Plussound Tri-Copper Review: In The Palm of Luxury
Plussound is a custom cable maker that’s been around the block; they’ve figured out a pretty good formula for coming up with cables that are compelling luxury products. Recently they’ve revamped their lineup and released a brand-new cable, called the Tri-Copper. How does is stack up against the competition?
The Tri-Copper will soon be available on Plussound’s official website. This particular version of the Tri-Copper, the Exo, will retail for $550.
So what really is the Tri-Copper? Well, it’s a cable made from a combination of pure copper, silver-plated copper, and gold-plated copper wire. Plussound told me that the Tri-Copper is actually the first of its kind, which is cool. If you look closely, you can actually make out the three individual colors of strands beneath the clear coating. The Tri-Copper’s color is really nice as a result and has a visually unique tone. It shimmers and sparkles a bit in the sun too.
Speaking of coating, Plussound has recently reformulated the plastic they use for each of their cables, the Tri-Copper included. They now make use of a compound they refer to as “PS insulation” (PS standing for Plussound I’d assume). The advantages of this material, according to Plussound, are that their cables are now more ergonomic and durable. Plus they’re supposed to have better performance, but I have no way of formally testing that, so I’ll have to take them on their word there.
As for the other two claims, I can indeed confirm that the PS insulation does make a noticeable difference in ergonomics. The Tri-Copper is very “soft” and pliable. It doesn’t have any noticeable body and rarely ever holds a shape for longer than a day. Microphonics are negligible too.
I find that some braided cables don’t feel too nice behind my ears, and since the Tri-Copper is memory-bent such that it can be used only for behind-the-ears style of IEMs, it is important that it not fall into that category. Thankfully it doesn’t, and is among the most comfortable cables I’ve tested to date. The smoothness of the PC insulation really does help, as does the Tri-Copper’s lightness in general.
My Tri-copper came with the standard black Y-splitter and chin slider. Nothing fancy material wise, but it does feel quite nice to the touch and has an understated look. Like most else on the Tri-Copper it is also smoothly finished and well machined.
My cable came terminated with a standard 2-pin plug. The Plussound logo was stylishly heat-shrunk onto both terminations.
Speaking of terminations, my cable was terminated with a trusty 3.5mm jack. Once again the Plussound logo has been heat-shrunk on, in an aesthetically pleasing way no less.
All in all I’m pretty impressed with the construction of the Tri-Copper. Plussound knows what they are doing and didn’t make a single mistake in building this cable. It’s a shining example of what “flawless” construction looks like.
Many “audiophile” cables are made such that they specifically induce higher impedance, and as a result, modify the “sound” of the cable. This can also occur in cables that make use of exotic conductors or very large numbers of strands. I’m glad to report that Tri-Copper doesn’t have a high impedance/resistance and doesn’t have any electrical flaws. As far as how it affects the sound, I’d say that it is vastly transparent on my IEMs. This includes sets such as:
- TFZ Series 4
- Kinera H3
- Heir Audio 4 Ai S
- Heir Audio 4S
And more. But, there were two IEMs that did, to the best of my perception, did have some subtle shifts. These are TOTL prototypes from Lark Studios. They have 10 BA and 11 BA drivers, per ear, respectively. Here’s what I heard:
- 11 BA Lark Studios Prototype: No affect on detail retrieval. Small reduction in emphasis on the lower mids
- 10 BA Lark Studios Prototype: Minor leveling on the lower-treble. No changes in detail retrieval, sound stage, etc.
Now this is new ground for me. Prior to acquiring the LSX Prototypes, I’d never experienced any sort of changes in sound signature from cables. Lark Studios has confirmed that they have also found some very small changes in frequency response in their prototypes when switching between some cables. According to them, not every cable produces a shift, but they’ve found a couple more beyond the Tri-Copper that do. I’ll begin re-testing my other cables with these prototypes too in order to see whether or not they can produce any more shifts.
The Tri-Copper is truly a luxury cable. It makes use of a combination of precious metals that gives it a stunning and unique visual tone and is built with the utmost care. Premium cables like this are great for audiophiles out there who either want to “max out” their system or upgrade their setup’s aesthetics.