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Iconoclast Cables by Belden "Must Read"

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  • Iconoclast Cables by Belden "Must Read"

    Greetings to everyone at AudioNirvana. I am grateful to be able to post on your wonderful site!

    Release – For Immediate Distribution – January 2019

    Blue Jeans Cable, Seattle, WA., an American manufacturer of high quality, handmade audio, video and data cable assemblies has announced today that it has reached an agreement with Belden Wire & Cable Company to assume the sales, marketing and distribution role of the Belden “Iconoclast” brand of audiophile cables. This includes a variety of speaker cables and both analog and digital interconnects. Since the inception of Iconoclast, Blue Jeans Cable has been the assembly, termination and testing vendor for Belden. Due to the complex and sophisticated design of Iconoclast cables, Belden will continue to use its 115+ years of experience and the one-of-a-kind equipment and systems necessary to produce these cables. Iconoclast designer and former 35+ year Principal Product Engineer at Belden, Galen Gareis will continue to support the Iconoclast product line. Long-term plans are to provide both a domestic and international dealer supported distribution network. For further information and white pages on Iconoclast products please visit www.iconoclastcable.comor call 850-860-0940.

    I have to tell you upfront that this message is a bit long but hopefully enlightening and encouraging to the reader.
    __________________________________________________ ____________________________
    The Players

    Belden Wire & Cable Company. 115+year “100% American” designer and manufacturer of signal transmission delivery products. This includes AV, broadband, broadcast and data signal delivery in most every stadium, NASCAR facility, data center, television station, post and pre-production facility, roadshow and sports venues from the Master to the Olympics, worldwide depend on Belden to deliver the “absolute best” products available. Period!

    Blue Jeans Cable- Blue Jeans Cable (BJC) is a manufacturer of cable assemblies in Seattle, Washington. In 2002 husband and wife team (Kurt & Pam Denke,) committed to provide broadcast quality, made in USA, value based, custom assemblies for audio/video, home theater and data networking. From day-1, BJC chose Belden as the primary source for bulk cable products and remains one of very few Belden OEM channel partners.BJC’s typical customer is not an integrator or contractor but rather homeowners, hobbyist and individuals who want the very best for their AV system or home network. Offering absolute top-quality finished cable assemblies has earned BJC the best reputation available. On a side note, BJC is strongly committed to providing a place where people are happy to go to work. Employees are well paid have the best benefits available and are members of a team. Turnover is almost non-existent. This in itself insures the very best in products and customer service.

    Galen Gareis– 35-year Belden “Principal Product Engineer” and sole designer of Iconoclast cables. At the Belden Engineering Center in Richmond, Indiana, there was an engineer who found himself being pulled in 2-directions. Galen Gareis (now retired) had decades of experience in designing practical, well-engineered cables for a wide variety of professional applications. But, Galen was also a high-end audio enthusiast with a life-long passion to use his knowledge to improve audio cables and take them far beyond the envelope of traditional standards. Iconoclast is the culmination of this Belden “Principal Product Engineer’s” knowledge mated to the vast resources of manufacturing and testing available at Belden. The result is truly remarkable and once again proves that Belden innovation leads the way in signal transmission. Now is Engineering and Support, Iconoclast, BJC.

    Bob Howard – 40+year audiophile, owner of Sight & Sound of Orlando 1988-2000, VP Sales and Marketing of Legacy Audio, Inc 2000-2006, Sales Engineer, Belden Wire & Cable (BAV Division Americas) 2006-2018. Sales at BJC, Iconoclast.

    This marriage between Belden and Blue Jeans should make everyone in the audiophile community open their eyes to a new day and possibility for a genuinely new and better cable and value not before experienced in our audiophile community. A refreshingly open and honest approach to the marketing and sales of speaker leads and interconnects that are receiving tremendously positive accolades from everyone who “investigates.” No snake oil here, only science and the challenge to “try us.

    As we begin to market and spread the word about Iconoclast and the marriage with Blue Jeans Cables there will be those who question what might first appear a reversal in the basic underlying BJC philosophy concerning exotic cables and materials. Kurt presented his thoughts in a most forthright and honest manner. Those thoughts are available in written form for anyone who would like to read them. The sequence of events over the last several years I believe blended Kurt’s seemingly pragmatic approach to his business to forming maxims predicated on theoretically reasoned principles. As Galen has shown, there is science to this. Kurt’s discussions with Steve Lampen and Galen, visiting our Belden facilities in Richmond, reading Galen’s work and design notes and listening to the numerous comments from customers must have had some affect in substantiating that “there must be something to this.” All the while he used his experience and excellence in building cable assemblies to produce a beautifully handcrafted/terminated Iconoclast product. The current state is a marriage “made in Heaven.” Let me add.

    Steve Lampen, Belden’s International Entertainment Product Line Manager was also, at first, a many year’s sceptic of “high-end” cables. I know Steve quite well and spent a lot of time with him traveling, walking trade shows, having fine meals, drinking fine wine and discussing where technology was taking us. Steve was always more than knowledgeable able to fry my small brain in an instant, just like Galen! In the end he too, at least to some extent, joined the “dark side.” You can purchase Steven H. Lampen’s book “Wire, Cable, and Fiber Optics for Video and Audio Engineers” on Amazon. Much of Galen’s writing is “free” and available on our website. Steve’s career spanned nearly as long as Galen’s. Steve was the “world-wide, traveling, cable and technology guru,” the spokesman at Belden. His popularity with and respect from, from the broadcast, motion picture and Ham radio worlds is unmatched. He was on the outside and a very fine speaker. As a BAV sales engineer I used to sometimes offer to sponsor an area “Society of Broadcast Engineers” monthly luncheon. The price for me paying for lunch was that they had to listen to my presentation on new Belden products or promotions. I considered attendance above 15 a well-attended event. A couple of times I was able to promote Steve Lampen as a guest speaker at one of those luncheons. Both times, well over 150 showed up causing major overload for my expense account. While Steve promoted Belden to the world, Galen stayed in the laboratory and created leading edge, push the envelope, state of the art cable products. No one, and I will say it again, no one, has contributed more to the world of wire than Galen. It would take a chapter to tell you about the products he designed. Now Belden has “no one” to design and “no one” to present.

    Self-admitted, Kurt is not an audiophile. This is something that I expect will change as time progresses. It’s hard not to catch the disease when properly exposed. Not really looking for a personality change but rather a broadening of horizons. We have all agreed to keep Iconoclast separate with its own identity and website. We will not be in the business of selling snake oil, bashing competitor’s products or arguing with those who do not understand just how much cables can and do make in an audio system. Do you have to have speakers and a turntable that cost more than most cars to notice the difference? No. In fact I have seen and heard cables radically improve modest systems making the cables perhaps one of the most “cost effective” improvements in a system. If you can’t hear the difference between Belden 1313A, 5T00UP and Iconoclast SPTPC speaker leads then I can’t help you. 5T00UP was designed to carry the high current amperage needed to drive a speaker array at a NASCAR track or NFL stadium. It takes massive current to reach outrageous SPL levels in a vast arena. 1313A was design to meet the needs of commercial AV applications from board-rooms to you name it. And these Belden products are among the best commercially available speaker wires on the market.

    If you are like me, you can hear “major” differences between cables in every aspect of the musical experience and coherence of the material. Not between “all” cables but between a bad, good and great cable. I personally own and lived with 1313A and 5T00UP leads terminated with the original ICM “compression” (RGSPU bodies and either RGSPB and RGSPL tips) connectors. The day I got my hands on a pair of Iconoclast SPTPC leads was the day my jaw hit the floor. I had just removed the 5T00UP. I cannot go back!
    Iconoclast was designed to push the envelope to deliver the most accurate, detailed and coherent audio experience available. Galen did not develop Iconoclast to go to market but rather for himself. Quite selfish in the beginning. I’m grateful he decided to share!

    Even with over 3-decades of cable design experience under his belt at Belden, Galen spent well over 2-years experimenting with both the known but also often unconsidered variables in cable design before finalizing on the early prototypes. He hand constructed, tested and listened to over 70 different designs. He wrote everything down in great detail to later be included in the patents. The predominate factor for moving a design forward was not in the R/L & C measurement but in “how it sounded.” Many combinations of variables were meticulously blended to achieve what is now Iconoclast. Just “ some ” of Galen’s design considerations included;

    • CONDUCTORS–How many, what size, what material, weave?
    • DIELECTRIC GEOMETRY ( Air Dielectric?)

    Patented, yes. Every Iconoclast design is patented. There were no machines in existence that could be used to construct the sophisticated and unique design in the speaker cables. The machines had to be fabricated and built from scratch.

    An audio cable is to neither add nor detract from the signal. No cable can add things or increase amplitude. Cables can only mask and muddy. A cable needs to get out of the way! Unfortunately, many cables can be found that are unnervingly bright, lifelessly dull, sibilant and fatiguing. Almost all place “some level” of masking over program material. Cables that may fall within widely accepted R/L & C ranges do not always perform well. Are there good cables out there? Of course, albeit most at the cost of a new car! Production 10 –16 AWG speaker/lamp cord cable has no place in an “audiophile” environment! Neither does bling coated shiny jewelry belong on cables.

    Lastly, in my life I have always made purchases of costly products based on the factor of “diminishing returns.” I wanted a Lexus but when I realized that the Toyota had the same frame, engine and drive train as the Lexus at $15k less, I bought the Avalon. If you have to spend 50% more to obtain a 10% performance gain then you need to think about what is important. I believe that Iconoclast is the pinnacle of value based on diminishing returns. I recently had a well-established Jacksonville, FL, audio dealer tell me to keep my damn cables away from his store. It seems he enjoyed selling cables for $15k+ cables and wanted no part of a cable that would trounce his brand name at 5-times+ less cost. This is not diminishing returns.

    How many years did I walk the rooms at Alexis Park on Harmon Avenue at CES or each floor at the Waldorf Astoria in search of that perfect pair of speakers or a new amp? The hunt is a part of a truly enjoyable process of being an audiophile. No sales pitch here. Just a challenge. Try it, you’ll like it!

    Visit the 3-years old thread at the PS Audio forums to see what Iconoclast is all about. This post at AudioNirvana is our first message outside of the PS Audio Forums. We look forward to helping audiophiles everywhere finally put the cable question “To Rest!” I’m also looking for a few “great dealers” who want to explore being a part of Iconoclast.
    Thank you if you are still here reading….
    Blue Jeans Bob [email protected]

  • #2
    Good for you. Although i have the 'high priced spread' i've also used your cables for subwoofers, for coax and other things- they are well made and not stupid money, and you give people the choice of wire- you run the operation like a business, responding to orders quickly and filling them. Best of luck with this- the market is one that is polarized between the naysayers and the believers, and a lot of the believers know how much mark up there is, and just deal w/it. You supply a good product at a good price, and reach an customer base that otherwise wouldn't bother. Don't know anything about this Iconoclast, but glad you posted.


    • #3
      Blue Jeans Bob!


      • #4
        Love Blue Jeans Cable and what they do. If the LA Audio Show hadn't been cancelled this past spring, they were going to supply all the cables for my exhibit this past year.
        Steve Lefkowicz
        Senior Associate Editor at Positive Feedback
        Analog 1: Linn LP12 (MOSE/Hercules II), Ittok, Dynavector 10X5 MK.II Low Output, iPhono2/iPowerX; Analog 2: Pro-Ject RPM-1 Carbon, Talisman S, iFi iPhono.
        Digital: Samsung 300E5C notebook, JRiver Media Center 26, Tidal HiFi and Qobuz Studio), iFi NEO iDSD, iFi iUSB3, iPurifier2, Audioquest Jitterbug.
        Electronics: DIY passive line-stage with TKD 10K pot, Antique Sound Labs MG-SI15DT-S, Burson Timekeeper Virtuoso
        Speakers: Tekton Lore, Magneplaner .7
        Interconnects: Morrow Audio MA1, Vermouth Audio Black Pearl, Audioquest Evergreen
        Speaker cables: Morrow Audio SP4, Vermouth Audio Red Velvet
        Digital cables: Aural Symphonics Digital Standard xxv USB, Belkin PureAV.
        Accessories: Sound Organization turntable shelf, Mondo racks, Pangea Audio Vulcan rack, Pi Audio Group Über BUSS, Monster HTS2000 power conditioner, Kinetronics anti-static brush, Pro-Ject VC-S record cleaner, Spin Clean record cleaner.
        Headphones: Schiit Valhalla amp, Burson Conductor Virtuoso Amp, Meze Audio 99 Classic and 99 Neo, Beyerdynamic DT770Pro 600 ohm, DT770 Studio 80 ohm, 1More Triple Driver Over Ear, 1More Triple Driver IEM


        • #5
          Thank you for the warm reception!!