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Author Topic: Speaker Cable  (Read 4318 times)

Johnny Diaz

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Speaker Cable
« on: May 22, 2013, 09:55:42 pm »

I'm loading my amp to 2 ohms and would like to build my own speaker cables.  Anyone recommend a good 10awg / 8awg 2 conductor cable so I can make speakon cables?
« Last Edit: May 22, 2013, 09:57:15 pm by Johnny Diaz »
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Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2013, 10:07:35 pm »

I'm loading my amp to 2 ohms and would like to build my own speaker cables.  Anyone recommend a good 10awg / 8awg 2 conductor cable so I can make speakon cables?

How long is the run 12 should be fine 10/8/6 they are all over kill
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Johnny Diaz

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2013, 10:10:08 pm »

How long is the run 12 should be fine 10/8/6 they are all over kill

I want to make 25, 50 & 100 feet.  I read that the longer cables affect the damping factor and one way to resolve it is to use a bigger cable.  Is this true?
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Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2013, 10:16:18 pm »

I want to make 25, 50 & 100 feet.  I read that the longer cables affect the damping factor and one way to resolve it is to use a bigger cable.  Is this true?

Yes to some extent but there is beneficial and overkill
The company I work for runs turbo 21 subs with 12 gauge cable all the time in fact that what most of nl4 cable is 12/4 ( so they can be use for by amped monitors or mans). But the subs only use pin 1+-
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Johnny Diaz

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2013, 10:19:01 pm »

Yes to some extent but there is beneficial and overkill
The company I work for runs turbo 21 subs with 12 gauge cable all the time in fact that what most of nl4 cable is 12/4 ( so they can be use for by amped monitors or mans). But the subs only use pin 1+-

How low are you loading the amp?
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Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2013, 10:21:03 pm »

How low are you loading the amp?
4 sometimes 2
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Johnny Diaz

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2013, 10:32:28 pm »

4 sometimes 2

Well in theory if you load it down to 2 ohms with a 12 awg cable you are definitely losing some power and the damping factor is being affected.  Real life may be another story.
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Mike Caldwell

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2013, 10:35:01 pm »

I want to make 25, 50 & 100 feet.  I read that the longer cables affect the damping factor and one way to resolve it is to use a bigger cable.  Is this true?

Yes but......no common speaker connector will take a #8 or #6  wire short of using twist lock power connectors. I guess you splice on a piece of #12 on each end for the connector.

#12 will be fine and at the end of the night you'll like rolling it up better than a bunch of 6 x 2 or 6 x4 cables for speakers, We do enough of that for feeder cable.

I guess if this is for an install you could go crazy and use #8 or #6 you would need to reduce to a smaller gage for terminations.
I have read somewhere some installs that ran several hundred feet used up wards to #6 for speaker runs.

As just mentioned you could use speakons wired with four conductor cable and double up on the connections.
That could get confusing if the cabinets or amp racks got mixed in with a bi-amp wired NL4 system.


« Last Edit: May 22, 2013, 10:51:21 pm by Mike Caldwell »
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Johnny Diaz

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2013, 10:37:56 pm »

Yes but......no common speaker connector will take a #8 or #6  wire short of using twist lock power connectors. I guess you splice on a piece of #12 on each end for the connector.

#12 will be fine and at the end of the night you'll like rolling it up better than a bunch of 6 x 2 or 6 x4 cables for speakers, We do enough of that for feeder cable.

I guess if this is for an install you could go crazy and use #8 or #6 you would need to reduce to a smaller gage for terminations.
I have read somewhere some installs that ran several hundred feet used up wards to #6 for speaker runs.

As just mentioned you could use speakons wired with four conductor cable and double up on the connections.
That could get confusing if the cabinets or amps racks got mixed in with a bi-amp wired NL4 system.

I agree 8 or 6 awg would be hard to manage but I think 10 awg would be doable.  Know any good brands for a 10awg cable?
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Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2013, 10:49:23 pm »

Well in theory if you load it down to 2 ohms with a 12 awg cable you are definitely losing some power and the damping factor is being affected.  Real life may be another story.

I would say that the loss on the 25 and 50 would be so minimal that it would never deem it reasonable to spend an extra
Example 12/4 25ft $22.       50ft $44         75ft. $66.       100ft. $88
             10/4 25ft $40         50ft $80.        75ft. $120.     100ft.  $160
              8/4. 25ft $52.        50ft $104.       75ft  $156.     100ft. $209

If you build just one of each length here's the differance in price
12/4   $220
10/4.   $400
8/4.      $521
I got these prices from cammeltraders.

The little bit of rewarded just does not out weigh the cost.
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Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2013, 10:52:47 pm »

As just mentioned you could use speakons wired with four conductor cable and double up on the connections.
That could get confusing if the cabinets or amps racks got mixed in with a bi-amp wired NL4 system.

How would it get confusing if you just used them as is only the pin 1 would actually carry power the other would never be used unless the box and amp was setup for biamping
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Mike Caldwell

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2013, 11:14:13 pm »

How would it get confusing if you just used them as is only the pin 1 would actually carry power the other would never be used unless the box and amp was setup for biamping

If inside the cabinet the speakons were wired say 1+ 2+ paralleled together as well as 1- 2-. The mating amp rack would be wired the same on the output panel.
Getting cabinets or amp racks mixed up could cause problems.

I do know of systems where they are wired like that on the subs to take advantage of the extra copper in a four conductor NL4. A slightly different take on that is bi-wiring a double driver sub box, each speaker on it own pair of cables back to the amp rack.

Zachary Zimmerman

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2013, 11:18:11 pm »

If inside the cabinet the speakons were wired say 1+ 2+ paralleled together as well as 1- 2-. The mating amp rack would be wired the same on the output panel.
Getting cabinets or amp racks mixed up could cause problems.

I do know of systems where they are wired like that on the subs to take advantage of the extra copper in a four conductor NL4. A slightly different take on that is bi-wiring a double driver sub box, each speaker on it own pair of cables back to the amp rack.
Right I have never heard of a sub that actually does that now we do have at work special breakouts that do that externally not in the cabinet itself

Yes I see we're you see the problem most amps primary nl4 has both channels on it
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paul bell

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2013, 07:27:20 am »

Powersoft amplifiers double up on their output NL4 jacks. IOW, 1+ & 2+ are strapped together, same for the - terminals. I know at least some BASSMAXX cabinets were wired to match this wiring convention.

You can find 10/4 SJ cord if you search around the web long enough. It'll fit a NL4 plug.

My longer NL4 cables (25 foot and longer) are wired with 13/6 speaker cable. It takes some effort, but using two of the 13 gauge conductors per pins 1 effectively doubles it's current capacity. This is commonly done in electrical installations. Doubling a wire makes it's gauge size two wire sizes larger. EG: two 14 gauge conductors (15 amp capacity each) would equal one 10 gauge wire with a capacity of 30 amps.

As far as "helping" the damping factor of amplifiers, it really only matter with subs. The higher the frequency, the less the effect of copper losses.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2013, 07:31:06 am by paul bell »
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Johnny Diaz

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2013, 08:20:50 am »

Powersoft amplifiers double up on their output NL4 jacks. IOW, 1+ & 2+ are strapped together, same for the - terminals. I know at least some BASSMAXX cabinets were wired to match this wiring convention.

You can find 10/4 SJ cord if you search around the web long enough. It'll fit a NL4 plug.

My longer NL4 cables (25 foot and longer) are wired with 13/6 speaker cable. It takes some effort, but using two of the 13 gauge conductors per pins 1 effectively doubles it's current capacity. This is commonly done in electrical installations. Doubling a wire makes it's gauge size two wire sizes larger. EG: two 14 gauge conductors (15 amp capacity each) would equal one 10 gauge wire with a capacity of 30 amps.

As far as "helping" the damping factor of amplifiers, it really only matter with subs. The higher the frequency, the less the effect of copper losses.

Paul,

So your saying that on the powersoft amps you need to use a 4 conductor wire.  So I'm assuming that on the the amps output the 4 conductors are independent and on the sub input the positive terminals are connected to pin 1 and the negative terminals are connected to pin 2.  Is my understand correct?  So if were to use a 2 conductor cable on the amps output instead of 4 what would happen?  Less power?
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2013, 12:45:41 pm »

Well in theory if you load it down to 2 ohms with a 12 awg cable you are definitely losing some power and the damping factor is being affected.  Real life may be another story.

Repeat after me:  "damping factor is a bullshit specification."

Most of the major sound providers in the USA use #12 (or multiple conductors to equal that size) for speaker cable runs that total over 100'.
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Paul Dershem

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #16 on: May 23, 2013, 01:42:39 pm »

Repeat after me:  "damping factor is a bullshit specification."

Most of the major sound providers in the USA use #12 (or multiple conductors to equal that size) for speaker cable runs that total over 100'.

In other words, folks who obsess about damping factor are "all wet."
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John Chiara

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #17 on: May 23, 2013, 05:29:42 pm »

Right I have never heard of a sub that actually does that now we do have at work special breakouts that do that externally not in the cabinet itself

I have 12 horn loaded subs and they are ALL wired that way, both to double the copper but more importantly for testing each driver individually.
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Caleb Dueck

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Re: Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #18 on: May 23, 2013, 07:09:41 pm »

Repeat after me:  "damping factor is a bullshit (amplifier) specification."

But is is a cabling consideration for installs, or sometimes an application for Powersoft K-DSP amps. 
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paul bell

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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2013, 07:36:46 pm »

Paul,

So your saying that on the powersoft amps you need to use a 4 conductor wire.  So I'm assuming that on the the amps output the 4 conductors are independent and on the sub input the positive terminals are connected to pin 1 and the negative terminals are connected to pin 2.  Is my understand correct?  So if were to use a 2 conductor cable on the amps output instead of 4 what would happen?  Less power?

Hey Johnny,

No, the Powersoft K series amplifiers have an NL4 jack for each channel. In each jack, both positive pins are linked as are both negative pins. You can use pins one only, pins two only or both for additional current carrying capacity. This is for the amplifier in stereo mode:
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Re: Speaker Cable
« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2013, 07:36:46 pm »


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