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Cable differences (again stressing those within well-designed bounds) can be from subtle to moderate in potency and mostly apply to nuances. Some may have superior bass control or a pleasing creaminess to the midrange which could be deliberate voicing manipulations by the manufacturers and/or interface results peculiar to the review system. As audiophiles we are also bound to overreact and magnify certain cable differences. But that’s not to say these differences could not be important to a given audiophile. Subtle or not, the value of disparity between two cables comes down to the listener’s sonic priorities and willingness to invest.

Having said that and the PSC AG Monolith’s exorbitant price notwithstanding, the idea of extending the signal-carrying conductor to become the connecting pin bypassing extra solder joins and additional bits with their LCR corollaries no matter how well-engineered not only makes sense in the most obvious ways but ought to have sonically benign effects. You’d then think someone would have employed such a scheme eons ago.

According to PSC Audio this is its unique contribution [Serguei Timachev of Stealth for just one might beg to differ – Ed]. The PSC team could not stress to me enough also the supreme quality of construction materials as you’d better expect for the price. The company is extremely proud and secretive about its achievement in the purity and metallurgy of their conductor/connector as an ultra pure single solid-core silver ribbon in an air dielectric dressed in a glaring silver-toned leather jacket. The Monolith arrives packaged in an equally loud silver leather zip-up pouch. Regarding this exotic cable’s cost, its value will be a reflection on what buyers consider to be its sonic merit. My observations are simply based on the AG Monolith’s performance. I’ll leave price to stock market analysts.

So then… are you per chance a detail fiend? You are going to flip your wig in huzzahs. The AG Monolith is an absolute freak when it comes to passing on information from the grooves and pits. I’m talking a manner of nuance you simply didn’t suspect was on the recording. Play a simple solo instrumental for example—be it piano, guitar, bass guitar, violin doesn’t matter—I heard delicacies and minutiae that never had been there before with literally dozens of single cables or complete looms. The level of detail with this cable was phenomenal. This wasn’t accompanied by brashness, grain or etch although the presentation was certainly vivid. It’s as PSC stated above. A cable can’t add detail. It simply can subtract less to expose more of where others failed. This it does better than any other I’ve tried.

This level of detail supplemented astonishing dynamic contrasts that ought to extend as far as your equipment’s capabilities will allow. Voices were spookily present. The deep raspy tones of Chris Jones and Patty Larkin, the sweet and velvet birdsong of Tori Amos and Karen Carpenter all were presented with such dynamic realism and tonal authenticity that I found myself digging through the music cabinet for hours on end to apply the same unexpected magnification on the next recording. As the cliché goes, veils were torn asunder.

The AG Monolith presents a bullet-proof case that it won’t be your components holding back the sound when it comes to these attributes. Other qualities followed on as the next domino fell as a result of tremendous transparency. The lower frequencies had inner detail augmented by snappiness or jump factor with transient speed and attack that had me grooved to the music to get the muses’ and music’s intent.

This was akin to comparing 480p or 720p to 1080p going from standard to Full HD. It equated to higher levels of musical detail, better resolving power and instrumental separation, tighter bass and an absence of strain or grain. I’ve had all manner of cables through my system featuring a scope of configurations, materials and topologies. None of them even approached the AG Monolith’s power of detail retrieval, transparency and bass righteousness which I experienced in my system when connecting them.

Modest as my technical knowledge is, I must assume that this rediscovery of previously buried musical treasures has to be the result of not only extreme silver conductor purity but a more efficient signal transfer that was less impeded by the usual electrical hurdles and obstacles of solder and connectors.

As to the lofty price, PSC Audio invokes the ever-rising cost of high-purity silver, their expensive and time-consuming proprietary silver-purifying process, the milling of the delicate conductors on the purpose-bought CNC machine, the sophisticated procedures involved in the shaping and forming of the conductor and its connection support. And R&D spanning 15 years. All that was costed in. I’m not here to justify 42 big ones. I’m here for the sound. As I hopefully conveyed, it’s shockingly good. If you have the green and experience it, you’ll buy. If you build it then they will come.

Silver is the new black
Innovation cycles are spaced far in the audio industry but evolution grinds on at a slow pace. In the last decade class D amplification has reemerged from its late 60s/early 70s birth to become more refined and ubiquitous. Over the last few decades transducer technologies have seen the emergence of exotic materials like titanium, synthetic diamond, Beryllium and ceramics. I won’t even mention high-resolution files.

I once believed cables were the only area in hifi that could no longer present us with anything truly new, just reconfigurations of the tried and true. As far as I can make out—and the company of course reinforces this—PSC Audio as a small outfit in this innovative country some call Down Under has introduced in the AG Monolith a cable that can be called truly novel. Different for the sheer sake of difference is of course highly questionable. Here we have compelling sonic evidence that cable novelty has been put fully in the service of pushing audible boundaries. Being green with jaded as our publisher recently put it on the subject, I wasn’t prepared for this encounter. This is no call to abolish common sense. At times breakthroughs simply occur at quite radical costs. It’ll be in applied trickle down that such advances are shared with more of us. For now the PSC AG Monolith shows what’s possible when cost is no issue.
Quality of packing: Nice leather zip case.
Reusability of packing: Usable for many years.
Condition of component received: As new.
Website comments: Expanding website
Human or web interactions: Excellent rapport
Final comments & suggestions: Malleable cable that’s easy to route.
PSC Audio website