Costing from £100 for a 1m length, the Titan Audio Nyx power cables could be a great starting point for people looking to upgrade from supplied cables. Alan McIntosh plumbs them into his system for a listen. 

I firmly believe buying the very best components for my budget in all aspects of my system and it has derived aggregated incremental gains as a result. That includes the power supply, of course. I have been starting to add higher grade power cables and blocks from different manufacturers into my system over the last few months, including DIY kits and usually the change, while at times very subtle, has been audible. Will you hear what I hear? Who can tell, we are all working with very different personal and architectural components in our rooms, but I for one am always interested in new components coming from good stables in the cable arena and so was very interested to hear Titans latest offering which is just hitting the market now.

CONSTRUCTION

Continuing on the theme of Greek mythology, Titan Audio has launched a new power cable called the Nyx. As a Titan user already I was keen to be one of the first to try it out, and with power cable among other things aiming to shield our music from unwanted noise, it’s apt then that the Nyx is so named after the Greek goddess of Night. The desirable inky darkness in the background of our music was perhaps a cue for the naming of this cable.

Throughout their range Titan power products have impressed me with a solid construction, high-quality materials, clear sonic results and strong aesthetics – that they are built here in the UK is a plus for many. Why do I mention aesthetics you may ask? When I am investing in components I want to see that investment from the manufacturer being evident throughout the full design and build process, it gives me a sense that the overall products is held up to inspection from drawing board to shipping, and confidence that those working on them take pride in what we as consumers implement into our beloved HiFi systems. Of course, function must match or exceed form when it comes to playback.

Like all their products and very unlike many well-known power cable manufactures who leverage China as a production base, the Nyx is hand made in Belfast, Northern Ireland and is positioned within the range as a High Current power cable, coming in above the Styx and below the Tyco with regards to price-point, both of which I already own (as well as the superb Helios). With three and half times the number of conductors than the well-priced Styx I think we can safely say that’s “high current”, so ideal for those looking to power key source components or amps.

Until now it felt like Titan had a slight gap in the pricing structure that the Nyx fills perfectly and with such high-quality IEC, plug and conductor content the £130 tag (1.5m) is exceptionally keen – a coup for Titan in an increasingly competitive market. The materials alone make this a very competitive solution in my eyes.

Cable construction itself is OFC (Oxygen Free Copper) with a PTFE sheath that’s dressed in Titan’s lovely woven outer. Each Titan cable has a signature colour with the Nyx being Black and Copper, with a matching transparent red IEC. The whole construction is designed to offer robust RFI shielding and high current delivery. Where the entry level, but very competent Styx has a decent but fairly basic black moulded plastic IEC and simple wall plug, the new Nyx has been graced with a custom high-quality copper watt-gate style model previously only available on the higher end Tyco and Helios cables, making this a very attractive solution indeed.

Titan has taken the decision to also offer Nyx with an improved wall plug that bears the Titan branding and available in either a UK, Euro or US variants. This “permaplug” style can be seen on some much higher-end offerings in the market typically coming in around £450, so you are getting a serious bang for your buck here – both plugs on Titan products are cryogenically treated – something that many manufacturers do provide, but often at a charge.

The Nyx, like many high-quality power cables has a certain girth and stiffness to it (to accommodate those conductors and shielding) so it’s very suitable that Titan offer the Nyx in a 1.5m length as I feel a 1m cable would have been slightly too short to fit some restricted back wall clearance systems when you factor in the curvature needed.

Suitable for running Amplifiers or the Titan Styx power blocks as well as key source components I wanted to test it in various configurations. Fitting the Nyx IEC to my Audiolab MDAC+, Auralic G1 or Arcam SACD it connected very snuggly into the female connector. When dealing with power I want nothing less than a solid, snug connection. I have found with some other cables, especially with self-build kits, that some IEC’s are somewhat loose in the female sockets of my set up, this doesn’t give me a good feeling and tends to distract me from enjoying the overall listening experience as I know it’s just not right. No such niggles with the Nyx.

The Nyx like all Titan products comes with an individual registration number and carries a lifetime replacement warranty. 

SOUND QUALITY

As my the test Nyx was brand new I connected it first to my Arcam CDS27 SACD player on repeat for a day or so before settling down for a more introspective listen.

Working my way through some well known CD’s I almost immediately heard a difference, which only deepened over time as either the Nyx continued to burn in or my listening became more acute to the improvements. As I worked through The Division Bell by Pink Floyd and then into a core test price – Melody Gardot’s Live In Europe – I was struck first by the edge of clarity brought, especially to percussion and drums – rim hits, snare and bass were just crisper, clearer – “thwackier!”-  in The Rain, a pacey and complex Jazz journey, the emotion of the piece was much more evident, drums were more immediate and I was surprised to find the bass digging deeper and with more “grunt” than before.

Time to move the Nyx to my Audiolab MDAC+ (being fed by my beloved Auralic Aries G1) and get to listening to tunes such as Kayleigh on Marillion’s Misplaced Childhood (Deluxe, 16bit/44Mhz) and again there is that enhancement of focus and space from an already strong starting point and with Alan Parsons Project’s Pyramid the kinetics and timbre of guitar on What Goes Up was brought into sharper relief and the whole tracks was imaged more deeply. Throughout that night, subsequent nights and even over the next few days, I had numerous moments where I just had to smile at how good my system was sounding. Massive Attack’s Angel from Mezzanine sealed the audio deal and I’d never heard it sound so good!

It’s unusual for most of us to have enough wall sockets for 6 or 7 components so we tend to use power blocks. I have invested already in Titans Styx block, which has a detachable power cord and so after running directly to source I moved it to power the block to allow me to compare like for like vs my a bog standard power lead. Overall vs the standard cable the lift was less evident that directly into source but it has the edge – Simples Minds Someone Somewhere (in Summer) came across fuller and better controlled, the bassline not boomier but certainly denser, and the whole piece came across as having a slightly improved imaging and avidity.

Suffice to say, I’ve had a couple of great weeks with this cable and yep, its staying… and I’ve already ordered and installed more of Titans offerings to gain the benefits across my whole system!

CONCLUSION

A superbly constructed cable offering great quality materials and a noticeable lift in playback. Providing a lift to energy, air and resolution especially on digital sources in my system. Versus the hot competition in the market today Titan has somehow managed to include genuinely class-leading components at an incredibly sharp price point and the Nyx should be on everyone’s audition list. I’ve now invested in more, as well as complimentary products. A bigger improvement for me direct into source but an improvement over the Styx when into one of the Titan power blocks.

AT A GLANCE

Build Quality: Superb! The materials, plug and IEC are all a class beating and are of great standard, and well above the norm for this price point, sheathing and termination are visually very attractive.

Sound Quality: Substantial improvement over my standard supplied cabling, while mostly it’s a revealing effect, the sense of energy, drive and clarity especially around percussion and detail is clear, with good ability to dig into and grip mid and bass.

Value for Money: With the inclusion of the high quality copper watt-gate style IEC, super quality wall plug and that tripling of the conductor material plus cryogenic treatment I frankly think you would be crazy to pass the Nyx by if looking to get into high-quality power cables for your amp, power bar or source components (Which I recommend to all!) .

Pros: The clear sonic improvement, build, aesthetics, quality of conducting material, fit of IEC, warranty

Cons: Nothing at this price.

Price: 1.0m = £100. 1.5m = £130. 3.0m = £220

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alan McIntosh

Review Equipment : Technics SL1210Mk3D, Origin Live Zephyr arm, Hana ML cartridge, Timestep PSU, Vincent Pho700 Phono Stage, Auralic Aries G1 Streaming Transport, Audiolab MDAC+  with Supra USB IC, Arcam CDS27 SACD player, Fyne Audio 500 speakers, WyWire Blue interconnects and speaker cable. GIK acoustic room treatments.

 

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