Titan Audio, A relatively new company, starting out in 2013 and based in Northern Ireland with a passion for getting the best mains power to your HiFi equipment. Not only do Titan strive to construct the very best power cables and connections, they back their work up with a “Lifetime” guarantee too. Here Dave Robson will be be testing their Styx Power Distribution Block and the first three power cables in their line up. The Styx, Tyco and Helios power cables.

CONSTRUCTION 

Styx Power Distribution Block. (£150) 

The Styx Power Distribution Block, is a relatively slim and lightweight affair. It is constructed from aluminium with acrylic ends which also form the feet for the module. Fit and finish is excellent, the Titan Audio logo embedded into the acrylic is a nice touch and although quite simple in external design there is a quality look and feel to the product. It’s inside the Styx Block where the technology surpasses some of the other distribution blocks on the market. Now I’m to expert when it comes to “electric-trickery” so I’m not going to try and bamboozle you with science, but most power blocks use a “Bus-bar” to distribute the electric within the block, this takes the electric connection at one end and then the other plug sockets run off that supply. Not so here, the Styx sockets are individually hand wired with OFCC copper cable so that the supply of the current is the same to the first socket and through to the last socket. This ensures each component attached has the same supply and does not degrade sound quality down the power supply chain.

You need to fit a separate power cable to the Styx and as the company have sent me several cables I choose to use their “Helios” power cable, as this can supply double current to the other cables here due to the amount of copper used in it’s construction. The operation of inserting the plugs into the sockets is a fuss free affair, and feels secure on all sockets with no variation in tightness or tension.

Styx Power Cable 1m. (£50).

The Styx Power Cable is the base model in the Titan line up, it offers an entry onto the upgrade path and it’s main intention is for use with ancillary equipment like CD players etc. Fit and finish on the Styx Power Cable is fantastic. Even though this is the base model in the line up, there is still an individual reference number where you can register your product for it’s “Lifetime” guarantee. The Styx has a three core construction, each using 30 x 0.25 strand OFCC copper cabling. It has extruded PVC and galvanised steel braid internally and finished in a classy black and green woven outer jacket, all there to reduce RFI and EMI interference. The IEC plug has Copper pins and all plugs are screw fixed and hand tightened, no solder involved in their construction, which may reduce final sound quality.

Tyco Power Cable 1.5m (£100).

The Tyco Power Cable is of the same excellent finish as the previous cable and distribution block. The cable I have here is the standard 1.5m version but longer lengths are available. The cable is constructed with the inner OFCC cores laid out in a twisted pattern and shielded in PTFE outer and shrouded in a polythene woven jacket. The plugs on the Tyco can be either UK, Shuko or US type, at the component end is a Wattgate style plug, and all plugs are cryogenically treated. The Wattgate plugs fit positively and snugly within their housing and give a secure connection.

Helios Power Cable. (£175).

The Helios Power Cables comes third in line, no need to elaborate on the build as I’m accustomed to the qualities and attention to detail the artisans at Titan purvey. The Helios has been designed to supply a greater current delivery, so perfect for Power Amplifiers and A/V equipment alike. Its use is also recommended for plugging into the Styx Power Block where several pieces of equipment may be plugged in and drawing on power from your mains. Like all cables in this series there is plenty of shielding to reduce EFI and RFI interference and the smart clear blue plugs are cryogenically treated. The only downside to these “Hosepipe” type cables is that they are all quite stiff and don’t bend and twist easily, that’s the same for all manufacturers so quite normal.

SOUND QUALITY 

After following the advice from the very knowledgable guys at Titan I decided to wire up my system and their cables using the Helios Power Cable to supply the Titan Power Block, the Tyco to supply my power amplifier, and the rest of the Styx Power Cables to supply the power supply to the Dac and the CD Transport. My thought was to swap the power to the Amplifier which is sensitive to where or what it is getting its power from between the wall socket and the Styx Block.

After a week or two of occasional listening I took on some serious listening sessions. My initial thoughts over the previous days where positive, the sound had settled quickly. My other Power supplies were of a good standard and upgrades from the supplied ones, all identical and all wall mounted. When I had my listening space built I had quite a few sockets fitted and a mains spur and consumer unit fitted, so new and hopefully clean electric to the system.

Clean and clear, my thoughts on these Titan products, playing several of my favourite test tracks and albums, I had the feeling of a little lift to the whole performance. A deeper and wider presentation with more breathing space between instruments and vocals. This was making the ambiance of the listening experience feel like you where being sucked into the recording that little bit more than usual, this is more evident especially with pseudo live recordings.

The amplifier came across as quite relaxed with the Tyco, a certain improvement over my usual cable. Bass notes where taut without being unnatural or fluffy, a defined edge and form made the music flow, there was a little more depth to each note and my blues and funk compilation loved it. The top end came across as sparkling and shiny without any brashness or hardness becoming evident.

The supplied bundle of Titan cables certainly seeming to work very well together, the “In-House” synergy seems to be alive and well and complimenting my system and the music. John Martyn “Church With One Bell”, Sade “Stronger Than Pride”, Eva Cassidy “Nightbird” and Steely Dan “Gaucho” among some albums playing. Nothing of my usual fare seemed odd or out of tune using the Titan cables, just a level and natural lift of the enjoyment levels, with the sonics keeping your ears fixed to what the music was saying to your senses. As the hours of listening ticked by, the whole experience became more and more enjoyable, whether that was me getting used to the little nuances now audible or the set of cables bedding in further and further I can’s comment

One late night session, when all was chilled, relaxed and quiet, I came to a moment with my John Martyn recording, everything just clicked into place, the volume was set that tiny bit higher than normal, the music just opened up and he was there! The soundstage was wide and deep, I was inside the music, all the pain and emotion in his voice was quite evident, the instruments all doing their part to attend the the needs of the recording. Quite a surreal moment when you know you have never heard a better sound from that album on your system, and yes it did make me swear out loud! Any number of variables may have gotten me to arrive at this point that night, but the Titan cables, used in their recommended formation really has to be the common denominator for my little epiphany.

CONCLUSION 

Titan Audio Cables have done a brilliant job in assembling a set of cables that for not a bank breaking amount can lift and enhance your listening experience. Whatever methods and materials they have incorporated into their designs, this adds up to something that works for me. If you are just starting out looking at upgrading your power cable supplies, then the Styx will be my go to recommendation. The Styx Power Block again, is superb, as it doesn’t seem to effect the sound any differently than if equipment is plugged into the wall socket, which is exactly what you want. My Amplifier is quite sensitive to where it is plugged into, the sound can either shift leaner or heavier or tinnier and hard depending on its connection. There was no noticeable difference when it was connected to the Styx block with the Helios as its electric supply partner. This for me is a little holy grail and knowing there is a solution to connection issues if they arrive is a reassurance.

AT A GLANCE 

A well built set of cables that do exactly what you want. Competitively priced and should be on your audition list.

Build Quality:  

Excellent fit and finish and attention to detail.

Sound Quality: 

These Titan Audio cables in the formation recommended proved an enhancement to my system and thus listening experience. Very neutral and balanced, throwing nothing unusual or distasteful into the final sound, giving the equipment the clean feed of power it needed. That little lift to the sound we all appreciate.

Value For Money: 

Excellent value for money, the little extra brought to the game could and possibly would have cost a fair bit more if equipment swapping where to take place. Sometimes the simple things can reap great rewards.

Pros:

Great sound, great value for money, and a good family sound that has synergy with its stablemates. The added “Lifetime Guarantee” gives peace of mind and customer commitment. 

Cons:

The larger diameter cables are a little stiff and unwieldy as all the heavy tube style cables are. My only real gripe is that the Styx Power Block connects it main power cable from above and not at the end laterally. This reduces the “length” of cable reach. It also makes the block tilt and fall depending on the thickness of cable your supplying power with.

David Robson

Review Equipment.

Mytek Brooklyn Pre/dac, (with Sbooster linear power supply), Nord NC500 Power Amp, Oppo UDP 205 (used as Transport). Wilson Benesch Arc Speakers. Chord Shawline Digital Coax. Black Cat Redline Tube Speaker Cable.

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