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Home theater spkr wiring?/


dshogman

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I know this is way off riding but.....

Just got a new home theater system for my home (motorhome). Speaker wiring comes out the back of the new speakers and ends with a colored plug to go into the new receiver. The coach is pre-wired for the current speakers and I would like to use that wiring.

Thinking out loud - just cut the wires on the new speakers and solder the wires to connect with the wires in the walls?? Or maybe get some sort of 2 wire male/female plug arrangement??

Would appreciate any thoughts or suggestions from this esteemed group.

Thanks and Happy Holidays.

David

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Silver Surfer/AKAButters

Either approach would work fine. I would just remove the plugs and either solder the ends together or just get some butt splices from Radio Shack or any auto parts store abd mechnically splice them. You could also get sone female RCA plugs and connect to the end of your motor home wire runs nd plug the spekers in there.

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Do you want to terminate the speaker system in the motor home or incorporate both sets of speaker systems giving you the option to choose one or the other at any time. additionally, solder acts like a transducer and will effect the quality of sound considerably. If you have to solder use the best. Cheap advise.

Wish I could help more.

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solder acts like a transducer and will effect the quality of sound considerably.

Color me skeptical. At best. After all, what’s every component on every PC board in every piece of electronics (including in sound equipment) on the planet connected with – solder.

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Just leaving work and saw your post Ken. I think the better quality solder gives a better and truer sound. Not every piece of sound equipment uses solder believe it or not. My cables from my console (TRS) and from the pianos are solder free and oxygen free.

I know it sounds weird, but it is true and they sound great.

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If your speaker wires are permanently attached to your speakers I'm virtually certain that the type of solder you use isn't going to be noticeable in the least. Just make sure that the phase of both speakers is matched.

 

Out of phase speakers could have a noticeable negative impact. Just match the same colors on your speaker wires to the same colors built into your motorhome.

 

 

 

 

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Correct me if I'm wrong but don't you have to determine if the two sets of speakers are matched in terms of impedence?

 

Yes, but.... In this case we're talking about a solder connection, not the speaker impedance. Other than in very, very high end systems, when "impedance matching" you're normally talking about 4 vs. 8 ohm (or whatever) your speaker rating is, not the difference a good solder connection vs. another type will make. Also, newer amps make tiny impedance differences almost a non-issue.

 

In this particular case, speakers that have wires permanently attached are not going to be studio quality or anywhere near it. People stress out way to much over connections, much due to the great marketing job by companies like Monster Cable and others. These companies are making tons of money by having people shell out huge bucks for speaker wires on sets of speakers that are made for casual listening. IMO, you're much better off putting every last dollar in better speakers vs. very expensive cables when a "good" connections will do the job just as well.

 

There's absolutely nothing wrong with casual listening. But, if you're not dealing with very high end equipment it's just not worth making yourself crazy about the connection set up. In this particular case, (again guessing on the general set-up) I think a good solder connection would be indistinguishable from any other.

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People stress out way to much over connections, much due to the great marketing job by companies like Monster Cable and others. These companies are making tons of money by having people shell out huge bucks for speaker wires on sets of speakers that are made for casual listening.

Amen to that. I’ve yet to see a single piece of scientific evidence supporting the whole ‘Monster Cable’ hype. It’s the placebo effect at its best IMHO.

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I’ve yet to see a single piece of scientific evidence supporting the whole ‘Monster Cable’ hype. It’s the placebo effect at its best IMHO.
And that's the problem. Monster Cable is regarded as junk by true aficionados.

 

I've done some blind tests (non-scientific, but rather a friend randomly switching cables) with analog cables, and I could tell a difference. Digital cables I can't see spending lots of money on, but if you're really picky about music/sound, it's worth looking into.

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What the heck is a “digital cable”???

 

It’s all just electrons moving along a conductor.

 

/rant on

 

If the educational system wasn’t so poor, that people knew even the basic sciences / physics, marketing BS like this wouldn’t stand a chance of success.

 

/rant off

 

 

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Joe Frickin' Friday
What the heck is a digital cable???

 

/rant on

 

If the educational system wasnt so poor, that people knew even the basic sciences / physics, marketing BS like this wouldnt stand a chance of success.

 

/rant off

 

 

Whoa, hold your fire.

 

Check this out. It's more about digital video than audio, but I think it may help to answer your question of what constitutes a "digital cable."

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What the heck is a “digital cable”???

 

I believe my fellow US Citizen was referring to cable carrying a digital vs. analog signal, such as a S/PDIF connector, or Toslink, the latter being optical fiber having no suceptibility to interference while carrying a digital audio signal. If it's carrying a bunch of 1s and 0s, the cheap stuff is just fine - unless you are a jitter afficianado. In the analog world, there are considerations, however.

 

But, what do I know? I went to a State school.

 

Fight the Monster, buy Blue Jeans cable if you have to, but upgrade your source components first. That's my audio-motto.

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What the heck is a digital cable???

 

/rant on

 

If the educational system wasnt so poor, that people knew even the basic sciences / physics, marketing BS like this wouldnt stand a chance of success.

 

/rant off

 

 

Whoa, hold your fire.

 

Check this out. It's more about digital video than audio, but I think it may help to answer your question of what constitutes a "digital cable."

 

Interesting responses from the various engineers and audiophiles that basically are saying that Monster stuff is advertising hype and otherwise BS.

 

I must admit I have been sucked in, in the past but now buy cheaper cable atr a local electronics supplier. Seems to work for me.

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This is a great post on comparing Monster cables to coat hangers. Yep, coat hangers. If you aren't interested in all the audiophile detail, skip to the next to last paragraph:

 

click here

 

We gathered up a 5 of our audio buddies. We took my "old" Martin Logan SL-3 (not a bad speaker for accurate noise making) and hooked them up with Monster 1000 speaker cables (decent cables according to the audio press). We also rigged up 14 gauge, oxygen free Belden stranded copper wire with a simple PVC jacket. Both were 2 meters long. They were connected to an ABX switch box allowing blind fold testing. Volume levels were set at 75 Db at 1000K Hz. A high quality recording of smooth, trio, easy listening jazz was played (Piano, drums, bass). None of us had heard this group or CD before, therefore eliminating biases. The music was played. Of the 5 blind folded, only 2 guessed correctly which was the monster cable. (I was not one of them). This was done 7 times in a row! Keeping us blind folded, my brother switched out the Belden wire (are you ready for this) with simple coat hanger wire! Unknown to me and our 12 audiophile buddies, prior to the ABX blind test, he took apart four coat hangers, reconnectd them and twisted them into a pair of speaker cables. Connections were soldered. He stashed them in a closet within the testing room so we were not privy to what he was up to. This made for a pair of 2 meter cables, the exact length of the other wires. The test was conducted. After 5 tests, none could determine which was the Monster 1000 cable or the coat hanger wire. Further, when music was played through the coat hanger wire, we were asked if what we heard sounded good to us. All agreed that what was heard sounded excellent, however, when A-B tests occured, it was impossible to determine which sounded best the majority of the time and which wire was in use. Needless to say, after the blind folds came off and we saw what my brother did, we learned he was right...most of what manufactures have to say about their products is pure hype. It seems the more they charge, the more hyped it is.

 

So you see, my friend, that is why I have joined up with this site (audioholics) because their approach to good sound and education to acquire good sound and video is based on science, not hype, hypnotics, placebo effects or wishful

thinking.

 

My best regards;

 

Dr. Bob Dean

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What the heck is a “digital cable”???

 

I believe my fellow US Citizen was referring to cable carrying a digital vs. analog signal, such as a S/PDIF connector, or Toslink, the latter being optical fiber having no suceptibility to interference while carrying a digital audio signal.

I was responding in the context of the original post – speaker wire.

 

I realize there are differences between various technologies (coax, optical, etc.) between components.

 

But once it leaves the amp to the speaker itself, short of being way too small to carry the current (anybody ever melted their speaker wires (in a typical home system)?), I still think basically wire is wire.

 

But heck, my much abused ears are +50 years old. Maybe a 20-something CAN tell the difference with high $$ speaker wires at 140 db!

 

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Speaker cable length vs. gauge can matter in a high-end installation (because speaker cables actually carry some current), but beyond that very basic consideration most all of the other cable stuff you hear bandied about is pure babble. It's easy to find people on hi-fi forums who think that they can hear an obvious difference between low signal level interconnects, fiber vs. coax digital feeds, power cords, or even differences between copper and silver conductors (copper sounds 'warmer' than silver, dontcha' know.) They will swear on their mother's grave that the differences are night-and-day. It's really comical.

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Joe Frickin' Friday

The problem is that the effects that the Monster Cable folks describe are indeed real - it's just that at audio frequencies and typical home audio power levels, those effects are negligible.

 

The skin effect - in which alternating current tends to flow closer to the surface of a conductor - is important at radio frequencies (mega/gigahertz), and even matters at 60 Hz if you're trying to move a lot of current. But consider:

 

-audio frequencies are less than 20 kilohertz;

 

- the large current flows tend to be associated with the much lower bass frequencies, a couple hundred hertz or less (we hear bass frequencies less well, which is part of why they need more power);

 

- those "large" bass current flows are still pretty small compared to the size of the wires involved;

 

-the "skin depth" of those bass current flows (and even of the higher audio frequencies) is much larger than the typical speaker wire diameter, so the current density is effectively uniform across the width of the cable.

 

In fact these guys calculated an increase in apparent cable impedance of only 3% at 20 KHz; the increase will be much less at lower frequencies. And given that the impedance of a typical copper speaker wire is just about diddlysquat (in the range of milliohms) to begin with, a 3% increase is just about nada in a system where your amp and your speakers each have impedances of 8 ohms.

 

It's a bit like K&N claiming to significantly reduce flow resistance, when the pressure drop through an OEM paper filter is already a fraction of a percent.

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What the heck is a “digital cable”???

 

I believe my fellow US Citizen was referring to cable carrying a digital vs. analog signal, such as a S/PDIF connector, or Toslink, the latter being optical fiber having no suceptibility to interference while carrying a digital audio signal.

I was responding in the context of the original post – speaker wire.

Yup, I was just trying to be complete and not make blanket statements about cable (which I wouldn't agree with).

 

The problem with speaker cable is that you've got to have an amazingly expensive setup to really be able to distinguish between speaker cables. I have an OK setup, but not nearly good enough to be able to justify good speaker cables.

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