wowsers! Lots of different cables/wires in 1 gainclone! - diyAudio
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Old 18th August 2010, 02:09 PM   #1
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Default wowsers! Lots of different cables/wires in 1 gainclone!

Hi all

Iam preparing for my first diy gainclone project. What strikes me is that, although it seems everyone takes cables and wiring very seriously, I can't find good information on which cables/wires to use where. When i look at pictures of fixed gainclones, i see all sorts of wires and cable differences between different projects, and lots of different types of wires within one project. I have to say: iam a complete beginner, so maybe my question is too stupid, in that case forgive me. I have tried to come up with some sort of schematic of different components in a gainclone and the wires/cables between them (see picture).
You see cable 5e and 5i. iam not sure wether my transformers are gonna be intern (5i) or in an external casing (5e), hence the two types.
I would really appriciate your input on what kind of wires to use where (type/material/size). I probably forgot some too, pls let me know.
Eventually I would like to have/publish here a document/scheme for other newbee's like me to use when they are starting projects like this.

tnx a lot!

Erik
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Old 18th August 2010, 03:29 PM   #2
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Being a value oriented kind of person, I use 23 gauge solid core copper or silver coated copper for signal wires, and 18 gauge stranded copper for speaker and short runs of power wire. For the longer connection between my power supply and amp, I used an IEC 320-C19/IEC 320-C20 cable with 14 gauge wire.
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Old 19th August 2010, 11:46 AM   #3
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi,
I don't know what measurement systems you understand. I will stay with mm since we are metric.

Signal wires: twisted pair of solid 0.4mm diam to 0.6mm diam.
Speaker wires: twisted pair of flex 1sqmm to 3sqmm.
Power wires: twisted pair of solid or flex 1sqmm to 3sqmm.

Everything copper or tinned copper (not tin plated). At this stage don't get involved in 6 9s nor silver nor silver plated nor Litz nor carbon, nor any of the other exotic materials.
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Old 19th August 2010, 12:50 PM   #4
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One of the beauties of an IC power amp in the first place is they are so small that if you do it right you don't need much wire around them. I know there are a lot of people that hate this truth, they gotta have a couple thousand bucks between their amps and speakers or it don't sound right to them, but the best sounding wire isn't. It's an age old problem that the signal source isn't where both speakers need to be, but inside the amplfier, if you wanna go all hi-end on this thing, try getting the terminals and attenuator as close as possible.

Last edited by Andrew Eckhardt; 19th August 2010 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 19th August 2010, 01:06 PM   #5
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Default oops, forgot mains cable

Mains: double insulated two or three core stranded flex. Choose sqmm (cross sectional area) to suit maximum current demand.
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Old 23rd August 2010, 07:22 PM   #6
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Thanks Andrew E, Andrew T and Redshift!
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Old 23rd August 2010, 07:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Eckhardt View Post
... if you wanna go all hi-end on this thing, try getting the terminals and attenuator as close as possible.
Sensible thought. Crossed my mind, but Iam having practical problems: this would mean a volume/attenuator and input selector per channel right? That does not seem to practical in case of the input selector, and pretty difficult for the infra red remote controlled volume potmeter I have in mind (not to mention the fact that that itme is about the most expensive part of the whole amp).

Would there be ways around this, cause i would love some cool looking amps just underneath my Anthony Gallo Nucleus micro speakers...
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Old 23rd August 2010, 08:42 PM   #8
Trebla is offline Trebla  United Kingdom
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Erik

The usual way of doing this, is to mount the volume pot on a bracket at the rear of the amp. Use an extension shaft to connect the pot to a knob on the front panel. You could do the same with a rotary input selector.
This way, low level signal wires which may be susceptible to interference can be kept short. Not so important with speaker wires, in my opinion.

If using a remote control volume pot, could the sensor be on the front panel and the pot at the back?
If not, just use screened cable and keep well seperated from mains and transformer wires. This might be all you need to do.

Last edited by Trebla; 23rd August 2010 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 30th August 2010, 10:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Eckhardt View Post
... if you wanna go all hi-end on this thing, try getting the terminals and attenuator as close as possible.
Iam getting confused a bit...

Do you mean getting the amps close to the speaker (as I thought) or internally the wires from the volume/input selector to the amps as short as possible (as Trebla seems to be suggesting)?

Both make sense to me, but that is just me!
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Old 30th August 2010, 11:44 AM   #10
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi,
a stage with a low output impedance and adequate current capability can usually drive any cable attached to any input.

A stage with a high output impedance or with low current capability cannot drive capacitance well. This prevents it being used with long cables.

A 20k volume pot has an output impedance of zero ohms to 5000ohms depending on it's setting. This cannot drive long nor medium length cables. It must instead be connected with short or no cables to perform at it's best.

Adding a buffer to the output of most medium to high impedance output stages generally converts that stage to be able to drive long cables.
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