Counterfeit Chinese Cables

I thought that I would write this for those who are curious about one of the many counterfeit Chinese interconnect cables that are available these days. I know that there have been threads about the subject before, and I was always curious because they seem to be such a bargain. I don't really recall much about what any members actually said about the performance of these counterfeit cables, and I didn't look back and do any research, but a couple of months ago there was a thread that came around to discussing the quality of Chinese made components, and oldhvymec said something that made sense to me.

He said that people that say that what they are making is junk should consider that much of what is in our gear, and a lot of our American brands are actually manufactured there. I decided shortly after that that I would take the chance on a set of interconnects, because I suspected that the interconnects going from my pre to my amp were the weak link and needed upgrading. The interconnects going from my DAC to my pre were Kimber Select which are very good, but the other set were LAT International (now defunct) which had cost $500.00 when new, but I had reason to believe they were lacking because I have one of their digital cables that turned out to be very poor sounding in comparison to others I own.

I decided on a one meter pair of counterfeit Nordost Odin interconnects for a total of $104.00 from Aliexpress. I received them a couple of weeks later. They appeared to be well made, and the locking fake WBT rca's were very impressive and are very tight. 

First impressions after installing them were light, thin sound, lacking bass. Each couple of days brought improvements, but from the beginning I noticed that they were quieter. Now, weeks later, I can say that they are drastically better that the LAT's in every way. Detail and ambience are much better, but it's the focus and separation of instruments that is most noticeable. 

I have no way of knowing if they are really a copy of the Nordost design, but I am impressed enough that I am going to try a counterfeit Nordost digital cable.

Obviously, this isn't a comparison that is useful to most, because there probably isn't anyone here using the LAT's, and everything is system dependent. I just wanted to relay my positive experience. 

Nordost ODIN&2 RCA Fever Audio Signal Cable Double Lotus Sterling Silver Audio Cord Video CD Amplifier Tube Cable High Quality| | - AliExpress


It is quite disconcerting that the Chinese Cables are being counterfeited.

To have a design that has been produced by using ones own education or collaborative idea sharing on the subject of a Cable Type and the design concepts then supported by in depth R&D to the point of a Cable Design being produced.

To have a group of individuals with an 'easy profit making venture' in mind, steal/rob the ideas of others and produce a version of an item, that is a much lesser design, that is on offer as an alternative choice and presents a 'real roll of the dice scenario' for an individual to acquire a product that is by chance, possibly ? an equivalent function.

For the producer to see this happening, as the originator of the design concepts being offered, it can only be an upset to them.

The reality is that when a part is bought from a Portal that allows imports from Chinese Manufacturers, the parts being selected will be produced from design ideas that were not borne in house by the producer, the design for the parts, will mostly be for the mimicking the aesthetic of other more successful brands items. 


"It is quite disconcerting that the Chinese Cables are being counterfeited."

That sentence is really funny. By the way, the portal that you're speaking about IS Chinese. You also need to consider that Nordost's design is built upon parts of research by many people over many years as well. They didn't invent high quality cables or the materials that they're made from.

One idea is derived from another, that's the way civilization works, and if you want to call that stealing and robbing, then to a certain extent all cable manufacturers are guilty of stealing.

Finally, every purchase is a "roll of the dice" as you note, but for a bit over a hundred dollars, it wasn't much of a gamble, and the build quality is very impressive as well as the sound.    

Here’s a little story for you.  I worked at a very high end audio equipment manufacturer for many years.  The owner decided he might want to release their own cables to sell with their systems.  Good idea of course.  The company’s CD player’s were already being turn-keyed in Hong Kong.  Designed, built and packaged there with our name.  So while over seas he visited a large cable manufacturer.  They sat down and discussed what kind of cables he wanted.  The manufacturer pulls out a big book with samples and shows him all the cables they already manufacture for various well known high end companies (I won’t say the names but you know them all) and tells him they can make the same thing with maybe a different color or whatever and says “we can put your name on any of them”.  This is the way much of this stuff works with the fakes.  Not all of course.  Some is pure crap!  But some is made on the identical machines with identical materials and sold to whoever will pay for it.  Maybe they put different connectors on it or maybe identical ones.  It is true the soldering/weld may not be the same if a company just buys the wire and does their own thing, or it may be the identical cable made in the same factory as the name brand with identical materials.  That’s the problem with counterfeits is you don’t know what your getting until you get it.  No box.  No paperwork.  Just the cables. 

I have purchased several counterfeit cables to try out and have been completely happy with them over the years. Yes I have a “champagne taste on a beer budget”.  I have purchased many high end cables directly from the manufacturer’s for 50% off when I worked in the industry.  So yes I have a variety of cables that are the real thing lying around from some great companies.  Some of the top of the line Audioquest, Cardas, Kimber Silver, etc.  I have also purchased some fake Audioquest and Furutech cables that have amazed me with their quality.  Right now I’m running all Furutech PCOCC (or OHNO) speaker and interconnects and getting some of the best, most balanced sound I have ever had and it was cheap. 

So are these identical in every way?  I don’t know for sure but the sound quality is amazing!  Can you get a crap counterfeit?  For sure, yes.  
As someone said you roll the dice.

Seems like the long thread on this subject has been taken down.

I don’t mind using knock-offs, and in this particular field, I don’t mind using counterfeits. I use a pair of knock-offs of Kimber 12TC speaker cables. They are not advertised as Kimber, but appear to be made in about the very same way. I would not mind, nor should anyone, if the maker advertised them as "Compare to Kimber." After all, Walmart advertises their generic aspirin product as "Compare to Bayer" or some such thing.

I have a fake pair of "Nordost Odin 2 XLR cables" on the way from China. Several people have written of their happiness with these cables, here and elsewhere. These are counterfeits. However, given that Nordost charges the price of a small house or a large car for a pair with that name, I’m not losing any sleep over it. Yet I would prefer if the Chinese makers sold them unmarked and advertised as "Compare to Nordost Odin 2."

The moderators may take these threads down from time to time.  However, given how the domestic cable manufacturers have treated us over the decades, we will keep on buying from China.  For there, the prices come reasonably close to the costs of manufacture of these relatively simple products.

Good point.  It would be nice if they advertised that way.  Although on some cables I’m not all together sure they are not the real thing, made with a “run” of the real cable, at the same factory.  Just not “run” for the brand name company.  

It is crazy the prices these companies are charging.  I know there is R&D, advertising, supporting they’re lifestyles, etc.  But $2K, $5K, $10K or even $100K for a 1 meter pair of cables!  Come on.  I remember one advertising executive at a audio company I worked at many years ago said “we have to charge more to show we’re the best”.  Well I love the audio biz and I really love listening to music but I never made the big bucks.  So I have to buy what I can afford.  

Well said harpo75. No need to feel sorry for these guys. I’m certain that they exaggerate the years that they spend on "research" by a factor of five, and these cables are not being purchased by their demographic.

Thanks to the moderators for reinstating this thread, minus most of the previous content. I've been here since '98 and I've never seen that before!

I should mention, Ali-E also has many other well known cable copies, AND, no-name at even cheaper prices

Also many are returnable, though it takes ~ 3 weeks to get to the Florida, so return at least as long on purchasers dime and the time to process, which is why I started with the Odin 2 coax cable, and was shocked compared to the Pangea Premier XL which is a darn good cable. Then slowly with Odin PC and XLR, the more PCs, and finally the speaker cable, which is not the same configuration as Nordosts (round instead of ribbon), but is amazing

Reverse engineering has been going on entire human existence. Unless cable companies have patents on design and/or proprietary parts used in that cable's design there are no laws being broken.


If these are indeed exact copies of well known cable companies, gives one very good idea of actual manufacturing costs of those cables. I generally build my own power cables these day, following recipes generously shared by individuals seeking to promote audio pleasure rather than profit.

There was a lot of good information in this thread that was deleted. Maybe just delete the troll posts and people angrily fighting, but keep the rest?


You mentioned oldhvymec, and it got me to wondering, what happened to him? I hope the chickens didn’t get him!

He got suspended here, went to WhatsBestForum. A few weeks ago he went off repeatedly on a thread over there, was suspended for three days as a warning and now gone

Interesting. Also interesting -to me, anyway- from what little of him I read on the other forum was his persona and writing style were polar opposites as to his style and persona here. No feeding the chickens, dog dancing around the sombrero, etc.

Clear, concise, intelligent writing.

Even though as soon as I hit play my Neardost Odin 2 speaker cables trounced the well known/reviewed and expensive cables that I had for about 2 years; last night (about a week since inserting) I played Dianna Krall ALL FOR yOU (Impulse), I haven't listened to any of her discs since in quite a while (too many CDs, so little time), The sound was complete and intimate, I felt as though I had been transported to the venue. 

That's interesting carpathian. I haven't followed him since he left audiogon, but yes, when he was here he had a very distinct style of writing.

OK I now have a few of these Neardost Odin 2 power cables incoming. I will put them up against real Nordost Heimdall 2 power cables, head to head.

If they can compete evenly that would be something. But the fake Odins are still going to have much higher current capability due to larger wire gauge, even if everything else is inferior, so that will probably advantage the bass over the Heimdall 2. I will discount that in the comparison.

I bought a pair of N------ Odin Gold RCA interconnects from Ali Express.  Beautifully made.  When I first connected them (backwards according to the direction arrows on the bottom of the wood blocks), they were big, bold, a little rounded and slightly soft on top - but enjoyable to listen to.

Then I put them in the "correct" orientation and they were more detailed with less prominent (though detailed) bass.  Very good also.  I am going to leave them this way for a while; though it is tempting to listen in the "wrong" direction.

Are these cables violating a patent or are they just knockoffs of a non patented design and only violating copyright law rather than copyright and patent law?

I'm using neardost odin 2 power cables and they are by far the best of many power cables I've used.  

Violating Patent's, Trade Mark and Copyright laws. 

Pure unadulterated theft. 


Cardas Cables


The Clear & Cross lines

Cardas Audio produces two distinct lines of cables, Clear and Cross. There are various interconnect, speaker, power and digital cables in each.

The Cross line has been in production the longest, with designs that evolved from the original Cardas cables.

The Clear line represents the latest developments and insights into audio cable design. All of the Clear cables feature Matched Propagation conductors, as described in US Patent 7,674,973.

Since the rights granted by a U.S. patent extend only throughout the territory of the United States and have no effect in a foreign country, an inventor who wishes patent protection in other countries must apply for a patent in each of the other countries or in regional patent offices.

See and China IPR Toolkit. 

All the best,

Bet the folks over in China are using these procedures and quality checks. No they are not!

No ethics, no integrity, buy counterfeit.



Also makes one wonder about the used cable market. What is the percentage of counterfeit cables being sold as good used premium product.

From what I am seeing on these pages I doubt the sellers would divulge this in their ads. 

"Bet the folks over in China are using these procedures and quality checks. No they are not!

No ethics, no integrity, buy counterfeit."

You just talk without any knowledge behind your words Juan.

Okay Roxy....They do all this and sell for $150 on the CCP eBay/Amazon aka Ali Express..

You are deluded.

Like I said zero integrity, zero ethics.

Enjoy that cheap chit and I will support North American cable manufacturers and their retailers.

Fake is fake. 

Only people who can not and will not afford the original buys the counterfeit.

@roxy54 to quote Muddy Waters, "You can't spend what you ain't got, cant lose what you never had. 


Only people who can not and will not afford the original buys the counterfeit.

That might be the reason companies like Nordost and Cardas don’t lose sleep over this matter. They are not losing a single customer. Good to know.

@spenav You win the dumbest post of the day !!!!!!

So if they are not worried about it why do they file Patents, Trade Marks and Copyrights.  

 These companies spend millions every year trying to stop the degradation of their brand and it products and by the WAY ITS AGAINST THE LAW!

Folks that buy this crap are criminals too!!!!!!!


Fakes and frauds hope the folks looking to buy used gear are looking at your user names and make not of you being a fake and a fraud. 

I have bought American made cables many times Juan, and you don't have any idea of what I can or can't afford. Besides that, we have said many times before that the majority of the cables sold on Aliexpress are not counterfeit branded. As I said, you don't really know what you're talking about.

@spenav That might be the reason companies like Nordost and Cardas don’t lose sleep over this matter. They are not losing a single customer. Good to know.


For a service fee $, if buy used and they don’t sound or look right, you can send in your unknown Cardas and they will investigate, validate, and/or authenticate for you.


@roxy54 you have evidence that states these are not counterfeit. Please present it. Also 60 year olds with disposable income are not buying fake Rolexes on Maxwell Street nor are the buying fake cables at Ali Express. 

Your shopping says volumes.

@roxy54 so here is what I am going to do. I am going to order some of these alleged counterfeit cables, I will send a set to Cardas for counterfeit testing and analysis. I will send another set to my companies chemical/metallurgical testing lab in Ohio along with a known set of legitimate verified Cardas cables for testing.

We will see who is right. 

pssst wanna buy a watch.


I suspect many off the shelf cables, even ones from the reputable manufacturers are not patented. Most, if not all purchase metal and have it drawn by the same few companies, nothing to patent, the connectors and dielectrics mostly the same. This leaves design, and many of these cables use common designs, only so many designs available.


While Cardas may have patents, lets see the whole list of cable manufacturers with patents. Until its proven they have both patents and offending cable is indeed being marketed as the 'real' deal, we don't have patent theft and/or consumer theft. If being marketed as counterfeit cable no one's being fooled, they know exactly what they're purchasing, a counterfeit cable. And does one really expect they're getting an exact copy with counterfeit cable, I presume not.


I've been constructing some of my own power cords and IC's for a number of years now, the wire, dielectrics and connectors are exactly what is used in some name brand cables, I know this because some of these parts come from manufacturers who design and sell their own line of cables. This only leaves design, assume design I'm using is exact duplicate of some off the shelf design, after all, how many proprietary designs are possible with the limited number of parts that make up audio cables. Point is, if I can do this, so can Chinese, how do you know what they're doing is in fact patent infringement, they are likely doing the same as I, only difference marketing and selling as counterfeit.

" ... Also 60 year olds with disposable income are not buying fake Rolexes on Maxwell Street nor are the buying fake cables at Ali Express. ... "

No, I think you win the "dumbest post of the day" honor hands down. 

Interesting that you perceive yourself as gifted with factual knowledge of the income and rationale for spending choices of 60-year-olds.

I look forward to many more flailing retorts from you (in addition to those already presented).


pssst wanna buy a watch.

Juan, many of those great Roxels are accurate to within minutes! Mott street used to be Mecca if you needed a roast duck and a "timepiece". LOL. 


I wish I weren't so picky...I used to be downright militant about my purchases, today, less so. Not just where my suiting was made but by whom on their staff (Henry Poole). A different time today indeed. A mutual acquaintance of ours, Jim Hall, once mentioned to me a long time ago that Hap's car would be prepared early in the week and his would be later in the week due to the implementation of new ideas/proof of concept changes. He said it showed in the results/finishes. I jokingly told him that maybe Hap was a better driver or took better care of the car. We both know Mr. Hall didn't find that funny.


Fakes and knockoffs are troublesome. The buyer is certainly aware they are purchasing from the metaphorical white van. What could possibly go wrong when buying a "Neardost" power cable? If only....


Interesting read here. Really like the parts about counterfeit aircraft parts. My company battles that every day. Think about that next time you fly. How about those brake pads on your car.


There's absolutely nothing wrong with anyone buying something that looks like something else, expecting it to perform somewhat remotely as well as it, all the while knowing that it's not it. 

It's basically an homage to the original and it's not fooling anyone, especially the buyer. Time to unbunch those panties.

All the best,

"@roxy54 you have evidence that states these are not counterfeit. Please present it."


As I said before, you don't know what you are talking about. I never said they weren't counterfeit. I clearly said that they were. I also said that there were many brands sold on Aliexpress that were not using branded American (or other ) names.

If you want to spend your money on having cables tested (which I very much doubt) go ahead; but you won't be proving anything to me.


So my new Chinese "Odin 2" cables that are sounding so very good . . . are they going to catch fire one day?  Melt?  Short out?

Throwing in the issue of counterfeit aircraft and brake parts just clouds the issue and is not germane. It's a red herring. While on the subject of fake parts used in planes and cars, what pisses me off is not the Chinese brand trying to pass it off as the legitimate product, but the American businesses knowingly buying it up and passing it off as the real thing.

Some unscrupulous Chinese manufacturer can make it but it has to get by all the checks and inspections to finally get used and when buying in bulk (after all the testing and approval) it's not the Chinese who are selling it to the company. It's some unscrupulous American business thats' doing it.

All the best,


Post removed 



What’s your freaking problem?  You are hurling insults like a spoiled child. How old are you anyway?  Does it make you feel important or smart? I hope Agon takes away your privileges soon. 

Who did I insult? @spenav

I apologize for that, just I am very very passionate about this issue. This very issue cost’s my business Millions every year.

Enjoy your day.

Read a few of the reports figure it out. Also all the tax dollars lost that could be used for?

LOL. Guess you never make a typo or misspell a word. 


Have a wonderful rest of your day.



I am outside of that set.

For the cable business generally, "ripoff" comes pretty close to describing their exploitation of the audiophile buyer IMO. And they've been doing it for a very long time.  They buy Chinese cable, terminate them and mark them up 20X.  I have no qualms  Some of these cable formulations are 40 years old.