THE WEL SIGNATURE
“Frankly, I had never contemplated the notion of a ‘signature series’ of products; it remains a rather alien notion to me. When one of my good friends (and AQ aesthetic steward), Joe Harley, suggested this, I was taken a bit off guard. However, as we sat back and discussed the quest, the many years of analyzing the quality of materials and construction, the hours upon hours of listening, the proving of theories and yes, the bit of luck that is required, it finally made perfect sense to me. For me, when a designer puts their name on a product, it feels like a kind of final chapter. Rest assured, this is the beginning of a new book.”
– William E. Low, AudioQuest Founder and Chief Designer
SOLID 100% PERFECT-SURFACE SILVER CONDUCTORS (PSS)
Perfect-Surface Technology applied to extreme-purity silver provides unprecedented clarity and dynamic contrast. Solid conductors prevent strand interaction, a major source of cable distortion. Extremely high-purity Perfect-Surface Silver minimizes distortion caused by the grain boundaries that exist within any metal conductor, nearly eliminating harshness and greatly increasing clarity compared to OFHC, OCC, 8N and other coppers.
FEP AIR-TUBE INSULATION (FEP IS A FLUORO-POLYMER)
Any solid material adjacent to a conductor is actually part of an imperfect circuit. Wire insulation and circuit board materials all absorb energy (loss). Some of this energy is stored and then later released as distortion. All of WEL Signature’s conductors use Air-Tube insulation because air absorbs next to no energy, and FEP is the best extrudable solid insulation and absorbs less energy than other materials. The FEP Air-Tubes used in WEL Signature have almost nothing but air around the solid PSS conductors.
DIELECTRIC-BIAS SYSTEM (DBS, US PAT #S 7,126,055 & 7,872,195 B1)
All insulation slows down the signal on the conductor inside. When insulation is unbiased, it slows down parts of the signal differently, a big problem for very time-sensitive multi-octave audio. AudioQuest’s DBS creates a strong, stable electrostatic field which saturates and polarizes (organizes) the molecules of the insulation. This minimizes both energy storage in the insulation and the multiple nonlinear time-delays that occur. Sound appears from a surprisingly black background with unexpected detail and dynamic contrast. The DBS battery packs will last for years. A test button and LED allow for the occasional battery check.
CARBON-BASED 7-LAYER NOISE-DISSIPATION SYSTEM (NDS)
100% shield coverage is easy. Preventing captured RF Interference from modulating the equipment’s ground reference requires AQ’s Noise-Dissipation System. Metal and Carbon-Loaded synthetics prevent most RFI from reaching the equipment’s ground plane.
The three conductors in “Triple-Balanced” WEL Signature cables ensure that whether prepared with RCA or XLR plugs, the positive and negative signals have equally low-distortion conducting paths. The 100% coverage shield is never used as an inferior conductor.
COLD-WELDED HANGING SILVER DIRECTLY OVER PURE RED COPPER SYSTEM
This plug design enables a perfect heat-free connection between cable and plug. The connection between the plug and conductors is made using AQ’s Cold-Welded System, which provides a superior connection that ensures that the structural integrity of the conductor is kept completely intact. The Cold-Welded System refers to a combination of high pressure at the point of contact and the use of copper- or silver-impregnated paste. (WEL Signature’s silver conductors get silver paste.) XLR plugs are also available.
The WEL Signature interconnect RCA and XLR connectors’ striking visual appearance is the result of many years of intense research into every aspect of plug design. These plugs are precision-engineered components far surpassing the performance of any previous design. The sole guiding mandate for the WEL Signature plug designs was maximizing sonic performance. WEL Signature connectors must be as sonically “invisible” as WEL Signature cable! WEL Signature RCA connectors are precision machined from a High-Conductivity Oxygen-Free Pure-Copper Billet (99.94% +Cu) for all conductive parts. FEP is used as the main insulation material. A thick (100 micron) layer of silver is then directly plated over the copper. Similarly, WEL Signature XLR wire bays and contact pins are also machined from HC-OFC Billet, silver plated and secured into a Delrin® bushing.