LAPP POWERCABLES




Pictured here are Lapp as well as Belden powercables, in various configurations, ready for extensive testing. We compared both the cables themself as well as the connectors.

All cables were tested in the same length, in combination with the same connectors and each cable was manufactured in the same way, plugged in for same phase and burned in the same duration. During testing only one cable at a time was connected, each time in the same position of the extensionblock.
Many shapes, sizes and prices

Most audiophiles have experimented with one Lapp type or another. Lapp cables come in many types and are offered at varying prices. Because they look largely alike from the outside, you may think that the sound couldn't be that much different across the line and you could just buy the cheapest one on offer. But you couldn't be more wrong. Soundwise they actually differ quite a bit. For starters, the amount of copper used makes a large difference as does the amount of conductors. For example, a cable carrying 3 conductors of 3mm each sounds different from a cable that has 6 conductors of 1,5mm. Even when you effectively use the same amount of copper for both cables. And, believe it or not: even the jacket itself has an effect on the sound. A rubbery material sounds different from PVC and transparent pvc sounds different from grey pvc.

All of these variables make for large differences in sound. There are Lapp cables that sound extremely dry, and cables that sound thin and emphasized and grainy in the treble and of course there are cables that combine these aspects.

The fun part is that I suspect that Lapp, the brand, are mostly unaware of the audible differences between their cables. They surely aren't designing them to sound different. After all, they are meant as control-cables for industrial machines such as robot-arms and heavy lifting machines, not as cables for audiophiles.
Lapp 191CY G1,5

Of all Lapp types, I like 191CY 7G1.5 best. It has full, deep bass that can be perceived to be a little slow compared to very fast sounding cables, but it is still articulate enough, combined with a rich midrange with full tonality, topped off with creamy-smooth treble that perhaps misses the last bit of air compared to very open sounding cables. But the best part of 191CY is that it will never make the music sound technical of clinical. Oh and the cable is very forgiving, too. It absolutely never sounds harsh. There are quicker and fresher cables around, Belden SJT 19364 3x2,1 for example, but that cable also sounds a little thin and dry and devoid of colour by comparison.

Here is how I wire it up. The wires are numbered. I use numbers 1,2,3 for live, 3,4,5 for neutral and remaining for earth (only one x 1.5, which I believe is officially not allowed). The latter is connected to the screen at the wall outlet side.

Lapp 110CY 3G2,5

Lapp 110CY 3G 2,5 is my second go-to Lapp cable. Compared to 191CY it sounds more powerful in the bass, in more rounded, voluptuous way. The 191CY sounds tighter and faster. Further comparing to the 191CY, the 110CY has a warmer midrange and smoother treble but at the cost of some focus and transient sharpness. Still, for some reason the 110CY works well as a main cable to an extensionblock.

For both cables goes: bring large diameter connectors that allow heavy gauge wire to the table such as Oyaide and IeGO. Ordinary connectors such as Bals and Kupp don't fit, unless you are particularly well-skilled, very patient and prepared to take out the drill.



Generic hints with respect to cable parameters in relation to their effect on the sound

-More copper = fuller sound (subjectively fatter bass) but also less articulate
-Less copper =  tighter sound (subjectively more control) but also less colourful
-Finer stranding (litze) = smoother, more refined treble, less good for bass control and transient sharpness
-Thicker stranding = more solid bass and more drive, but also drier treble
-Solid core = better for bass (solid, controlled, fast), less good for treble

-A given amount of conductors divided in individually insulated groups = more articulate but also drier
-Same amount of conductors put together in the same insulator = less articulate, but richer, creamier sound


Of course, there are exceptions, but generally, this is what it comes down to most of the time.

And lastly: the 110CY or 191CY are not perfect magical super cables. Like any other powercable, they have flaws in certain areas. Whether or not they will work well in your setup depends on your personal taste as well as your system-matching skills. That said: at their low prices, I don't know a better cable.

Now, go and buy yourself some cable and start experimenting!




MORE INFO:

List of all reviewed cables

Cable Length

Power Cables Info

Review: 3 IEC connectors compared

Review: 3 schuko connectors compared

Furutech versus IeGO connectors on a Lapp cable

Oyaide Tunami versus PA23 powercable


Servo-FD781 and Robust 215C

Some newer Lapp cables sound very different from what I consider the Lapp house sound. The Servo-FD 781 is one such cable. It looks nice, with its bright orange jacket but I didn't like its sound. Like the latest rubbery black cable introduced, the Robust 215C, this orange cable sounds very controlled and dry. It has excellent bass definition and articulation and overall detailling is very good, but the highs are too damped for my tastes. By that I don't mean that the cable sounds dull, but that the highs appear "blocky", much like digital signals. When there is a peak signal, you hear it, but it is switched off too soon, not slowly decaying into the black background. The treble just isn't fluid or airy, but rather too precise. A cable suited for some extreme systems, but not a universal cable.


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