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AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium

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Posted on September 4, 2013 at 01:46:50
thom70
Audiophile

Posts: 78
Location: RM
Joined: June 26, 2007
Did someone compared rhodium plugs vs silver plugs?
I'm actually using on my DIY power cord rhodium plugs (IEC and AC) made by Valab with aluminium barrel and I was planning to try some silver ac plugs.
Thom

 

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RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 4, 2013 at 13:11:40
TRUFI
Audiophile

Posts: 622
Location: So. California
Joined: March 16, 2002
The base metal is more important. Copper sounds better than brass, IMO. Gold plated copper is warmer than Rhodium plated copper. Silver plated copper can also sound good. The outlet should also match the plug and IEC plug to IEC inlet if you want perfection. :)

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 4, 2013 at 14:16:09
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
IME, often when the same metal plating is implemented for all AC connector interfaces, it can emphasize the sonic signature of the plating (too much of a good thing or simply unacceptable sounding), which is contrary to the audiophile notion of avoiding the use of dissimilar metals.

For example, a Wattgate 330i Ag Audio Grade Silver AC plug when plugged into a Wattgate 381 Ag Audio Grade Silver AC outlet sounds very lean and stark, with an unnatural sounding lack of tonal bloom, to my ear. On the other hand, when a Wattgate 330i Audio Grade Gold AC plug is plugged into Wattgate 381 Ag Audio Grade Silver AC outlet, a neutral sounding synergy is found, IME.

IME, the first discovery of this type of connector/outlet synergy was found when a palladium + gold Oyaide SWO-XXX AC outlet was mated with a gold Oyaide P-079 AC plug, while an Oyaide connector/outlet combo with the same plating either sounded too lean/speedy, or too warm/lush.

However, when the platinum + palladium Oyaide R1 Beryllium AC outlet became available, I found the platinum + palladium Oyaide P-004 Beryllium AC plug to be a perfect match if the sonic signature of the Oyaide R1 was a desirable thing for system tuning purposes.

YMMV

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 4, 2013 at 14:50:21
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
In general, I find rhodium plating tends to present a notably smooth sounding characteristic with a somewhat neutral tonality (if not a bit cool/cold sounding), and a more front row sounding presentation as compared to gold plating which is more laid back, full bodied, and more middle row, while silver plating tends to sound leaner, with emphasized leading edge transients depending on various factors such as the base metal and particular AC outlets.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 5, 2013 at 03:29:05
thom70
Audiophile

Posts: 78
Location: RM
Joined: June 26, 2007
I have found Furutech gold plated plugs too much warm and so on also IEGO copper plugs.
I'm looking for neutral sounding plugs with refined highs but not too much dry or cold, possibly smooth or silky sounding highs.
So do you think, in general, rhodium will be more smooth or less cold than silver in higs?
It would be great of course also to keep weight in the low midrange and bass area....

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 5, 2013 at 09:45:35
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
What make/model AC outlet is the power cord plugged into?

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 5, 2013 at 11:17:45
Mikey8811
Audiophile

Posts: 178
Joined: June 4, 2011
Hi Duster

I am currently using an Oyaide MTB 6 with the original SWO DX Ultimo outlets (silver and rhodium plated). Power cords are Triode Wire Labs (pure copper plugs) from equipment to distributor and from Maestro wall outlet (high-purity copper/brass alloy mix with no plating) to distributor.

The overall sound is detailed but I find highs slightly bright on less pristine recordings,the sound lacking bloom and would like more body and warmth.

Would you be so kind as to suggest if the mix is wrong for my preferences and how you would address it (most economically) in terms of plugs or AC outlets? I am guessing the cheapest option would be to try a gold plated Oyaide SWO GX Ultimo outlet or the more costly Furutech GTX D Gold.

Otherwise I would have to fine tune by changing to warmer interconnects like Cardas Golden Cross.

Thanks

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 5, 2013 at 14:07:30
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
I found the rhodium + silver Oyaide P-037 AC plug to sound tipped-up in the treble, and to present the soundstage perspective in a strange manner with odd imaging, as if an attempt to sound "hi-fi-ish" was the fundamental goal of the design. As such, I reckon your dissatisfaction is based on the rhodium + silver SWO-DX Ultimo outlets, so replacements would be advisable. There are a number of options to consider.

The gold Oyaide SWO-GX AC outlet is also disappointing, as it sounds too warm/lush/sluggish, if not somewhat congested in comparison to the gold Oyaide P-079 AC plug when evaluated individually. On the other hand, the palladium + gold Oyaide SWO-XXX AC outlet provides excellent synergy with gold plated AC plugs, an unplated copper AC plug such as the Furutech FI-11M(Cu), and rhodium Valab AC plugs which benefit from the vivid liquidity of the Oyaide SWO-XXX.

I would suggest replacing the Maestro AC outlet at the wall with an Oyaide SWO-XXX, replace one of the Oyaide SWO-DX in the Oyaide MTB 6 with the Maestro AC outlet, and replace the other two Oyaide SWO-DX with yet to be determined make/model AC outlets based on your particular audio components and specific system tuning goals, since a mix-and-match approach can be a very good thing from an audiophile POV if experimentation is not too much of a daunting thing to explore.

You also might consider simple x-cap filters installed on each of the Oyaide MTB 6 AC outlets.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 5, 2013 at 18:36:52
TRUFI
Audiophile

Posts: 622
Location: So. California
Joined: March 16, 2002
Furutech FPX-G gold outlet is more economical.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 6, 2013 at 03:50:09
thom70
Audiophile

Posts: 78
Location: RM
Joined: June 26, 2007
Nothing hi-fi grade, simply brass commercial outlets, I have not yet arrived to the tuning of the AC outlet.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 6, 2013 at 10:01:35
Mikey8811
Audiophile

Posts: 178
Joined: June 4, 2011
Hi Duster

What are x-Cap Filters?

Also, you did not suggest Oyaide R1 or R0 outlets. Was there a reason? I have always wondered what they sound like vis-a=vis the SWO DX Ultimo's on the MTB 6.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 7, 2013 at 10:40:52
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
The x-cap filter I mentioned is the installation of a simple 0.1F metalized polypropylene X2 safety interference suppression capacitor placed across the live and neutral of each AC outlet in order to provide mild AC noise filtering.

You mentioned the desire for an economical suggestion, so I did not consider you would purchase three Oyaide R1 or R0 AC outlets.

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 11, 2013 at 09:20:12
Mikey8811
Audiophile

Posts: 178
Joined: June 4, 2011
Hi

So how would you describe the sound of Oyaide R1 or R0 vis-a-vis the SWO DX Ultimo?

Thanks

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on September 11, 2013 at 12:20:58
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
You mentioned that with the current SWO-DX AC outlets in place, the highs are slightly bright on less pristine recordings, and the sound is lacking tonal bloom and you would like more body and warmth. I think that what you describe is exactly what the R1 would help you solve, but I can't be certain that there may be another issue(s) elsewhere in your system. That said, the essential sonic signature of the Oyaide R1 is a relaxed yet detailed treble energy (not bright), warm presence without sounding too euphonic, a full-bodied tonality, and a tunefully pronounced bottom end. However, I can't predict what kind of synergy you might find via your particular power cord AC plugs. YMMV

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on November 21, 2013 at 12:04:59
Mikey8811
Audiophile

Posts: 178
Joined: June 4, 2011
Hi Duster

Following up on this, I plan to purchase a Cardas Golden Reference power cord with silver plated rhodium plugs. The cable by itself is warm full bodied cable with the traditional Cardas midrange. Will the plugs tip up the balance unfavorably into brightness plugged into the Oyaide SWO DX receptacles on my MTB 6? Or will it slightly counter balance the warm nature of the cable to give a more balanced sound? In other words, which has a greater effect, the cable or the connectors?

 

RE: AC Plugs: silver vs rhodium, posted on November 21, 2013 at 15:43:43
Duster
Manufacturer

Posts: 17117
Location: Pacific Northwest
Joined: August 25, 2002
Cardas may have chosen the rhodium Furutech FI-15(R) type AC connectors for the Cardas Golden Reference power cord in order to counter-balance the warm sonic signature of the power cable. If so, the Oyaide SWO-DX AC outlet might add a leaner sounding gestalt with a tipped-up treble and a reticent bottom end, but I can only postulate rather than predict those as a result. It might be a fine match or sound completely unsatisfactory. If you have right of return for your purchase, it might be worth a try.

 

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