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Thread: speaker wire(s)

  1. #1
    Tom Hicks's Avatar
    Tom Hicks is offline 1K Silver Member
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    18 guage zip cord

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    barefoot's Avatar
    barefoot is offline barefootsound.com
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    Ummm.... is this meant to provoke the superstitious?

    3' (1m), probably ok. 30' (10m), probably not so good.

    barefoot

  3. #3
    mixmkr's Avatar
    mixmkr is offline we don't need rest!!
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    whoa!!! ....my original post is missing!! anywazz....I was asking, what are the downsides of using some 10/2 romex, or even some heavier guage wire like 8 or 4 gauge for speaker wire? I work at a job that has plenty of leftover pieces of heavy guage wire (even up to 1/0 and 2/0), and thought...hey..why not for some speaker wire. What advantages would a *prof* speaker wire have over a piece of 10 foot 4 gauge?

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    barefoot's Avatar
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    Wow, 4 gauge!

    This is always a hotly debated issue, but when you look at the science, speaker cable has no perceptible effect on sound.

    The effect of all the various components inside a loudspeaker (wires, inductors, capacitors, resistors, solder joints, etc.) completely dwarfs the effect of the relatively tiny variations in resistance, capacitance, inductance and skin effects between normal speaker wires whatever the cost or level of "engineering". The magnitude of these speaker wire properties are well within the "noise" (1 standard deviation) compared to the tolerances of even the tightest matched drivers and crossover components. Speaker wire effects only become audible when you get into the extremes of long runs and/or thin gauges.

    Beyond this, simple variations in the weather or altitude cause changes in pressure and sound velocity which alter speaker parameters and also completely obliterates the miniscule effect of wire.

    For developing and testing my speakers I use 2 meters of 12 gauge tinned OFHC (Oxygen Free High Conductivity) copper wire with PVC insulation. Not that it makes any difference, but saying I use a "standard" seems to give a warm fuzzy to those who can't let go of their superstitions.

    That huge wire you're talking about is complete overkill, not to mention cumbersome. Whatever you use, just give a quick brush on the exposed ends with sandpaper or steel wood to remove any oxidation, then give a tight clamp with the connectors.

    Oh, and watch your back lugging that wire home!

    barefoot

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    frederic is offline Opinionated Old Fart
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    For a 100W amplifier, you could use 18 ga speaker wire and 0 ga welding wire with the same sonic results.

    What matters is the wire is large enough not to burst into flames when you run the power through it. When wiring my studio, I used 12 ga for all the speaker wires, not because I need it at the moment, but because its going under a hardwood floor, and if some day, I get a grossly oversized amp, I don't want to deal with wire under the floor.

    Like someone stated above, there has been discussion after discussion after discussion regarding how thick is too thick, and our trusty test equipment shows as long as the wire is large enough for the power rating, anything thicker than that is a waste of copper

    If you want to use 4 ga because you have a spool of it, thats fine, it won't hurt anything, but you can't take advantage of it with ordinary amplifiers.

    Or do you have a 25,000W amplifer?

    Hope that helps,


    Originally posted by mixmkr
    whoa!!! ....my original post is missing!! anywazz....I was asking, what are the downsides of using some 10/2 romex, or even some heavier guage wire like 8 or 4 gauge for speaker wire? I work at a job that has plenty of leftover pieces of heavy guage wire (even up to 1/0 and 2/0), and thought...hey..why not for some speaker wire. What advantages would a *prof* speaker wire have over a piece of 10 foot 4 gauge?

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