Friday, February 12, 2010

Tip Top Audio - Stackables review

Stackables (Banana patch cords for euro format!)
By Steven Hayes

Along with my Z-DSP came 20 of the Tiptop Stackable patch leads. That is, the plugs on these leads allow you to stack plugs together, much like banana plugs do. The quality of the cables feels excellent, the plugs provide good grip, and stacking one on top of the other gives a reassuring click and feels solid. The cable itself is fairly stiff, so it wants to keep itself away from the front panel - a good thing.

Oddly enough, my biggest concern about using Stackables has to do with the quality of the jacks on the module you're plugging in to. For example, the Bubblesound uLFO has very nice quality jacks, and I wouldn't think twice about using three Stackables high with it's jacks - the connection feels so solid. At the other end of the spectrum, the Elby kits use cheaper jacks that feel relativily loose when you plug into them. Stacking three or four high into these jacks may lead to excessive force on the jacks internal connectors, bending them to a degree where they may need to be replaced. Simple answer is to continue stacking from the other end of one of the cables, that is why there are 2 stacking points per each cable. No need for mults (:

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