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Best Internal Wire for Speakers? Silver? Solid Core?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Levi Jesse, Jan 10, 2021.

  1. Rick58

    Rick58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dublin, CA, USA
    uhhhh, no? To expand a bit, when you get to the atomic level, a lot of things are not intuitive nor follow 'normal' thinking. Electronics is one area, optics another ... the interaction with light (photons) and surfaces/interfaces (of lenses and mirrors) is incredibly strange ... I can't pretend to know all about it.
     
    Levi Jesse likes this.
  2. fish

    fish Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Doing a good job.... Just Say'in.
     
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  3. fish

    fish Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Oh, I read it. My speakers have 4 foot runs from bottom to top internally for 4 speakers. 4 feet still too short to matter?
     
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  4. Rachael Bee

    Rachael Bee Miembra muy loca

    I didn't think so. He's obviously given these things much thought over the years. In the end, I took it that he designed a speaker cable to be as neutral as possible with his speakers. Silver or gold coated wires might exceed his copper-strand wires in some other applications, he's certainly not arguing against that possibility.
     
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  5. BillWojo

    BillWojo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Burlington, NJ
    18 or 16Ga stranded copper wire is all you need. Never use solid core wire in any application that will subject it to intense vibration or movement of any kind. The solid core wire will fatigue and crack eventually.
    Any good quality wire from Belden or Alpha will do.
    And yes, not much to discover about the property of electricity running through a wire. I've never had a hobby were so much voodoo magic and BS is thrown around like facts. I'm glad my technical education shields me from all that crap.

    BillWojo
     
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  6. CatManDude

    CatManDude Forum Remnant

    Location:
    Connecticut, USA
    1 gauge solid core unubtanium. You may have to cut through a few load bearing joists to run it, but you'll be happy you did.
     
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  7. Tone?

    Tone? Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    again we are talking about internal wire . Why are you fixated on external? Just to try and win some kind of argument cause you’re bored?

    Look up what matters in speaker wire. Internal and external.
    It’s measured in resistance, capacitance and inductance.
    Tons of scientific articles on it.

    If you are buying speaker wire all you need is for the manufacture to provide specs of resistance, capacitance and inductance. There is literally nothing else.

    wire is passive and only takes away from the signal. It doesn’t zero to add.

    go find the articles and educate yourself as I did.

    good luck !

    peace
     
  8. Uglyversal

    Uglyversal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney
    So, have you advanced a bit on the decision? Somebody previously mentioned the Duelund brand that has an unusual approach and I've heard good things of them, Furutech and Cardas are other brands that might offer you some good cabling.


    That's your opinion and it shows lack of experience.
     
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  9. mkane

    mkane Strictly Analog

    Location:
    Cloverdale,CA
    ........
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
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  10. Levi Jesse

    Levi Jesse New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    jonesboro
    Definitely agree, however these monitors have a lot of the lows shelved off (using a sub) so there isn't that much vibration coming from them. Also being used mainly for mixing situations where you dont blast music too loud...

    So I guess what I'm getting at is solid core soldered good in this situation should be ok, yeah?
     
  11. BillWojo

    BillWojo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Burlington, NJ
    Why are you fixated on solid core wire? What makes you think it will be any better?

    BillWojo
     
    Levi Jesse likes this.
  12. caracallac

    caracallac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ireland
    I hope that I don’t sound overly negative or critical when I say this, but if you’ve come down to tweaking the internal cable in your speakers expecting to hear a huge difference, then I think you might be disappointed in the result. I’m sure that there are many other changes you could make that would have a more audible effect than changing the last 3 or so inches of cable.

    That said though, when I was about 11 years old a friend of my uncle’s bought a damaged pair of ex-BBC Spendor BC1’s for a couple of quid as a project to work on. He rebuilt the crossovers with premium components and soldered a set of I think Monster cables directly on to the crossovers bypassing the XLR ports. That was and is still is one of the best BC1’s I’ve ever heard.
     
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  13. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    Well no - he's not an idiot. But he does not explain how an ac current flows through a wire. The electrons go nowhere on average. They shuffle back and forth as the ac signal goes + and -. I'll spare you the calculation, but at 1 amp in a typical loudspeaker cable the electrons move back and forth by about the diameter of a human hair. In a interconnect cable, which takes a tiny current, the electrons shuffle back and forth by less than the wavelength of visible light, or a few thousand atomic diameters. And they do not "cluster".

    I turned off when he was waffling on about the special connectors he had had made. These type of connectors used to be made by WBT, but they discontinued them for safety reasons (low voltage directive). Neotech have started making them though. They aren't cheap, but they are easily available. (I have a bunch of the older WBT ones kicking around, along with the WBT sleeves in multiple diameters and the fancy crimping pliers.). But the Neotech ones are easily available.
    NC-01675RH here Banana Plug – Neotech Cable .

    Whatever cables, whether internal or external, just make sure that the connectors are scrupulously clean and solder joints perfect - the weakest sonic part of any cable is the connectors.
     
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  14. bluesky

    bluesky Forum Resident

    Location:
    south florida, usa
    What type and what size wires to which speakers (woofer, mid, tweet. super tweet)?
     
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  15. Had it done for me. Cardas speaker specific wire size. Total rewiring from crossover to each (hard wired) driver.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
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  16. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    The case against electrons "clustering" in a cable, as mentioned by my fellow Brit in that video. Suppose such a cluster existed, and lets shuffle 1% of the electrons in a 3 foot wire to one end (and hence leave -1% at the other) - just as a thought exercise.

    As a result of Coulomb's Law, the force between the two wire ends would be about 1.5 x 10^11 tons. This basically means that no such clusters can possibly exist, even at a microscopic, atomic level. The free electron gas density in copper is exceptionally homogeneous.

    Now copper has a significant temperature coefficient of resistance - about 1% per degree C. Basically temperature jiggles the copper atoms a bit, so the electrons scatter (it is called phonon scattering). The higher the temperature, the more the copper atoms jiggle, the more phonon scattering. And that is the process that leads to resistance increasing as temperature goes up - for all conductors - it is not confined to copper.

    The copper voicecoil of a speaker drive unit is no exception. Since the acoustic efficiency of a driver in a direct radiating speaker (ie a speaker in a box) is about 1%, 99% of the power from your amplifier just goes to heat up the voicecoil. It is not unusual for a voicecoil to heat up to well over 100C, and most are specified to run a lot hotter than that. Hence it is not unusual at all for a loudspeaker to double in resistance when playing loud music, and hence play quieter by 6dB than expected (a process called thermal compression). Looked at in that context, a short cable run inside a loudspeaker cabinet is likely to have minimal effect.

    The question of drive unit acoustic matching (that gives rise to ~1% efficiency) can of course be overcome by using horn loudspeakers. The horn acts as an acoustic transformer and enables much better matching between the driver and the air impedance, and gives around 10-20% efficiency. And the driver runs a lot cooler, so thermal compression is much less of an issue.
     
  17. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    The secret sauce in the Brit in the video's loudspeaker drive unit, which he said was indeed a secret, was in all likelihood going from round section wire in the voice coil to square or rectangular section. The idea is that you (a) get improved packing density as compared with round section wire and (b) going from a four layer coil to a two layer one (my guess only), and hence reducing coil inductance and moving mass. Square and rectangular section winding is much more difficult in making a voicecoil, and most are made to specification in China now.

    Lots of information about voice coil construction and different wire types here Voice Coils: A Tutorial , including wire insulation temperature grades.
     
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  18. Juan Matus

    Juan Matus Reformed Audiophile

    The longest run of internal wire in the speaker (maybe in an entire stereo system) is the voice coil right? I don't hear people talking about it at all, just all types of other wires. Wonder why that is?
     
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  19. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    Yes indeed it is.

    If you want 8 ohms of copper wire of 1/3mm diameter wire (typical for a bass driver), that is 30 metres of wire. In one driver. That works out as four layers of 48 turns on a 50mm diameter former and a winding length of 15mm. Now you can play with the detailed numbers, but in the end you have about 30 meters of wire in a bass driver, about 10 meters in a midrange (finer wire) and about 8 in a tweeter (finer wire still. So in a three way speaker there is about 50 metres (around 170 feet) of bog standard copper wire in the loudspeaker drivers.

    Even the highest end loudspeaker manufacturers just use high temperature insulated regular magnet wire. They might specify square or rectangular section to get a better turns packing density, but that is done by taking already insulated magnet wire and drawing it through a die.
     
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  20. Just curious. What is the length of wire used in large power amp transformer windings?
     
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  21. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    Same sort of distance; again bog standard copper winding wire. The aim in both that and drive units is using the appropriate insulation grade for safety and high power handling respectively.

    Unless you are paying Audio Note Ongaku prices for silver everything (around $100k). And even they use copper in the mains power transformer.
     
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  22. Mike from NYC

    Mike from NYC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Surprise, AZ
    I wired my DIY speakers using both silver wire and OFC to hear a difference - and I didn't.

    I use 16 gauge wire throughout using a combination of silver for the crossovers I build and OFC copper for the leads to the speakers.
     
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  23. Uglyversal

    Uglyversal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney
    In case you didn't notice, you are.

    BTW: inductances in the crossover might have longer wiring than some voice coils
     
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  24. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Location:
    Abingdon UK
    Yes that is also true. And inductors in general, and high power crossover inductors in particular, are the least perfect electrical component, prone to proximity effect and internal resonance from it own inter-winding capacitance. I eventually went to an active crossover and separate power amps for each speaker to get around the very real passive crossover imperfections. Is shifts potential problems into the active crossover of course, so it needs to be done right - but at least there are no high power crossover inductors in it!
     
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