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#401178 - 02/18/14 10:50 AM Speaker Wire Preference?
msjpearson Offline
regular

Registered: 02/18/14
Posts: 7
Hey guys. Thanks in advance for your help. Just wondering what's the consensus on speaker wire...gauge? Brand? Price? Is there a difference between regular speaker wire and audiophile grade brands? My speakers include m22's, qs8, vp150. I'm also interested in m60's down the road. Thanks again.

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#401184 - 02/18/14 02:53 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4556
Loc: Marion, IA
Go 12ga if you can, 14ga will be ample for most people.

Brand does not matter.

heck, I ran with the cheapest "lamp cord" from a local home improvement store for years. I know that Axiom sells some pretty sexy looking stuff, but I got mine all bulk from monoprice.com

Simple, basic, cheap, and it works. Whatever you do, don't believe the sales pitch to buy Monster Cable or the like. Proven to be completely not worth the price.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, Shakers

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#401185 - 02/18/14 03:20 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Hellcommute Offline
veteran

Registered: 09/23/12
Posts: 152
Belden 5000UE 12/2awg, many strands, flexible, substantial, cheap enough. In wall rated. My bulk cable choice for sure. smile

I have Belden 5T00UP, 10/2awg for my hi-fi, it is overkill, but still cheap. In wall rated. Measured well in audioholics tests.

Then there's monoprice, a cheap alternative with negligible performance difference at average speaker run length. Good value.

14/2awg is the min size I would recommend for any critical audio installs, though 16/2 is often used for whole house\building structured audio installs with dependable results.

I took home leftover 18/4 sol securex from a fire alarm install job and paralleled the conductors inside of the cable. This yielded somewhere around a 15/2awg size cable. At runs in my HT of ~40' I can't tell the difference between the 10awg conductors. Saved me some $$.

Speaker wire is easy to get carried away on, but remember, where you put your speakers and your room acoustics will affect the sound 5000% more than adding even a dollar to how much you spend on speaker wire. wink Just get 12 or 14 awg and focus on the next battle. smile

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#401186 - 02/18/14 03:21 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Hellcommute Offline
veteran

Registered: 09/23/12
Posts: 152
sorry nickbuol, writing at same time and you beat me to it. smile

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#401190 - 02/18/14 05:39 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4556
Loc: Marion, IA
No worries.

Yeah, this time around I went for the in-wall rated stuff too.



Like this stuff, only I got a LOT more than 50 feet.

Pretty easy to work with and about half the price of other similar stuff out there. I used to use companies like Blue Jeans Cable as a "low cost" alternative to the other brand name stuff, but even the Monoprice stuff is pretty great and the value is even better. I wired up all A/V stuff for my entire basement using Monoprice cables, wires, keystones (wall jacks) etc. I spent about $750 or something on all of it and only had 1 thing fail. A 75 foot HDMI cable that was DOA. Returned it and got a replacement that worked. Outside of the speaker wire, it was the single most expensive item at about $70, but the return process was easy.

_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, Shakers

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#401192 - 02/18/14 07:03 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
brwsaw Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1125
I wish I could have got that price in Canada.
Best price I found was around $135 including expedited freight for 250ft of the same cable.
_________________________
The Hobbit in HFR 3D was worth the wait.

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#401195 - 02/18/14 08:12 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: brwsaw]
onn Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 914
Loc: Edmonton Alberta
Originally Posted By: brwsaw
I wish I could have got that price in Canada.
Best price I found was around $135 including expedited freight for 250ft of the same cable.


Don't forget that Monoprice uses UPS so you need to add about a $80 brokerage fee to the total price.


Edited by onn (02/18/14 08:13 PM)
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#401199 - 02/18/14 10:02 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10412
Mike, welcome to Axiom. There really is no such thing as "audiophile grade" speaker wire since the term "grade" implies that it's actually significantly better in helping transmit audio information. Blind testing indicates that this is purely BS(Before Science).

Speaker wiring and interconnecting cables are two areas notorious for snake oil salesmen. This explanation of speaker wiring realities by a veteran audio professional has helped a lot of people avoid being played for suckers. Gauge of wire is the significant factor, and the length of the run together with the impedance of the speaker determine the advisable gauge(as shown in Mr. Russell's table).

Once you've determined the gauge you need(I use 16ga)and whether you're going to use wiring with an outer jacket suitable for behind-the-wall installation, there are several sources to get it at low cost. Local hardware suppliers such as Home Depot and Lowes can cut it to order. Online suppliers such as MonoPrice and several others are readily available.
_________________________
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Enjoy the music, not the equipment.



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#401200 - 02/18/14 10:19 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Socketman Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/12/09
Posts: 1215
Loc: Whitehorse YT
Get some in wall wire, then head to ebay and get some sheathing and some cable pants finish off with banana plugs and you can make some inexpensive speaker cable that looks expensive and works great.. Its also a fun project.
Wire Pants

Flex sleeve
_________________________
DOG is GOD spelled backwards.
I blame my terseness on my keyboard. smile

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#401202 - 02/18/14 10:42 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: onn]
brwsaw Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1125
Originally Posted By: onn
Originally Posted By: brwsaw
I wish I could have got that price in Canada.
Best price I found was around $135 including expedited freight for 250ft of the same cable.


Don't forget that Monoprice uses UPS so you need to add about a $80 brokerage fee to the total price.


I bought from a Canadian retailer.
_________________________
The Hobbit in HFR 3D was worth the wait.

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#401205 - 02/18/14 11:20 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4556
Loc: Marion, IA
brwsaw... Funny... I opened up the Axiom forums, looked for threads that I subscribe to, and you had the last post. I open up AVS, go to the first thread that I subscribed to that had new posts, and you were the last to post there too. LOL
Acoustical Treatments Master Thread I believe.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, Shakers

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#401208 - 02/19/14 12:59 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: nickbuol]
brwsaw Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1125
Originally Posted By: nickbuol
brwsaw... Funny... I opened up the Axiom forums, looked for threads that I subscribe to, and you had the last post. I open up AVS, go to the first thread that I subscribed to that had new posts, and you were the last to post there too. LOL
Acoustical Treatments Master Thread I believe.


I'm cutting back...lol
_________________________
The Hobbit in HFR 3D was worth the wait.

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#401217 - 02/19/14 07:18 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6884
Loc: PEI, Canada
I agree with much of the above. Do not spend an extra $ on anything that is overpriced for its so called "acoustical qualities".

Do however consider the practicality of the wire. I once bought a large amount of 12g speaker wire from a local hardware store for the longer distances during my house build. It was so hard and inflexible that it was near impossible to work with. I cut my fingers a couple of times trying to work the ends before giving up and throwing much of it out.

I ordered 12g inwall from Monoprice and it was a complete joy to work with in comparison. Also, even with duty, the price was comparable to the crap at the local HW store. More than worth it to offset the frustration and blood loss.
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#401245 - 02/19/14 09:51 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
dakkon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 1846
Below is the speaker wire I am using.
http://www.avoutlet.com/index.php?dispatch=products.view&product_id=4416

This is one of the few companies that advertise all of the specs for their cables. Most companies don't publish the capacitance or inductance of their cables.

Hope this helps.

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#401247 - 02/19/14 11:19 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
msjpearson Offline
regular

Registered: 02/18/14
Posts: 7
Thanks all. I really appreciate your responses. I will check out mono price et al. Thanks again!

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#401248 - 02/19/14 11:39 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
brwsaw Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1125
FWIW I really like axioms black 12 gauge.
It looks good exposed and does the job.
I went in wall this time but would have preffered the black cable.
Axioms cable has a clear cover now, and I've decided to go with in wall and hide it because of it.
I picked up my spool today so I'll have 300+ ft (100' black axiom 12 gauge, 100' monster thx rated 16 gauge and and and) of miscellaneous cable sitting here, all good enough to use, none in wall rated.


Edited by brwsaw (02/19/14 11:42 PM)
_________________________
The Hobbit in HFR 3D was worth the wait.

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#401256 - 02/20/14 10:54 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13344
Loc: Iowa
12 awg is 12 awg, it is just the higher stranded stuff is easier to work with and lays nicer around corners on the floor.
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#401257 - 02/20/14 11:07 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: SirQuack]
drjones Offline
regular

Registered: 01/16/10
Posts: 6
I'd like to offer a link that I recently found that seems to me to offer essential reading for any audio consumer, especially just before taking the wallet out of the pocket. The link is to an extensive compilation of the efforts to obtain objective evidence (as distinct from claims) about what 'audiophile' cables actually achieve.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/486598/testing-audiophile-claims-and-myths

I'd love to know what you think!

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#401259 - 02/20/14 11:27 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Socketman Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/12/09
Posts: 1215
Loc: Whitehorse YT
Here is what I think, I don't care what other people think and I will think what I want to think and if other people think im crazy that's ok cause I don't care what they think. grin
_________________________
DOG is GOD spelled backwards.
I blame my terseness on my keyboard. smile

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#401260 - 02/20/14 12:31 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
exlabdriver Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/07/11
Posts: 1063
Here's what I think, ha!, FWIW.

Just about any wire of an adequate gauge that is easy to work with & does not introduce interference (RFI, etc) will work just fine - ie Zip Cord bought at a hardware store. The reasonable price is a bonus.

As long as the electrons get from A to B cleanly without too much resistance is all that matters to me. Each to his own though....

TAM

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#401261 - 02/20/14 01:17 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: brwsaw]
msjpearson Offline
regular

Registered: 02/18/14
Posts: 7
Originally Posted By: brwsaw
FWIW I really like axioms black 12 gauge.
It looks good exposed and does the job.
I went in wall this time but would have preffered the black cable.
Axioms cable has a clear cover now, and I've decided to go with in wall and hide it because of it.
I picked up my spool today so I'll have 300+ ft (100' black axiom 12 gauge, 100' monster thx rated 16 gauge and and and) of miscellaneous cable sitting here, all good enough to use, none in wall rated.


I'm looking at the axiom speaker cable now and am a little confused about the terminated ends. Right now I'm using banana plugs on both ends of my cable; the axiom cable uses 3/8" spade lug connectors. Would I want 1/4" to 1/4" to use with M22's and an ADA1000? Or something else entirely?


Edited by msjpearson (02/20/14 01:21 PM)

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#401263 - 02/20/14 02:57 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4556
Loc: Marion, IA
Spade ends work with the "banana sockets". You just unscrew the socket a little, slide the spade in, tighten down.

Like this.



yeah, yeah.... I know. Some elitist brand cable in this picture. Just look at the connection...
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, Shakers

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#401264 - 02/20/14 04:12 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
brwsaw Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 10/12/12
Posts: 1125
When I purchased axioms 12 gauge cable my cables were in plain sight. Black, flexible and from a company I trust won me over.
"That's all I got to say about that".
I hate the fact I'm using in wall cable. It looks cheap.
K, there. Done.
_________________________
The Hobbit in HFR 3D was worth the wait.

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#401267 - 02/21/14 12:03 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: nickbuol]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16298
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
You can do far worse than Kimber Kable is you're talking about elitist. smile
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#401273 - 02/21/14 08:58 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: pmbuko]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4556
Loc: Marion, IA
Originally Posted By: pmbuko
You can do far worse than Kimber Kable is you're talking about elitist. smile


For sure. I was just commenting on the braided cabling aspect of it.
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, M3s, SVS 20-39PCi, Shakers

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#401358 - 02/24/14 07:42 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Argon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/24/04
Posts: 1443
Loc: Oak Ridge, NC
Just out of curiosity, what does it take to be "In Wall" rated?
_________________________
"A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject" Churchill

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#401363 - 02/24/14 08:35 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
ClubNeon Online   content
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3452
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
A certain amount of fire-resistance to the jacket.

There's also cable rated for installation in a plenum (air space). That cable's jacket can't produce toxic fumes when heated.
_________________________
Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, PDP-5020FD, DV-79AVi
Axiom M22s, VP150, QS8s
Sony PS3, surround backs
-Chris

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#401374 - 02/24/14 04:01 PM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
Argon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/24/04
Posts: 1443
Loc: Oak Ridge, NC
Thanks, Chris. I was thinking in the wrong direction.
_________________________
"A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject" Churchill

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#402211 - 03/27/14 05:16 AM Re: Speaker Wire Preference? [Re: msjpearson]
MichaelTrottar Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/10/13
Posts: 84
This information of speaker wiring information by a professional audio professional has helped a lot of people avoid being conducted for suckers.
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Cinéma maison Montréal

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