ICs and speaker cables confusion

henrylrjr

Member
2012-10-26 7:49 pm
Ct.
Hi all,

I am totally confused as to what to get for ICs and speaker cables. One manufacturer says UPOCC wire, based on quantum phsyics, can't do anything special and another says its the best, especially, if it's a silver/gold alloy. Now I can't afford either of those, unnamed, manufacturers products.

Then there are those that swear by $100 ICs and ZU-Wylde ICs are on ebay in the $100 to $30 range. Has anyone tried them? How well do they work with solid state equipment? Are they considered better than the Anti-Cables? Bottom line is I wish I new what would work well for $100 or less. Some of the low priced makers say their cables are equivalent to $1000+ cables. Is that considered to be true in some cases?

Thanks,
henrylrjr
 

rayma

Member
2011-04-29 8:37 pm
I am totally confused as to what to get for ICs and speaker cables.

Get some 10 or 12 gauge stranded copper wire from the local hardware or electrician's store.
GearIt 100 ft. 12-Gauge Speaker Wire - White-GISPKR12AWGWH100FT - The Home Depot
50 ft. 10-2 Stranded Speaker Wire-EM681050 - The Home Depot
Make the wires for both speakers equal in length, but no longer than necessary.
If possible, position your amplifier between the speakers to minimize the wire lengths.
Attach the suitable connectors for the amp and speakers on the ends.
Crimping is best if you have a proper crimping tool, otherwise solder them.

You can also make your own cables with the RCA connectors of your choice, and a good Belden cable.
 
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jcx

Member
2003-02-17 7:38 pm
..
quantum effects in conductive metals is easily seen - in the color of the reflected light

for room temp signal and power the electrical properties really seem to very well captured by resistivity/conductivity

as cables/interconnect most of the rest of the electrical properties are determined by geometry and choice of dielectric
 
You can safely ignore anyone who mentions 'quantum' in connection with audio, especially if he is trying to sell you something.

For speaker cables you need low resistance, in the cable and at the contacts.

For interconnects you need low resistance at the contacts, good screening/shielding and not too high capacitance.

In both cases you do not need to pay a lot of money. Paying huge amounts of money almost guarantees an inferior cable!
 
“what they said”

You have a LOT of perfectly good recommendations there, OP. Speaker wire is best chosen not by hype but by GAUGE. Larger gauges (smaller numbers, where 10 is larger than 12 is larger than 14) are definitely better. Unless you're driving hundreds of watts continuously, there's rarely a need for anything larger than 10 gauge.

The interconnects though are different: Rayma points to “good Belden cable”, and it is indeed an excellent choice. Belden tends toward more stiff cable, but this is mostly because of thick shielding of copper braid. It is perfectly reasonable to spend a dozen bucks or more on the RCA connectors for both ends to obtain nice thickly gold-plated ones. And it is worth it as the cable ages.

Investing in a proper crimp tool is also worth it. Might cost you between $50 and $100 for a top-shelf crimp tool, but it'll last a lifetime, and every interconnect you ever make will be equal or better than almost any hyped super-duper commercial cable.

GoatGuy
 
Speaker wire is best chosen not by hype but by GAUGE. Larger gauges (smaller numbers, where 10 is larger than 12 is larger than 14) are definitely better.

Except when it isn't. My 10 & 12g speakers cables sit in a tote. I have slowly graduated to solid core 24g cable. My current needs are not high.

dave
 

henrylrjr

Member
2012-10-26 7:49 pm
Ct.
Do you mean you are running just two solid core 24g wires, from your amp, to each speaker? If so what type of wire is it? What is the coating and termination? What is the configuration...are they twisted around each other? What are your amp and speakers?

Thanks,
henrylrjr
 

henrylrjr

Member
2012-10-26 7:49 pm
Ct.
That's amazing and conflicts with almost everyone's idea of what a speaker cable should be like. Just yesterday I read, somewhere, of speaker cables the diameter of the human wrist. The variety of beliefs are astounding.

Do you just run the coated wires straight to the speakers with out any twisting or wrapping? What lengths do you use? What is the coating material and how do you terminate such small wires?

I went on the sites you had links to and was very impressed. They got me rethinking my system layout and components. I thank for the great info.


henrylrjr
 

rayma

Member
2011-04-29 8:37 pm
Yes. A pair of wires pulled from CAT5 network cabling. Wires split apart. I am currently using a pr of 6W ACA amps
and i have a large number of (mostly) FR speakers. Most 90 dB or less.

Have you measured the amplifier's frequency response at the speaker terminals? There will likely be substantial deviations
from flat because of the resistance in the wire, and also the variable speaker impedance, especially at the LF resonance.
 
That's amazing and conflicts with almost everyone's idea of what a speaker cable should be like.

It is. AFAIC, bigger is better is dogma. I used to use as thick as i could get OFC wires… but the small wires just sounded better. I do use thicker cables on the subs (when i have them turned on).

What cable works best is quite system dependent.

Do you just run the coated wires straight to the speakers with out any twisting or wrapping? What lengths do you use? What is the coating material and how do you terminate such small wires?

I untwist the wires, and sandwich then approx parallel between 2 pieces of packing tape (Chris did a cable where the untwisted wires were wrapped around a cyclindrical core (fish tank tube) and wraps the wires around the tube such that the conductors cross at near 90°). Lengths are 6-8 ft. Teflon insulation is preferred but i will happily use PVC insulated. I use dual Pomona plugs at each end (and it drives me crazy when people build speakers with non-standard post spacing).

Resistance of the wire is negligible.

dave
 
planet10 said:
AFAIC, bigger is better is dogma.
"Bigger is better" assumes that the speaker is designed for a voltage (i.e. low impedance) drive and that the listener prefers a flat frequency response. As these are the most common assumptions, and the simplest, this is not really "dogma" but merely wisdom. However, if the speaker is designed for some other drive source (e.g. the speaker designer's own system) or the listener prefers non-flat then adding some resistance can adjust the response to suit. Easiest option is to add a low value rheostat, as a form of tone control; more sensible than 'tone control by wire rolling'.