The TCI Tiger II is the company's entry-level interconnect.

It actually looks a good deal more upmarket than the price suggests, with some particularly handsome (and well made) phono plugs fitted. Beneath the soft jacket, it is apparently a simple twisted pair in design, an arrangement which minimises hum pickup, though under very low-signal conditions (a turntable connected to a phono preamp) the lack of shielding may possibly become an issue.

The wire is straightforward stranded copper insulated in polythene, a low-loss dielectric whose properties are slightly compromised here by the fibre filler and the PVC outer sleeve – were it not for that, Tiger would also serve pretty well as a digital interconnect.

Great at the price

Budget interconnects often struggle mainly in the treble, with a less open sound than their dearer rivals can achieve. In this case, although that is still true to some extent, treble is really rather impressive.

Just now and then one becomes aware of a slight lack of ambience and 'air' around the sound, but for the most part results are good and for the price, excellent.

Bass is interesting, being to our ears a little short of completely neutral. Instead there is something of a lift to it, which makes for a fuller sound, but does on occasion detract from the tautness of a rhythmic bassline. In budget set-ups, with rather bass-light systems, that may be no bad thing.

Detail is good and imaging excellent with surprisingly good depth, too.