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  1. #1
    Romanticist Philosopher
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    Smile What speaker gauge for my setup?

    Right now I am using pedstrian 18 gauge speaker wire with my Behringer EP2500 that outputs 450 watts RMS 20hz to 20khz into 8ohms. My speakers are slightly modified DCM KX12 Series 2 speakers with Pioneer 4ohm car subwoofers replacing the original woofers. Funny the original woofers were also 4ohms even though the nominal impedance rating is marketed as 8ohms. I think it is really closer to 6 but anyway I'm wondering if an investment in 14 gauge or 12 gauge speaker wire is worth it. The left speaker is using only about 3 feet of wire and the right is using about 7 or 8 feet. I can't believe that 18 gauge even works at all for this app but I guess the distance is so short. It sounds good but I would like to know if getting new wire is more than likely going to make a difference or for this distance am I okay? It seems to sound a bit harsh. I had 12 gauge speaker wire attached a long time ago but I don't remember what it sounded like and I must have tossed the wire in the trash because I can't find it.

    I checked Wiki but I don't think they mention the wattage factor if there even is one.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speaker_wire
    I prefer my sex like my basketball, one on one, and with as little dribbling as possible.

  2. #2
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    I'm a fan a large gauge wires for speakers. Get rid of the 18 gauge wire ASAP! I would go with 10 or 12 gauge. Speaker cables should be the same length for each speaker. If your speakers sound harsh it's probably not the wire.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY
    Accuphase T101, Teac V-7010, Nak ZX-7. LX-5, Behringer DSP1124P
    Front: Magnepan 1.7, DBX 223SX, 2 modified Dynaco MK3's, 2, 12" DIY TL subs (Pass El-Pipe-O) 2 bridged Crown XLS-402
    Rear/HT: Emotiva UMC200, Acoustat Model 1/SPW-1, Behringer CX2310, 2 Adcom GFA-545

  3. #3
    Suspended markw's Avatar
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    For a system of such quality, only the finest will do. Go for 12 gauge and sleep well knowing your system has what bring the best out of it.

  4. #4
    Romanticist Philosopher
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    I'll go for 12 gauge then ASAP. Thanks.
    I prefer my sex like my basketball, one on one, and with as little dribbling as possible.

  5. #5
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  6. #6
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    These White Lightning Moonshine speaker cables are excellent and cheaper than zip cord.


    http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/w...moonshine.html

  7. #7
    Romanticist Philosopher
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    Smile About wire length

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9 View Post
    I'm a fan a large gauge wires for speakers. Get rid of the 18 gauge wire ASAP! I would go with 10 or 12 gauge. Speaker cables should be the same length for each speaker. If your speakers sound harsh it's probably not the wire.
    My amp is on top of the left speaker. Having equal length speaker cable is just not in the cards here. Horn tweeters are more than likely the harshness when you hit them with so much SPL.
    I prefer my sex like my basketball, one on one, and with as little dribbling as possible.

  8. #8
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Bluejeanscable has 10 and 12 guage wire at great priced if you terminate them yourself. I own a pair of the the 10g and it took me all of 20min to terminate them with banana plugs. I run bare ended wire into my speakers though.

    http://www.bluejeanscable.com/store/speaker/
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
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    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  9. #9
    Forum Regular hifitommy's Avatar
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    then theres the home depot orange extension cord wire. just cut the AC ends off and use bare wire or add bananas.

    cheap and good.
    ...regards...tr

  10. #10
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven View Post
    Bluejeanscable has 10 and 12 guage wire at great priced if you terminate them yourself. I own a pair of the the 10g and it took me all of 20min to terminate them with banana plugs. I run bare ended wire into my speakers though.

    http://www.bluejeanscable.com/store/speaker/
    I did use their 10g to wire my sub. It may (or may not) be overkill, but for the cost, why not? It's a small price to pay for the piece of mind you get. It's when people start paying $5k for wire that makes me wonder.
    Last edited by GMichael; 06-22-2011 at 05:05 AM.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular hifitommy's Avatar
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    even mikey fremer called them STUPID expensive. but when you get to the +100k systems, zip cord and throw away wiring doesnt fit in. its at that level when those differences become clear.
    ...regards...tr

  12. #12
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hifitommy View Post
    even mikey fremer called them STUPID expensive. but when you get to the +100k systems, zip cord and throw away wiring doesnt fit in. its at that level when those differences become clear.
    True. If I paid over 100k on a system, I sure as sh.t wouldn't put the cheapest wire possible in the mix. But if my system cost 2k, then 5k wire is out.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  13. #13
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert-The-Rambler View Post
    My amp is on top of the left speaker. Having equal length speaker cable is just not in the cards here. Horn tweeters are more than likely the harshness when you hit them with so much SPL.
    That makes no difference. Both speaker cables should be the same length. Coil the excess on one speaker.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY
    Accuphase T101, Teac V-7010, Nak ZX-7. LX-5, Behringer DSP1124P
    Front: Magnepan 1.7, DBX 223SX, 2 modified Dynaco MK3's, 2, 12" DIY TL subs (Pass El-Pipe-O) 2 bridged Crown XLS-402
    Rear/HT: Emotiva UMC200, Acoustat Model 1/SPW-1, Behringer CX2310, 2 Adcom GFA-545

  14. #14
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9 View Post
    That makes no difference. Both speaker cables should be the same length. Coil the excess on one speaker.
    Coil? Are you sure? Won't that add resistance?
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  15. #15
    _ Luvin Da Blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMichael View Post
    Coil? Are you sure? Won't that add resistance?
    This certainly will add inductance into the circuit. The amount added depends on the current as well as the number and size of the loops. If one has to, folding is by far the better solution but still not recommended. Cut to length, wire can be relatively cheap..

  16. #16
    Romanticist Philosopher
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    Smile Found some 12 gauge in the man cave

    Pulled some 12 gauge wire from my 18" sub downstairs in the largely abandoned man cave that I planned on not using anymore. Well, it makes a big difference. Despite having some superficial damage to the exterior caused by my destructive cat the cable works great and is MUCH MUCH better suited for the high powered class H amp. There are teeth marks everywhere in the plastic but no puncture down to the copper. Sound is more rich in every way. The bass has now extended and the highs don't sound as strained. I think this realy shows that for a high wattage application speaker gauge is very important. Sometimes DUH applies. 18 gauge is for consumer appications in low wattage short distance not for professional use.
    I prefer my sex like my basketball, one on one, and with as little dribbling as possible.

  17. #17
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    LDB is correct. Coiling will cause increased inductance. Speaker cable lengths should still be the same.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY
    Accuphase T101, Teac V-7010, Nak ZX-7. LX-5, Behringer DSP1124P
    Front: Magnepan 1.7, DBX 223SX, 2 modified Dynaco MK3's, 2, 12" DIY TL subs (Pass El-Pipe-O) 2 bridged Crown XLS-402
    Rear/HT: Emotiva UMC200, Acoustat Model 1/SPW-1, Behringer CX2310, 2 Adcom GFA-545

  18. #18
    _ Luvin Da Blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9 View Post
    LDB is correct. Coiling will cause increased inductance. Speaker cable lengths should still be the same.
    I agree Joe, speaker cables should be the same length but if one only has the option of coiling or cutting to length, I would chose the latter.

    Myself, I always have my 2Ch amp (reciever?) centered between the speakers so it's never an issue.

  19. #19
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    I have a tubed monoblock sitting behind each speaker connected with 3 foot speaker cables which are about twice as long as I actually need. This also applies to my subs which are driven by bridged SS amps.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY
    Accuphase T101, Teac V-7010, Nak ZX-7. LX-5, Behringer DSP1124P
    Front: Magnepan 1.7, DBX 223SX, 2 modified Dynaco MK3's, 2, 12" DIY TL subs (Pass El-Pipe-O) 2 bridged Crown XLS-402
    Rear/HT: Emotiva UMC200, Acoustat Model 1/SPW-1, Behringer CX2310, 2 Adcom GFA-545

  20. #20
    Big science. Hallelujah. noddin0ff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMichael
    Coil? Are you sure? Won't that add resistance?
    Quote Originally Posted by Luvin Da Blues View Post
    This certainly will add inductance into the circuit. The amount added depends on the current as well as the number and size of the loops. If one has to, folding is by far the better solution but still not recommended. Cut to length, wire can be relatively cheap..
    That's why I keep the 20 extra feet of wire that I have for my right speaker in a tangled mass, shoved behind the cabinet and on top of the power bar.
    TCA ATT GGA

  21. #21
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    My speaker cable is mostly 12 ga. Does the rear speaker require equal length cables.

  22. #22
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    all you need to know about speaker wire..

    The only thing you should be aware of when choosing speaker wire is the length of the run. It doesn't even matter (within reason) if you run different lengths, different brands and so on as long as you use the appropriate gauge for the length of the run. Google 'Roger Russell speaker wire' for a complete faq.

    I think people are finally coming around to the fact that speaker wire is speaker wire as long as it is manufactured to industry specifications. Same is true for other audio/video cables.

  23. #23
    Forum Regular hifitommy's Avatar
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    "speaker wire is speaker wire"

    nope. if you have a receiver of commercial quality, that may work but not when you get refined products. just as in photography, the better the lens, the more you see.

    nobody says that you need $1000 wire with a sansui receiver but with audio research separate components, it may be time to look other than radio shack.
    ...regards...tr

  24. #24
    Suspended Smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hifitommy View Post
    Nobody says that you need $1000 wire with a sansui receiver but with audio research separate components, it may be time to look other than Radioshack.
    Does HomeDepot count since you recommended their orange cord

    The best route for choosing cables is based on their quality, not how much the system cost

  25. #25
    Forum Regular hifitommy's Avatar
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    if i had need for speaker wire at this time, i might try the home depot trick. i DO have an audio research preamp. the fact is that i am well set with kimber 8tc that i paid $50 for.

    my point is that some people believe you can greatly improve you sound by just changing the interconnects or speaker wire. big improvements are made before changing the wiring. improved wiring becomes sensible when your system is in the high end sound category. that can be with certain budget priced components or costly items.

    i worked my way up in quality over a long time and discovered better wiring incrementally. my most expensive cable is one that i won in the raffle at the audio society meetings.

    one of my finds was a kimber PBJ which sounded wonderful between my then rotel 855 CDP and the preamp. another was an AT litz wire between the crossover and preamp when i was using a dahlquist electronic xover while biamping between my rogers LS3/5As and infinity monitor JRs i used as subs.

    i had no need for that level of wire when i had my sherwood s8900a receiver.
    ...regards...tr

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