DISCLAIMER: Effect Audio provided the Leonidas II Octa in return for my honest opinion. I am not personally affiliated with the company in any way, nor do I receive any monetary rewards for a positive evaluation. I’d like to thank Effect Audio for their kindness and support. The review is as follows.
With the release of every 4-wire Effect Audio cable comes the same old question: “I wonder what an 8-wire variant would sound like?” And, Effect Audio have ceaselessly, unfailingly responded. Hot off the heels of their excellent Leonidas II, the Singaporean giants have gone and released the Octa variant as both a standalone product and an upgrade path for pre-existing owners. But, as we’ve seen with conductors in the past – including Effect Audio’s very own Lionheart – doubling wire count does not guarantee an objectively superior experience. As they say, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” So, will the Octa echo the successes of the Bespoke Ares II and Thor II, or will it crumble under its original form’s own pedigree?
Effect Audio Leonidas II Octa
- Wire composition: 26 AWG UPOCC Palladium-plated silver + Litz silver hybrid
- Default configuration: 8-wire
- Key feature(s) (if any): Palladium plating, UltraFlexi insulation
- Price: $1888
- Website: www.effectaudio.com
Build and Accessories
According to Effect Audio, the Octa’s retail packaging will differ from the Leonidas II’s. Obviously, it’ll reflect the jump in price as well. However, the unit I was provided with did not come with said packaging, so I’m unable to include it in this review. Please refer to their social media pages for further information on the new packaging when it does come out.
Ergonomically, Effect Audio continue to impress. This Leonidas II maintains the original’s silky, smooth texture, resulting in a more supple, less-plasticky feel than all the other 8-wire conductors in my possession. Relative to the Bespoke Ares II or the Janus D, there seems to be less friction within each braid. This gives the Leonidas II Octa a wider, freer range of motion, as well as a reduced sense of density. In braiding consistency, excellence is pretty much a given for Effect Audio at this point. The runs are tightly, evenly wound, and the transitions between different braiding types are well-executed too. This is certainly the most comfortable 8-wire cable I’ve experienced – indicative of Effect Audio’s constant progress.
Hardware is another arena where Effect Audio have constantly upped their game. The Octa sports the same, chrome-accented hardware I covered in my Janus D and Leonidas II reviews. And, they look as gorgeous as ever. Again, the mirror finish is mesmerising, and the logos engraved directly onto the plugs ensure a clean and permanent aesthetic. The leather Y-split is as stunningly exotic as ever. The organic, sunburst finish contrasts the metal elements beautifully. And, it’s worth noting again that the Y-split is modular, which opens the door for further customisation in the future.