Quality Bulk Speaker Wire

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Lou Casadonte, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. Priidik

    Priidik MOT: Estelon

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    I don't think lamp cord is a good general recommendation.
    A cheap wannabe Litz speaker cable (insulated strands) in any random audio-video store likely sounds noticeably better with any speaker capable of resolving treble.
    Fwiw I am making my mid-treble speaker wires from multiple parallel Cat5 cables
    (that has been quite common reco in speaker circles for ages already).
    It sounds better for that application than random bulk wire or the shitty sort of semi-Litz that I use for bass.
    Bass cable needs to be beefy for firm bass. Here AWG (or cross section area in old world) certainly is relevant for damping.
    For bass drive I probably couldn't tell the difference in my setup, when the cross section and material is the same.
    If I had 100k$ TT rig, 150k$ monoblocks and 200k$ speakers then I'd worry about 5k$/m cables.

    That is just ignorant BS! There is hardly any firm scientific evidence for anything in audio, it doesn't make the phenomena non-existent.
    Why SET sounds so good? Prove it with math and 5 sigma probability experiments or it doesn't! You kidding?

    Here's a scientific/engineering reasoning: what's the skin depth in copper cable at 10kHz? About half a mm.
    Worst case it's about half the usable copper for 14AWG wire at 10kHz.
    Not end of the world, but it's a measurable difference.
    It's also worth taking into account inductance, capacitance and conductor and insulator quality.
    Easily measurable stuff that can be correlated with psycho-acoustic observation.
     
  2. Hrodulf

    Hrodulf Prohibited from acting as an MOT until year 2050

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    You think that a regular multistrand copper cable will present considerable resistance at audible frequencies due to skin effect? Shouldn't be hard to measure or even model. Here's a trick question - how much more copper should you have for treble in a cable, compared to the actual tweeter voice-coil wiring?

    Measure overall line resistance + amp output impedance. I'm inclined to say that physical contact resistance will play a bigger role than going overboard with cable cross section. A better recommendation would be using 4-pole speakons to maximise contact surfaces and add overall convenience.

    Really? What kind of firmness are you looking for? The magnitude of linear and non-linear distortion has always been an pretty decent measure of device performance. The tricky part, of course, is that human auditory apparatus can be pretty tolerant towards some forms of distortion, however less has always been better.

    There's also a large body of research about the perceivability of room acoustical phenomena. I think the path laid down for precise playback is rather clear. Of course that won't tell you if you'll like something or not.
     
  3. Priidik

    Priidik MOT: Estelon

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    Not true. A shitty eBay stainless steel crocodile has a few milliohms of resistance in contact with bare copper surface of reasonable size (like a few strands in a cable worth of area), albeit not terribly repeatable, and with lots of current such limited cross section contacts will modulate resistance due to heat and not so good temp co of these materials.
    Good spade in screw terminal is micro ohms, and reasonably repeatably so. Speakon is probably very good too.
    There is the user responsibility thing with common connectors, it can be bodged up.
    edit: good idea is to avoid banana. Lots of shitty ones out there and it is prone to get dirty and gunk can build inside the female hole.

    A common lamp cord can have hundreds of milliohms for few meters back and forth. Beefy amp source resistance can be few milliohms, more commonly few tens of milliohms.
    I don't know about micro ohms, but avoiding hundreds of millohms matter for bass in my experience.
    One could f up speaker's Qts, in case of passive xo with shitty cord (paralleled drivers going as low as 2 ohms or smth).
    Welp, that's my attempt to add reasoning to it.
    I can hear the difference, so can many others. You tell me why? If you say placebo, I don't speak to you any more, haha.
    The thing can be heard with cheap home theater tower speakers even. It's not an audiophile nervosa level debate.

    I have found very little solid evidence linking distortion mechanisms in electrical domain to our brain data management.
    The topic has been beaten to death, I will not add to that. You make a point about acoustics.

    I'm not sure it's only function of resistance. I don't hear difference in detail presentation and soundstage much when adding 0.5 ohms in series with MT section, I certainly can when going from CAT5 to lamp cord of insignificantly low DC R.
    Skin effect itself is also not only change in resistance. It's underlying mechanism has other consequences for signal transfer.
    It's not like I enjoy making cables, I'd be much happier if I could get along with just lamp cord for speaker wires, my UR22 as sound source, and a 50$ T amp powering shit.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2018
  4. AllanMarcus

    AllanMarcus Friend

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    I don't appreciate the ignorant BS comment. That's not called for, even if you disagree. I've been guilty of doing that here, and I was wrong when I did it. I could easily say the same of your comment, but I will not.

    I will say that just because other things haven't been tested is irrelevant to this topic.

    If you can hear a difference with speaker cables, that's great. What I said is that until some does a blind test that shows people can hear a difference, there is no proof there is difference. You, and I, and everyone else are absolutely entitled to our opinions, but opinions are not facts, and opinions are never wrong. I was being a little hyperbolic using lamp cord as an example; even I don't use lamp cord, I use monoprice OFC 12 and 14 AWG cable.

    I think it's great you can hear a difference, and posting your impressions of reasonably priced bulk cable (hopefully with links) will help the OP with his quests for cables.
     
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