Am I Nuts or is Subwoofer Cable a Waste of Money? - Page 4 - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #91 of 107 Old 01-31-2007, 08:32 AM
AVS Special Member
 
schticker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: The AVS Echochamber
Posts: 2,588
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by epsilon72 View Post

Quick question (and NO bickering about the answer..) -


I have just acquired my first "real" subwoofer - a Hsu VTF-2 MkIII - and right now I'm using an ultra cheap (like, probably worth less than $.60 cheap) as-thin-as-you-can-possibly-get "coaxial" cable that came with a low budget audio decoder I bought 2 years ago.

Would I notice a difference between what I'm using now and, say, something like this?

EDIT: I should probably add that I am decidedly against paying for upgrades that make no real world differences (i.e. most Monster Cable products)

I think the only real issue I have with this debate is that it always seems to devolve into a "Monster or the stuff I stole from a garage sale" comparison. There's plenty in between that doesn't call into question the quality of the cable and therefore the signal.

The First Clarke Law states, 'If an elderly but distinguished scientist says that something is possible he is almost certainly right, but if he says that it is impossible he is very probably wrong.'
schticker is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #92 of 107 Old 02-01-2007, 12:44 PM
Advanced Member
 
epsilon72's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: AZ
Posts: 681
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by MauneyM View Post

If you notice problems now that could be cable-related, i.e., excess hum, noise or crosstalk, signal loss, high-end rolloff (unlikely to matter in a sub application), or mechanical noise from cable or connector movement, then you should swap the cable. Ultra-cheap cables can and do exhibit these symptoms, so it's somewhat likely.

Otherwise, it's an interesting experiment, but probably not much more.

As has been pointed out, it would be interesting to disconnect and re-connect the existing cable before swapping it out to check for improvements - sometimes, the very act of removing and inserting the connector will clean the contact surfaces and improve the signal transfer (generally increasing the volume slightly).

Also, if you have an RTA, and/or level meter, you could do before-and-after traces to find out if it really changed anything.

I hear some very quiet humming (and I have sensitive ears) when I put my ear up to the open port, is that normal?
epsilon72 is offline  
post #93 of 107 Old 02-01-2007, 01:02 PM
AVS Special Member
 
MauneyM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Milwaukee suburbs
Posts: 2,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by epsilon72 View Post

I hear some very quiet humming (and I have sensitive ears) when I put my ear up to the open port, is that normal?

That depends on how high you have the sub's level set. Does the level of the hum change when you disconnect the cable at the sub? If it doesn't, then the hum is from the sub's internal amp (or something creating EMI that is getting into the signal path inside the amp).

If the level DOES change (decrease) when you disconnect the cable, then the source is either the cable or the receiver (or potentially at the primary signal source). If so, see if it tracks the LFE output level you set at the receiver; if it does, then the receiver or signal source is the culprit; if it doesn't, change the cable. If it tracks the LFE output level, then try switching input sources to find out if it's a bad DVD player/sat receiver or whatever.

Hope this helps.......
MauneyM is offline  
post #94 of 107 Old 02-01-2007, 08:40 PM
Advanced Member
 
epsilon72's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: AZ
Posts: 681
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by MauneyM View Post

That depends on how high you have the sub's level set. Does the level of the hum change when you disconnect the cable at the sub? If it doesn't, then the hum is from the sub's internal amp (or something creating EMI that is getting into the signal path inside the amp).

If the level DOES change (decrease) when you disconnect the cable, then the source is either the cable or the receiver (or potentially at the primary signal source). If so, see if it tracks the LFE output level you set at the receiver; if it does, then the receiver or signal source is the culprit; if it doesn't, change the cable. If it tracks the LFE output level, then try switching input sources to find out if it's a bad DVD player/sat receiver or whatever.

Hope this helps.......

Thanks. I'll try that.
epsilon72 is offline  
post #95 of 107 Old 02-01-2007, 11:24 PM
Member
 
bogie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: St. Louis, Misery
Posts: 191
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I like my cables to be durable.

And to have XLR connectors.

I wish someone would make a nice balanced AV preamp.

Too much is just enough...
bogie is offline  
post #96 of 107 Old 02-12-2007, 12:05 AM
Senior Member
 
michael000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Spring (Houston)
Posts: 373
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quick question, if i was running the sub cable under the carpet (~13ft or so under it and about 21ft total) would it be a good idea to spend a little more? I'm guessing the sound quality will be the same regardless but they'll be running next to some speaker cable (for the rear surrounds) and will end up being walked on so i was curious if it might be worth it (in regards to durability and possible interference). I found these cables

https://www.cablesforless.com/index....D&ProdID=13936

and they don't seem too pricey so was was wondering yay or nay. I'm really noobish to this so a little slack before anyone jumps down my throat .
michael000 is offline  
post #97 of 107 Old 02-12-2007, 12:11 PM
Member
 
wherryj's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Livermore, CA
Posts: 188
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harden View Post

But the question is: should cheapo RCA cables (e.g. red/white) work just fine connecting my subwoofer?

While I compared the red RCA cable to my RS Gold, it sounded the exact same to me (sound quality, volume, humming, etc.)

Thanks. No way am I going to buy Monster or some specific subwoofer cable. Just trying to figure out if RCA gold shielded cable is any better than an RCA cable that comes in my DVD box.

Thanks.

The red/white ones won't work quite properly until you use a black sharpie and color the end and make it the proper black color of a subwoofer cable.

After all, the color coding system IS in effect and the system WILL know! Make sure to get out the sharpie (any brand of permanent pen will do) and color the end caps in)...let's not cut corners on the wiring here.

Read about the Sony Rootkit fiasco.
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
wherryj is offline  
post #98 of 107 Old 02-25-2007, 10:50 AM
Newbie
 
JJnero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 14
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I'm setting up a home theater in my den and was thinking of using this cable to run from my receiver (stashed in the closet) up into the attic and down a wall to hook up my sub woofer. I realize this isn't a sub-woofer specific cable, but is this better than a normal RCA cable?

https://www.cablesforless.com/index....l=&strCompare=

I was also planning on using a shorter run of this cable to connect my computer to my receiver so I can play itunes, is this the best cable for that too?

Thanks!
JJnero is offline  
post #99 of 107 Old 02-25-2007, 11:11 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harden View Post

But the question is: should cheapo RCA cables (e.g. red/white) work just fine connecting my subwoofer?

While I compared the red RCA cable to my RS Gold, it sounded the exact same to me (sound quality, volume, humming, etc.)

Thanks. No way am I going to buy Monster or some specific subwoofer cable. Just trying to figure out if RCA gold shielded cable is any better than an RCA cable that comes in my DVD box.

Thanks.

There are several degrees of quality in audio cables out there. The better ones are constructed from better, more durable materials, often sport better shielding and use better connectors that provide longer life and better connection.

Many companies have tried to capitalize in the "better sound" of their cables. Some even offering stuff that costs more than some components it connects.
This is total nonsense. Measurements can't sunstantiate that and no double blind testing has been able to support that claim.

So; What do I use? I will buy well constructed, good connector cables from places like Betterdeal Cables, Blue Jean cables, Knukonceptz, Cablesforless or even Monster if they are on sale.

Have any of these changed the way my system sounds.... NO!

They just fit well, look good and provide a good electrical connection.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #100 of 107 Old 02-25-2007, 11:17 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by JJnero View Post

I'm setting up a home theater in my den and was thinking of using this cable to run from my receiver (stashed in the closet) up into the attic and down a wall to hook up my sub woofer. I realize this isn't a sub-woofer specific cable, but is this better than a normal RCA cable?

https://www.cablesforless.com/index....l=&strCompare=

I was also planning on using a shorter run of this cable to connect my computer to my receiver so I can play itunes, is this the best cable for that too?

Thanks!

In 25 words or less... no.

The best type of analog audio cable connector for long runs is the balanced, 3 conductor XLR cable. Both devices connected by this cable, however, must support that connector.

To use regular, unbalanced, RCA type cables, the only advise I have is to use well shielded cable, keep the run as short as practical and away from interfierence sources like AC cables, motors, transformers, fluorescent lighting etc.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #101 of 107 Old 02-25-2007, 11:20 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by wherryj View Post

The red/white ones won't work quite properly until you use a black sharpie and color the end and make it the proper black color of a subwoofer cable.

After all, the color coding system IS in effect and the system WILL know! Make sure to get out the sharpie (any brand of permanent pen will do) and color the end caps in)...let's not cut corners on the wiring here.

I totally agree. Let me just add that the Marks-A-Lot brand of markers has always provided tighter bass and deeper extension. For me anyway.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #102 of 107 Old 02-25-2007, 11:26 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by michael000 View Post

Quick question, if i was running the sub cable under the carpet (~13ft or so under it and about 21ft total) would it be a good idea to spend a little more? I'm guessing the sound quality will be the same regardless but they'll be running next to some speaker cable (for the rear surrounds) and will end up being walked on so i was curious if it might be worth it (in regards to durability and possible interference). I found these cables

https://www.cablesforless.com/index....D&ProdID=13936

and they don't seem too pricey so was was wondering yay or nay. I'm really noobish to this so a little slack before anyone jumps down my throat .

Hi, Michael.

It is really hard to tell from pictures, but those certainly look like they are made well, with good connectors.

Hard to say how they will stand up to walking under the carpet. I have seen telephone installers use regular, solid phone wire under office carpet and it has survived.

One thing I would do, for sure, is: Before you run it under your carpet, hook it up, make sure there's no hum or other issues that would need to be resolved before the cable ie installed.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #103 of 107 Old 02-26-2007, 12:40 AM
Newbie
 
xclan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I just bought a "MSB1000SW-24" Monster Cable. I have spent 5000$ on TV, Audio, Entertainment this year and why use cheap cables that can have poor shielding? I in the past always used cheapy cables. But this time I noticed a slight buzzzzzzzz thats almost inaudible in my subwoofer "cheap 20 cent green rca that comes with every vcr, dvd player ever made etc" This cable "MSB1000SW-24" eliminated that problem, I really didnt wanna spend the money but I did and am very happy.

BUT I normally in past used 15$ decent cables, they look clean and lets face it, its a hobby and I enjoy wasting money in it . I would have spent 15$ to 20$ on a good subwoofer cable, but when I went to Best Buy all they had was 40$ cables, up to the hundreds. SOOOOO I went online found a cable for 250$ at amazon through a repected online retailer, and looked on ebay, got it for 20$ plus shipping. I wouldnt consider paying 250$ for this cable, nor above 50$

Bottom line is most the time it wont make a noticeable difference, in my case it did (massive wiring behind my system most likey caused interference with sub). I dont usually Promote MONSTER brand cables, in fact I always frown on them for the prices, but this time, I got an awesome cable and a great Y connector for 30$ that stopped my stupid humming sound, to me that was priceless. I am very happy with my purchase.

Last but not least, I have not heard anything improve as far as SPL, Tighter Bass etc. Maybe it did? maybe it didnt? all it did was get rid of whatever interference I was hearing. Heres a good example...........

Ever ran a car audio RCA cable to your amp next to a 4 gauge power wire? And heard horrible alternator Whine? when u accelerate the whine increases, when u let off gas it drops? thats Interference. 2 common things can resolve this..........

1. Get a better shielded cabel.
2. Dont be an idiot and run the cable down opposite side of car AWAY from the interference.(this ones prefered) In my case I couldnt isolate the problem so I opted for better shielding.


seeing where this threads going and all the arguing I am sure somebody will come behind me and correct me in every way they can think of, and in some way am an Idiot, but thank god I wont be rereading it ever anyways so I wont notice
xclan is offline  
post #104 of 107 Old 02-26-2007, 04:30 AM
Member
 
jaalstead's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 28
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Based on what I was reading, I plan on using RG6 for my sub, but where can I get RCA connectors? And what is the best way to connect these to RG6 cable.

thanks for the help!

Jason
jaalstead is offline  
post #105 of 107 Old 02-26-2007, 06:16 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie View Post

I like my cables to be durable.

And to have XLR connectors.

I wish someone would make a nice balanced AV preamp.

Sunfire does. It has both balanced and unbalanced outputs on all channels.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #106 of 107 Old 02-26-2007, 06:30 AM
AVS Special Member
 
John F. Palacio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA.
Posts: 1,167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaalstead View Post

Based on what I was reading, I plan on using RG6 for my sub, but where can I get RCA connectors? And what is the best way to connect these to RG6 cable.

thanks for the help!

Jason

RJ6 might be a bit of overkill, you migh consider RG59 instead. In any event RCA connectors are available at Radio Shack or any electronics part store.

One clean way to attach RCA's to coax is to install regular RF conectors on the coax and add an RF-RCA adaptor. It is possible to solder an RCA directly to coax, although if you use RJ6 it's gonna be tough because of the large diametern of the cable.

"Information is only as good as the accuracy of the source"
John F. Palacio is offline  
post #107 of 107 Old 02-26-2007, 10:00 AM
Member
 
jaalstead's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 28
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I have about 100' of RG6 left over from doing the basement, that is why I thought i would use it.

I guess I didn't realize they had RG6 to RCA connectors. I'll check Radio Shack out tonight. Thanks for the tip!

Jason
jaalstead is offline  
Reply Subwoofers, Bass, and Transducers

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off