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Author Topic: Litz wire for speakers?  (Read 1716 times)

Cosmo

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Litz wire for speakers?
« on: July 22, 2012, 04:26:09 pm »


I have an opportunity to buy a quantity of Litz wire from a company going out of business.  It is 16 gauge with a silicone jacket.  Normally I would not be interested but I happen to be helping a friend with a home-theater installation and he is in the market for speaker wire.  I can get the Litz wire for much less than any regular wire I would normally use for speakers, so I'm wondering if there are any issues I'm not aware of that would rule out the Litz.  BTW, I have access to (and experience with) a hi-temp solder pot to treat the ends, so that is not a problem.

Thoughts?

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If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.  Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.  - H.D. Thoreau

Kevin McDonough

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2012, 05:48:55 pm »

hey

While i've never used this type of wire as such, my only concern on reading up would be that because each individual strand within the wire has its own jacket your getting a bit less copper than you would from the equivalent size of normal wire.

But looking at a quick conversion table I can see 16 guage is 1.3mm in my money  :)  which I'd think was a little thin for a PA of any power but fine for home Hi-Fi stuff.

k
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Randall Hyde

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2012, 07:30:03 pm »

I have an opportunity to buy a quantity of Litz wire from a company going out of business.  It is 16 gauge with a silicone jacket.  Normally I would not be interested but I happen to be helping a friend with a home-theater installation and he is in the market for speaker wire.  I can get the Litz wire for much less than any regular wire I would normally use for speakers, so I'm wondering if there are any issues I'm not aware of that would rule out the Litz.  BTW, I have access to (and experience with) a hi-temp solder pot to treat the ends, so that is not a problem.

Thoughts?

Back in the 70s when I was into esoteric audio, I used Litz wire on my stereo system. It definitely made a difference in the sound (I could hear it). Now whether it was *better* or not is a good question. In theory, it's not supposed to make a difference at audio frequencies, but like I said I heard a difference.

If you can get it cheap, by all means go for it.
Cheers,
Randy Hyde
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Brad Weber

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2012, 03:56:09 am »

It is 16 gauge with a silicone jacket.  Normally I would not be interested but I happen to be helping a friend with a home-theater installation and he is in the market for speaker wire.  I can get the Litz wire for much less than any regular wire I would normally use for speakers, so I'm wondering if there are any issues I'm not aware of that would rule out the Litz.
For the run lengths you may encounter in installed systems I'd rather see more copper (larger gauge conductors) than worry about the skin effect at audio frequencies.  Unless it is 'tear resistant' a silicone jacket may often be susceptible to damage when being pulled in installs.  And you might want to make sure that the cable is at least rated for installation inside walls, for example CL2 or CL3, if not rated for riser or plenum installation.  Basically, if the intent is to use it for installations then you probably want to make sure it is not just good cable but also appropriate for those applications.
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Hal Bissinger/COMSYSTEC

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2012, 05:26:28 pm »

... you might want to make sure that the cable is at least rated for installation inside walls, for example CL2 or CL3... 

You hit the nail on the head there Brad. I guarantee that wire isn't listed and is not allowed to be run within walls.
 
-Hal
 
 
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2012, 07:09:20 pm »

Conform that the DC resistance is as good as normal 16 GA, and that 16 GA adequate for your install.

Skin effect is generally not an issue for speaker wires, but the wire should not otherwise be inferior.

It will give your friend something to talk about to impress audio-phool friends (as long as it works at least as good as zip cord).

JR
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Tim Padrick

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Re: Litz wire for speakers?
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2012, 03:44:52 am »

Nope!  Good old fashioned 12 or 13 gauge copper with the standard ~60 strands per conductor is what you want for Pro or for HiFi.
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