Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 Speaker Cables
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  1. #1
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    Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 Speaker Cables

    Hello fellow members. Thought I would post a review of the latest addition to my system for those considering or otherwise interested in the Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 speaker cables with the SR Grounding Block. By way of recap, my system consists of: an ARC Ref. 10 pre-amp, Octave MRE 220 monoblocks sourced by an Ayre C-5xeMP connected to Shunyata power conditioners (separating digital from analogue) sitting on a double-wide SRX with Shunyata interconnects and power cables, all feeding a pair of ProAc K-6's. Before I start upgrading the digital front end of my system, I decided to first change-out the speaker cables from my Acoustic Zen Satori Shotguns. I set out, as we hunter and gatherers usually do, to seek out various choices. Given my set-up the first choice for review was obviously Shunyata SC's. I then explored some of the other brands hailed by we audiophiles as top tier in the price range of $5 - 15k (not too stratospheric as pricing for speaker cables go). To get to the punch line: I bought a 9' pair of SR Atmosphere Level 4's in a bi-wired configuration. Not because of the relatively reasonable pricing or the incredible build quality and design, but because of the incomparable performance. None of the other speaker cables I auditioned measure up to the Level 4's, even the more expensive Element CTS's which are the reference cable for many professional reviewers. I have to say the Level 4's have been an absolutlely outstanding upgrade that far exceeded my expectation of what a couple of runs of wire could do for a system. Most of the other cables I tried, including Straight Wire, offered something more than the Satori's (which are great in their own right) as you would expect given advancements in wire and insulation materials and design since the Satori's showed up in the market many years ago. The Level 4's did everything better: speed, details, nuances and dynamics (without being bright, brittle or overly analytical); warm expressive mids; the bass we love and pine for but often don't get, the widest and deepest soundstage of the punch (behind the system and along the side walls) and spectacular separation of instruments and voices on that stage. My needs/objectives for elements in my system are simple but sometimes difficult to attain: let it be as real as a live/studio performance. The SR Atmosphere Level 4's deliver that without compromise and have helped mine from the other components/elements in my system the best of their performance towards that objective. The CTS's, which I had in my system for 6 weeks, came close - but no cigar. The CTS's, though very impressive, were a bit more compressed and struggled to deliver the coherent (time aligned) response of the Level 4's particularly in woodwind, cymbal and piano note reproduction. The sustain and decline was palpably more impressive and real, as is the human voice. I am going to switch out my Shunyata Anaconda interconnects to the Level 4's now I have witnessed what the speaker cables deliver. Not expecting the same step change from switching out the Satori's, but will let you know what I discover for those who might be interested. Take care all.

  2. #2
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    Re: Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 Speaker Cables

    Spyder,

    Better late than never eh? It only took 2 years!

    Very nice review, well thought out and articulated. Do you still have the Level 4’s? Curious to see how they held up over the last two years and if you completed the loom? Or did you find something else?

    Adam

  3. #3
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    Re: Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 Speaker Cables

    Hi Adam. No worries. I've made a few changes to my system since. Currently: Esoteric K-01X, Antipodes SX, Jubilee Pre-amp, Jubilee MRE 220's w/Super Black Boxes. The CD player and Preamp were serious upgrades over their predecessors and have rendered an absolute step change in performance across the board. I have kept my SR Atmosphere Level 4 speaker cables, which have never disappointed. Yes; I have a complete loom of SR now based on their performance. However, I went up a level to the Galileo UEF interconnects. Wow!! Yes; they are expensive but I bought them as "a keeper". They are. Good listening and all the best ... Let me know if you need more details. Take care.

    Ray

  4. #4
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    Re: Synergistic Research Atmosphere Level 4 Speaker Cables

    Thanks Ray!

    I would love to be at that level, maybe some day.


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