Kimber Kable’s Select range is the company’s premium line of copper and silver cables. The KS2416 CU is the entry point for its top USB line, with a copper/silver and pure silver cable above it. In the high-end USB cable world, where spending a hefty four figure sum for one metre of USB is not considered ‘extreme’, the £408 price tag for this cable is a breath of fresh air, especially as the cable comes so well packaged in its own Peli case. It’s good to know that, in the event of a flood, your USB cable comes with its own pressure-sealed and waterproofed packaging (in truth, once the cable goes between computer and DAC, the box becomes a perfect container for everyday official Man stuff).
The cable itself is handmade from two solid-core copper conductors for signal and two ‘VariStrand’ stranded copper conductors for the +5V and ground, all laid in a typical Kimber Kable braided geometry construction. This is then wrapped in a dual layer shielding, said to be frequency optimised and comes in a very elegant rich glossy black finish, all topped off with Kimber’s own wooden covers for the USB A and B sockets: the company has no plans to make any other kind of USB socket, so micro-USB users miss out. This cable is then supplied in a little stiff clear plastic bag, inside the said Peli case and the whole caboodle is supplied in a white cardboard outer. In short, the whole package gives off an air of quiet confidence to the buyer, like you are buying a fine diver’s watch. While some will will bemoan the fact that they are paying for the packaging, little things like this matter to many people.
The performance of the cable is excellent in several important ways. First, it’s extremely good at soundstage resolution, presenting a large, open, and particularly deep image on all kinds of music. It doesn’t matter how complex or how simple the sound is; it works exceptionally well and teases out a fine soundstage from the recording. This also has the advantage of being approximately the right size; no artificially enhanced ‘attack of the 50ft singer’ moments unless the recording overstated the image to begin with. This works extremely well with orchestral recordings, which get a sense of layering and spacing that sometimes seems to get lost in the handover from Compact Disc to hard disk. You feel a very real sense of sitting in front of a live orchestra here.
The cable is also good at resolving detail and dynamic range, without placing emphasis on particular frequencies or exaggerating micro or macrodynamics. If there is a shortcoming, it’s perhaps not the most immediate and rhythmic of portrayals, but these are not major quibbles, more minor observations and I would rather have this balance than a rhythmically tight but too bright or forward cable.
If I could sum up the Kimber Select KS2416 CU in a single word, that word would be ‘balance’, which is what makes it a fine cable to sit and listen to for hours on end. Highly recommended.
Price and contact details
Manufactured by: Kimber Kable
Distributed in the UK by: Russ Andrews
Tel: +44(0)1539 797300