SLiC Innovations Eclipse C MKIII Interconnect Cable Review
David Price samples the best RCA interconnect that you’ve never heard of…
Eclipse C MKIII Interconnect Cable
£550 (Approx AUD $1,058)
There’s no shortage of cable brands around, with umpteen manufacturers jostling for position in an already crowded market. No surprise then that smaller manufacturers find it hard to make an impact. SLiC Innovations gives all the hype and razzmatazz that goes with this sector a wide berth, so perhaps it’s no surprise that it remains one of hi-fi’s best-kept secrets…
The Eclipse C MKIII is almost as stealthy as an F-35 Lightning II jet. Its outer sheathing is black, its plugs are black, and its packaging is – well, you’ve guessed it. Everything is downplayed, including the manufacturer’s own description. The company says that it sets out to, “reduce signal disturbances created when current flows through conductors”. The name stands for Super Low Interference Cable, and it has been optimised to work across an ultra-wide frequency range, up to 300MHz. This RCA version costs approximately $1,058 available to order directly from www.mcru.co.uk for a one-metre length, with other terminations and lengths available.
This cable sounds clearer, faster and more open than almost anything else that I have heard under £1,000. Its midband is seriously special; with a punchy slice of techno like Manix’s Rainbow People, I was immediately struck by the SLiC’s translucence. This isn’t a great recording, but one could hear the shimmering harmonics of the lead piano sample better than expected. At the same time, the hi-hat cymbal had a combination of smoothness and sparkle that was a joy to behold. Down below, the bassline was strong and taut, thumping out vast amounts of grunt.
On less processed programme material like Randy Crawford’s soul classic, Rio de Janeiro Blue, the music floated along beautifully as her divine voice was conveyed with a crystalline clarity. Indeed, the Eclipse C MK III is really fast and fleet of foot, being well able to convey the blistering transients of acoustic instruments like guitars; the hard plucked playing on Al Jarreau’s great cover of Summertime is a case in point. It also opened up vocals, giving them a fluency and dynamism that one rarely hears from affordable interconnects. The eighties rock of REM’s Welcome To The Occupation sounded vigorous and punchy, as pristine as when I first heard it on the day of its release.
Spatially the SLiC is seriously capable too, giving a precise, architectural sort of presentation that makes the position of instruments in an orchestra very clear to hear. Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Symphony No.2 – the definitive EMI release conducted by Bernard Haitink – showed the London Philharmonic off at its best. Soundstaging was cavernous from left to right, and depth perspective good. Inside the recorded acoustic, instruments were very securely positioned.
Overall then, the highly capable SLiC Eclipse C MK III compares favourably with many interconnects at twice its price, or even more. If you’re after insight and involvement rather than something to cover the recording up with a fluffy warm blanket, you’ll find it hard not to be impressed.
The SLiC Innovations Eclipse C MK III is available now.
David started his career in 1993 writing for Hi-Fi World and went on to edit the magazine for nearly a decade. He was then made Editor of Hi-Fi Choice and continued to freelance for it and Hi-Fi News until becoming StereoNET’s Editor-in-Chief.