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Sound Reinforcement - Forums for Live Sound Professionals - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Live Sound Forums => AC Power and Grounding => Topic started by: Mike Sullivan on November 05, 2015, 12:25:03 pm

Title: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 05, 2015, 12:25:03 pm
I know there's a couple different combination cables out there to combine power and signal for active speakers in one cable, but they seem bulky and expensive.  I was just toying around with ideas on how to go about combining them into one common jacket to make life a little easier... Is it possible to have somewhere take a regular 12/3 wire, and combine it with the conductors from a mic cable (for example, the 2 x 24ga plus shield from an EWI Starline bulk to fit in similar space as 12/4 wire, for example?  Just throwing the idea around.  If so, does anyone have an idea of a place that could do this?

I know, putting power and signal together has always been a no-no, but I would think there's a lot less of a chance with balanced signal. 
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mac Kerr on November 05, 2015, 12:29:12 pm
I know there's a couple different combination cables out there to combine power and signal for active speakers in one cable, but they seem bulky and expensive.  I was just toying around with ideas on how to go about combining them into one common jacket to make life a little easier... Is it possible to have somewhere take a regular 12/3 wire, and combine it with the conductors from a mic cable (for example, the 2 x 24ga plus shield from an EWI Starline bulk to fit in similar space as 12/4 wire, for example?  Just throwing the idea around.  If so, does anyone have an idea of a place that could do this?

I know, putting power and signal together has always been a no-no, but I would think there's a lot less of a chance with balanced signal.

These cables are available from a variety of sources. We use them all the time on my shows.

Mac
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 05, 2015, 12:39:07 pm
These cables are available from a variety of sources. We use them all the time on my shows.

Mac

I haven't seen one that really put it in a compact package.  I've seen them from (I believe) CBI and American DJ also makes one, but they're quite expensive and bulky.  Instead of putting two separate wires into one jacket, I was thinking it would be easier to replace the 4th conductor with the mic cable lines.

Then again, if that is what you're referring to, I would like to see some links, please.   ;D
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mac Kerr on November 05, 2015, 12:46:25 pm
Then again, if that is what you're referring to, I would like to see some links, please.   ;D

Link (http://www.amazon.com/Rapco-Horizon-AC-Audio-Composit-Speakers/dp/B007C7S0U6)

Another LINK (http://www.gepco.com/PDF_files/Why%20Gepco%20-%20RunONE.pdf)

Yet another LINK (http://whirlwindusa.com/catalog/power-electrical-distribution/edison-boxes/apc-audio-power-combo-snakes)
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 05, 2015, 12:54:34 pm
Link (http://www.amazon.com/Rapco-Horizon-AC-Audio-Composit-Speakers/dp/B007C7S0U6)

Another LINK (http://www.gepco.com/PDF_files/Why%20Gepco%20-%20RunONE.pdf)

Yet another LINK (http://whirlwindusa.com/catalog/power-electrical-distribution/edison-boxes/apc-audio-power-combo-snakes)

See, I've NEVER seen any of those before.  I was just toying around with the idea to make my own.  But if these are not pricey ($175 for the Horizon, OUCH) then I will consider them. 
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Lyle Williams on November 05, 2015, 02:11:29 pm
I think my 10m ones were about $60/ea down here in Australia. 
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 05, 2015, 03:13:21 pm
Link (http://www.amazon.com/Rapco-Horizon-AC-Audio-Composit-Speakers/dp/B007C7S0U6)

Another LINK (http://www.gepco.com/PDF_files/Why%20Gepco%20-%20RunONE.pdf)

Yet another LINK (http://whirlwindusa.com/catalog/power-electrical-distribution/edison-boxes/apc-audio-power-combo-snakes)

Having never held one in my hands, let alone taken one apart, can you describe the construction?

I know that there are code requirements for a barrier between low-voltage (signal level) conductors and high-voltage (100-250V) conductors in premises installation. Do the power and signal lines have separate jackets inside the overall jacket? Or does the jacket have a barrier between the conductors (like between the pairs in CAT6 UTP cable)? Or are the conductors happily commingling with only the conductor insulation separating them?
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 05, 2015, 07:05:44 pm
Having never held one in my hands, let alone taken one apart, can you describe the construction?

I know that there are code requirements for a barrier between low-voltage (signal level) conductors and high-voltage (100-250V) conductors in premises installation. Do the power and signal lines have separate jackets inside the overall jacket? Or does the jacket have a barrier between the conductors (like between the pairs in CAT6 UTP cable)? Or are the conductors happily commingling with only the conductor insulation separating them?

On genny installs, I can run the low voltage communication wire in the same conduit/flex as power wires as long as the low voltage cable has the proper rating-I think 600 V-so I would see no reason a cable assembly would be an issue.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 05, 2015, 09:28:36 pm
Having never held one in my hands, let alone taken one apart, can you describe the construction?

I know that there are code requirements for a barrier between low-voltage (signal level) conductors and high-voltage (100-250V) conductors in premises installation. Do the power and signal lines have separate jackets inside the overall jacket? Or does the jacket have a barrier between the conductors (like between the pairs in CAT6 UTP cable)? Or are the conductors happily commingling with only the conductor insulation separating them?

The AC line is jacketed separately, and CATegory cable it has its own internal PVC jacket as well (Signal lines do, too). Filler cordage is added to make it round and the outer jacket is extruded over the loomed conductors.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mark Cadwallader on November 05, 2015, 11:32:54 pm
The AC line is jacketed separately, and CATegory cable it has its own internal PVC jacket as well (Signal lines do, too). Filler cordage is added to make it round and the outer jacket is extruded over the loomed conductors.

Is the outer jacket SO rated, or does the inner jacket on the AC cord combined with the outer jacket material combine to provide SO grade protection of the conductors?  (I hope that makes sense; the links don't readily provide that spec.)
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 06, 2015, 02:15:53 am
Is the outer jacket SO rated, or does the inner jacket on the AC cord combined with the outer jacket material combine to provide SO grade protection of the conductors?  (I hope that makes sense; the links don't readily provide that spec.)

Good question.  My guess is that this gets rated SJO or some variation thereof but you'd have to ask the manufacturers.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Michael Thompson on November 06, 2015, 04:09:37 am
Is the outer jacket SO rated, or does the inner jacket on the AC cord combined with the outer jacket material combine to provide SO grade protection of the conductors?  (I hope that makes sense; the links don't readily provide that spec.)

I've never seen this type of cable SO rated, but from what I gather reading the NEC code book (don't quote me on this), it doesn't have to be.  It falls under a different category due to it's "high-tech" or "proprietary" nature.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mark Cadwallader on November 06, 2015, 09:24:05 am
I've never seen this type of cable SO rated, but from what I gather reading the NEC code book (don't quote me on this), it doesn't have to be.  It falls under a different category due to it's "high-tech" or "proprietary" nature.

Thank you. Hmmm. I'll see what I can find out, but I'm not sure if it would be worth an argument with the AHJ. Has anybody here been questioned by an AHJ about the use of combo cables?  (It might not be a real world issue, especially at the Lounge level, but I'm a cautious SOB.)
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 06, 2015, 09:47:10 am
I've never seen this type of cable SO rated, but from what I gather reading the NEC code book (don't quote me on this), it doesn't have to be.  It falls under a different category due to it's "high-tech" or "proprietary" nature.

The most recent full NEC I have here is almost 10 years old and much has been updated in the last 3 Code cycles.

I think the big question will be if the "siamese" assembly has to meet the same requirements as any other electrical cable used in the same "occupancy", or if it's considered a detachable appliance supply cord.

Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Rob Spence on November 06, 2015, 10:59:44 am
The most recent full NEC I have here is almost 10 years old and much has been updated in the last 3 Code cycles.

I think the big question will be if the "siamese" assembly has to meet the same requirements as any other electrical cable used in the same "occupancy", or if it's considered a detachable appliance supply cord.

My read is that it is a detachable (since it does) appliance cord though since it isn't the one supplied with the device that could be questioned.

I have some 50' Siamese cables I use with my ZXa5s. Mostly I use em when not over subs.



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Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Michael Thompson on November 06, 2015, 11:46:02 am
I'll also point out that Meyer Sound has offered "siamese" cables for years.  It's basically the same cable, but they use a multipin on the ends.  I rarely see this option in the wild, but one would assume that if a company like Meyer offers it, they have done the research.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Pyle on November 06, 2015, 11:50:12 am
Yes they ARE bulky, all versions I have seen.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 06, 2015, 12:06:25 pm
NEC 2014

640.8 allows "insulated conductors of different systems...to be bundled... in portable cords or cables, shall comply with 300.3(c)(1)."   And that says that all conductors must have insulation rated at highest voltage present.

The following is in section III Portable and Temporary Audio System installations:

640.41 addresses multi-pin connectors.  Basically have to be able to handle the load and be impossible to connect incorrectly-can't use edison's, etc.

640.42 makes a distinction between

 "(A) Between Equipment and branch circuit power.  Power supply cords for audio equipment shall be listed and shall be permitted to be used where the interchange, maintenance or repair is facilitated..."
 
and in 

(E) requires "equipment racks" to be supplied with extra-hard usage cord.

525 does not address combination use cables- it does reference to 640.



Seems to be a LOT of room for interpretation-might want to take the inspector out to a very nice lunch  and ask him his interpretation.

Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Frank DeWitt on November 06, 2015, 06:46:24 pm
Just dreaming here but we know that the first thing that happens to that AC inside the amp is it gets converted to + and - DC.   It seems that it would be easier to place the power supply near the AC source and  send + and - 30 volt DC down a cable with line level audio.

I know, no one makes a powered speaker with a external powersupply, but perhaps they should.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: David Sturzenbecher on November 06, 2015, 07:03:42 pm

I know, no one makes a powered speaker with a external powersupply, but perhaps they should.

You can order SpeakerPower amps that will take 24VDC input.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mac Kerr on November 06, 2015, 08:22:53 pm
I know, no one makes a powered speaker with a external powersupply, but perhaps they should.

Meyer does. Speaker (http://www.meyersound.com/product/mm-4xp/), Power Supply (http://www.meyersound.com/product/mps-488hp/).

Mac
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sokol on November 07, 2015, 12:50:16 pm
Meyer does. Speaker (http://www.meyersound.com/product/mm-4xp/), Power Supply (http://www.meyersound.com/product/mps-488hp/).

Mac

Well, I've always wanted to play with something like this. SoundTube makes a 40 watt ceiling speaker that uses POE (Power Over Ethernet) using CAT-5 cables connectors. http://www.soundtube.com/index.php/products/ip/
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 09, 2015, 11:37:10 am
Alright, not to be "that guy" but back on topic, not much was really said...does anyone have an idea of a power cable manufacturer that I could see that would be able to take 12/4 wire, remove the 4th conductor, and replace it with the components of a regular mic cable (2 22-24ga leads and shield), plus whatever other strands to keep the jacket round?  I just want to test it, before spending $150+ on pre-made cables. 
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 09, 2015, 11:54:33 am
Alright, not to be "that guy" but back on topic, not much was really said...does anyone have an idea of a power cable manufacturer that I could see that would be able to take 12/4 wire, remove the 4th conductor, and replace it with the components of a regular mic cable (2 22-24ga leads and shield), plus whatever other strands to keep the jacket round?  I just want to test it, before spending $150+ on pre-made cables.

Um, no. It's impossible to remove a conductor from an SO or similar cable without destroying the jacket in the process. And even if you were willing to do that and remold a new jacket around the assembly, it would likely cost considerably more than a $150 cable. You could, conceivably, do this yourself with heat-shrink tubing, but you would be limited in length to a few feet at most. Since the strength of interference/crosstalk is dependent on length, you may not have a legitimate test. Also, if you wish to use this for anything other than a bench test, the insulation on the microphone conductors would have to be rated to the same voltage as the insulation on the power conductors.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Michael Thompson on November 09, 2015, 11:59:26 am
What is wrong with the current product offerings?  Gepco makes a 12AWG version. http://www.gepco.com/products/proav_cable/runone/runone_touring_M.htm (http://www.gepco.com/products/proav_cable/runone/runone_touring_M.htm)

There a companies that will make custom cable, but you'd have to be getting thousands of feet for them to bother.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mac Kerr on November 09, 2015, 12:23:49 pm
Alright, not to be "that guy" but back on topic, not much was really said...does anyone have an idea of a power cable manufacturer that I could see that would be able to take 12/4 wire, remove the 4th conductor, and replace it with the components of a regular mic cable (2 22-24ga leads and shield), plus whatever other strands to keep the jacket round?  I just want to test it, before spending $150+ on pre-made cables.

Back in reply #3 I gave you 3 options, now in reply #24 you have another. How many options do you need to test the concept?

I don't need to test the concept because I use these cables on almost every show in some way or another.

Mac
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 09, 2015, 01:14:59 pm
Mike, maybe I'm dense but what is the concern here?  Inductive noise?  If you have balanced signals in the line you're fine.

We routinely (as in, every fucking day) run 300' multi pair analog mic snakes with #8/5 conductor 120/208v. service to FOH.  And for about 50' of the run, it's all on top of the feeder.

Nada problemo for contemporary music shows.  If you're doing whisper quiet theatre or corpy work it may take not running the snakes on top of the feeder, but for the getting signal and power to a wedge?  Any problems you have will not be because of the Siamese cable...
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 09, 2015, 03:08:56 pm
Mike, maybe I'm dense but what is the concern here?  Inductive noise?  If you have balanced signals in the line you're fine.

We routinely (as in, every fucking day) run 300' multi pair analog mic snakes with #8/5 conductor 120/208v. service to FOH.  And for about 50' of the run, it's all on top of the feeder.

Nada problemo for contemporary music shows.  If you're doing whisper quiet theatre or corpy work it may take not running the snakes on top of the feeder, but for the getting signal and power to a wedge?  Any problems you have will not be because of the Siamese cable...

Agreeing with Tim here. If it didn't work, they wouldn't sell it. At least they wouldn't be able to sell it to professionals. They might be able to sell it to audiophools.

Mr. Sullivan may be thinking that the current offerings of Siamese cables are too thick and bulky, so replacing one of the wires in a 12/4 configuration with an audio signal cable would make for a smaller, easier-to-handle package. There is a technical problem with doing so.

In a typical SO cable, as well as a typical microphone cable, the conductors are twisted around each other. This gives a degree of common-mode rejection to prevent crosstalk between adjacent pairs. If you replace one of the conductors of an SO cable with a different signal pair, you have effectively negated some of the common-mode rejection by making the new low-voltage pair inductively part of the high-voltage pair.

Depending on the twist of the low-voltage (audio signal) cable, you may retain some of the common-mode rejection properties of the signal cable, or you may completely negate them, allowing the audio signal to be heavily contaminated by the 60 Hz signal (and any line noise) present in the power cable.

Constructing the Siamese cable in a parallel, rather than twisted, configuration preserves the common-mode rejection properties of both cables.

P.S. -- I'm not an electrical engineer, but I play one on the Internet. There are people on this forum who are electrical engineers, and if they call "bull" on my arguments, I will defer to them.

P.P.S. -- It is very important to coil and lay out Siamese cables properly. Improper coiling and layout could negate common-mode rejection if the cable is allowed to become twisted so that the audio signal cable is wrapped around the the power cable.

EDIT: Corrected name in paragraph 2.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Michael Thompson on November 09, 2015, 04:07:55 pm
Agreeing with Tim here. If it didn't work, they wouldn't sell it. At least they wouldn't be able to sell it to professionals. They might be able to sell it to audiophools.

Mr. Thompson may be thinking that the current offerings of Siamese cables are too thick and bulky, so replacing one of the wires in a 12/4 configuration with an audio signal cable would make for a smaller, easier-to-handle package. There is a technical problem with doing so.

In a typical SO cable, as well as a typical microphone cable, the conductors are twisted around each other. This gives a degree of common-mode rejection to prevent crosstalk between adjacent pairs. If you replace one of the conductors of an SO cable with a different signal pair, you have effectively negated some of the common-mode rejection by making the new low-voltage pair inductively part of the high-voltage pair.

Depending on the twist of the low-voltage (audio signal) cable, you may retain some of the common-mode rejection properties of the signal cable, or you may completely negate them, allowing the audio signal to be heavily contaminated by the 60 Hz signal (and any line noise) present in the power cable.

Constructing the Siamese cable in a parallel, rather than twisted, configuration preserves the common-mode rejection properties of both cables.

P.S. -- I'm not an electrical engineer, but I play one on the Internet. There are people on this forum who are electrical engineers, and if they call "bull" on my arguments, I will defer to them.

P.P.S. -- It is very important to coil and lay out Siamese cables properly. Improper coiling and layout could negate common-mode rejection if the cable is allowed to become twisted so that the audio signal cable is wrapped around the the power cable.

Dear Jonathon,
I have no problem with siamese cable.  I have thousands of feet in my inventory.  I was asking why the original poster feels that the products already on the market are not options for him.  If he (original poster) wants 12AWG instead of the more common 14AWG, their are companies that make it.  I know Mike is a common name.  Please don't mix us up.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 09, 2015, 04:32:01 pm
Dear Jonathon,
I have no problem with siamese cable.  I have thousands of feet in my inventory.  I was asking why the original poster feels that the products already on the market are not options for him.  If he (original poster) wants 12AWG instead of the more common 14AWG, their are companies that make it.  I know Mike is a common name.  Please don't mix us up.

Thank you for pointing out my error. I have fixed my response above.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 10, 2015, 07:24:04 am
Mr. Sullivan may be thinking that the current offerings of Siamese cables are too thick and bulky, so replacing one of the wires in a 12/4 configuration with an audio signal cable would make for a smaller, easier-to-handle package.

Hit the nail on the head.  We have a couple laying around that we have tested, which feel more like 8/4 or bigger cables, since all they are is two wires in a common jacket.  That's what I want to avoid, it just look awkward and bulky.  Better than running two cables, but still, it stands out.  I just would like to at least see if a small power cable company would be able to help experiment with the idea, to see if there's a really feasible way to do it.  Hence, why I haven't jumped on buying a pre-made unit yet.  This is just to try the idea...
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 10, 2015, 11:42:08 am
P.P.S. -- It is very important to coil and lay out Siamese cables properly. Improper coiling and layout could negate common-mode rejection if the cable is allowed to become twisted so that the audio signal cable is wrapped around the the power cable.

After sleeping on it, I realize that the issue of common-mode rejection negation may not be correct. However, proper coiling and layout is still a really good idea, if for no other reason than to preserve the ability to coil and lay out the cables properly by preventing kinks and twists.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 10, 2015, 01:53:52 pm
Hit the nail on the head.  We have a couple laying around that we have tested, which feel more like 8/4 or bigger cables, since all they are is two wires in a common jacket.  That's what I want to avoid, it just look awkward and bulky.  Better than running two cables, but still, it stands out.  I just would like to at least see if a small power cable company would be able to help experiment with the idea, to see if there's a really feasible way to do it.  Hence, why I haven't jumped on buying a pre-made unit yet.  This is just to try the idea...

The reason the cable is physically so big is the NEC 640.8 requirement that all conductors must have insulation rated at highest voltage present.  The easy way for a cable manufacturer to accomplish this is to extrude another rated jacket over the signal wires, then filler to keep it round, and then extrude an overall jacket.

Several months ago there was a listing in the Marketplace for a Meyer-supplied siamese cable, the O.D. was close to 0.75 inches.  Looking at the Meyer spec sheet, the cross section illustration showed a lot of insulation and filler.

For the time being I expect this will remain the case, Mike S.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Rob Spence on November 10, 2015, 01:56:46 pm
Hit the nail on the head.  We have a couple laying around that we have tested, which feel more like 8/4 or bigger cables, since all they are is two wires in a common jacket.  That's what I want to avoid, it just look awkward and bulky.  Better than running two cables, but still, it stands out.  I just would like to at least see if a small power cable company would be able to help experiment with the idea, to see if there's a really feasible way to do it.  Hence, why I haven't jumped on buying a pre-made unit yet.  This is just to try the idea...

They are not just 2 wires in a common jacket. They are a 300 volt rated cable such as SJ and a low voltage twisted, shielded pair cable in a common jacket.

You do realize that there is a significant cost to modify tooling to produce a new cable type? Also, there is significant cost in testing to meet regulations to get approvals such as UL which may be required since you are combining 600 volt (in the case of SO or SOOW) with a low voltage cable which would also need to be insulated for 600 volts in order to be in the same jacket.

I suspect the resulting cable would be much larger and heavier than you would think.
Oh, and costly as not much would be produced as I don't see a big market for it.

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Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Kirby on November 10, 2015, 05:11:36 pm
I make my own by putting SJ and audio cable though braided sheathing.  It doesn't have the pinch resistance of the extruded cable with the secondary overmold, but it is much thinner and lighter.  The SJ power cable already has it's own pinch resistance (I suppose you could use SO but all the factory made siamese cables I've seen are SJ) so it's basically equivalent to running the speaker manufacturer's supplied SJ power cables and regular audio cable of your choice.  Just neatly bundled together for convenience and a bit of extra cut resistance. 

One thing with integrated conductors is that you still need a breakout at either end as with a snake.

You could use shrink sleeving.  A few years ago I used to make some power cables for the Bradley by armoring existing cables with extra layers of shrink sleeving.  Blowing compressed air down the sleeving holds it open while feeding the cable through.  It might take awhile to shrink it all down though.  We would run it through an inline SMT reflow oven (25' long conveyor belt) with people at either end feeding and catching.

Not only is the sheathing easier to work with, it is also more flexible than shrink sleeving pulled down tight against a bundle.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 10, 2015, 11:52:26 pm
Thanks everyone for the advice.  I understand if this was a full on production line product it would have to be submitted, I honestly just wanted to try it out and see if it worked.  Seeing as how the power wires would be rated way over what they would be used for (think about it, less than 5-10A at 115v) so there wouldn't be an issue with higher voltages, although I know that people are leery of shorts and spikes.  I just thought it would be a fun project if I found a feasible way to have it done.

I make my own by putting SJ and audio cable though braided sheathing.  It doesn't have the pinch resistance of the extruded cable with the secondary overmold, but it is much thinner and lighter.  The SJ power cable already has it's own pinch resistance (I suppose you could use SO but all the factory made siamese cables I've seen are SJ) so it's basically equivalent to running the speaker manufacturer's supplied SJ power cables and regular audio cable of your choice.  Just neatly bundled together for convenience and a bit of extra cut resistance. 

One thing with integrated conductors is that you still need a breakout at either end as with a snake.

You could use shrink sleeving.  A few years ago I used to make some power cables for the Bradley by armoring existing cables with extra layers of shrink sleeving.  Blowing compressed air down the sleeving holds it open while feeding the cable through.  It might take awhile to shrink it all down though.  We would run it through an inline SMT reflow oven (25' long conveyor belt) with people at either end feeding and catching.

Not only is the sheathing easier to work with, it is also more flexible than shrink sleeving pulled down tight against a bundle.

That sheathing looks really tempting. Any recommendations on places to get it from?  First look on a Google search shows Techflex, are they any good or does it really matter?
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Kirby on November 11, 2015, 04:55:03 pm
I got my sheathing from a local electronics surplus place.  Never really looked into any quality differences between suppliers.  For years it was all made to the same military spec.  There are probably cut rate versions out there now but I don't know which they are.  There is a version that's not supposed to fray.  I just put shrink sleeving over the end.  Also, folks have posted in other threads on the subject that if you cut it with a hot knife, it won't fray.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: John durisko on November 11, 2015, 06:40:21 pm
For the record
Top left is standard 13/8 speaker for size reference.
Top right is what Meyer sells as a veam break out cable. Notice the individually jacketed pairs. This is what would have a male veam multi-pin on one end and perhaps a L6-20, Xlr and Phoenix connector at the speaker.
Bottom left is Meyer veam cable. Notice the power conductors not individually jacketed but audio and RMS are.
Bottom right is CBI MTPD Siamese style cable.

Why anyone would want to "reinvent the wheel" is beyond me. If you purchase pre made cables and something happens because of them, it's a lot easier to point the finger than if you come up with a home made solution.
(http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/11/2d168507b95de40c04a0a38618f7e5ef.jpg)


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Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Mike Sullivan on November 12, 2015, 09:26:32 am
Why anyone would want to "reinvent the wheel" is beyond me. If you purchase pre made cables and something happens because of them, it's a lot easier to point the finger than if you come up with a home made solution.

I understand where you're coming from, but I would at least like to try it myself.  Who knows, if I can find a suitable way to have it done, then it may become a business venture.  I know companies have done it already, I just want to see if it can be made more compact.  That's all.  Thank you all for your love and support  ::)
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 12, 2015, 02:27:58 pm
I understand where you're coming from, but I would at least like to try it myself.  Who knows, if I can find a suitable way to have it done, then it may become a business venture.  I know companies have done it already, I just want to see if it can be made more compact.  That's all.  Thank you all for your love and support  ::)

Here's your hint:  it's mainly about 2 things:  dielectric strength of the individual conductor insulation on the AC mains side and the over all jacket that is still required over them; and the physical robustness properties of insulation, filler and outside jacket of the entire assembly.

That means to make it smaller will require more advanced (expensive) insulating materials.  Look to the aircraft industry - very little rubber or vinyl, mostly Teflon and similar materials.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 12, 2015, 05:35:44 pm
Robotics often combine power and signal wires in small tough cables.  But cost is usually not an over riding concern.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Kirby on November 12, 2015, 07:12:46 pm
Here's your hint:  it's mainly about 2 things:  dielectric strength of the individual conductor insulation on the AC mains side and the over all jacket that is still required over them; and the physical robustness properties of insulation, filler and outside jacket of the entire assembly.

That means to make it smaller will require more advanced (expensive) insulating materials.  Look to the aircraft industry - very little rubber or vinyl, mostly Teflon and similar materials.

Note that Teflon cold flows.  So any constant pressure will compromise the dielectric performance.  Kapton is probably the thinnest insulation available but is unfortunately hydroscopic.  Once it has absorbed moisture it's breakdown voltage is compromised significantly.  The fly by wire and much harnessing in the F16 was originally Kapton to save weight.  But they found that the moisture absorption from the constant washing of planes (the old military axiom of it it moves salute it, if it doesn't move, wash or paint it) was correlated with a breakdown in the flight controls inverting functions such that several pilots flew themselves into the ground before they stopped washing the planes all the time.  See also the Magellan space probe fire from Kapton breakdown.
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 16, 2015, 01:26:14 pm
If you still want to experiment, check out these guys.  I have worked with them before-used to buy wire for specialized industrial applications.  (Used some of their control cable in place of so on tig welder foot pedals- almost indestructible by the guys in production.). Very good product, you can buy short lengths, good service-all of which comes at a price, but you won't pay as often.  They do custom work-though I have never presumed that with them.

I have no financial interest-just like their product.

http://www.tpcwire.com/

Fixed sorry!

Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 16, 2015, 02:08:38 pm
If you still want to experiment, check out these guys.  I have worked with them before-used to buy wire for specialized industrial applications.  (Used some of their control cable in place of so on tig welder foot pedals- almost indestructible by the guys in production.). Very good product, you can buy short lengths, good service-all of which comes at a price, but you won't pay as often.  They do custom work-though I have never presumed that with them.

I have no financial interest-just like their product.

Who are these masked men?  No linky....
Title: Re: Combining power/signal in one wire idea
Post by: Lyle Williams on November 17, 2015, 12:35:14 am
A lesson to take away from Kapton is that new technology may have new and unexpected failure modes.  If you don't gain a sufficient competitive advantage from being on the bleeding edge, don't be there.

Aluminium wiring on the A380 was another step too far.  It was meant to save something like 1000kg per aircraft and ended up saving about 80kg.  And it made the project years late.