Deep and bold yet controlled bass, Defined vocals, Pleasing treble body, Wide soundstage, Excellent build quality and design, Wide synergy
Slightly smoother treble note attack saps fine detail retrieval, Not the most layered presentation, Stiff wires out of the box
The Socrates showcases excellent refinement in its sound and design. It is not the most technical in Eletech’s line-up but finds wide synergy with its wide and dynamic presentation.
Eletech, short for Element Technology, is a new custom cable manufacturer from Singapore. The company carries itself much like industry veterans with a passionate team including Eric from Effect Audio and material specialist Wang, alongside the half-decade of experience and insight they bring. The Socrates is their latest creation, joining the Plato in the School of Athens series. It is positioned as a flagship copper cable sporting bespoke 7N OCC monocrystal copper conductors with a densely packed ultra high-strand design. Stringent QC ensures high purity on each unit while permitting a desirable sound profile. Special mention must also go to the design, its intricate finish and angulation creating an interplay of light and shadow as a homage to Socratic method.
The Eletech Socrates is available for $699 USD. You can read all about it on Eletech’s website and treat yourself to one here.
I would like to thank Eric from Eletech very much for his quick communication and for providing me with the Socrates for the purpose of review. All words are my own and there is no monetary incentive for a positive review. Despite receiving the cable free of cost, I will attempt to be as objective as possible in my evaluation.
The Pitch –
Maximus Efficiency Strand Geometry
Reminiscent of several other boutique cable manufacturers, Eletech implements an in-house customized cable geometry that utilises strands of varying diameter. In line with the skin effect, the company has tailored the strand size to deliver their ideal sound. The cable is infused with Kevlar to reinforce its geometry and bolster the general wearing properties of the cable. Eletech service every component of the conducting chain by implementing bespoke solder on each termination.
Custom Connectors and Y-Split
Gone are the generic DIY cables of past years, custom cables are akin to modern art pieces and the Socrates exemplifies this with its tessellated design. The Y-spit especially employs 6 planes of angulation for a visually striking package and the terminations all employ a brushed finish. Chamfered edges have been implemented for user comfort, altogether promising excellent aesthetics and durability.
Eletech implements medical grade PVC insulation that offers a great balance between tensile strength and flexibility for an ergonomic experience. Special focus was given to their insulation design due to their adoption of high-strand internal wiring. One thing I have noticed about Eletech’s cables especially is that each model offers a distinctly different ergonomic experience due to the geometry of the wires inside despite sharing the same insulation.
I admire what a great job Eletech has done with their packaging and accessories as this isn’t necessarily something that buyers expect when they buy a custom cable. The packaging is clean and delightful to look at with sketched artwork and a magnetic latch to close. Inside is the cable within a gorgeous leather case with metal ID tag above, both heavily reinforcing the premium status of the product. The case receives special mention as, not only is it premium, it is a desirable accessory that I would love to be able to purchase on its own. The Socrates, in particular, comes with a genuine red-wine leather case, a stunning complement to its gold metal accents and hefty Eletech zipper. Its soft suede interior prevents scratches and there is ample room to house IEMs and a small DAP.
Eletech do hand fabricate each cable, however, in the pursuit of a coherent and fully-realised aesthetic you do sacrifice some of that custom portion. Nonetheless, there is a good selection of connectors and terminations accommodating of 3.5mm single-ended and 2.5mm and 4.4mm balanced. The connector choice is also wide and, should Eletech not offer the standard of choice, the buyer is able to contact the companyf or a cu
Similar to my former experiences alongside MMR’s IEMs, Eletech’s flagship copper cable is a gift to the eye. Though the solid black jacket does not offer a view of the conductors, the two-tone copper/black colour scheme screams premium. Eletech’s connectors and y-split are easily among the best I’ve encountered, simply stunning metalwork free of chips or imperfections even when pixel-peeping macro photos. The Y-split on the Socrates takes the company’s signature angular design to the next level with its 6-axis tessellation pattern. The bold copper accents handsomely complement the brushed metal finish while chamfered edges deliver a softer feel on the skin for a more comfortable wearing experience. Small touches such as the coloured inlay within the laser cut Eletech logos are proof of Eletech’s pursuit of excellence and the quality of the product. This results in a handmade cable that feels not like a commercial product but a labour of love.
Structurally, the Socrates is a 4-wire cable with 24AWG wires are standard within the realm of high-end custom cables. In turn, it feels sturdy but not so heavy as to become cumbersome during portable use. The pre-moulded earguides aid this impression, carrying the weight of the cable comfortable and gracefully; I enjoy how they angle slightly inwards to prevent the cable from popping over the outer ear. Eletech’s FlexiMax insulation makes a return here too, however, the Socrates is noticeably stiffer than their former designs due to the geometry of the conductors if not an especially stiff cable in isolation. I’m told the cable will soften over time and this does seem to be the case after my 3 weeks of testing. The cable has some slight memory and carries a bit more microphonic noise than suppler cables. It’s nothing intrusive to the listening experience but this can make the cable difficult to coil for storage. Conversely, the thicker design, smooth jacket and stiffer complexion also mean that the Socrates essentially never tangles which makes it quite easy to live with regardless.
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