Surround Sound Speaker Wiring Question - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 08-30-2007, 10:16 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't know if this is the right forum or not...but can someone answer two quick questions for me? I'm going to be wiring in some rear surrounds for a 7.1 system. They will be in-ceiling speakers. My questions are:
1. With the speaker wire I have read in some places that even tho one speaker is farther from the receiver that you should make the actual speaker wire lengths the same length and just coil one side up to make up for the length. Do I really need to do this or can I have one that is 8 ft. longer than the other?
2. Since I will be running two different runs of wire, would it be more beneficial to run two 4 conductor wires (one going to the rears and one going to the sides) or run four two conductor wires(to each speaker). I was thinking of just running the 4 conductor and stripping the shielding back at the first speaker and taking 2 wires out to the first and letting the other 2 go across the ceiling to the other? Would this be OK?

Thanks for your input. I know it will be 12 gauge I will be running due to the length. If i posted this in the wrong forum please let me know and I will move it.
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-30-2007, 11:40 AM
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if you look at pure voltage drop per foot of cable, there can be a tiny difference between speakers if the cables are different lengths, but an 8' difference with 12 gauge wire will not be noticable. Since there is not a great price advantage to using 4 conductor wire over 2 conductor, and you are asking for a lot of additional work dividing the wiring, I recommend you home run 2 conductor cable for each speaker.

If you decide to use the same cable lengths, I would not "roll up" the excess wire. That can create a "coil" and add inductance to the wiring system. Let the wire lay loose and sloppy in the ceiling, but not in bunches or coils.
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post #3 of 10 Old 08-30-2007, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m_vanmeter View Post

if you look at pure voltage drop per foot of cable, there can be a tiny difference between speakers if the cables are different lengths, but an 8' difference with 12 gauge wire will not be noticable. Since there is not a great price advantage to using 4 conductor wire over 2 conductor, and you are asking for a lot of additional work dividing the wiring, I recommend you home run 2 conductor cable for each speaker.

If you decide to use the same cable lengths, I would not "roll up" the excess wire. That can create a "coil" and add inductance to the wiring system. Let the wire lay loose and sloppy in the ceiling, but not in bunches or coils.

Thank you...off to Blue Jeans cable to order some up!
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post #4 of 10 Old 03-15-2008, 11:28 AM
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Because of the way my den is built I may have to run the wiring to my right surround speaker three-quarters of the way around the room. We're talking approx. 52' one way and 20' the other way. The left surround will be approx. 20'. Am I correct in assuming that the Audyssey EQ system of my Onkyo 705 will be able to compensate for this discrepancy? Will there be a problem as far as power drop off becouause of this difference? I am using 14awg, "high purity, oxygen-free" (quotes are mine) wire from Monoprice for the wiring. Thanks.
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-15-2008, 02:35 PM
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this is a personal opinion (but aren't they all)...I would run two 52' lengths of cable on the off chance the 32' difference would show up in the relative volume levels between the two surround speakers. It is very probable the EQ system would even out the differences, but for the very small cost of the extra cable I would not take the chance.
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-16-2008, 05:32 PM
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There were a few pieces of crown moulding over a fireplace I didn't really want to take down but I bit the bullet so now the right and left surrounds have virtually equal length wiring, about 25' each. Now all I have to do is re-wire the back surrounds, install wall jacks and banana plugs on all the ends! What a chore. It was nice, though, to here sound from all 7.1 speakers.
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post #7 of 10 Old 03-16-2008, 06:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m_vanmeter View Post

this is a personal opinion (but aren't they all)...I would run two 52' lengths of cable on the off chance the 32' difference would show up in the relative volume levels between the two surround speakers. It is very probable the EQ system would even out the differences, but for the very small cost of the extra cable I would not take the chance.

I would not at all make that recommendation. Run the wire the appropriate length. The distance difference is basically immaterial. And if it were an issue, it means you're not using the proper gauge for the distance in question, and are in essence going to make one speaker be impacted negatively to equal the other. Worst of both worlds.
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post #8 of 10 Old 03-17-2008, 08:11 AM
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Mr. Wiggles...
since the wire gauge (stated at 12 ga.) was more than adequate for the longer run, my opinion (and it worth even less than $.02 because of the falling dollar) stands. I hope we can agree to disagree.
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post #9 of 10 Old 03-17-2008, 12:43 PM
 
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If it's more than adequate, then there is not going to be any impact one way or the other by using equal lengths. This makes wasting the wire a silly exercise that serves no purpose whatsoever. It does, however, make for sloppy wiring either in the wall/ceiling or outside of it.
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-17-2008, 01:03 PM
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As Chris has stated try to keep it somewhat neat it would have to be a 100ft difference
to alter the signal then its still debatable if thats audible if the right guage wire is run
for the lenght.
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