Help with startup tools and equipment - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 12-02-2012, 10:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey all,

I am in the process of putting together a 7.1 system in my apartment, and after weeks of research, finally ordered my reciever and the last of my speakers online last Friday. I will be receiving them sometime this week, and hope to set everything up next Saturday. After researching this site, it sounds like monoprice is probably the best place to order everything. I want to order everything tonight so it ships by next Saturday, and if possible all at one time to save on shipping, but having never done this before, I am not sure exactly what I should order.

My first question is, what are the basics I should order, keeping in mind I have no equipment. I currently plan on ordering 100 ft of 14 awg wire, 10 pairs of banana plugs, and will pick up a few optical cables on the cheap per batpig's recommendation. My setup is a Panasonic st30, a ps3, Denon 2113, and an infinity primus speaker setup. I don't have cable so no cable box or dvr box. Are there any other obvious cables I would need for this set up?

My next question is regarding tools. Can anyone recommend a good, basic cable cutter/stripper? Is it OK if I order one from monoprice, or should I go to a place like Lowes? Are there any other tools I would need?

Does it matter if I use 12 or 14 gauge wire? I plan on ordering the "oxygen free" wires, but they also offer "2-conducter loud speaker cable". Does it matter which one I get? This is what I currently plan on ordering http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10239&cs_id=1023902&p_id=2748&seq=1&format=2

Any help is greatly appreciated!!!
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post #2 of 11 Old 12-02-2012, 12:17 PM
 
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there are two different types of wire strippers.
one of them is the old plier type .. you stick the wire in the right size hole and spin it a bit and yank off the outside of the wire.

the other wire stripper is a bit more cool..
it looks like a plumber's wrench and it will self-adjust to the size of the wire.
when the tool gets stopped by the outside of the cord it will then place some teeth down to bite into the cord, and if you keep squeezing the tool it will pull those teeth backwards to yank off the insulation for you.
(something like the worlds fastest wire stripper)


**edit**

the 'other one' looks like this:
http://www.amazon.com/Automatic-Wire-Stripper-with-Cutter/dp/B0002KR95W/ref=sr_1_11?s=power-hand-tools&ie=UTF8&qid=1354479497&sr=1-11
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post #3 of 11 Old 12-02-2012, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beanburito60 View Post


My next question is regarding tools. Can anyone recommend a good, basic cable cutter/stripper?

I suspect that both Monoprice or Lowes has something that will work.
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Is it OK if I order one from monoprice, or should I go to a place like Lowes? Are there any other tools I would need?

http://www.lowes.com/pd_33920-12704-45-101_4294821046__?productId=3369968&Ns=p_product_price|0



These are fine. Just adjust them so that you don't nick the copper conductor.

Make a few test runs on some wire you can throw away.

This type of wire stripper looks neat, costs more and IME is more likely to nick the wire:



Its big advantage is that it self-adjusts to different wire gauges, but like I said in actual use it is more likely to nick wire.

You can buy about 3 of the adjustable kind for the same price and keep each one adjusted for a different gauge of wire. BTW, you can use wire strippers adjusted for 12 gauge on 14 gauge wire.

Monprice seems to only have strippers for network cable and none of them look right for speaker cable.

Of course you can strip wire with a sharp blade. Be careful!
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Does it matter if I use 12 or 14 gauge wire?

The precise answer depends on the impedance curve of the speakers and the length of the cables.

When in doubt get 12 guage.
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I plan on ordering the "oxygen free" wires, but they also offer "2-conducter loud speaker cable". Does it matter which one I get? This is what I currently plan on ordering http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10239&cs_id=1023902&p_id=2748&seq=1&format=2

All commercial regular copper wire is pure enough for general electrical work including speaker wires and interconnects. Oxygen free wire doesn't hurt but I wouldn't pay a penny extra for it in this application.

You know for the slight additional dollar or two, I'd buy this stuff because it would look neater with the overjacket and all. If you ever wanted to put it inside a wall it would be the stuff to use:

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10239&cs_id=1023901&p_id=2816&seq=1&format=2

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post #4 of 11 Old 12-02-2012, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks anwaypasible and arnyk for the help! Even though I won't be doing any wiring in the walls at my apt, I think I'll still get the wiring with the sleeve you recommended, to keep everything bundled. Since I'll only be using 12 gauge, Ill just get the cheaper adjustable wire cutters since I will only need one diameter.

I know this is probably a silly question, but can anyone comment on whether I am missing any of the basic wires/cables etc. needed for speaker/receiver setup? Like I mentioned, I just have a tv, ps3, and denon 2113 that I will be setting up. Is speaker cable the only thing I'll need for hookup? Thanks!!
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post #5 of 11 Old 12-02-2012, 03:30 PM
 
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the only thing that doesnt seem to nick the wire are these two things:
1. robot arm
2. a person that doesnt cut down to the copper and just rips the insulation after it has been nicked


you can nick the insulation with any regular plier pair of wire strippers.
..and sometimes you can find those things for as cheap as $1
the factory that pumps them out needs a material that goes into the mold casting (and that means it lasts long or short)

i've used the automatic one's personally and they really dont nick the copper all that bad.
the joke they are throwing around is when the copper is custom crafted with enough sensitivity in the atomic structure that nasa wouldnt let you on the plane with the tool in your pocket.
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post #6 of 11 Old 12-03-2012, 06:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beanburito60 View Post

Thanks anwaypasible and arnyk for the help! Even though I won't be doing any wiring in the walls at my apt, I think I'll still get the wiring with the sleeve you recommended, to keep everything bundled. Since I'll only be using 12 gauge, Ill just get the cheaper adjustable wire cutters since I will only need one diameter.

I know this is probably a silly question, but can anyone comment on whether I am missing any of the basic wires/cables etc. needed for speaker/receiver setup? Like I mentioned, I just have a tv, ps3, and denon 2113 that I will be setting up. Is speaker cable the only thing I'll need for hookup? Thanks!!

Well HDMI cables for the non-speaker lines.
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post #7 of 11 Old 12-03-2012, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by anwaypasible View Post

the only thing that doesnt seem to nick the wire are these two things:
1. robot arm
2. a person that doesnt cut down to the copper and just rips the insulation after it has been nicked

That's why I like the kind of stripper that you can adjust. What you do is adjust it so that you cut the insulation less than all the way through, say half way through. Then when you pull on the insulation it breaks at the cut but your cutter never had to touch the copper.

The total pro solution is a thermal wire stripper that uses heat to melt rather than cut the insulation:



or




Figure about $300 either way..

Here's a *cheap one" for about half that price:

http://www.hmcelectronics.com/product/American-Beauty/10517



We need to get Harbor Freight (the $20 vibrating utility tool people) interested in this kind of product. ;-)

Thing is I don't think their target volumes are in the market. Kinda a niche item.
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post #8 of 11 Old 12-03-2012, 05:10 PM
 
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hole-y
some math shape like s-h-t

two razer blades, a spring, and washers a bolt and nuts to adjust the spring.

these things fall through prairie land like a mouse hole ate it and it never-ever returned up here on the land.
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post #9 of 11 Old 12-03-2012, 05:51 PM
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^ ^ ^ ^ I imagine razor blades are the last thing you need to be even thinking about....
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post #10 of 11 Old 12-04-2012, 04:22 AM
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^ ^ ^ ^ I imagine razor blades are the last thing you need to be even thinking about....

Yes, not the best choice because of the excess sharpness and difficulty of control. However old-time electricians used them, stripping wire something like sharpening pencils.
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post #11 of 11 Old 12-05-2012, 01:26 AM
 
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......c'mon 2 blocks of wood
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