Cat5 speaker cable

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by valleymon, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. valleymon

    valleymon
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    I have a Yamaha RX-V557 receiver with a pair of Diamond 9.1s for the fronts and aego (from a p5) speakers for centres and surrounds.

    At the moment I'm using fairly average cables. I have had a look at some DIY ones that people say are fantastic. TBH I doubt if buying decent cable would be worth the money considering the cables I have are OK anyway and that fact that i dont have a really high end setup.

    I do however have a couple of spare network cables lying around that never get used.
    I don't have the time or inclination to spend ages winding lots of these together nor do I have enough cables, but I wouldnt mind stripping the ends off a couple of cables and just plugging them in.
    Does anyone have any experience using a single cat5 cable as a speaker cable? The runs will be very short as theyre for my fronts, only 1-2m.
    Thanks for any input.
     
  2. Mark.Yudkin

    Mark.Yudkin
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    CAT5 network cable can't carry the power and should not be used.

    1.5mm copper costs about £1.50 per metre, so it shouldn't really be an issue to buy a few metres.
     
  3. valleymon

    valleymon
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    Bear in mind I'd be using all 8 cores of the cable for each speaker giving me a total cross-section of 2*Pi mm squared this would be compared with 2.25*Pi mm squared if I were to use 1.5mm copper wire.
    The TNT FFRC is very popular and apparently performs very well. They also suggest that using multiple individually insulated 0.5mm wires is better than one single wire.
    Any other thoughts?
     
  4. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible
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    For a tweeter only or perhaps one of the lifestyle speakers, a single cat cable would would work. Anything meatier in the bass department and you'll be disappointed in the results. You can never have enough copper!
    I use the TNT FFRC (slightly modified to make it easier to avoid confusion on connecting amps to terminals in a bi-amp set up).
     
  5. eastman3000

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    Hi there! Just noticed this thread. I read some articles about this once. And apparrently there have been some positive results with CAT5 cable. Just to a search on the tinternet. In the end I opted not to and just spent that £500 on a drum of QED stuff.

    Have a search see what u find.:thumbsup:
     
  6. xxGBHxx

    xxGBHxx
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    Theres a very famous Cat5 speaker cable by a bloke called Christopher VenHaus site which has been around for a number of years. He spliced together (well braided actually) a number of lengths of low copper Cat5 into a cable and used that. He claims it was equivalent to cable costing many £100's a meter but only cost him £100 to make along with a lot of time and blisters.

    I am curious as to Mark's statements regarding Cat5's inability to carry the load though. Cat5 and Cat5e is generally made up of 8*24awg wire which as long as you twist them all together should be more than adequate, especially for such a short run. I assume 8*24 is roughly the same as 15awg as it's a matter of multiplying the cross sectional area *8? It's all a bit perplexing perhaps someone would care to explain it to me in detail. Forr what it's worth I think they'd work perfectly fine. Then again, as I said, I don't believe any of the speaker wire conventional wisdom ;)

    G
     
  7. gerbilly

    gerbilly
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    Yes it can I have used it and it works fine as does twin and earth cable which is less hastle to set up.

    I know people who use it on high quality systems and some who use it on cheaper ones and they dont notice any difference.


    I once braided together 6 lengths of cat5 for my modest hifi set up I had at the time and the bass from it was better and meatier than the qed silver anniversary it replaced. Obviously the copper inserts would be twisted into the negative and positive connections.
     
  8. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible
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    Coloured coded wiring guide for a modified TNT FFRC
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Mr Incredible

    Mr Incredible
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    Yes, but....... you use 4 cables each for positive and negative, so the CSA for comparison purposes is half of your calc.
     
  10. recruit

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    moved the cables forum.
     
  11. CJROSS

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    Maybe worth doing a search on CAT5 Mark, check the sticky Cable FAQs posted above or do a search, FWIW 3CAT5 are roughly equiv. to 2.5mm2 cores and cost about 90p a metre. So it is cheaper a lot of the time and you can make up large CSAs of copper very cheaply.

    You could have put the poster off trying out this fantastic and cheap solution to speaker cabling.

    Best regards
     

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