Hong Kong's High Fidelity magazine praises C-MARC cables in 11 page review.

December, 2017
Download a PDF of the Table of Contents here and the 11 page review here. (It is all in the Chinese language.)
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"...sounds almost as good as the vinyl disc on the best of analog systems."

November, 2017, author: Marek Dyba
"Echo's End offers exceptionally long, full reverb tails, which is usually the domain of tube devices."

"I listened to a lot of acoustic recordings with piano, string instruments, acoustic and classical guitars and in each of them this Lithuanian transducer had to offer even more than my LampizatOr. The one element that makes music different is that it seems to be fuller, and above all more natural, more 'right.'"

"I did not expect from this non-tube device - the naturalness, or actually even the organic nature of the sound. It's a feature I associate with vacuum tube based circuitry. And yes, I did happen to encounter it in some transistor digital sources, but only at a significantly higher price level."

"Let's just take a look at Michel Godard with Monteverdi's music and the variations on the theme (A trace of grace), which is absolutely gorgeous on vinyl, and from the digital version it always seemed a bit worse / poorer, though still very good. Playing from the file via USB input, Echo's End for the first time in terms of rendering spatial aspects and tone quality, sounds almost as good as the vinyl disc on the best of analog systems. The Noirlac Abbey's courtyard opened up to a huge size, the breadth of the sound was freely circling its distant corners, each clean, saturated sound filling the air, all complementing the palpability of large, precisely arranged apparent sources. All this together made a huge, realistic sounding panorama."

"Echo's End has shown that the resolution, the amount of information that can be extracted from recordings, also puts it in a really high league of digital sources, as does serious separation. In the case of the above mentioned recording, it was a great pleasure to listen to the sound of individual instruments. The insight into the color, the texture, the dynamics at the micro level was unique. This makes each instrument singular and all very realistically convincing."

"Another similarity to the well-known vinyl version of this recording was the softness of the sound, sometimes called analogue nature. In the digital world, it is associated with the sound of DSD files rather than "harder" PCMs. As in the case of the analogue disc, this "softness" of the sound is due to the softening of the attack phase, but without loss of speed. So when we have sudden, strong impulses of the leading edges of instrument attack, we still jump in our listening position, even if it is a tad lighter than other transistor DACs. Thanks to this, Alan Dawson's drumming performance was excellent on We're All Together for the First Time."

"One more feature that is worth mentioning, and which only audio devices with refined power feature, is a very black background. The latter comes from a lower level of noise and distortion, of which we may not be aware, but which do lower the sound quality and enjoyment of listening."

"So I plugged in a Firewall 5X module between the power cord and the Echo's End and it quickly confirmed that the sound of this device was partly obtained through the use of the onboard Firewall modules. In the simplest terms, all of the above-described features of the DAC sounded deeper. This made no noticeable negative impact, but the sound was made even cleaner, more organic, more colorful (not to be confused with colored), more illuminated - just more real. Adding a second "5X" further aggregated this effect, though I felt rather less than the first one. The playback was even smoother, more consistent, less choppy, but still fast, live sounding and energetic."

"Looking at the form of this device, and even at its interior it is difficult to guess how much it has to offer. You have to accept the lack of switches, displays and indicators, or the need to physically disconnect or turn off previously used sources. However, one quickly accustoms oneself to the elegance of this nicely made wooden box, especially since the sound of Echo's End easily convinces."

"It is clean, organic, smooth with amazing tembre, with beautifully rendered acoustics (where it's in the recording), but also dynamic and fast. Regardless of the type of file being played, Echo's End offers sound normally associated with DSD files - smooth, saturated, plastic, sharply focused, with a gentle but fast, powerful attack. It's one of those devices whose sound creates a spell from which it is difficult to break. It became hard to point out specific advantages over competitors, because overall I felt I just want to listen to the pure flow of the music."
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6moons says of Firewall: More organic and fluid, better frequency extremes, layering, impact and weight

September, 2017, author: Srajan Ebaen
"As anticipated, this whodunnit was easily sorted. What I'll call the X amp [with Firewall modules]–internally in parts, sonically in 'more'–distinguished itself on two levels. The first had to do with raw quantity."

"Here [with Firewall modules] the bass was better articulated, front-to-back layering more developed, the treble more suave and vocals were more present."

"Describing why the feel was more organic and fluid leads to lazier lengthier decays and background sounds more connected to the foreground. The plain Jane's [without Firewalls] drier take coincided with sharper separation but lacked the more holistic elasticity of the X [with Firewall modules]. One was pricklier and more staccato, the other rounder, smoother and of a more legato persuasion."

"[With Firewalls:] better visibility at the frequency extremes and of the imaging precision in general."

"The depth layers of X [with Firewall modules] during chorus interludes had superior development. With it the low beats of the Bombay Dub Orchestra had more impact and weight."

"One [without Firewalls] was cooler, sharper, more bare boned and lean. The other [with Firewalls] was richer, mellower, smoother and fuller."

"[With Firewall modules had] this afterglow quality. Here lingered on a stronger flavour of space, ambiance and calm."

"For an alternate take on LessLoss Firewall effects, read Vance Hiner's review of the Echo's End DAC. Between us–and we've not had any exchanges–there's no doubt. These Firewall cards really do the trick."

"What today's experiment showed is that it takes no luxury gear at all to hear differences or create improvements."
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...better than any DAC I've had in my system...
...far more organic and three-dimensional...

September, 2017, author: Vance Hiner
"Whether it was Red Book, 24-bit/192kHz or 2x DSD files, the Echo's End narrowed the gap considerably, sounding largely like itself no matter the source."

"I wasn't prepared for the sonic bloom and realism."

"The Echo's End produced a three-dimensional soundstage that was strikingly deep. It rendered the nightclub crowd sounds so realistically that they became an important part of setting the mood of the performance; in fact, my dog, Zorro, started barking at some of the rowdier customers seated at the bar."

"The Echo's End is exceptionally good at detail retrieval."

"Clean, quiet and vivid. Those are not words that normally come to mind when I listen to this CD. I also noticed how much depth there was in the soundstage and the clarity of Baker's tone."

"The Echo's End is a damned fine DAC."

"The Echo's End is a thoroughly modern DAC that manages to sound both detailed and remarkably natural, but there are two things in particular that it does better than any DAC I've had in my system."

"First, its stage via USB presented music in a far more organic and three-dimensional way than what I've come to expect from this interface."

"Second, the Echo's End's timing and pacing are downright addictive. Its above-average performance in this particular area meant that groups of musicians sounded especially in sync, resulting in an emotional, visceral reaction to the music."

"The Echo's End is a real charmer."
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C-MARC Wins Double Awards at Mono&Stereo

August, 2017, author: Matej Isak
"Very inspiring performers to say the very least."

"The first minute instantly reveals how much potency the cables are able to carry. Not only with regard to sonics, but also to emotional transfer."

"One is really engaged because the interactive path between the performer and listener are bridged so well. At the end of the day, this is where the so-called magic resides. Not in a particular clinical dissection of the sound into constituent parts, but in potently rendering the message, that can evoke notions of the original aura of the music."

"These [C-MARC] products speak for themselves."

"true gems"

"An unexpected and most welcome lightness of notes floating and inducing overtones suddenly made more sense on a grander scheme of realism and drama."

"And "constitutional" is a word that describes the primary qualities of C-MARC cables. Their no-nonsense approach revealed what Kenny Burrell had to "say". It's all about the message with The Mule and Soul Lament and these C-MARC cables managed to deliver the essence and invaluable message of this music."

"Especially with Midnight Blue, where the musical energy is extremely dense, the C-MARC cables reacted within the true high end realm with no unwanted fluttering or mashup of chaotic dissection of the overtones."

"Even from the first dramatic moments of the Tchaikovsky symphony, the brass fanfare quickly reveals the high sonic performance of these cables."

"The LessLoss C-MARC cables, without artificial texturing, manage to really let loose the sound with impressive speed and power, thus forming that unmistakeable brass ensemble experience, usually achievable only from cable sets costing in the five digit range."

"Instead of an embossed laser-like etching of every single ornament, the LessLoss C-MARC cables portray the orchestra in a naturally informative, I want to say refreshing, way."

"When the first movement expands and grows, revealing Tchaikovsky's unmistakable emotional impact, then the previously mentioned "cloud" effect comes even more into focus, revealing all the individual instruments and human intention behind them, constituting the rich sonic "cloud". Like a dark cloud no longer able to hold moisture, a thunder storm is inevitable when the massiveness of the ensemble's tutti pours through these high gauge audio veins. It really is an emotionally moving experience."

"In the third movement, I noted the C-MARC cables' excellent revealing of the minute intricacies of ensemble pizzicato, something only an extremely fast cable can do."

"But, the real challenge with Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4 is yet to come. When in the fourth movement Tchaikovsky calls for con fuoco (with fire!), everything can easily fall apart. If the system's balance and especially the cables are not spot on, the giant harmonious cloud at once starts to dissipate instead of maintain a form larger than its constituent parts. C-MARC's liquid-like nature conveys the orchestra without stepping into the realm of diffraction and dissection. What really left a most lasting impression to me was the way that C-MARC was capable of materializing the orchestra with palpable gestalt. That impression is hard to forget."

"The progress made with the new C-MARC technology is a leap forward of such significance, that I'm more than sure easily convinced Louis to completely overhaul the entire LessLoss cable line."

"C-MARC digs deeper into the constitutional, quark-like particles, that are of defining factor in realistically reconstructing music from both an acoustic and emotional standpoint."

"C-MARC cables are also all very flexible and utterly easy to bend compared to all of the previous LessLoss cables. Their high flexibility and light weight make them much more easy to install."

"Several people wrote me from my initial postings about C-MARC with similar conclusions to mine and we all agreed: C-MARC is more than just worthy of its price. We're living in an era where new stratospheric priced cables appear constantly, and in this context it's not only refreshing, but highly inspiring to witness such grand performance at such reasonable pricing."

"[What I heard is] usually achievable only from cable sets costing in the five digit range."

"I really experienced a sobering moment as the transparency provided by C-MARC came from a completely other universe than expected. This type of resolution and depth is usually reserved only for the upper echelon players, yet the LessLoss C-MARC cables provide a seemingly impossible insight into this esoteric world, a world that is by default unaccessible at this price point (you can easily add a 3x factor and still have a difficult shoot-out)."

"It would be an understatement to call LessLoss C-MARC cables a refreshing, or even exemplary, stand-out product. In fact they are both revolutionary and evolutionary regarding the mountains they traversed on their way forward in the performance realm as well as the accessibility they provide in terms of affordability."

"For these reasons I wholeheartedly grant the LessLoss C-MARC Wire and Cable products both Mono and Stereo's Highly Recommended and Best Buy awards."

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"C-MARC represents their finest most important and accessible work yet." "A Whale of a performer."

May, 2017, author: Srajan Ebaen
"Though coin is always relative, considering this build's complexity even cynics should find that one's hifi dollar meets real substance. This includes a 3-day cryogenic treatment in an offsite facility."

"It's highly flexible and easy to dress."

"It didn't take long to conclude that, in my book at least, this was their best yet: most universally applicable, most easily demonstrated."

"The C-MARC wires were indeed speechless... er, quiet. As promised by their propaganda, they truly were exceptionally revealing. Unlike hyper-stiff wires can with their layers upon layers of solid shielding, the super-slinky self-cancelling Lithuanians didn't make the sound dry. Music didn't occur in a sterile vacuum. It was properly juicy and elastic."

"The coppery Litz's magnification power of musical plankton didn't happen under a hospital's stark white neon glare. Its combination of the spatially teased out, energetically relaxed but room-fillingly grand made the C-MARC loom a whale of a performer."

"Back to fair pricing, really no Las Vegas gambling is involved to bag this whale."

"With the LessLoss C-MARC loom, one buys into small-diameter super flexible non-springy cables in demure black cotton sleeving. They have quality connectors-the power inlet plugs grip like a wrestling champ!-dress easily and don't shout with their appearance."

"More importantly, one gets a supremely balanced natural sound that's fluidic not choppy, relaxed not wiry. It's also very intelligible down into the minuscule to be the cable equivalent of hi-rez."

"Best of all, it's capable of getting the music out of the boxes and the virtual zone behind them and bridge it into the room. If you believe you already have that... you're either quite lucky; or still misguided about what you think is actually possible."

"Having reviewed a number of LessLoss items over the years, I'll close out by repeating that I think their latest C-MARC, from concept to execution, represents their finest most important and accessible work yet."
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"Easy to use and does the job without a negative impact on dynamics."

May, 2017, author: George Sallit
"With the filter in circuit the background noise is significantly reduced and the decay of notes on the guitar are much easier to hear. The soundstage (as it is) was enhanced. Oddly enough the tonal colours also seemed enhanced. The drum kit was not some amorphous thudding but stretched skins being hit gently. I did not quite believe what I was hearing."

"With the filter in place, the sound was far more musical."

"The 3D soundstage was much bigger and made it easier to differentiate who was doing what."

"I then blinked. My notes for the music without the filter were hifi comments, with the filter I was commenting on the music."

"Well the filter certainly allowed all the individual elements to be easily heard without any frequency response changes."

"All the advantages of mains filters but no loss of dynamics."

"The sound was more 3D and it was easier to hear the individual instruments. Also, the drums had a stronger tonal colour than without the filter."

"It sounded as though the worse the mix the better the effect."

"On the DAC the noise levels were reduced. The tonal colour was much better. The biggest impact was again on the DAC. Was this a weakness in the Audionote DACs? No. I tried the 5x on my Metrum Octave and I heard a similar effect, less noise, more 3D sound, greater tonal colour. Is it possible it only works with NOS DACs? No. Out came my Esoteric DAC with a very similar finding."

"The biggest difference was with bright mixes where the 'truthfulness' of the Class D could make things a bit fierce. The 5x filter tamed that and all that was left was a bright mix. There are many reports on the web of people recommending mains treatments for Class D amplifiers. I had not tried that as I was concerned about the loss of dynamics. With the Lessloss filters there was no real change to the dynamics but the brightness had gone and the tonal colours had increased."

"So, at the end of all this I had to conclude that these filters do work and they do so particularly well with DACs and a Class D amplifier."

"But are they worth it? Given what most of the serious mains conditioning units cost and the fact that some do impact the dynamics (not all of them) then my answer is yes. Is the 5x worth the extra? In a high-resolution system, the answer is positive. A really interesting product that is easy to use and does the job without a negative impact on dynamics."
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"The new LessLoss DAC should be on your list."

February, 2017, author: Srajan Ebaen
"The Echo's End had the most distinctive easily grasped gestalt ..."

"Whilst it didn't sound like tubes, it felt like them. Whilst I fed it pure PCM, it behaved like deep DSD."

"Not sounding but feeling like tubes meant textural fluidity with plenty of connective tissue but no response liberties or THD seasoning. Behaving like DSD meant sweeter, more elastic and texturally softer than standard CD sound, with more overt ambient recovery."

"Deep DSD indicates that the LessLoss went beyond the Lindemann's actual resampling. It expressed the same flavour but did so at categorically higher potency; in pure PCM no less."

"Longest ever decays from digital?"

"What the listener can tell regardless is that it works; and very plainly so."

"A vital qualifier was how such pervasive gentility–that softer more organic approach–didn't come at the expense of vividness. ... The musical gestalt didn't collapse."

"Muscle tone was that of an upright not supine body. This was key. Its softness was more on the surface. It didn't impact the core of musical tension. Incidentally, that's been a personal complaint with DSD converters of the über-alles or resampling kind. They all bled out some caffeine and put a minor damper on the musical adrenaline. The Echo's End did not. It did all the other DSD things and at a very good clip but not that one."

"Should your own tastes overlap–of wanting the pretty, nubile and spacious aspects of DSD but not its reduced verve– this LessLoss just might have your number. In an ocean of generics, having such a distinctive calling card is a useful advantage."

"I feel privileged to have experienced the Laminar Streamer's sonic achievements."

"Streaming the laminar way, music felt juicier and calmer at the same time. This was particularly keen on overcooked nervous jittery productions with their tense hype and sizzle. Now those had elegance and mellifluousness. They were on song according to the bel canto definition."

"The primary taste is of greater calm; as though time ran slower. This makes the listener more settled and poised."

"Intermixed aspects are a removal of very fine metallic grit in transients and overtones; and wetter ambiance."

"It's only by going back and forth, with/without, that one inspects why the experience differs. That's when the disappearance of faint glittery upper-mid/treble grit gets checked off; when more specific spatial sensations get translated into heightened contrast; and as a result of that and intangibles, why the overriding quality is greater calm. Here team LessLoss are undeniably on to something. DACs seem to be even more susceptible to how their digital data arrive than we suspected. Many of the gestalt-based complaints which audiophiles try to address with sundry hardware changes seem to have their roots here, at the very beginning."

"True, the Laminar Streamer did sit at this peak with the finest resolve of ambiance and focus for spatial mapping."

"The combination of Laminar Streamer and Echo's End spelled o-r-g-a-n-i-c and l-e-g-a-t-o in capital letters. Without losing any substance, music manifested less solid, staid and straight-jacketed. It felt more suspended, afloat and breathing. To visualize, think blooming ink blots on wet watercolour paper, albeit in 3D. That's your counterpoint for edge-limned silhouettes in a shadow play. That and the silky textural 'suede' softness were key. They walked hand in hand with greater calm."

"This calm had a very different living oxygenated quality to it."

"If what I described tracks your taste, the new LessLoss DAC should be on your list."

"Someone in Lithuania burns the midnight oil; at the very extreme high-end, in the middle and below; and not on the same old same old. Innovation rules!"
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Laminar Streamer wins Upper Echelon Class Award

January, 2017, author: Matej Isak
"The difference when comparing my computer server/streamer to the LessLoss Laminar Streamer is not small by any means. When I first connected the Laminar Streamer to the MSB Select DAC II, the first thing I wrote down in my listening notes was "analog-like easiness, fuller and more vivid projection of the sound," as well as "prolonged sense of the scale."

"I took a direct hit from the LessLoss Laminar Streamer Direct Drive SD card player, but even after that hit, it continued to grow on me subtly."

"This is where it becomes most obvious that we are concerned here with the topmost echelon of ultra high-end audio reproduction. A convincing recreation of acoustical space and the instruments being played within this space is the most demanding challenge for both analog and digital front ends. In this regard, while analog comes with impressive mileage, the digital competition has now obviously gained headway to such an extent that, today, with the Laminar Streamer, it has little in common with state-of-the-art digital playback of only a few years ago."

"revealed a new reference point overall."

"The LessLoss Laminar Streamer Direct Drive SD card player operates at such a high level that it is difficult or impossible to assemble and balance a system which would reveal any of its own flaws."

"Louis Motek's vision pushes the known horizon of uncompromising digital audio playback to a completely new plane. The Laminar defines this new plane like no other device."

"In a very real way, the Laminar Streamer frees us and our machines from this sort of activity and allows us to fully engage in an emotionally charged state and completely personal process. The sabbatical (vacation) from commercial activity I alluded to before is the establishment of a private space where one can freely dedicate his own private time and senses for the pure enjoyment and experience of music. This reminds me of a concert going experience, or taking time to explore gourmet food. These moments are only ever special because we charge them with that special condition ourselves, often times by disengaging ourselves from our usual state of struggle within a commercial or careerist environment. That special rest we experience through the purposeful establishment of such conditions is exactly what I experienced in music through use of the Laminar Streamer."

"The Laminar Streamer continues to shake my inner core through the huge impact it has had on me, and this feeling remains with me and is not fading away."

"The real luxury is the level of realism, drama and emotional impact that these products bring to our experience. The LessLoss Laminar Streamer Direct Drive SD card player pushes the boundaries of this type of luxury further by no small margin. Once experienced, a whole new world opens up. In absence of iPad's, Wi-Fi, IP based devices, internet streaming devices, etc., you simply melt into the music."

"The Laminar Streamer "beamed" me into a different universe, where my digital audio rites were constitutionally changed not only by the mere ritual, but most importantly with the experience of stressless, direct, pure audio intake. I do not think it will happen any time again soon in the digital realm. That is how far ahead the Laminar is."

"The LessLoss Laminar Streamer Direct Drive SD card player represents an early dawn of a new era and acts like a Time Machine that suspiciously changes the facet of time and space.

"I've travelled far and deep into the digital audio universe, but never as far and as sublime as with the Laminar Streamer."

"For what it accomplishes and embodies, I'm wholeheartedly giving the LessLoss Laminar Streamer Direct Drive SD card player Mono & Stereo's Upper Echelon Award. In addition, it takes a new place in the Uber Audio throne at Mono & Stereo."

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