Brandt Audio Cables

Charles Brandt of Brandt Audio and Machainehifi writes: "I am one of the rare producers of high-end audio equipment who is also active in organising concerts. Every summer since 2007 I have organised a ten-day classical music festival with a friend. Being this close to live music has resulted in me having a particularly critical ear when I hear it played back."

Whilst “amplified” music is fairly easy to reproduce with a greater margin for error, non-amplified classical music is a more delicate proposition. Here the harmonics, the timbre, the dynamics are extremely important. When I listen to Bach’s suites, I like to hear the depth and timbre of the cello and viscerally experience the sensuality of its tone. Listening to a recording of a piano recital, I like to have the impression of the instrument right in front of me. And when I listen to a chamber music ensemble, I want to make out the harmonics and have a tangible feel for each instrument as if it were a living thing. I want to experience a symphony orchestra in its full magnificence.

It is essential that classic music is reproduced faithfully; this allows many hours of listening without fatigue. Listening both stimulates and relaxes you and just as at a live concert, it fills you with a positive energy. It is possible to recreate this experience of “the happy moment” at home and I have been spending a large part of my time trying to do so.

Along with some professional audio colleagues, friends of mine who are highly experienced in electrical engineering and material science, we developed original solutions using litz wires, a type of conductor that promised to deliver better performance than traditional conductors. We have also introduced an architectural design that optimizes inductance effects, preventing signal distortion by producing a coherent and linear audio signal.

Cables are a truly vital link in a hi-fi system; they are the platform on which dazzling sound reproduction is built. BRANDT-AUDIO produce unique cables that will make you addicted to music.

BRANDT-AUDIO cables are unshielded, created and handcrafted in Switzerland. Each cable, constructed to a special design, requires hours of meticulous work. It is carefully made with very high-quality materials that are produced specially for BRANDT-AUDIO. Particular attention is paid to insulating materials, natural silk and nylon.

1/ How do you choose your speaker cable?

First of all it must be said that in a constant concern for quality I have developed my own weldable connectors, bananas and forks. Their plating of 5 microns of fine gold (usually 4 microns in the jewelry industry and 2 microns in hi-fi) eliminates the need for a prior layer of nickel (nickel is magnetic). These beautiful connectors ensure a perfect passage of current between the amplifier and the speakers.


COLTRANE & VERDI II: These two cables are acoustically very close, but the VERDI II has an architecture that offers more space, which translates into a boost in the soundstage. The VERDI II can be mounted on request in bi-wiring in the same conductors. These are generous and harmonious cables with lots of bass.

WAGNER II is an evolution of the first generation WAGNER with a marked improvement in construction. This cable is the one that equips the speakers of the SE series of the STENHEIM ALUMINE TREE and FIVE. It is an extremely lively cable with nevertheless an exceptional softness and musicality.

Raising the speaker cables on small studs is strongly recommended.

If the use of “bridges” is required by the construction of the speakers, it is essential to use those of the same material as the speaker cabling, otherwise you will not be able to enjoy all the qualities of your cables.

1/ And how to choose your interconnect?

The two models of RCA plugs that I have selected for my interconnect cables have nickel free plating. I remind you that the nickel which favors the resistance of the plating is magnetic, it causes a slight loss in the high frequencies of the signal equivalent to a decrease in the definition.

WAGNER or DEBUSSY which one to choose? The Debussy interconnect models offer incredible definition, they are very lively, they are “studio” or “monitor” interconnects, while the Wagner are softer and more musical. The choice will depend on what you want to obtain but also on the acoustics of the listening room and the electronics in place.

The KLEI connectors fitted as standard for all Brandt-Audio RCA interconnects are tremendous from a musical point of view, these connectors designed by Eichmann (KLEI) are made in Australia and known to purists to be the best in the world. Previously Karl-Louis founded the ETI brand which he sold a few years ago to create an even more successful model with KLEI. These are my favorite RCA connectors, they are silver copper, the plastic body minimizes the impact of the metal mass, I substitute the M3 retaining screws with non-magnetic brass screws. It is an almost “direct” passage of sound between the cable and the terminal block of the device to which it is connected. Acoustically these connectors are very soft and terribly musical. Their only restriction is that they are not suitable for WBT RCA terminal blocks which have a spiral contact, the contact being made at a single point, if the plug is not positioned in front of the necessary contact the sound does not pass!

The RCA CARDAS connectors, beautifully made, “sticks” all around the plug, contact is made very well on all the terminal blocks. Very solid, they are made of rhodium-plated golden brass, the sound produced by CARDAS is colder and very analytical. From an aesthetic point of view the CARDAS are beautiful with their gilding and rhodium plating.

For the XLRs connectors, I chose a very well-known NEUTRIK standard model. Made in Switzerland, it is used by most cable manufacturers. The high-end CARDAS XLR, offered as an option, is made of fine materials and is nickel free, while there is nickel under the plating of NEUTRIK. In comparison to CARDAS, the sound passing through NEUTRIK seems to be off. Of course, it is not dramatic and we can live with it, but the freshness and liveliness of CARDAS are clearly superior.

Fine-tuning a cable takes a lot of time. BRANDT-AUDIO cables have reached maturity. Perfectly balanced, they are produced individually in a specialized workshop in Geneva, Switzerland.