Go Back   Team-BHP > Under the Hood > In-Car Entertainment


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12th June 2007, 15:13   #1
Team-BHP Support
 
tsk1979's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 22,972
Thanked: 15,684 Times
Default What makes a good wire for speakers?

I searched and searched and found a lot of threads about Power cables etc., but none about the "signal" or speaker wires, i.e. ones carrying the signal from HU to the AMP and to the speakers.
I was told that when I go in for a new system, I will just have to procure good quality power cables (4 gauge BIS IS 694).
On the signal front I am told I would need just good quality RCA and speakers come with cables, no need to buy those.
what about connection from HU to the AMP?

Lets say I have to procure signal wires what characteristics I need to see? Current carrying is not one of them, but off hand I think
1. Low inductance(I think this is why even home speaker cables and computer cables are ribbon shaped)
2. Low capacitance (To protect the amp against oscillations??)
3. Good quality shielding.

Some googling revealed that the CAT5 cable has most of these characteristics (Ethernet is at 33Mhz). anybody tried CAT5 here?

Also coming to the shielding part, I know it from personal experience that even high freqency MHz grade signals are effectively shielded by using aluminum foil(which you use for packing paronthas).
So if I run out of money, and fall short of signal wire, can I take CAT5 cable? I won't even need to shield it.
I have some 10m of CAT5 cable lying with me unused.
tsk1979 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:16   #2
Team-BHP Support
 
navin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: mumbai
Posts: 22,571
Thanked: 3,924 Times
Default

CAT5 in short runs is fine. In longer runs skin effect will come into play. See post #6157 (you know where).
navin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:21   #3
Team-BHP Support
 
tsk1979's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 22,972
Thanked: 15,684 Times
Default

I was told that speakers and amps come with wires in the box, so I won't need long lengths, is it true. If so I do not need to worry.
As for the post 6157, somehow I will not buy the "sound changes with material" argument.
Thats why I wanted to know the specifics like what are inductance, capacitance and conductivity characteristics a good speaker wire should have.
tsk1979 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:21   #4
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Faridabad
Posts: 6,814
Thanked: 294 Times
Default

also the lan cable is a single core wire one it will be a little difficult to handle it.....and solder it....
low_bass_makker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:39   #5
Team-BHP Support
 
navin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: mumbai
Posts: 22,571
Thanked: 3,924 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
I was told that speakers and amps come with wires in the box, so I won't need long lengths, is it true. If so I do not need to worry.
As for the post 6157, somehow I will not buy the "sound changes with material" argument.
Thats why I wanted to know the specifics like what are inductance, capacitance and conductivity characteristics a good speaker wire should have.
the cables supplised are adequate for most applications buuuuttt I have heard silver and copper (OFC) and some of the more exotic cables (one that is a hollow rectangular tube) and can say quite impartially that cables to add their own signature. My sister hubby is a cable guy (rolls his own and all that i need) and he swears by a silver in hot lead and copper in the other leg combination with multiple grades of insulation.
navin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:45   #6
Team-BHP Support
 
tsk1979's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 22,972
Thanked: 15,684 Times
Default

Hmm pretty exotic.
But mine is a budget setup, so I can stick to what comes with the standard amp and speakers, no need of any Jugaad's?
tsk1979 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 15:58   #7
BHPian
 
gopz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Blighty
Posts: 452
Thanked: Once
Default

Well true, cables play an important part, but Navinji some of them are too expensive but the quality maybe slightly better. You have access to your sisters hubby, you can experiment...and tell us!
gopz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 16:36   #8
BHPian
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 978
Thanked: 5 Times
Default

Navinji, is this cable signature applicable to both HU-to-Amp and Amp-to-Speaker wires? or is it predominant in one of them?
santosh.s is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 17:57   #9
Senior - BHPian
 
hydrashok's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: In my Office
Posts: 2,528
Thanked: 14 Times
Default

@tsk1979, if you're not using an amp, the cables that come with the speakers will be enough.

If you are going to use an amp, it would be a good idea to get better quality (and thicker) speaker cable. You definitely want to get the max out of the investment in the amp, without having the wires reducing the signal strength, right?

I don't think amps come with cables?
hydrashok is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 18:21   #10
BHPian
 
appuchan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Bangy
Posts: 641
Thanked: 16 Times
Default

Read the links below for a discussion on speaker cables and some DIY stuff. Note that the quality of interconnects (plugs/end points) used also matter.

The Truth About Interconnects and Cables — Audioholics Home Theater Reviews and News
The Naked Truth about Speaker-Cables

I had done some R&D on this cable and interconnect stuff when I setup my home theater. Not sure how much these are relevant to car audio. I did find a difference in speaker output when I compared the cables that comes with the system and other professional quality cables like those from Monster. Ofcourse they are expensive but makes sense when you have invested a good amount in your AV/HU unit and speakers.

Last edited by appuchan : 12th June 2007 at 18:24.
appuchan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 22:15   #11
Team-BHP Support
 
navin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: mumbai
Posts: 22,571
Thanked: 3,924 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by santosh.s View Post
Navinji, is this cable signature applicable to both HU-to-Amp and Amp-to-Speaker wires? or is it predominant in one of them?
Actually most of my tinkering has been with RCA cables. Becuase carrying a 3m pair of RCA cables back is a lot easier than 20m pair of speaker cable. Even then there is no way I could have heard every combination of cables on earth. A friend of my sister's hubby (my wife's brother is also an audio nut but he tinkers with the innards of CD players - mostly Marantz) made some cable for me using 4 metals (OFC, Silver, Ti, and SS) and carbon and it did NOT sound good. Plain OFC sounded nicer. OFC-silver combo that my BIL uses sounded still nicer.

In an independant test, the nameless hollow rectangular core cable made a big difference to the airyness of a friend's system (the cables they replaced were from Nordost). The CD and Amp were from Roksan and the speakers were the A2.5 from BC Acoustique. OT: I intend to "steal" the Roksan CD and modify it someday - gotta go to his place when he is not home.

IMHO I do believe that speaker cables can also affect the timbre of the sound just like RCA cables do but i have not done too much in that department. My present cables is a home brew using OEM silver coated copper (Belden 8V28060) for the bass and midbass and a OEM silver (Belden i think it is 83010 or something like that) for the tweeter. My sister's hubby uses a cross-connected wire using Belden 89259 coax cable. Apparently both ends are not cross-connected (it is very stiff and a pain in the neck to use and install but he has no kids and has converted one room into a audio den).

Some cheaper options include Sommer, simple 100/38 or 100/40 intrument grade (they use the stuff for oscilopscopes and DVMs leads) and some other cable that i was gifted and sells for about half the cost of Belden (I forget the name but maybe Sam remembers). No Sam did not gift it, another friend did but I had discussed it on this forum at that time.

P.S. There is some decent and very cheap 16GA speaker cable from "Audio Source" that is also selling at this time. cheap = about Rs. 40-50 per meter. Dont ask me to get it though. The source told me he's looking at 1000' spools (hint: they were probably meant for the US). Do not be disheartened if you hear it is Made in China. China is gaining much deserved respect in audio circles these days.

Last edited by navin : 12th June 2007 at 22:44.
navin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 22:50   #12
Team-BHP Support
 
tsk1979's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 22,972
Thanked: 15,684 Times
Default

I am confused now.
SO I go to electrical shop and buy IS 694 confirming finolex 4 guage for the power, what do I buy for signal?
I am planning to use speaker wires which come with the speakers and components.
What do I use for HU-Amp connection.
If I keep the Amp below the drivers seat, then CAT-5 is okay, right?
I can also use CAT-6 if that would be better, but 10+ meters of CAT 5 lying at my feet doing nothing is a tempting option.
tsk1979 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th June 2007, 22:53   #13
Team-BHP Support
 
Vid6639's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 14,525
Thanked: 19,595 Times
Default

HU-Amp is generally RCA cable. these make a big difference to the sound.
Vid6639 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th June 2007, 00:28   #14
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sam Kapasi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Mumbai (but wat
Posts: 6,989
Thanked: 1,454 Times
Default

Tanveer, please dont use CAT5 cable to carry audio signal. If on a budget buy MX 5 metre RCA cables, but please don't use CAT5 cable to carry audio.

In closing, i would like to say that please don't use CAT5 cable to carry audio signal.
And remember, please don't use CAT5 cable to carry line level audio signals.
Sam Kapasi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th June 2007, 00:31   #15
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Faridabad
Posts: 6,814
Thanked: 294 Times
Default

Sam Bhai how is CAT 6 for the job???
low_bass_makker is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Is It necessary to add new plug wire,ignition coil if adding new NGK Iridium Plug finetuning Modifications & Accessories 20 12th September 2011 10:45
Damn, a good install makes a difference!! My OHC Vtec ICED again GTO In-Car Entertainment 60 17th July 2008 12:39
what speaker wire to get? wannabelean In-Car Entertainment 5 2nd August 2006 10:51
M800, Neon Tube Wire getting melted, plz help nosfreak Modifications & Accessories 5 23rd June 2006 21:33


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 11:18.

Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks