Ernie Ball Instrument Cable (Braided) Review & Blind Test

Hello there, in this brief article I would like to review one of my recent purchases from Thomann. Based on user reviews, Ernie Ball instrument cables are one of the best choices around. These cables have managed to score 5 out of 5 in this competitive market!

Ernie Ball instrument cables feature a high-quality design with excellent components that promise a high value/money ratio. These cables guarantee a long servicing time with excellent sound characteristics across guitars’ frequency ranges.

Ernie Ball Instrument Cables Tech Specs

Dual shielding
Braided fabric sheath
Gold-plated connectors: 6.3 mm jack - 6.3 mm angled jack
99.95% Copper shielding
Length: 3 m
Colour: Black

I have preferred the version with angled gold-plated jacks. Note that, there are many variations of this cable with different cable lengths, straight jacks or different colours.

Naturally, prices will vary so you need to choose one depending on your need. I prefer angled jacks usually as it’s tidier on your audio interface or preamps.

Click here to browse all Ernie Ball Instrument Cables!

Ernie Ball instrument cables feel very durable, I must say I love the sound of them in comparison to what I have had to use so far which was Shnoor Cables.

To make this article a bit more interesting, I have made a blind test video (or A/B audio test). Obviously, it’s just a simple test. Most guitar nerds may probably say that I shouldn’t compare 2 cables with different lengths, different jack plates…However, it’s just a simple comparison head to head at the end of the day.

I would also like to hear your guesses! You will find the correct answers at the bottom of this article. Let’s hear this simple guitar cable comparison first!

A/B Audio Test: Ernie Ball Instrument Cable EB6081 vs Shnoor IC124 JMEJME

In this video, I have used my Schecter Hellraiser Hybrid PT-7 Ultra Violet, ENGL E570 All Tube Preamp, ENGL Cabloader, RME Babyface PRO interface and Chicken Picks Shredder 3.5mm, Pyramid 7 String 10-56 Strings.

Do you hear any differences? Come up with your first guesses 🙂

I must say I hear slight differences between the two cables. But it’s almost impossible to define all audible differences immediately. I have also taken some screenshots from the Voxengo SPAN spectrum analyzer VST plugin to prove that there are some sonic differences.

Ernie Ball vs Shnoor Cable Spectrum
Ernie Ball vs Shnoor Cable Spectrum

Note that, these screenshots were taken at the exact moment in these 2 identical guitar tracks. Even with a rough inspection, one can clearly spot differences.

For instance, around 8-10KHz, Shnoor has a slightly louder response that can be translated into a more trebly sounding cable. Or around 600Hz, Ernie Ball generates a louder peak, translating into a more mid-sounding cable.

Now you have heard both cables and also been able to see snippets of spectral analysis of the identical moment in the audio files. Post your second guesses and compare them to correct answers below!

Do these help you to guess Cable 1 and Cable 2?

As a last remark before I reveal the correct answers; please do not take this as a scientific experiment or any kind of claim to look down on one cable. It’s just fun and I’m a guitar nerd just like you! 🙂

I just wanted to give my visitors an insight into a simple analysis. I don’t think either of these cables sounds bad. They both sound great to me!

Excellent people at the Shnoor booth back in 2018 (Musik Messe, Frankfurt) gave this cable to me as a gift! Since then I have been using their product. So I’m also using this opportunity to mention them again here on my blog. I hope Shnoor products will be available at Thomann! 🙂

At the end of the day, we, guitar nerds, always need to learn that differences between products we use may be very little in terms of sonic characteristics. So before you spend your hard-earned cash on boutique cables in this case, think again. You would be probably wasting your money. Always aim for long-servicing guitar cables first.

Correct Answer

[Drum Roll] Here is the correct match.

Cable 1: Ernie Ball instrument cable

Cable 2: Shnoor IC124 JMEJME

I hope you have enjoyed this brief article and found my simple experiment insightful. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for future articles!

Osman