Originally Posted by spec1alk
I am curious what represents the best value for speaker cable and interconnects?
This will be dictated by your own ears and appreciation for beauty of cables design. My advice to you is to audition many different cables in compatibility with your audio setup, price, look, performance, connectors, colors, etc. Once you evaluated them in your home choose the one or ones that you like most according to what you can afford. Many audio dealers would lend you the cables before buying.
I just picked up a set of the Monoprice Onix
RCA cables. Does this provide pretty good performance for the cost? Or would it be worth spending a bit more to get a much better cable?
Once you try them, you grow into this hobby, little by little, you became an expert on discerning things that you did not know were there all the time. Monoprice uses very cheap materials, you get for what you pay for. No one would sell you a really good built cable for $10. Even the Cardas that I get in bulk to build my self costs me like $200 for a good pair of interconnects.
What about speaker cables? Is something like the Monoprice Monolith
a good value? Or can I get a much better cable by moving up to $50 or $100?
You may not feel or tell a difference from a $50 to $100 cable that could be the same cable but something from $50 to $500 yes, or from $500 to $2,000, yes you may or may not tell a difference. Again this is evaluated by your own ears nobody else's.
I suppose it would help to know how I intend to use the cables, as high end cables have no business on a cheap system.
You are right. High end audio es super expensive, just for the rich. But I find audio to be very affordable compared to other hobbies like motocross, car racing, horse ridding, etc. where you can spend half a million dollar just in a blink of an eye and you risk your life.
I currently have some DIY speaker cables (BlueJeans 12 or 14awg wire with some Nakamichi banana plugs).
Going from a Harman Kardon AVR3600 to a pair of Definitive Technology Mythos 1 towers and a Mythos 9 center.
I also have an Outlaw Audio LFM-1 EX
that is using one of those MP Onix cables listed above.
It's good to learn how to do your own stuff, I do. I do my own acoustic audio panels, connectors, speakers stands, computers, etc.
In addition to this, I have been kicking around building a 2-channel listening setup for our living room. Nothing crazy, but will probably use a Raspberry Pi 3B+ w/ HiFi Berry DAC+ Pro
to stream local FLAC files (16 and 24-bit files) and possibly Tidal or other streaming services. I would want to pair this with a pair of bookshelf speakers (something like the AudioEngine A5 or MP MM-3). Would like to avoid the need for a Pre-Amp and Amp if possible.
I'm more into a 2-channel audio setup for music only, the home theater is for my daughter, to me HT is just noise. Ha, ha, ha.
Based on this usage, where am I likely to find the value sweet spot of performance to cost?
I recommend you to start with Audioquest, Cardas, Transparent or whatever is in your local city.
Please tell us what you decided to do and if you auditioned any stuff and what you found out.