Shielding & Insulation

Electrostatic & electromagnetic noise

We live in a world filled with electric and electronic devices. These devices cause electrostatic and electromagnetic noise. Ever heard the strange pulsating sounds from your cell phone, bleeding through the loudspeakers in your car? There are many more noise sources that are less obvious but also influence the quality of your audio – and therefore your listening experience: Wi-Fi base stations, the nearby radio transmitter, the medical equipment of the hospital or physical therapist close by or the elevator in the apartment building. These noises get into your audio signal and distort its quality by masking the low-level details.

Shielding: limiting external noise Interference

Good cables must keep the noise out by using a fence around the conductor, called the shielding. In short, this is a braided layer around the core of the cable. In between the core and shielding is an isolator to keep them apart. Not only to avoid a short circuit but also to regulate the interaction between the core and the shield that determines a part of the electrical properties of the cable. The better the quality of the shielding and the bigger the space between the shield and the isolator, the less noise interferes with the signal that passes through the cable.

Insulation to protect your audio signal against internal noise

Even when a cable’s shield keeps external noises out, there is a chance the cable generates noise ‘internally’. This happens when the distance between the cable’s core and shielding varies because of mechanical, electrical, or magnetic forces on a cable that has a soft, compressible insulation between the core and shielding. This causes a phenomenon called Micro Movement Distortion.

A soft, compressible insulation has another disadvantage: when a cable is bent and the insulation between the core and the shielding is soft, the core is pulled to the inside of the bend. The shorter distance not only reduces the effectiveness of the shielding, but also changes the electrical properties of the cable. This can have negative effects on the audio signal, like loss of high frequencies and jitter with digital audio.



Crystal Cable: the best materials and construction for the best listening experience

Crystal Cable applies ultra advanced construction techniques to the best materials to ensure that external noises are kept out and the electrical properties of the cable are safeguarded. The main cable design principle is based on a proprietary co-axial construction, meaning that the conductor is wrapped in two thin layers of extremely hard insulators (DuPont Kapton and/or Teflon). As a result, there is no room for movement between the conductor and the shield in the cable and thus no room for deformation. The shielding in our cables is either silver-plated copper or Infinite Crystal silver, ensuring that external signal interferences are decreased to the absolute minimum.

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