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Speaker cables

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by hentai, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. hentai

    hentai New Member

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    Hello everyone. One of these days i read in audio magazine an article about DIY speaker cables and the guy was recommending using coaxial cable (type RG11) which i found very odd. And he only used the core of the cable. Only the metal conductor from the core the rest is for nothing. I thought "what a waste of, more or less expensive, coax cable". Now i guess if u keep the core diameter and the lenght of the cable at good dimensions in order to keep a low resistance i guess it acts like any piece of wire. Still seems a waste plus its much more rigid and u need a pair of cables for one speaker. So if u want 2.5m of speaker cable u need 10m of coax :D. So i asked the guy what could posibly be so good about coax to be used for speaker? (he even admitted that the sound was more darker with the highs attenuated a bit) His reply was very confusing all big words saying nothing mostly but what he said basically was that the dielectric material between the core and the metal sleeve of the coax helps conduction! i was :eek:. And his explination for that was that the electromagnetic field that is created when current passes through conductor (actually he said when a difference in potential appears on the conductor) penetrates this dielectric and helps conduction. Im no expert but to me its sounds like BS. Ofc EMF is generated when current flows through the wires but i thought the more i confine it the better! no more EMF influences! Am i wrong here? He was giving me an example with a battery 2 wires, a light bulb and a switch. And those 2 wired between a baterry and a light bulb form a transmission line. and when u close the switch an electromagnetic wave propagates through the transmission line and when it hits the light bulb a part is absorbed and a part is reflected back. I would say this is BS again, but mb im wrong that why im asking you.
    Can someone shed some light? Can EMF help conduction in my speaker wires?
     
  2. Leftyretro

    Leftyretro New Member

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    Yep, tons of BS on those high end hi-fi audio sites about the benefits of witchcraft on sound quality.

    No sense trying to educate those kind of users as they want their sound to be have the properties of organic wine so that they can compare their critical opinions with each other. It's a form of group masturbation for people with more money then knowledge of electronics.

    PS: Tell them that measurements don't support their opinion and they will just say "your aren't measuring the right thing then". Hard to reason with such circular logic.

    Lefty
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  3. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    There is absolutely no scientific fact to back up anything he said. Snake oil salesman =) And of course because it's an online article and he never has to prove anything he can get away with saying stuff like that.

    If you want to use coax cause you have a bunch around by all means do so, I personally would run two pairs and use the shield as conductor too, there's more metal in the shield than there is in the center conductor. There is absolutely no need for shield on audio power cables. Signal cables MAYBE but only if you're passing weak signals that are going to be highly amplified a long distance, even then the shield would need to be grounded.
    Can you place the author/article? I would love to give that genius a piece of my mind.
     
  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    He's probibly with the same group that booted me out of a car audio crank it up contest for running modified equipmnet in the modified catigory. I got booted because they did not understsnd basic electrical and sound physics. (One big thing they had issues with my using welder cable for the main power lead. They said it was not a polarized type of wire. It was only good for ac current like what welders use!
    And they called themselves the sound equipment experts? :eek:
    I was 19 at the time and had a better grasp of electrical and sound than they did! :)

    Who are they? We all will jump them! :D
     
  6. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    I'll sharpen my knives. tcm get some brass nuckles =)
     
  7. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    When the guy said the sound became "darker" then you should have laughed and ran away.
     
  8. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    I dunno audioguru, tube amp freaks use a lot of very subtle words =) Warm is the biggest one I hear =) Then again there are actually REASONS for tube amp guys to use those terms =)
     
  9. hentai

    hentai New Member

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    Thanks for ur answers. Yea, he is talking fairytales and also making mistakes in his statements but just wanted more opinions to be sure. However the article was actually published on paper magazine. I bought the magazine some days ago and when i saw the article i was like what the hell. Then i searched on internet and found the authors email. However the article was in my native language. I can give you his email on pm if u want hahhahhaha. well i will definatelly not gonna subscribe to that magazine :D.
    He couldnt even answer what makes me go and buy 10 m of expensive coax cable and use just the core conductor which is solid and not so flexible when i can buy 5m of double, multi-core wire much thicker, cheaper, flexible and very likely with much better electrical parameters for audio than the coax.

    Its amazing how they can go around ur questions and twist it and say what they want... if i would only have time to translate so much BS hahhaha you could all have a great laugh.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  10. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Forget the sharp ones! I want to use dull! I plan to work off some of that anger. You know what I mean? :eek::D

    As far as the vacuum tube amplifiers they do have a somewhat different sound quality to them. The typical solid state amplifier directly drives the speaker with the output stage and can transfer hard clipping distortion directly to it.
    A tube amplifier has that impeadance matching transformer that greatly smoothes out clipping effects. Plus tubes do have that unique feature that they can both produce and be afected by physical vibration of their own internal structure.
    Those odd interactions do tend to give a smoother and warmer sound to the music in some situations. That warmth and smoothness comes from some rather complex interactions related to the variable nature of a vacuum tubes actual design. Natural harmonics at different frequencies, non linear gain charictaristics, variabl e slew rates from one tube to the next, and many other factors that are not part of a solid state devices operating nature.
    I have played with vacuum tube amplifiers for mostof my life and they have unique sound qualities all to them selves.

    But I agree the magazine nutters tend to get too far off from the physics of how and why they sound different.
     
  11. hentai

    hentai New Member

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    About tube amps yes, their distorsion consists of second harmonic thats why seems more melodic than a bjt which is in 3rd harmonic and the other odd ones. The matching transformer also adds distorsion of itself and colorates the sound. But i think the thing that matters most is that only electrons carry the information in tubes. Anyways tube amps are obsolete expensive to build, heavy and just give u little power.
     
  12. Leftyretro

    Leftyretro New Member

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    Yes, I've spent many an evening talking to tube heads about the warm sound and even harmonics, etc of tube amps.

    My point it that a modern well design solid state class AB direct coupled output amp can be measured to the lowest distortion value possible. Basically what you get in is what you get out with solid state, if not over driven. While tube amps will modify what comes in even if not over driven. So what do you wish to listen to, the original artist and recording engineers work or modified to what you want it to sound like? Your choice, no real correct answer.

    In reality one's speakers and room layout will have more effect on the total sound quality then any of the electronics used between the transducers. Have you ever read the distortion and frequency response specifications of even expensive speakers?

    A stereo amplifier is not a musical instrument, it's job should be to accurately reproduce the input signal and amplify it enough to drive ones speakers. Wire with gain is one definition of 'the perfect amplifier'. Extra power capacity helps handle music peaks better but otherwise there is no magic involved.

    Lefty
     
  13. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Hey now. Some days I resemble that comment!

    My tube amplifiers ar just a hobby. The ones I have are frome auctions, garage sales, ANd friends just giving them to me.

    They are certianly not for everyone. But if your looking for a good challenge build one! Even if it dont work you still can warm your hands up with it!
     
  14. Leftyretro

    Leftyretro New Member

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    Oh and they can look really cool. No problem here with people playing and enjoying them in my book. It's just looking at some of the custom 13 watt class A tube amps using a single 300B tube, selling for many thousands of dollars to the golden ears type just rubs me the wrong way. Just seems like such a waste of money.

    Lefty
     
  15. Leftyretro

    Leftyretro New Member

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    "But i think the thing that matters most is that only electrons carry the information in tubes."

    And that is different in solid state amps in what way?

    Lefty
     
  16. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    I'm surprised I haven't seen any circuits in the forums here from peeps like audioguru that would introduce tube like effects to regular audio. Then again the tube effects are very subtle and probably difficult to produce accurately without some pretty advanced filter design. The only thing I know about active filter design is it scares me =O
     
  17. hentai

    hentai New Member

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    Dont get me wrong, i have two tube amps and i enjoy them both. One is a stereo SE with russian 6p3s the other is a mono amp with the same tubes but push pull for my guitar.
    They do have a speacial fealing when i listen to old records on vinyl on tube amps. But i agree nowadays amps' fidelity is far greater and can deliver lots of power. Also with tube amps not all speakers go well. U need pretty high SPL. I might work on a project now. Found some ECC82 and if its still working im thinking of making a clone of the Marshall 2204 preamp.
     
  18. hentai

    hentai New Member

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    well, as i remember i think there are also the "holes" electrons leave behind in semiconductor. These holes can also carry information. I think tho MOSFET and JFET are resembling tube-like operation. Tell me if im wrong.
     
  19. Diver300

    Diver300 Well-Known Member

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  20. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    You know with all the lawsuits in the U.S. I don't know why someone doesn't just sue these idiots. $7250 for two 12 foot audio cables? I think a judge would easily see that as extortion.
     
  21. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    The judge probably buys the BS cables and likes them.
     

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