Vortex Cables Seraphina Review: Thump & Shine

Vortex Cables Seraphina Review: Thump & Shine

There are plenty of IEM custom cable makers around the world. While cable crafting may appear simple, it’s not as easy as you’d imagine. Tuning a custom cable doesn’t stop on material specification or measurements but also needs to be tuned through listening which makes the R&D process a lot more vague and challenging.


This is also why most cables sound different although they use the same type of materials. Mixing and matching different cable materials requires the cable maker to make sounds and characteristics to work well with each other, hence requiring higher expertise and challenges to create a good-sounding IEM cable. 


Today we bring you to the cable brand Vortex Cables. Based in Hong Kong, Vortex Cables made its appearance around 2018 and has been quickly gaining popularity through quality sound and craftsmanship. Most recently, Vortex has released its newest line-up called the C.F.S. series, consisting of four cable products: Lavinia, Alida, Minerva, and Seraphina. Today we’ll be reviewing Seraphina which retails for $439.


The Includings / ConX Connectors

Seraphina comes in a sleek blue packaging box and comes with some quality accessories. The rest of the included are a leather cover pad, a leather protective case, two pairs of ConX 2.0 connectors, a leather strap, and a metal warranty card.

The leather case is the same variant as the DDHIFI C90 and is very well-built. The cable and earphones can be slid through one side of the case as two magnetic latches keep the case secured. It uses genuine leather for the skin with good padding inside out, offering a good feel for both the user and IEMs.


The ConX Modular Connectors

I’m sure many of you cable users have already experienced the ConX connectors. Seraphina comes with two pairs of Effect Audio’s modular connector system, the ConX 2.0. The IEM connectors can be swapped into 2-pin or MMCX which cover the two most common IEM connectors. 


Cable Geometrics / Usability

Seraphina uses a combination of different wires to perfect its tuning and performance. Braided in 2-core with nylon shielding, the outer layer is finished with Silver-Plated OFC Copper shielding with the inner core consisting of a Silver-Plated 6N OCC Copper. The wires are quite soft and pliable, not causing any microphonics or tension during usage. The connectors and Y-split are finished with lightweight aluminum, giving a sturdy feel yet keeping the cable light. Seraphina is slightly lighter than most other fabric cables and I don’t expect comfort to be an issue.  


The Sound of Seraphina

Seraphina is an all-rounder cable that focuses on carefully bringing improvements in technicality and mid-high emphasis. However, the lows aren’t sacrificed while doing so. The bass quantity remains similar but comes with a bolder, tighter body. This would be an ideal change for those who seek to keep the original bass nuance or would like to gently tighten loosened bass reverbs.


Another characteristic of Seraphina is to introduce clarity that keeps naturality as default. Rather than boosting the brightness or intensity of the upper mids, Seraphina makes the IEMs sound cleaner by formulating a quieter background. This brings the music to be better in focus. The vocal timbre is mildly boosted in richness which remains thoroughly neutral. It’s a subtle breezy, cheerful tone that uplifts the upper-end dynamics. Mid-range has a neutral thickness that neither thins nor thickens the vocals. Lastly, but just as significantly, Seraphina brings a decent improvement for the treble technicality, showing finer resolution and crispness. This unveils the treble strands that were unclear or hidden previously.


Next Page: IEM / Cable comparisons, and Final Verdicts