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which should i use

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by simwilk, Feb 11, 2005.

  1. simwilk

    simwilk
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    This is my very first day on this sight and my first message.

    Please can any body help . I am so confused as to which speaker cable i should use. I have read a few of the posting on this wonderful sight but still can't make a decision as to what to buy

    I'm using a Denon Av2802 av amp and Audio Monitor radius R90's (4) and 1 R180. is there any gain in using very thick 8mm car amp power cable with OFC 680 strands, Or is there any credit to using a silver strand traced wire
    ie CPC CB01869 (pursonic 7825) at £4 a metre+VAT. Is the CAT5 wire some talk about, suitable for carrying the full range of sound and power, What about coax?
    I collect the speakers on Sunday from Sevenoaks and I do not feel it is really Nesseccary to spend vast amounts of money that these companies ask for for a single Metre I need 35 metritis Many Thanks SIMON :lease:
     
  2. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Hi Simon,
    I don't believe it's necessary to spend a fortune on speaker cable. Good cable is all you need. If you have some 8mm car amp cable lying about then give it a go.
    I'm a cat5 advocate myself. It's perfectly capable of carrying the full range of frequencys and you'll find unless you get into the silly range of prices (£100 a metre plus) you'll struggle to beat it. I learn't the hard way!
    Another member on here, Eviljohn, will probably give you some advice later on some cable he's made up using coax.
    Either way all you have to do is terminate the ends. You don't have to do this but it's neater and makes moving things easier and if you're handy with a soldering iron even better. There's a link in my signature for basic Cat5.
    Good luck!
     
  3. simwilk

    simwilk
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    Thanks for the advise
    I did plan to solder the ends and then apply heat shrink to the remaining exposed ends. You said you learnt the hard way and i am interested to find out what you learnt. Could you tell me if CAT 5 was mind blowing better and where i could buy 35 metres and better still WHAT SIZE CABLE ? :thumbsup: :thumbsup: .
    Not asking for much am I Kind regards Simon

    PS can't wait to hear the system I've been waiting for 2 years
     
  4. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    I used to use some good quality £75 a metre cable. I will say in it's defence it was very nice cable. Nice smooth and detailed. I'd tried various different cables and none had quite matched up so I stuck with the expensive stuff. I tried solid core CAT5 and found it wasn't too bad but I still prefered the other cable. Finally dug out some stranded cat5 cable and terminated with some of these: http://www.homegrownaudio.com/diy_banana.html
    and found it too be a better match than the original cable. Total cost was about £25 +time for the whole job.
    Check out http://www.maplin.co.uk for the cable and Heat shrink.
     
  5. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    As if by magic, eviljohn2 appears to add his tuppence. :laugh:

    The important thing to remember with speaker cable is that there's very little to distinguish between any length of speaker cable. I would argue that you'll only get differences when you use different cable geometries. All that we're trying to achieve is the potential to move high current from one place to another and at comparatively low frequencies. As speakers are low impedence devices it's very difficult to induce signals into the wire that they're going to be sensitive to.

    You're absolutely right that there's no point spending a fortune, once a cable is good enough for it's job then there's no point losing further sleep over it.

    Although I rate Puresonic cables highly, I really don't think you need to worry about having silver in your speaker wire (or any other wire that you use in your hifi system for that matter) so spending £4m seems excessive. A good length of regular copper zip wire will be just as good, for ~30m have a look at CPC product code CB04491.

    The other options are similar DIY types. Knightshade advocates using Cat5 cable to make it (go to www.tnt-audio.com and find the FFRC cable for full details). I'm using the outer cores of some coaxial cable which has been twisted together for mine. The Cat5 takes longer to make and will probably have marginally different characteristics, I suspect it will have a higher capacitance but that's not really a problem these days. All of my suggestions are comparatively cheap, particularly as Maplin currently have 100m of Cat5 cable on special offer!

    For terminations I don't think you'll do any better than soldering on some banana plugs and covering them in heatshrink. Convenient, easy and cheap. :)
     
  6. simwilk

    simwilk
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    dear Evil

    Many thanks for your tuppence worth. I did buy the Maplin CAT 5 yesterday before i had read your reply and have already made up one platted cable. I have only platted 3 single cables of 4 double strands each, and realise the pictures on your supplied link show 6 cable platts.As The sub is supplied by its own 75 ohm coax do you think i need to start over again an make up 6 wire platts. Thanks once again
     
  7. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    Simon,
    It sounds to me like what you've done will be just fine. If I'm reading it right, you've plaited 3 lengths of Cat5 together? You just need to terminate all of the coloured wires at each end, and similarly with all of the white wires. Make sure that you don't accidentally cross-connect any of them or you could destroy your amp and speakers! I always advocate using a multimeter to check continuity on every cable project like this, you'd be surprised how often one stray strand can cause all sorts of trouble.

    You'll need to do this for each speaker but after that you should have as good a speaker cable as anyone else does. :)
     
  8. simwilk

    simwilk
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    Hi John

    Thanks for your message today I have continued the 3 cable cat 5 platting today based on your reply, I am however not sure if you mean to heat shrink the banana plug body on where the cable entry as the wire makes a 90 degree side entry to the plane of the plug. I would think bending the wire back along the plug body so as to aid heat shrinking would not be best practice.

    Thanks for the advise on wire connecting but having 29 years in the motor trade I am well aware of the disasters miss wiring can have (I've seen baked wiring looms many times. Not my own work I must add)
     
  9. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    Simon,
    If the wire enters the banana plug at 90deg then sealing it probably isn't a good plan, as you say. You seem plenty knowledgable enough so trust your judgment and carry on with confidence. :)
     

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