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Author Topic: Reasons not to buy crappy XLR cable pack from PSSL  (Read 13968 times)

Ray Aberle

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #30 on: August 17, 2016, 03:04:38 pm »

It's a trade off.  A small label on the cable indicating cable number makes tracing things much easier. Clear heat shrink over a small label is not horrible in photos.

I make my labels inverted. They are black with white text.  From a distance, you can barely see them.
I'm going to start inverting my label colors immediately- that's a great idea. I also have color ID rings (e-tape) for cable pack and length-- that's a bit harder to deal with, and I never thought about Tim's point regarding showing up in video. However, I can cut the e-tape bands in half, thus reducing the size they take. Saves on clear shrink as well!

Last weekend I needed an extra 50 footer for a wedding ceremony and ran down to the local music store.  When I got things set up the first thing I noticed was this obnoxious white bit of sleeving at the mic end with the store's name on it.  Swiss Army knife to the rescue.

I don't blame the local music store for wanting to promote their store when they sell cables- it's like the license plate holder you get on your new car- for as long as it's there, you're inadvertently advertising for the car dealership where ever you go!

-Ray
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #31 on: August 17, 2016, 05:08:40 pm »

I'm going to start inverting my label colors immediately- that's a great idea. I also have color ID rings (e-tape) for cable pack and length-- that's a bit harder to deal with, and I never thought about Tim's point regarding showing up in video. However, I can cut the e-tape bands in half, thus reducing the size they take. Saves on clear shrink as well!

I don't blame the local music store for wanting to promote their store when they sell cables- it's like the license plate holder you get on your new car- for as long as it's there, you're inadvertently advertising for the car dealership where ever you go!

-Ray

Ray - What are you calling e-tape?  You talking about Brady labels or P-Touch stuff?

I am a big fan of the Brady/Panduit self laminating labels.

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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman

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Ray Aberle

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #32 on: August 17, 2016, 05:40:50 pm »

Ray - What are you calling e-tape?  You talking about Brady labels or P-Touch stuff?

I am a big fan of the Brady/Panduit self laminating labels.

Electrical tape. Just standard electrician's stuff- those photos I posted earlier in this thread, the red stripe to the right of my asset tag is the case code (All RED cables go here!) and the purple stripe to the left is the length indicator (purple is either 10 or 50 feet).

There are two other companies here in the PNW that use the same color scheme; since I work closely with both of them, it made sense to adopt a similar color code scheme.

-Ray
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #33 on: August 17, 2016, 08:27:25 pm »

Electrical tape. Just standard electrician's stuff- those photos I posted earlier in this thread, the red stripe to the right of my asset tag is the case code (All RED cables go here!) and the purple stripe to the left is the length indicator (purple is either 10 or 50 feet).

There are two other companies here in the PNW that use the same color scheme; since I work closely with both of them, it made sense to adopt a similar color code scheme.

-Ray

Got it and I hope that you agree imitation is the best form of flattery because this is a great idea.

We just made that huge leap off a big cliff and hired an actual, direct, w2 employee to take care of the warehouse, logistics and loading the vans.  His very first task is to take inventory and update asset tags.  As we were running the company from 2 houses and a warehouse that was actually a portion of my business partners auto business we were not quite sure just how much stuff we had, especially stands and cables.  I am taking the 4th load from my house to the warehouse and my wife is actually starting to look happy. 

These types of ideas (the cable labeling) are solutions to the real problems small operators face every day. 

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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman

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Ray Aberle

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #34 on: August 17, 2016, 09:18:00 pm »

Got it and I hope that you agree imitation is the best form of flattery because this is a great idea.

We just made that huge leap off a big cliff and hired an actual, direct, w2 employee to take care of the warehouse, logistics and loading the vans.  His very first task is to take inventory and update asset tags.  As we were running the company from 2 houses and a warehouse that was actually a portion of my business partners auto business we were not quite sure just how much stuff we had, especially stands and cables.  I am taking the 4th load from my house to the warehouse and my wife is actually starting to look happy. 

These types of ideas (the cable labeling) are solutions to the real problems small operators face every day.
An accurate inventory is crucial to any business. I SWEAR I was losing cables, and it was driving me apeshitbatcrazy. Also, my previous 'labeling' was just using Audiopile's cute color ID rings on XLR ends- great for knowing the cable length, but doesn't tell you who the cable belongs to... :)

So here's a screen shot from my inventory database- pure Excel. Sequential numbering. And it actually starts with things I bought 15 years ago. (This particular file has only been around for the past 6-7 years, but when I built it, I actually started looking back to determine "what did I buy, and when?" The block after the acquisition cost is used for serial number(s), if applicable. Actually, there's another cell in there as well, but it doesn't get used. :)

By tracking where it belongs (color of cable kit) if something goes missing, I can determine how to replace it.

-Ray
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Kelcema Audio
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Ray Aberle

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #35 on: August 17, 2016, 09:24:58 pm »

Got it and I hope that you agree imitation is the best form of flattery because this is a great idea.

We just made that huge leap off a big cliff and hired an actual, direct, w2 employee to take care of the warehouse, logistics and loading the vans.  His very first task is to take inventory and update asset tags.  As we were running the company from 2 houses and a warehouse that was actually a portion of my business partners auto business we were not quite sure just how much stuff we had, especially stands and cables.  I am taking the 4th load from my house to the warehouse and my wife is actually starting to look happy. 

These types of ideas (the cable labeling) are solutions to the real problems small operators face every day.

Here's the other part of the system- cable trunk labeling. I just whipped this up in Word. Print it, and either laminate or put in a sheet protector and tape it closed. THEN, use a rivet gun and permanently attach it to your cable trunk lid.

Everything you see here is in one quarter-pack cube. The "patch kit" is a bunch of Husky branded black zipper pouches from Home Depot- one has short XLRs (something like 16, from 12" to 3'), one has 1/4" inserts (not like we use those anymore... haha), one for iPod cables/rat tail, one with MM XLR barrels (8) and one with FF XLR barrels (8). One has 1/4" M to RCA-F adapters, ground lifts, phase reverses, and XLR-F to 1/4" F barrels. One has a selection of 1/4" cables, and one has 1/4" to XLR adapter cables. Finally, there is an "Accessory" pouch-- Sharpies, extra AA batteries, Thunderbolt to VGA adapter, extra Cat5e cable, extra Audiopile drawer keys, and (seems to be the most important here--) a couple of USB bricks and USB-iPod and USB-Lightning cables. People ALWAYS forget iPod/iPad charging materials, amiright? All of the cables, barrels, adapters, etc, [IN THIS KIT] share the yellow labeling with yellow e-tape.

Now, when you're at a show, and you have "volunteers" or even audio techs that don't work with you normally, they can easily find things. They know how to determine which cables are 25' long. They know how many are in there, so if they've only used a couple 25 footers, or maybe they wish they had a 100 footer-- they'll know there are two in this cube.

When the pack comes back to your shop, the warehouse guy can QC the kit and based on that sheet, determine whether or not all of the cables, adapters, etc made it back OK!

-Ray

edit: added code to make the (8) display correctly
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Debbie Dunkley

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #36 on: August 17, 2016, 09:37:25 pm »

Yes.

Labels and fasteners go on the male end, always. With the velcro, it is always a good idea to wrap it back together before you plug it into your input box so all the velcro lines do not stick to one another. Bonus points are awarded if you are forward thinking enough to make sure that the fuzzy side is out on all the velco straps. This helps them to not stick together.

Then I gots me quite a few points.... check, check and check!!
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Mike Mottsey

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #37 on: August 17, 2016, 10:30:02 pm »

Buy Once, Cry Once.

Stick with reputable brands like ProCo, Canare, RapcoHorizon, Whirlwind, Mogami, etc. for cable and either Neutrik or Switchcraft connectors. If you're handy with the soldering, it's cheaper to DIY. Cheap crap will fail because of skimping on copper strands and worthless connectors that will bend easily.


I only buy Canare L4-E6s in fact I still have a few dozen since 1986 and there still going! No failers! Stuck with this brand ever since.
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Rob Spence

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #38 on: August 17, 2016, 11:11:10 pm »

An accurate inventory is crucial to any business. I SWEAR I was losing cables, and it was driving me apeshitbatcrazy. Also, my previous 'labeling' was just using Audiopile's cute color ID rings on XLR ends- great for knowing the cable length, but doesn't tell you who the cable belongs to... :)

So here's a screen shot from my inventory database- pure Excel. Sequential numbering. And it actually starts with things I bought 15 years ago. (This particular file has only been around for the past 6-7 years, but when I built it, I actually started looking back to determine "what did I buy, and when?" The block after the acquisition cost is used for serial number(s), if applicable. Actually, there's another cell in there as well, but it doesn't get used. :)

By tracking where it belongs (color of cable kit) if something goes missing, I can determine how to replace it.

-Ray

I do something pretty simple (weekend warrior style).
I use nail polish on much of my gear. I have a pretty much established color set that many folk know. A few dabs of nail polish in inconspicuous places makes it easy to establish ownership.

For things like adapters and such, the colors are blatant. For things like mics, a dab on the connector end which gets covered up by the cable connector lets us sort out which SM58 belongs to whom. All XLR ends are marked on all cables. Length is identified in other ways.
 


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brian maddox

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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #39 on: August 18, 2016, 01:20:39 am »

Here's the other part of the system- cable trunk labeling. I just whipped this up in Word. Print it, and either laminate or put in a sheet protector and tape it closed. THEN, use a rivet gun and permanently attach it to your cable trunk lid.

Everything you see here is in one quarter-pack cube. The "patch kit" is a bunch of Husky branded black zipper pouches from Home Depot- one has short XLRs (something like 16, from 12" to 3'), one has 1/4" inserts (not like we use those anymore... haha), one for iPod cables/rat tail, one with MM XLR barrels (8) and one with FF XLR barrels (8). One has 1/4" M to RCA-F adapters, ground lifts, phase reverses, and XLR-F to 1/4" F barrels. One has a selection of 1/4" cables, and one has 1/4" to XLR adapter cables. Finally, there is an "Accessory" pouch-- Sharpies, extra AA batteries, Thunderbolt to VGA adapter, extra Cat5e cable, extra Audiopile drawer keys, and (seems to be the most important here--) a couple of USB bricks and USB-iPod and USB-Lightning cables. People ALWAYS forget iPod/iPad charging materials, amiright? All of the cables, barrels, adapters, etc, [IN THIS KIT] share the yellow labeling with yellow e-tape.

Now, when you're at a show, and you have "volunteers" or even audio techs that don't work with you normally, they can easily find things. They know how to determine which cables are 25' long. They know how many are in there, so if they've only used a couple 25 footers, or maybe they wish they had a 100 footer-- they'll know there are two in this cube.

When the pack comes back to your shop, the warehouse guy can QC the kit and based on that sheet, determine whether or not all of the cables, adapters, etc made it back OK!

-Ray

edit: added code to make the (8) display correctly

This is all great.

Just one question. What is your color code based on?  The one thing i REALLY appreciated about my first sound company is that their color code was based on resistor code. Yeah, it might be Proprietary but it was based on something.

To my eye your color code is Totally Random. And that to me just equals wasted on site time.

I'm very open to being wrong on this. I just want to know how.
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Re: XLR cable pack from PSSL
« Reply #39 on: August 18, 2016, 01:20:39 am »


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