Home made speaker cables in a high end system

steve parker

Novice Member
I posted some info on making speaker cables from enamelled (coil or magnet) copper wire. (about £15 for a coil of about 20 metres 1.6 mm diameter depending where you buy it - see the Anti Cable web page for detail on how it looks).
I've already posted that my upgrade path was from Nordost Flatline gold with phono plugs ,
to 8 strand solid silver/litz braided/teflon,
to 2 strand thicker guage solid siler/teflon,
to enamelled copper.
(the last 3 cables having NO end plugs - just bare wire)
I'm convinced each step was an improvement overall.

I've just spent the last week or so listening to the Grover Huffman custom made by hand in California cables. No terminations - he recommends bare wire. It's a 3 strand solid silver, with shielding, as far as I can tell. He holds a patent on the construction, but it seems to be 1 flat wire, with 2 round wires, in a loose teflon sleeve. Then some over-jacket stuff. I bought it to try, based on rave feedback in various forums.

I've just taken it out, and put back my £2 of enamelled copper. There were subtle differences, but after a minute or so they faded into insignificance. Essentially the cables were slightly different but equally enjoyable. Both had the detail, the sound stage, the foot tappingness and lack of fatigue. I'd struggle to tell them apart in a blind test.

I've sent back the Huffmans to California for a refund, and stuck the £250 into a savings fund for a new preamp.

(By the way - those enamelled wires have been in and out of my system loads of times, stuffed beind cupboards when not in use, and retwisted a few times - and ther's no signs that the insulation has been even slightly damaged - it's tough stuff, as you'll find when you try and strip it off at the ends.)

Anyway - I've been going backwards and forwards between the solid silver in loose teflon sleeve, and the enamelled copper. Both cables with bare ends. Both same length. Both of similar guage.
As I've got to know the cables a bit more, I noticed that the copper seems to attenuate the treble a bit - leading to a more relaxed sound, but losing a bit of top end detail. In contrast, the silver tends to portray a more treblely image. More detailed, with more sparkly cymbals etc, but tending towards being slightly more edgy and tiring.

Since I'm now well down the route of trying things out rather than buying some expensive new stuff from a dealer - I simply connected both sets at same time (ie a silver and copper wire to positive, and a silver and copper wire to the negative).

The results - the best of both worlds as far as I can tell after a few days of listening. I seem to have a lot more treble detail AND I have the bass extension and rich midband.

The pair combined are definitely giving me more of everything. In fact it was a bit disconcerting at first - it almost seemed too much. but after listening, it is just more detailed and deeper. Front to back imaging has improved.

I have disconnected the silver and tried copper only - it sounds a touch dull. I disconnect the copper and go with silver alone - it sounds a bit bright. Together it just gets more of everything.

I'm driving £4K Focal floorstanders with Audio Research pre power, and I'm very happy. Copper is giveaway money, and my silver wire with teflon sleeve wasn't more than £35 to make myself.
 

blue max

Distinguished Member
Thanks for the detailed review Steve.

Any chance of a pic and store purchasing details as I may want to give it a go too.

Graham
 

steve parker

Novice Member
I had a question about what the reference code is.

it's Farnell ref 1230987 for the copper wire

http://uk.farnell.com/1230987/cable/...o-power-ecw1-5

You get 32 metres, which gives you 16 metres of positive/negative cable. All for £9 plus postage. Maplins and others will also stock it.

DON'T get the tinned copper version. I understand that the tinning gives a worse sound. Buy the simple copper with enamel varnish.

http://www.anticables.com/products.html is the link for the anti Cable site with lots of pictures.

http://www.wires.co.uk/acatalog/si_bare.html is the link for 99.99% pure silver wire. you can get the Teflon sleeving (PTFE sleeving) from Farnell, Maplins etc

By the way - I was speaking to a fairly serious hi fi enthusiast a few weeks ago, who told me his local audiophile club had done a speaker cable shootout recently. The anti cable (enamelled copper) won, and now they are all selling their branded stuff.
 

Oversleep

Active Member
I had a question about what the reference code is.

it's Farnell ref 1230987 for the copper wire

http://uk.farnell.com/1230987/cable/...o-power-ecw1-5

You get 32 metres, which gives you 16 metres of positive/negative cable. All for £9 plus postage. Maplins and others will also stock it.

DON'T get the tinned copper version. I understand that the tinning gives a worse sound. Buy the simple copper with enamel varnish.

http://www.anticables.com/products.html is the link for the anti Cable site with lots of pictures.

http://www.wires.co.uk/acatalog/si_bare.html is the link for 99.99% pure silver wire. you can get the Teflon sleeving (PTFE sleeving) from Farnell, Maplins etc

By the way - I was speaking to a fairly serious hi fi enthusiast a few weeks ago, who told me his local audiophile club had done a speaker cable shootout recently. The anti cable (enamelled copper) won, and now they are all selling their branded stuff.
Hi

Could you let me know what size of silver wire i should get?

Did you twist the copper with sleeving and silver sleeving together? or bare wire then sleeving?
 

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