It even feels surreal that we are finally updating the Billow after seven years, and I’m often amazed by the vitality of our products as there are still customers buying the first generation after so many new products have been released on the market by numerous brands. This time, the Billow MKII is coming with a three-layer design, surpassing its predecessor in nearly all aspects. The innermost core is made up of a solid rod of silver alloy, which is not only thicker than the first generation but also has a new composition that sonically performs better. The middle layer is made up of alloy threads that have also been updated in terms of their material composition, and now they offer better conductivity with an updated sound signature. The outermost layer, which looks like a spiral, is in fact a sonically polished 24-karat gold foil running up each wire. This single helix is multi-function in that it serves isolation, tuning, and aesthetic purposes at the same time. I would call it the soul of the Billow MKII. The new structure found in Billow MKII results in more powerful bass, beautiful and round vocals, and better details in the high region. One can immediately hear the difference between the MKII and the first generation after seconds of listening, at least I did. Appearance-wise, the Billow MKII looks better as each wire is now thicker due to its complex structure, but it still feels surprisingly soft thanks to our newest isolation sheath that provides a comfortable touch.
Here's the description of the original Billow:
It is definitely not an easy task to write this description as the sonic performance of the Billow is ineffable, and we feel the effort is definitely worthwhile even though it has taken us around one year to develop this new flagship cable. The Billow is the first cable in our products to use gold alloy as thread material. Sparing no cost and effort in its ingredients and design, we took advantage of the most expensive material and the best cutting-edge technologies. Of course, we did not simply throw gold, silver, and other metal ores into a melting pot at random. Repeated trials were conducted with the aid of knowledge in metallurgy for producing these beautiful cables in terms of both appearance and sound. The performance in all frequency ranges is spectacular without any interference from neighboring frequencies. This means that the Billow can accurately conduct all signals in the original records regardless of how high quality the soundtracks are. Due to production difficulties, the Billow is only available in limited quantities, which is unfortunate because not everyone has a chance to get their Billow for the ultimate listening experience.
Customers have been asking us why we call it the Billow. I feel this question is worth answering. The Chinese name of this cable is called 金澜, where 金 means "gold" and 澜 loosely translates to "big wave". This name has good meaning because of the feeling of a "big wave of gold" coming at you, just like the sound of music, and it also sounds very cool in Chinese. However, there is no direct translation in English, but "billow" is the closest word we can find although it looses the gold part, which we believe is obvious from its look. As you guys already know, "billow" means big wave, which is very spectacular, so it can describe the "wow" effect of the cable's sound.
Moreover, some customers were asking us about why the Billow is what it is, and how it came about. In fact, we have put some great innovations and technology into this cable from our previous experience. There are three key points we learned from previous models and used on Billow:
No. 1: Metallurgy. When we were designing the Signal, which is made of a special metal alloy, we used silver, copper, and some rare minerals (around 3%). Imagine putting a bunch of basketballs together in a large box. There would be lots of empty spaces among them. To fill in these empty spaces, we can use smaller balls, and then even smaller balls to fill the remaining gap. Analogically, the same concept holds true for the molecular structures of our metal alloy, which is very stable and special for better conductivity and tuning. However, due to budget constrain, although Signal is a fine cable, it is not the best we can do. For the Billow, we are using a much more costly and complex procedure with different steps of purification and alloying, using gold, silver, copper, and other rare minerals to achieve the best tuning we can do.
No. 2: Thread design. Our Oslo III has a design that we call coaxial conductivity, meaning materials are wrapping around each other rather than the traditional twisting design. Billow uses small threads to form bigger threads and then uses bigger threads to form the final threads, which is a hybrid of coaxial and traditional conductive thread braiding methods. This makes the contacting surface area about 300% more, which greatly improves conductivity.
No. 3: Isolating sleeve. We are using the same isolating outer sleeve as the ever-popular Prima Donna to ensure the Billow is soft and flexible while being nicely isolated from outside interference. To achieve this, the sleeve material has been highly pressurized, which is quite expensive to do, to form a denser molecular structure, and this also minimizes the unwanted rubbing noises while moving.
4-wire or 8-wire?
The 4-wire option has the advantages of being more economical and lighter in weight.
The 8-wire option has fuller sound, larger soundstage and punchier bass while still feels amazingly soft and easy to use.
All of our IEM cables have pre-bent earguides by default. There are no wires inside as the ear guide is shaped by ourheat shrink sleeve to eliminate the possibility of oxidation of the metallic memory wires. If you do not want any ear guide, please contact us.
The default length of our IEM cables is about 1.2 meters, while headphone cables are around 1.5 meters. If other lengths are needed, please contact us for alternative arrangements.