DIY speaker wire? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 01-24-2007, 07:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Can anyone recomend some good DIY speaker wire? i may just use the wire plain, or end up adding banana clips later...

thank ya much
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post #2 of 23 Old 01-25-2007, 02:58 PM
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Check the link on the bottom of this.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=782976
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post #3 of 23 Old 01-25-2007, 06:19 PM
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Thanks for that link!
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post #4 of 23 Old 01-29-2007, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
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12/2 seems to be the way to go...

I was wondering if anyone know if the 12/2 speaker wire at lowes is any good?

I was hoping that they had something with a bit more of casing?

Reading that article, it seems to me, the more wires inside the better, at least for resistance, but i dont think ive seen it listed anywhere where people list this information?
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post #5 of 23 Old 01-29-2007, 08:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Reading that article, it seems to me, the more wires inside the better, at least for resistance, but i dont think ive seen it listed anywhere where people list this information?

The gauge tells you "how many wires" are inside, and how much current it can carry.
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post #6 of 23 Old 01-29-2007, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tivo1 View Post

Reading that article, it seems to me, the more wires inside the better, at least for resistance, but i dont think ive seen it listed anywhere where people list this information?

The markings like "12/2" tell you wire size and how many wires there are inside the jacket (12 gauge/2 wires). The gauge tell you how much current the wire can carry. Smaller gauge# = bigger wire = lower resistance = higher current caring capability. But it does not tell you how many individual strands of copper (or whatever) are used to make up the individual wires, if thats what you mean by "the more wires inside the better'.

It reality I don't think there is any audible difference between a single 12 gage strand (solid) and any multitude of strands. Sure you will hear arguments involving things like skin effect and other scientific sounding words, but at audio frequencies these effects are negligible.

You will find that higher strand count wires are more flexible and that makes them much easier to work with. But if you are planing on pulling wire through walls or things like that you might find that a stiffer wire is preferred.

BTW: Lowes or Home Depot wire sounds just fine.

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post #7 of 23 Old 01-30-2007, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by 11001011 View Post

...You will find that higher strand count wires are more flexible and that makes them much easier to work with. But if you are planing on pulling wire through walls or things like that you might find that a stiffer wire is preferred...

If the wire has a clear jacket, you cannot use it in walls or ceilings--it does not comply with fire codes. Wire rated as safe for in-wall use has a code stamped on the jacket and shown on the wire box or reel. There are many codes, but some of the typical ones are CM & CMR. CMP (plenum wire) is also OK but more expensive.
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post #8 of 23 Old 01-30-2007, 10:26 PM
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The markings like "12/2" tell you wire size and how many wires there are inside the jacket (12 gauge/2 wires). The gauge tell you how much current the wire can carry. Smaller gauge# = bigger wire = lower resistance = higher current caring capability. But it does not tell you how many individual strands of copper (or whatever) are used to make up the individual wires, if thats what you mean by "the more wires inside the better'.

Boy do you have alot to learn about wire,all that the 12/3 on the jacket is telling you is the size of the wire and the amperage it can handle which is 20 amps and and if it was 14/3 then it would be 15 amps "Not the amount of strands the conductor carries".
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post #9 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 07:33 AM
 
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Boy do you have alot to learn about wire,

So do you , lou.
You're quoting ampacity at 120VAC
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post #10 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louthewiz View Post

Boy do you have alot to learn about wire,all that the 12/3 on the jacket is telling you is the size of the wire and the amperage it can handle which is 20 amps and and if it was 14/3 then it would be 15 amps "Not the amount of strands the conductor carries".

Really? so tell me how just the markings 12/3 tells you the current caring capability is 20 Amps?

Specially if you do not already know or have a wire gauge current rating chart handy.

Also if you read my post I did not say it was the amount of strands the conductor carries I said

Quote:
Originally Posted by 11001011 View Post

The markings like "12/2" tell you wire size and how many wires there are inside the jacket (12 gauge/2 wires)... But it does not tell you how many individual strands of copper (or whatever) are used to make up the individual wires,

The "12" is the wire gauge and the "2" is the number of conductors in a multi conductor wire.

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post #11 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 03:39 PM
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Ok, speaker wire typically has several different types of markings to determine gauge and quality of product. The following is a brief guideline to what is normally considered quality wire. For those so inclined to flame away on this brief explanation please feel free to do so.

- 14/2 - defines the size or gauge or the wire as well as the number of conductors (it's really an electrical term). The size of wire used is mostly dependent on the distance of the speaker wire run. On average a 12 gauge wire for a average home theatre system with a 20 foot run is overkill and possibly a waste of money. A quality 14 Gauge wire will work fine.
- 105 strands - refers to the number of strands within the 14 gauge. The large the number of strands in a speaker wire the better the response/sound (if you subscribe to the skin effect (i.e. electrons travel on the outside of a conductor) the more strands the better the quality. Typical strand counts range in the 65 to 105 range for a 14 gauge speaker wire.
- Oxygen free is a desirable quality in a copper wire as it supposedly creates longer copper crystals/formations within a copper wire. The benefit of this is better sound quality.

Therefore, a Oxygen Free, 14 gauge 105 Strand cable is considered to be of good quality cable regardless of vendor. 14 gauge 65 strand is commonly used in a higher end multi-room audio installation with very good results. IMHO, the biggest difference in cables is the material used for the cable jackets. Not only do they come with in wall ratings, but the better cables usually are much easier to pull thus reducing the effort required to pull the cable.

Cheers
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post #12 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 03:42 PM
 
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The large the number of strands in a speaker wire the better the response/sound (if you subscribe to the skin effect (i.e. electrons travel on the outside of a conductor) the more strands the better the quality.

Not a flame, a correction. Skin effect is negligible at audio frequencies.
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post #13 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 05:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tivo1 View Post

12/2 seems to be the way to go...

I was wondering if anyone know if the 12/2 speaker wire at lowes is any good?

I was hoping that they had something with a bit more of casing?

Reading that article, it seems to me, the more wires inside the better, at least for resistance, but i dont think ive seen it listed anywhere where people list this information?

The higher quality copper wiring generally has a higher strand count. The strand count allows for slightly better conductivity (less resistance) and better resistance to breaking. That said, 12 gauge wire is sufficient for almost all speaker wire applications unless the runs are extremely long.

The 12/2 'speaker wire' or zip cord is probably fine as long as you don't run it in the walls.

My Home Theater Site:

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post #14 of 23 Old 01-31-2007, 07:08 PM - Thread Starter
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i know that 12/2

means there are two wires, and the gauge of the wire inside is 12 gage... but that doesnt mean there are 12 wires in each strand...

AV doogie hit on what i was talking about... i was wondering how to tell this, or where to find better wire for such?
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post #15 of 23 Old 02-01-2007, 07:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AV Doogie View Post

The 12/2 'speaker wire' or zip cord is probably fine as long as you don't run it in the walls.


There are several companies that make quality in-wall rated speaker/zip cord cable (i.e. clear jacket cable). One company that I know of is Genesis Cable (a Honeywell company). In addition, you may want to check to see if the connectors on your AV receiver will accept 12 gauge. Not all them do. Again 14 gauge will work fine for most applications under a 200 ft.
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post #16 of 23 Old 02-01-2007, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosteius View Post

There are several companies that make quality in-wall rated speaker/zip cord cable (i.e. clear jacket cable). One company that I know of is Genesis Cable (a Honeywell company). In addition, you may want to check to see if the connectors on your AV receiver will accept 12 gauge. Not all them do. Again 14 gauge will work fine for most applications under a 200 ft.


The speaker wire rated for inwall will have a CL rating or similar with a tough outer jacket used for pulling/cable strength improvement.

I would use 14AWG up to about 30 feet max.... beyond that I would use 12AWG to about 50-70 feet max. JMHO

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post #17 of 23 Old 10-16-2011, 11:28 PM
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Has anyone bought from monoprice? is so, are their speaker wire rated for Canadian building codes?
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post #18 of 23 Old 10-17-2011, 03:19 PM
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DIY speaker wires? U guys are killing me! Surely there is something more complex u rather be doing. Nobody mention thin strands/soft cables, that's what I like.

Solution: FREE. Explanation: I will have to charge$ you.

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post #19 of 23 Old 10-17-2011, 04:55 PM
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I use wire coat hangers for my DIY cables.
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post #20 of 23 Old 10-17-2011, 08:18 PM
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using wire coat hangers has several benefits. First as they are stiff, no cable lifters are needed, you always have some available if you need one to snake out a clogged drain and when on your patio, you can use them to roast marshmallows. When done, simply re-insert them in the speaker line.

The residual sugar on the coathangers sweetens the sound.
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post #21 of 23 Old 10-17-2011, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tventocilla View Post

Has anyone bought from monoprice? is so, are their speaker wire rated for Canadian building codes?

Lots of folks here buy speaker cable from monoprice. It is just fine. As to applicability to uses controlled by CEC, etc., contact monoprice, but AFAIK they don't carry a C-UL mark.
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post #22 of 23 Old 10-17-2011, 10:31 PM
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Originally Posted by tventocilla View Post

Has anyone bought from monoprice? is so, are their speaker wire rated for Canadian building codes?

their wires are fine.
as for the Cdn Codes, their web site says they are
I bought some and it is not stamped on the wire, just US codes

so, a building inspector may reject the wire for in wall use if they so wish
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post #23 of 23 Old 10-19-2011, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tventocilla View Post

Has anyone bought from monoprice? is so, are their speaker wire rated for Canadian building codes?

Seriously?

Why dredge up a four year old thread to ask a question that is only vaguely related to the original four year old post?

A 'phile and his money are soon parted...
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