Checking my email inbox I was happily surprised to find an email from the owner of Vermouth Audio. Based out of Bali Hendry Ramli has created a line of loudspeaker cable, power cables, and speakers. Being impressed with his top model Black Pearl speaker cable I said yes to his Rhapsody speaker cables.
The Rhapsody loudspeaker cable shares a lot of aspects from his other two lines of cables. According to Hendry: "the Rhapsody loudspeaker cable adopts the conductor geometry design from Black Pearl. As a whole, it adopts design and material from Red Velvet (speaker cable) such as cable geometry, insulation & filler material, air tube and conductor material (12AWG hybrid UP-OCC multisize Conductor)." The cable, just like the previous Black Pearl, has excellent fit and finish. Instead of the carbon fibre banana plugs, the ends are finished in durable aluminium and are still terminated with cold forged cooper conductors covered in gold plating. Like I mentioned in my previous review of the Black Pearl cold forging is thought to be the better process of linking the banana or spade to the loudspeaker wire. The reasoning is that the solder adds another element to the transmission of the signal as well the heat changes the molecular structure of the materials in the cable and connector. These cables definitely have the garden hose variety diameter so it will take some thought in proper strain relief and cable management. They are aesthetically quite pleasing and it is nice to see the cables individually marked left and right for easier installation; points definitely go towards this thoughtful gesture.
Proper break in is necessary and I settled down for the usual hundred hour break in period running through all kinds of music. Definitely do not take these cables at their first listen and give them some maturation time. Once acclimatized I was ready to run and settled with some vinyl stalwarts to see what they could do. First was a little Etta James from her album At Last! The songstress has that captivating voice that blends many genres of music with a soulful voice that still surprises me with her emotional connection. The first track on the album Anything To Say You're Mine was rendered quite convincingly by the Rhapsody. The track had an intimacy and lightness to it and properly produced the midrange of the track. Where it may have lacked slightly was at the top and bottom ends. On the top end the resolution may have topped out on the high notes but it was not glaring but more of a progressive loss of detail. At the bottom end the notes were a little one dimensional but still pronounced to keep the tempo and beat in line with the lyrics.
I threw on a copy of The Marriage Of Figaro to judge the cables capabilities in orchestral music mixed in with wide sweeping vocals. The cable did a pleasant job again in keeping the feeling and presence of the both the orchestra and performers. Both instruments and vocals had proper weight and timbre. Separation of instruments was present and the midrange was defined. The soundstage was a little narrow and flat, but like the previous album, this did not take away from the overall enjoyment of the music.
The last album I tried with the Rhapsody cables was Antonio Carlos Jobim's Wave. The Bossa Nova genre really suited these cables well as they presented his music in a smooth and melodic manner. Instead of all out resolution the music was presented in a cohesive whole and kept the importance of feeling and interpretation of both instruments and vocals.
Overall, the Rhapsody cables are a great way to tryout the Vermouth cable family. They give a light and airy presentation and compare favorably to the other competition at this price range. You get value from experiencing the advantage of the trickle-down effect of his more expensive cable line. In the end, Hendry has put some thought and listening to make this cable musically shine. I would give it a try as I think you will be impressed by the fit and finish, and with the right system, happily enjoy the music.
Rhapsody Loudspeaker Cable
1.8mtr/pair $US290 add per 0.3mtr/pair $US24
Hendri Ramli Jln.
Gatot Subroto Tengah No.100X Kav.15
Denpasar - Bali (80231) | Indonesia