Speaker thickness or type for chasing into walls.

disconotdisco

Novice Member
I'm a newbie poster and am starting a refurb of my lounge / diner in my flat here in North London. The room is only 4x4.5 metres approx and with a small proportion of that for my dining space.

Anyway, I'm putting my first home cinema project together. I'm in the process of chasing cat6 into the walls and passing under the wooden floors anyway, to upgrade my network. The TV is being wall mounted and I'm having floating units underneath it so I thought I may as well try to chase or hide speaker cables as much as possible.

For now I plan to source a 2nd hand 5.1 or 5.x.y receiver as well as speakers, replacing them as I get to know more and find what I want. Initially for speakers I was considering finding some Cambridge Audio Minx (min21 or 22), upgrading to bigger if needed eventually.

Given I don't know what the end spec will be, what would be a suitable cable type or thickness to use that will give reasonable future proofing?

More info if needed: I'm looking to pass 3 runs of about 6m each from the AV receiver by the TV, under the floor, to feed the rear surround speakers and subwoofer (also considering running to an alternative sub location in case I need in future). I'll pass these through 20mm plastic conduit running along a joist. For the front L and R I'm likely to chase about 2 runs of 2-3 metres from receiver to speaker locations. For the centre speaker I'll likely hide the cable inside the floating unit so no chasing. Might use some euromodule banana or RCA sockets on walls in places.

If I decide I want Atmos I can easily run 2 extra cables to ceiling, hidden down side of some floating units.

Anyway, probably lots of info. Feedback welcome.
 

Harkon321

Well-known Member
2.5mm solid copper is what most fit. I went with 2.5mm Van Damme Blue for everything this time around. When I did the Living Room I used that for the fronts and 1.5mm for the rears. I've also used some Amazon 2.5mm solid copper. Had no issues with any of it.
 

Joe Fernand

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
As @Harkon321 says a 2x2.5mm cable will be ideal and the VanDamme Blue Series is an easy cable to install and very consistent from batch to batch - VanDamme Blue Series Loudspeaker Cable 2x2.5mm - The Media Factory

We try and avoid 'terminated' plates as they add cost and unwanted breaks in the cable run - brush plates are our preference.

VanDamme are also ideal for long RCA2RCA cables for your sub - VanDamme Subwoofer Cable SP-OFC Series - The Media Factory

In terms of layout the new kid on the block is 'Atmos' which if you pre wire for has an impact on the height of the surrounds in a 5.1 'base' layer - you want the surrounds to be closer to seated era height in an Immersive system vs a conventional surround sound system.

The AVF Classifieds are a good source of second hand kit - Classified Adverts

Joe
 

disconotdisco

Novice Member
Thanks @Harkon321 and @Joe Fernand for your replies.

Here's a diagram of the layout I'm working with, so you can see the distances etc (ignore the blue outlined shapes, theyre from something else I was doing in a free drawing tool).

I've included 2 potential sub positions as I'm not sure what will work best, and I think I want flexibility in case I need to change layout or need a bigger one than I'd thought. I wont be able to pull the floor back up again or re-chisel into the wall to change after the installation of course, so its important I have some fitted elements that should do me for the next 10+ years if possible and I dont still end up with a mess of visible cables.

Because of whats under the floor, I'm unlikely to be able to pull different cables through in future for replacements without pulling the floor etc up from scratch (gas main and multiple heating cables cross the bottom right quadrant of the floor so the root through the joists will be a bit convoluted). Either way, I'm doing work under there so this is a great opportunity to integrate while everything is being done.

A few questions:
- If I were to use terminated plates, would I expect a significant degradation in sound quality?
- Can you get euro module inserts for the RCA style connector, assuming thats what I'd use for the sub?

Also - in network cabling, you should use more flexible cable for patches between outlets and devices. Is this principle the same for speaker cable? The CAT6 solid core I've run into the room from the office was quite rigid. I wonder if the van damme blue is similar and if that'll be a problem trying to keep it in place against a small speaker like a Cambridge audio Min22. If so, what cable would you use for short patches or would that be totally wrong?

Thanks again

Speaker placement.jpg
 

Harkon321

Well-known Member
You’re just trying to reduce connection points, to reduce the chance of issues. The best connection being bare cable at speaker to bare cable at amp. Many, including myself, then add banana plugs for ease of connection. The vandamme is flexible, shouldn’t have an issue there.
 

Joe Fernand

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
The VanDamme Blue series is, as @Harkon321 highlights, a very flexible cable and where required you can strip back some of the outer jacket leaving the two sheathed bundles of conductors - we have had to do that a few times to allow us to thread the conductor bundles up through tall/thin stands such as Gallo Acoustics, B&W and Monitor Audio.

Where possibly minimise any unnecessary breaks/joins in any cable run.

Joe
 

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