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What is appropriate speaker cabling for this rig?

lostbok

Established Member
I appreciate that this is probably a very common question on this forum, but can somebody please recommend appropriate speaker cabling to go with my fairly basic kit:

Sony STR-DG700 amp and KEF KHT-1005 5.1 speakers.

I've already got a VERY nice co-ax for the sub (one of the QED Qunex cables - it had to run about 5-6 metres, so I bought one of the better ones).

And now I was wondering where to start with the speaker cables since I'm still using the ropey stuff that came in my cut-price all-in-one setup from about 1999... it's not quite bell-wire, but not far off - so needs to be replaced!

I was just pricing up the QED Silver Anniversary XT and just about had a heart-attack...

I think I'll need 1.5m + 2 x 3m + 2 x 6m.... which makes the ready-made terminated cables £350!

I assume since the speakers and amp only cost me about £600 together (last year), this would be complete over-spend...

On the flip-side, if I just bought 20m of this cabling by the metre, then that would be <&#163;100... so I guess this is more appropriate??

But would I be wasting this cable if I just used the screws/clips on my speakers and and to secure it (i.e. should this cable really be terminated with proper plugs?).

Although I don't mind slightly over-spending to get the most out of the speakers, I'm unlikely to go beyond the one of the bigger KEF KHT's or beyond a higher end home cinema amp (e.g. Sony STR-DA3300, when it's out).

And lastly - I'm NOT putting this into the walls or anything too crazy, so it will be a half-hour re-wiring job if it needs to be replaced further down the line...
 

AnthonyG

Distinguished Member
If it were me I would get some 1.5mm VanDamme cable. For the fronts and either keep the best of your current bell wire for the rears or buy some cheap wire for the rears.

But at £1.19 per meter you could easily afford to use it for the rears too.

Its simply amazing cable, and it shows how much of a rip off QED are in that they charge so much more for theirs.
 

lostbok

Established Member
thanks - at that price, it's definitely in the "do it all" league...

and wrt to wether it needs to have plugs included, etc?

I'm guessing that's a "no"?
 

AnthonyG

Distinguished Member
You dont need any plugs just expose the bare wire and then screw them into the binding posts on both the Receiver and the Speakers.

From what I have been told this is the best way to do connect them.

However as I found this too fiddley so I just bought a bunch of Profigold Banana Plugs for around £1 each.
 

lostbok

Established Member
even at &#163;1 a plug, that's still reasonable (&#163;12 extra)... I think I might put plugs on the amp side... and on both sides for the centre channel, but with the KEF stands (cable inside the very-thin-pole), the other satellites are going to be more hassle with plugs in!

Is there much difference between the van Damme stuff and something like "QED Original"?

You've recommended the 1.5mm Van Damme (&#163;1.19 / m), the 2.5mm Van Damme is &#163;1.80/m and the QED original (also 2.5mm) is &#163;2.70.

Is it worth going for the 2.5mm over the 1.5mm?

If so, will I notice any difference between the QED 2.5mm and the Van Damme 2.5mm?

Total spend (approx):
12 x plugs, plus 20m of VanD 1.5mm = &#163;36
12 x plugs, plus 20m of VanD 2.5mm = &#163;48
12 x plugs, plus 20m of QED 2.5mm = &#163;62

Would these "4mm Milty banana plugs" be similar to your Profigold's?

http://www.hificables.co.uk/Product...D/2397/v/026e6c53-7a99-40f1-b23e-b3dd2dae04f2

All of these are fine - certainly compared to the original prices (QED Si Anni XT) I was looking at!!
 

lostbok

Established Member
thanks for your help - I'm off home now to measure up the distances and check if my amp even takes plugs (I know it does for the separate stereo "zone B"), but never really looked for the home cinema zone!
 

AnthonyG

Distinguished Member
You've recommended the 1.5mm Van Damme (£1.19 / m), the 2.5mm Van Damme is £1.80/m and the QED original (also 2.5mm) is £2.70.

Is it worth going for the 2.5mm over the 1.5mm?
On the website I had linked to it has a full explanation of the sizes for speakers.

As a general rule most people find that cables of 1.5 or 2.5 square mm are good for home cinema systems where you have purchased an AV receiver and a speaker package. If you have a cable run of over 20m we would recommend that you use 2.5mm cable.

The VanDamme speaker is completely covered by a very thick protective sheath to protect from kinks or intereference which may have caused problems with the speaker cables.

Plus your receiver and Speakers are of the lower end.

Therefore IMHO I would just get the 1.5mm. (trust me if you plan on running the cable under carpets or such you will be amazed how thick the protected sheath surrounding the speaker wires actually is.

But about the VanDamme quality side of this, from what I have read this is the cables used by the BBC and everywhere I have read it gets glowing reveiws.

Why does Van Damme speaker cable seem so cheap?
Van Damme cables differ slightly from some of the other makes we stock in that they do not come in retail packaging, they don’t have any added gimmicks or ‘go faster stripes’ and they do not spend money on retail advertising campaigns. When you purchase Van Damme cable all you are paying for is a quality, high performance product!

Van Damme manufacture cable for the professional market. Their range of cable is unrivalled in the industry and is employed so confidently on stages, studios and screens across the world.

Although much of Van Damme’s huge range of products is not relevant to the domestic home cinema and hi-fi market we have chosen a few products that are.
 

AnthonyG

Distinguished Member
thanks for your help - I'm off home now to measure up the distances and check if my amp even takes plugs (I know it does for the separate "zone B"), but never really looks for the hoem cinema zone!

I will likely be that the Banana plug holes will be filled up with little black plugs.

You just need to pull these out with your finger nail or tweezers.
 

lostbok

Established Member
I will likely be that the Banana plug holes will be filled up with little black plugs.

You just need to pull these out with your finger nail or tweezers.

ta for the tip - I'd probably miss that - impatience rather than a lack of light or anything sensible like that! ;)
 

lostbok

Established Member
whoops - nearly missed your other posts!!

Given that this will be over a max of 5.5m total cable length... and like you said these are definitely right at the lower end of the proper home hi-fi setup, I think it's 1.5mm VanDamme.

And again, like you said... little black plugs on the back of the amp...

Thanks for your patience... this is my first home home cinema setup, so it's still early days...

I think you've probably just saved me at least half of what I was going to spend :smashin: (the £350 Si Anni XT stuff was never really an option, but I probably would have gone with the QED Originals or similar)...
 

lostbok

Established Member
I ordered from ClearlyAV on Weds night... arrived via ParcelForce today...

I'm VERY glad I only went for the 1.5mm sq cable... it's about the thickness of CAT5!!

I'll see what it looks like, but I'm hoping to avoid having to run the cable around the sides of the room (i.e. put it under the rug), so now considering getting Silver micro for the rear channels :eek:

I might just leave the bell-wire in the rear channels for now and see how I go...
 

dazza74

Distinguished Member
I ordered from ClearlyAV on Weds night... arrived via ParcelForce today...

I'm VERY glad I only went for the 1.5mm sq cable... it's about the thickness of CAT5!!

I'll see what it looks like, but I'm hoping to avoid having to run the cable around the sides of the room (i.e. put it under the rug), so now considering getting Silver micro for the rear channels :eek:

I might just leave the bell-wire in the rear channels for now and see how I go...

I've bought the same cable from the same company arrived yesterday. Looks good stuff and I agree about the thickness, oh well got the sub woofer cable and the speakers just waiting on the banana plugs and the amp (minor technicality :D)
 

lostbok

Established Member
yep, it's surprisingly "solid" looking it looks about the same as the QED Qunex sub-woofer co-axial...

well, anyhoo.... I'll banana-plug the one side and then run the cable around and see if it stands out too much for the rear channels... I'm pretty sure it's gonna be the bell-wire for now... maybe just a quick trip to Homebase for some electrical flex for the rear channels... if I can find some that looks the part...
 

CJROSS

Prominent Member
Excellent advice chaps, good to see a chap dissuaded to spend a shocking amount on speaker cabling when stuff like Van Damme Blue is around, FWIW I use it on my 2 hifi rigs (Blue 2x2.5mm2) and my Tannoy Revolutuon 5.1 setup off a Sony QS AV reciever, I use the 2x1.5mm2 stuff for the AV stuff, no problem whatsoever.
 

lostbok

Established Member
Thanks CJROSS - I guess my little KEF (baby eggs) will be fine then!!
 

lostbok

Established Member
Thanks again Anthony... I think the 2.5mm sq cable wouldn't even have fitted up the inside of the stand for my KEF baby-eggs!!

Plus the 1.5mm sq cable fits under the edge of the (very solid) rug without showing through (yet).

It's been a great night!!

And wow... so much more depth to all the sound!!

WRT to the Profigold plugs... exactly how do they get wired in?

I've just unscrewed the back off of them, taken the"slug" out, slid the cap over bared & twisted wire... pushed the bared wire into the main plug, pushed the slug in behind it and then screwed it all together...

Is it really that simple?? (the sound seems fine!!)
 

jellybeard999

Established Member
Im a cheap cable advocate ! So long as its reasonable quality, well shielded etc... I'll even go so far as to say branded, but why should QED's copper be any better than VanDammes ???

Im using QED Quontour, simply because it HAS to go under carpet, and its &#163;1.50p/m which is reasonable :)

I also use banana plugs on the receiver side, as there are a few too many in a concentrated area to be fiddling, however its bare wire and binding posts on the speaker side.
 

lostbok

Established Member
My KEF's have got a nice little spring loaded thingies anyway, so it's just bare wire, a few twists and then pop it in there and let the springs do all the work :D

Banana plugs into the reciever though...
 

mike7

Distinguished Member
On the subject of speaker cable I have just received the latest catalogue from Russ Andrews. There's a nice little line in speaker cable, Kimber Select KS-3038. It comes as a 2.4 metre pair and is a snip at &#163;8400 !. If you want the slightly longer 3.4 metre pair they are a bargain at &#163;10320 !!!!!!

Somebody must buy this stuff or they wouldn't be selling it. BTW they have spade and banana connectors.

www.russandrews.com
 

lostbok

Established Member
LOL

I dread to think what the bi-wire stuff is for their high end systems....

ooooh... a space AND a banana connector... I wonder if they offer a discount if you don't want the spade? more likely to charge extra for removing it??
 

pmanson

Established Member
I've just installed a load of Belkin PureAV 16AWG (1.5mm) cable in my new system. I think a 30m roll came to £18 including delivery.

Really pleased with it and i'm glad I didn't go any thicker as i had would have too much trouble hiding it!
 

CJROSS

Prominent Member
On the subject of speaker cable I have just received the latest catalogue from Russ Andrews. There's a nice little line in speaker cable, Kimber Select KS-3038. It comes as a 2.4 metre pair and is a snip at £8400 !. If you want the slightly longer 3.4 metre pair they are a bargain at £10320 !!!!!!

Somebody must buy this stuff or they wouldn't be selling it. BTW they have spade and banana connectors.

www.russandrews.com

Mike I have recieved mine too, got to be the biggest pile of doo doo that circulates in audiophile circles, very very good for a larf though. But one crucial thing to note here is that people buy these products, there is a market for them, but thinking of 3.4 £10,320 speaker cables you mention above, I'd settle on a pair of Sonus Faber Amati Homage's for £7000, £2500 on nice big Pathos, leaving £500 - 800 on a DVD/CD player or TT. £20 on cables - 5m of Van Damme 2x4.0mm2, now that rig or those cables ? :rotfl::rotfl::rotfl:
 

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