About the AudioQuest Rocket 88
Rock your system with Rocket!
Rock your system with Rocket!
AudioQuest's Rocket 88 speaker cables can help high-performance audio systems sound their very best. This "bi-wire" Rocket version is designed for the many bi-wirable speakers available today. Each cable has two sets of connectors at the speaker end, which provide separate connections for the woofer and tweeter. Until now, bi-wiring required using two regular sets of speaker cables, but AudioQuest's innovative single bi-wire cable delivers the sonic benefits of conventional bi-wiring along with simpler hookup. Rocket 88 cables will help your speakers deliver smooth, engaging sound that never sacrifices a bit of detail.
The benefits of bi-wiring
When a full-range signal is sent through a single speaker cable, the interaction of the magnetic fields created by the different frequencies can negatively impact the sound produced by your speakers. In particular, large amounts of bass energy can interfere with more delicate high frequencies. Bi-wiring transfers audio signals separately to your speaker's woofer and tweeter inputs, eliminating this distortion-causing interaction. If your speakers can be bi-wired, they should be for optimum performance.
One of the most important ingredients in a high-quality cable is the metal used for the signal conductors. Rocket 88 uses a carefully optimized combination of AudioQuest's Perfect-Surface Copper and their even-higher-purity Perfect-Surface Copper+. The metal mix is dominated by PSC+, which significantly reduces harshness while increasing clarity. Each of the cable's eight solid conductors is a single unbroken length of pure copper, to minimize signal loss.
AudioQuest's patented Dielectric-Bias System
If you've noticed that when you turn on your audio system it takes a while to really hit its stride sonically, there are a couple reasons. Certainly allowing your electronics to warm up helps, but another factor may lie in your speaker cables. When your system is playing, a charge builds up in the cable's insulation, reducing the amount of electronic noise the cable produces. This charge can dissipate when the cable's not in use, limiting performance slightly until it builds up again.
AudioQuest's active Dielectric-Bias System (DBS) creates a strong, stable electrostatic field which saturates and polarizes the molecules of the insulation. A small battery pack attached to the cable produces a constant 72-volt charge, which maintains optimum bias level, giving you clear, expressive sound from your system every time you turn it on. The DBS battery packs will last for years. A test button and LED allow for the occasional battery check.
High-quality connectors eliminate the weakest link
Rocket 88 cables feature banana plugs fastened by cold welding — a process that uses extremely high pressure to create solid secure connections that minimize signal loss. By contrast, solder tends to impede the signal, and heating the copper can negatively affect its conductivity.
- 15-foot pair of speaker cables with pre-attached banana plugs
- designed for bi-wiring speakers with dual sets of connectors
- eight solid copper conductors per cable, each made of a combination of Perfect-Surface Copper and Perfect-Surface Copper+
- battery-powered active Dielectric-Bias System maintains a constant 72V charge for more consistent cable performance (batteries included)
- silver-plated copper banana plugs
- textile braid jacket
- warranty: 5 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- MFR # ROCK8815SBS
What's in the box:
- Two 15' lengths of speaker wire (terminated with bi-wire PK-BFA terminals)
- Polishing cloth
- Product Information sheet
- Silver Polish Cloth instructions
AudioQuest Rocket 88 reviews
I demoed these as a potential upgrade from AQ Type 4. Sounded pretty good, clarity a bit better and bass extension was much better. But when I reconnected the Type 4s, they were much more lively and "energetic", and I liked that much better. So I ruled out the 88s and demoed a few other AQs. Settled in on double-bi-wired GO-4. That gave me the liveliness of the Type 4 but with a bit more defined and extended bass, and eliminated the harsh highs of the brighter Type 4s. Double-bi-wired gave me decent gauge to all connections, compared to splitting up the slightly heavier initial gauge of other options, while retaining the liveliness. My decision was based on my system and acoustically-challenged wide listening room, and as always, personal preference and favorite music genres. The 88s would undoubtedly be very good if a cozy, warm sound/room was desired, as its strengths are in the upper low to upper mid range. The GO-4 strengths are in a slightly higher frequency range, lower mids to lower highs, and for a more open, airy sound. But both are excellent, and significant upgrades to Type 4. System: NAD T787 AVR, NAD M51/M50/M52, PSB Synchrony 2 towers and Center Music: FLAC files, range from ripped CDs to 24/192 HDTracks, wide variety from Jazz, Blues, Classic Rock, Vocals
Pros: Clarity, accuracy, bass definition, bass extension, "cozy" sound, strong in upper lows to upper mids
Cons: a bit "passive", not lively -- maybe "too warm" for some, if there is such a thing, but system components/cabling would be a factor
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More details on the AudioQuest Rocket 88
Rocket 88 Series Bi-Wire Speaker Cable: The Rocket 88 series speaker cable incorporates AudioQuest's patented Dielectric-Bias System (DBS) and replaces Long-Grain Copper with Perfect-Surface Copper+. DBS offers a lower noise-floor, so you can hear deeper into the nuances of your favorite music. At the same time the addition of more PSC+ offers a smoother, more relaxed, and natural sonic timbre and texture.
PSC/PSC+ Conductors: The Rocket 88 series speaker cable uses a carefully finessed and optimized combination of Perfect-Surface Copper and extremely high-purity Perfect-Surface Copper+. The astonishingly smooth and pure combination of PSC+ and PSC significantly eliminates harshness and greatly increases clarity. Rocket 88's conductor mix is dominated by PSC+.
Carbon-Based Noise-Dissipation: The four negative conductors in the Rocket 88 series speaker cable are insulated with partially conductive Carbon-Loaded Polyethylene. This remarkable material damps radio-frequency garbage from being fed back into the amplifier. Rocket 88 also uses Foamed-Polyethylene Insulation on its positive conductors because air absorbs next to no energy, and Polyethylene is low-loss with a benign distortion profile. Thanks to all the air in Foamed-Polyethylene Insulation, it causes much less of the "out-of-focus" effect common to other materials.
Dieletric-Bias System: 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.
Spread-Spectrum Technology: Any single size or shape of conductor has a specific distortion profile. Even though radially symmetrical conductors (solid or tubular) have the fewest discontinuities, any conductor of a particular size does have a sonic signature. SST is a method for significantly reducing the awareness of these character flaws by using a precise combination of different sized conductors. The different SST-determined conductor sizes used in Rocket 88 allow an exceptionally clear, clean and dynamic sound.
Bi-Wiring: The Rocket 88 series speaker cable is an exceptional Single-BiWire cable. When the halves are separated at the speaker end, the Double Star-Quad Geometry turns Rocket 88 into a true Double-BiWire set thanks to the magnetic autonomy of each Quad-conductor section. On its own, one Star-Quad conductor group would be a little lightweight in performance as it is biased towards treble finesse. The other Star-Quad conductor group is biased toward the bass; it's more forceful and lacking ultimate resolution. Together they form a completely optimized full-range design. When separated, the Double Star-Quad design allows Rocket 88 to be a maximum-performance Double BiWire in a single cable.
Directional: The PVC "pants" on either end of Rocket 88 are marked "Speaker End" or "Amp End". Please use cables in the direction required.
Silver Polishing Cloth: The Rocket 88 speaker cable come with a chemically treated silver-polishing cloth for cosmetic reasons, not for electrical reasons. When exposed to air, silver forms silver-oxides. This "tarnish" looks ugly, but is still fully conductive. In comparison, copper oxides are semi-conductors which cause distortion. Harmless silver tarnish and other surface contaminants can be reduced by using this cloth two or three times a year.