Looking for an HDMI cable

I am looking for an HDMI cable to go between my Jay’s Audio CDT2 MK3 and my Audio Mirror Tubadour 3 DAC. A 1M cable with price up to $300. Thanks.


@soix Good question! I should have added that info. I would purchase used if the right one came along. Many of my cables have been purchased that way. Thanks.

This DH Labs cable gets some good feedback here and won’t break the bank.  With i2S you wanna go as short as possible as performance degrades with length.  They’re offering 10% off if you give your email.  Best of luck.


@soix Thanks! I own the DH LABS Silver Sonic AES cable.  This is probably one I should try.  I have contacted them. The price is right, just need to figure out the length as I am repositioning  components in my system.  

I remain open for other suggestions.

If you can make the 0.5m length work — that’s the shortest they seem to offer for this cable — then do that.  i2S was initially designed to make connections internally within a component and so wasn’t designed for distance, so that’s the reason to keep length as short as possible.  Some “experts” say optimally you want it to be a foot or less, but that’s not always practically feasible.  Just FYI. 

The Mapleshade Vivlink 3+ cable, I think its price is $220. Endgame HDMI cable, so far above other HDMI cables its not funny. 2m length only because that’s what sounds best.

Designed by the father of the F16 Falcon and A10 Warthog aircraft, Pierre Sprey, RIP.

The Mapleshade Vivlink 3+ cable, I think its price is $220. Endgame HDMI cable, so far above other HDMI cables it’s not funny. 2m length only because that’s what sounds best.

@agisthos That’s a bold statement.  What other HDMI cables have you compared the Vivlink to?  Also, a 2m cable would be suboptimal for an i2S connection as shorter is absolutely better so not sure where you got your info from.  

@soix I have had over 10 high end HDMI cables. The better ones were probably Wireworld Platinum Starlight and Nordost Heimdall 2 HDMI. The Vivlink 3+ was better than them all.

Regarding length, don’t be so sure. For HDMI and USB cables, which are data transmission cables, its found the reflections and resonance points have an effect, e,g many are finding a 1.5m USB cable to sound better than a 0.5m

I guess it depends on the cable geometry itself. But a hard and fast rule that shorter is absolutely better is incorrect.

I guess it depends on the cable geometry itself. But a hard and fast rule that shorter is absolutely better is incorrect.

@agisthos While that may be true for some or maybe most digital cables it is not the case for i2S that was designed originally for very short lengths to be used to make connections internally within a component. It was not designed to travel distance and the signal degrades rapidly with length and any cursory reading on the topic makes this limitation very clear — i2S is a different animal from the more typical SPDIF or AES/EBU connection. The experts I’ve read on the topic actually recommend a length of a foot or less for an i2S cable if possible.

@soix Oh I guess yes I am taking about another standard and i2S is indeed for internal transfer. Probably the receiver is a different standard and not subject to the cable reflections like others are.

Putting all that aside, I would still highly suggest trying the Vivlink, as its so cheap compared to other high end HDMI cables, and it beat the others comprehensively in my system.

I have had all 3 versions of the Vivlink, so experienced its evolution and improvement over time. INterestingly they all used completely different geometry construction, so it seems Pierre was really experimenting with HDMI, and the 3rd version is by far the best, and also the most compact in width, which is handy.

@agisthos  @soix At this time I am using a DH Labs AES/EBU cable.1M long. My thoughts are that if/when I reconfigure my system to allow a short length of I2S I may try both the DH Labs and Vivlink cables.  At that time I will get back regarding my findings. 

Just for craps n giggles I’d suggest trying this very cheap HDMI cable from Monoprice maybe just to try i2S on the cheap and to compare to the others whenever.  The reason I suggest this is twofold — while some people have found some benefit in using more expensive HDMI cables for i2S, others have found it makes a minimal difference and better to use the $$$ elsewhere.  Second, I use this same cable in a 0.5 foot length between my DDC and the i2S input on my DAC and still realized substantial sonic improvements.  While I do plan on trying the DH Labs cable at some point because I’m an audiophile and that’s how we roll, the results are so good now I’m really in no rush.  Hey, at under $7 there’s not much to lose, and it’s still very valuable as a frame of reference going if nothing else.  Just a thought FWIW.


@soix  Funny you should say that. Shortly after my last post I had similar thoughts. I often recommend Monoprice to my non audio hobby friends and thought I should try a less expensive cable to determine the benefits of I2S for myself prior to trying a more expensive one.  First I want to better position my system to best take advantage of I2S regarding the cable length. Once you mentioned the length issue I recalled reading about this with I2S. It wasn't until I upgraded my transport to having one with I2S this wasn't an issue.  As the Jay's Audio transport made such an improvement I am happy with the DH labs cable.  Thanks again.

Supra cables 2.1 HDMI cables are very good cables for almost nothing, I think $75 for a 1/2 meter cable. I lived with one for my I2S (Denafrips Iris to Denafrips Pontus II DAC), for about 6 months before upgrading.

I'm currently using an Audioquest Vodka 48 8K/10K which is a noticeable upgrade, but if buying do not buy on eBay or from a Chinese supplier, they're going to be fakes. You can occasionally find them on sale from US suppliers for under $400 new

@vthokie83 Thanks for the recommendations. The Supra cable is under consideration once I move towards I2S.