1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Joining/lengthening speaker cable

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by indus, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. indus

    indus Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,982
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Ratings:
    +112
    Hi guys.

    I won't bore you with the full reasons why but due to an ahem cock up in my estimates when I had my extension built my speaker cables have come up short.
    They are chased into the wall and I'm talking about the the ends that plug into my Onkyo Amp.

    I've tried doing this by two methods

    1) Just twisting them together, result very very poor sound

    2) Using some little metal widget where the existing cable goes in one side of an opening, the new cable goes in the other end and then you tighten a screw to make the connection. Again result was very very poor.

    Does anybody know whether there is a better way to do it?

    Thanks:)
  2. MarkTaylor

    MarkTaylor Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2002
    Messages:
    4,329
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Ratings:
    +696
    solder and heat shrink tube is the best way to do it but I have to say I'm a little surprised that the two routes you've used so far delivered very poor sound.

    I'd agree that neither were the best solution but I'm just a little worried that you may have a problem elsewhere.
  3. Darkstar_surfer

    Darkstar_surfer Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2004
    Messages:
    2,835
    Trophy Points:
    86
    Ratings:
    +146
    I have to agree with Mark, how long is your cable run and what type of cable did you use. Heatshrink is not necessary as not every one can get hold of it or a heat gun, I am lucky as I can. Solder is best if you know how to join two multi core cables and then just use a good electrical tape wound round a few times.
  4. indus

    indus Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,982
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Ratings:
    +112
    Hi guys.

    The run is about the 20 feet. When I used the methods I described above I got NO sound from the rear spaekers and really horrible squeaky sound from the fronts that was barely audible.

    Do you think I did something wrong?

    The cable I'm using is from Richer Sounds and called 'silver ultra micro composite'

    Please note that I had been using this same cable and kit for months with excellent results. The reason I'm trying to lengthen it is because it is so short at the amp end that I can't pull the AV cabinet away from the wall if I ever need to get to the back of it because the cable here is so short.
    If I do the cables 'rip' out of the back of the amp because there is no slack and then trying to get them back in is back breaking.

    I hope that makes sense and thanks for your help
  5. MarkTaylor

    MarkTaylor Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2002
    Messages:
    4,329
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Ratings:
    +696
    Yes, I'd say you were doing something wrong.

    Using either of the methods you describe we should be debating if you can detect a difference in quality, not if you can hear it at all.

    Most likely problem is that you've got some loose strands which are shorting out the connection so try again with the connection block but make totally sure you have all the strands inside the little hole and that there is no way that bare copper can touch, use insulation tape as well if you need to to keep the two sides safe from each other.
  6. indus

    indus Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,982
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Ratings:
    +112
    Hi Mark.

    When you say 'make sure there is no way bare copper can touch' what do you mean exactly? The bare copper of the connection block touching the other connection block?

    Many thanks for your help:)
  7. danmc_82

    danmc_82 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,295
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +509
    Just bringing this back up, I have two lengths of 10 AWG speaker cable, Im wanting to join them but have no solder, would twisting them together make much difference?

    I cant try at the moment beause all my av is in another room while we decorate.
  8. MarkTaylor

    MarkTaylor Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2002
    Messages:
    4,329
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Ratings:
    +696
    Twisting them together is not an adequate long term solution, I'd almost rather use a terminal block than just twist them together like that.
  9. danmc_82

    danmc_82 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,295
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +509
    You mean the block for holding electrical wire together? Whats an ideal solution then, solder or is there something else. Will soldering them effect the sound quality?
  10. MarkTaylor

    MarkTaylor Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2002
    Messages:
    4,329
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Ratings:
    +696
    Soldering and protecting the join with heat shrink tube is the next best thing to not having a join at all.

    I very much doubt that you will notice a difference in sound quality but as ever that is a very personal thing and I'm sure someone somewhere will say they can hear a difference.
  11. deckingman

    deckingman Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Messages:
    1,813
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Ratings:
    +273
    Had the same problem in the past. Used "chocolate block" (terminal block) as a temporary measure. Later made a more permanent connection by twisting, soldering and then heat shrinking. Later still, replaced the entire thing with a single length of the same cable. No discernable difference in audio quality between the three methods (to my ears, with my equipment etc).

Share This Page