Duelund 16GA Tinned Copper Hookup Wire Experiment – Bottlehead SE Experimenters Amp Updates
We both have.
I’ve been running the amp hard, and estimate we’ve got nearly 40 hours on it since the upgrade.
The wire brought a remarkable improvement to sound quality, just as it did when used as speaker wire. Tone and timbre are more natural and ‘real’ sounding. The harmonic complexities of well recorded voices and acoustic intruments are better represented. Dynamics have been elevated: the micro are more tactile and, macro shifts are startling at times. Duelund chose the materials – and specifically the cotton sheath for its more natural properties. I find that this translates to more natural sound.
When listening to Joshua Redman‘s Trios Live record via Tidal/Roon, the overall high level impression is one of heightened energy. The music is simply more engaging. The improvements make an already riveting live performance that much more gratifying.
Moving down toward the stage level, I can hear/see the corona of brassy colors circling Greg Hutchinson’s kit when he’s at his most intense. There are many cymbal tones buffeting one another, like waves in a pool – all better resolved and more realistically colored by my system now, and it’s satisfying to hear Hutchinson’s masterful touch better represented. One strike sends a cymbals rivets into a small cloud of metallic bits – like a swarm of fireflys.
The described improvements to sound quality are comparing the Duelund wire to the stock copper wire Bottlehead provided. It’s sheathed in plastic of some sort. I believe the stock wire is 20ga. The Duelund is 16ga stranded wire, which is certainly more challenging to work with in this application. Duelund does sell 20ga tinned copper wire too, so this may be a better solution for those looking to upgrade hookup wire in an amp.
Another thing to consider: I was confident that the cotton sheathed Duelund wire would be fine in the Bottlehead amp because it’s not delivering super high voltages. So far, I’ve had no issues with the wires performance in this amp over the past week. On the first day I ran the amp for 12 hours, so reached peak temperatures and the wire has remained solid under these operating conditions.
I will follow up later and provide an update on this Bottlehead/Duelund pairing.
Thanks for listening.