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Using power cable as speaker wire?

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by drbob, Nov 11, 2004.

  1. drbob

    drbob
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    Hello,

    I've recently bought the denon DHT500SD all in one system, but I need three 10m speaker calbes for my layout and it only comes with two 10m cables and three 3m cables. I've heard or read somewhere (though I can't remember where) that standard solid power cable is actually just as good as many more expensive "proper" speaker cables. Has anyone tried this, what were the results?

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    regards

    drbob
     
  2. Cool-hand

    Cool-hand
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    This is not ideal, if fact is clotts the sound up alot. Taking the dynamics away from the sound and making the bass a little wolly.

    1.0, 1.5 or 2.5 twin & earth is cheap as chips so you can try it at no great loss. But once you've used a descent dedicated speaker cable you clearly hear the difference.

    I'm guessing right now your thinking a cables a cable but after you've tried a few your see or rather hear things a little differently.

    As a starter cable, most people go for a RicherSounds Gale cable or if you can afford it at £5 a mtr, QED Silver Anniversary, which is extremely good value for money.

    CH
     
  3. Ian J

    Ian J
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    30 metres at £5 per metre is a touch overkill for a £400 all in one system.

    Have a look in the cable forum as their are many that swear by cheaper DIY options rather than pre-packaged stuff where you are paying a huge premium for a big name on the cover.
     
  4. Cool-hand

    Cool-hand
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    Apologise drbob,

    I didn't look closely at your setup. It was late!!!!
    I agree with Ian, take look round here and something will turn up or £30 quid on some budget cable from your local hifi centre.

    CH
     
  5. Mylo

    Mylo
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  6. drbob

    drbob
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    Thanks for your responses. I've re-disovered the web page on which I read about using power cord as speaker wire:

    http://www.roger-russell.com/wire/wire.htm

    Though this guy seems like he has an axe to grind I think he may have a point. I'll try some power cable first and compare it to that which came with the system before buying dedicated speaker cables for the extended run I need.
     
  7. Dfour

    Dfour
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    There is always large runs of speaker cable on fleabay. Worth trying out.
     
  8. SamirP

    SamirP
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    also have a look at Van Damme pro loudspeaker cable at www.vdctrading.co.uk twin core. The more you buy the cheaper it gets ;)
     
  9. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    Try the mains flex first and maybe blind test against 'snake oil' makes. You'll soon realise what a con the whole thing is. Unless you are paying for something like Chord or similar you are wasting your money IMHO.

    Check out threads on FFRC cat 5 DIY stuff. You WILL hear a difference from that and it comes in around £1 a metre. I would urge you to check it out. Most cheaper cables are simply zip wire off the reel in a fancy jacket. Dont get conned.

    I would cable up with flex first and let the system settle in. Then maybe try to borrow some lengths of £15/m stuff from a hifi shop to see if you really can hear a difference. Get a mate around or family member and do a proper blind test with you as the subject.
     
  10. suzywong

    suzywong
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    Many years ago we tried using mains cable. We wanted to move the Isobariks to the other end of the lounge from the turntable & amp (Sondek/Meridian 101/103D).

    We replaced the existing 5 metres of Naim A4 cable with 10 metres of B&Q 13 Amp stranded (we still have it - if I ever sell the old Briks, the cable will go with them).

    Although the Naim cable was superior in all areas (especially the bass), the B&Q mains cable was perfectly listenable. We lived with it for a couple of years, and then moved house (but the house move was not cable-related :laugh:, more to do with growing children).

    I can't say that using cheapo cable decreased our listening enjoyment. However specialist speaker cables are sonically better, and the Linn K600 we've currently got sounds superb. Period.
     
  11. digisocialist

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    Mains cable will be adequate. Considering an associate of mine who runs a multi million pound business installing large sound systems into public places advised me that this is all he ever used and had visited many of the cable manufacturers over the years to investigate speaker cable types, he concluded that the core was no different to mains, rather the cable was branded and packaged better. You'll get better insulation on mains too. Certainly if you're comparing to something like Gale. I've installed 26m of mains in my cellar and there's no going back as all the plaster board is now up. I'll be throwing 3 grands worth of kit in there but considered £400 - £500 for cable exhorbatent.
     
  12. rozzar

    rozzar
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    put decent speaker wire on the fronts and centre. the rears don't need to have anything that special on them.
     
  13. Paulbmw

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    if your speakers are bi-wirable use 2 thin gauge speaker wires to connect.I found i get a better sound if i bi-wire but once bi-wired thicker cable does not make that much difference(I only use thick costy cable if speakers non bi-wirable)Works for me :)
     
  14. Reiner

    Reiner
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    Given that the cable is made from the same material and has a comparable diameter I see no difference between a power cable and a speaker cable in terms of sound quality issues, only the mechanical properties would make me want to use a speaker cable (usually more flexible and thus easier to install).

    Speaker cable from the DYI shop will IMHO do as good as any overpriced / branded cable. :)

    Find my opinion about bi-wiring here: http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=159863
     
  15. Keiron

    Keiron
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    Over 20 years of messing about, experimenting, money down the drain, Stax earspeakers, £4k worth of amp and speakers and I've never heard any difference between any interconnects or speaker cables. Mains cable is perfect, just not very flexible. Maybe I have cloth ears.
     

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