Best lower end cables for B&W speakers...?


Hello Everyone,
I’m relatively new to mid grade audio equipment and recently purchased a pair of B&W 702 S2’s and a HTM71 S2 center channel. To me, they are very clear and unforgiving speakers. I also use a Velodyne sub, but not all the time. So far I’ve been in love with them but am using borrowed speaker cable, straight 12 guage, to just try.

The Blue Jeans certainly seem reasonable enough, but in my head cables may be more speaker specific than a lot of other applications so I wanted to see if folks had used Canare 4s11 or some other cable that would be 500 and under per pair with their B&W’s. I can get these for 150 and certainly seem reasonable.
At 150, if they don’t work it won’t be the end of the world but figured I’d try here to see what people thought who had B&W’s
goodman770
Personally, mid range wire world because they are dark but help improve imaging.  On the B&Ws they would help smooth out the treble.
The wires you're already using are WAYYYY overkill for any speaker no matter how overpriced. Forget wires. Save up for something that actually matters. Like speakers. In fact you could downgrade your wires to 16 ga. zip cord and there would be absolutely no difference in the sound quality.
Unless you, like many others here, imagine there is.
  I brought home a pair of B&W pedestal-mounted small speakers (forgot which model maybe 607?) and hated them. They sounded loud, bright, harsh, with an unlistenable upper-midrange spike in the frequency response. But that's only my opinion so I'm not knocking anyone else's.
  I now have Maggie LRS speakers which are the best thing I ever heard but again, that's just me.
I use Canare 4S11 in both my McIntosh based systems. One system is in the 60K range and the other in the 23K range. I had 3K speaker cables before I went with the Canare. Did you know that 90% of all recording studios use Canare 4S11 cables?
Please feel free to completely disregard everything hombre said as it’s pure rubbish from someone who obviously has limited experience in audio.  I mean, what the hell are “pedestal-mounted” speakers???

Anyway, it’d be helpful if you shared what electronics you’re using, and interconnects can be as or more important than speaker cables so let us know what you’re using there too.

As for speaker cables, there’s a pair of Acoustic Zen Satori cables on US AudioMart for $550 that’d likely make a big improvement.  They have a nice refined but still nicely extended treble but will also help by fleshing out the mid and bass tonal density to further balance out the high frequencies.  The Satoris are excellent and well above “mid-level” cables so you’d be moving up several rungs with them IMHO.  BTW, I’ve owned and used them in my own system (in shotgun bi-wire form) for years and compared them to some other good cables and they remain in place.  If I’m wrong you can just turn around and sell them for little/no loss as there’s a fluid market for used AZ cables. 

While the AZs would be my best recommendation, if you’re hesitant to buy used you can try something like Morrow cables that offer a generous in-home trial period and are also very good cables.  But as I mentioned above, don’t ignore your interconnects as they are critical as well.  Anyway, congrats on the new gear and best of luck. 
Please do not listen to anything cable haters like @hombre said. Pure hatred and BS, pretty sure he does not own any speakers 
I am using Canare 4S11 speaker cables.They replaced an old pair of Straightwire Maestro cables. I think they improved my SQ. Better image and soundstage. I needed a 18' pair. So the cost of a higher level cables would be prohibited. I think they are very good for their inexpensive price.You wouldn't be loosing much if you don't like them.

I encourage participants such as hombre to accept education. Feel free to read my latest review of the Iconoclast Cables at Dagogo.com. 

For those seeking high performance, value oriented cables, the conclusion of the article is pertinent. 


I agree with Eric. Some Wireworld mini-eclipse (7 or 8) would work well.
Be patient and buy a pair now and wait for another set and bi-wire later.
Also, some Harmonic Technology Pro-9 or Pro-11 would be awesome.
The key is to use OCC copper (single crystal copper).
Canare 4S11 is a standard. WHY? So the sound ISN'T changed by CABLE differences.. A wire is a single conductor.. Studio is about being "THE SAME" not different.. NY to CA

The 12 gauge CABLE is perfect.. Heavy copper with a good insulator/dielectric (no shielding other than the weave). That will give you the best BASS.  I like OCC with teflon. LOL Not smaller for bass BIGGER. Add armor and tune the sound with terminal ends.. I like copper.. RED COPPER..

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HI-End-12TC-Speaker-Cable-OCC-Copper-Audiophile-speaker-cable-HIFI-Banana-p...

The cable is from China. I paid 108.00. You won't get this kind of performance, without spending a LOT of money.. I added red copper spades for 29.00 additional cost..

I also double the run with a silver clad OCC teflon RIBBON, for a whopping 68.00 dollar and I change the ends to silver over red copper  and a saw spring tube banana.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HiFi-Audio-Speaker-Cable-OCC-Silver-Plated-Speaker-Wire-Carbon-Fiber-Banana...

Under 300.00 + Tungsten add 45.00.

The copper cable is fork spade (both ends), The ribbon is spring/banana (both ends).  Left and right side gets BOTH cables attached to the same terminals. They are NOT bi wired, just a double or triple of different wire types.  You can move the copper to the bass post in a dual terminal setup.. I use that construct for silky smooth mids BUT a TON of detail is added because of the ribbon cable, Planars and Ribbons..

I add a 99.99% .014 tungsten stinger in an oversized silicone tube (+ side only). It depends on the drivers I use.

Monsoon planars I don't need tungsten, GR, and BGs do.. Most standard round drivers and domes like it too.. For 45.00 usd the tube and WIRE (single construct) can be added to the CABLE run..

LOL TRY to beat that combination, of dollars spent and performance gained.. ..10 day of cable conditioning on a Cable Cooker 2.5.
2-400 hours of BREAK IN, NOT BURN IN...on the silver/clad at LEAST.
The OCC copper weave, the first 2 hours will be the biggest change.. 24 hours of settling, that's After I cooked the heck out of them for 10 full days..


Regards
The WireWorld Eclipse series are excellent for-the $$.
I compared Monolith by Monoprice 14AWG Oxygen Free Copper Multi-Strand Conductors PE Insulated Speaker Wire with Gold Plated Spade Connectors, 6ft - Pair $50  to Audioquest Rocket 88 $500. 
 Parasound Hint Original with Forte 3's. Music source Bluesound Vault 2i. Audioquest Niagra 1200. Pangea Cardas power cords.
Maybe there was a slight difference in bass extension in favour of the Audioquest. Definitely not a $450 difference.
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"I brought home a pair of B&W pedestal-mounted small speakers (forgot which model maybe 607?) and hated them. They sounded loud, bright, harsh, with an unlistenable upper-midrange spike in the frequency response."

Hombre... Sounds like you were using zip cord with that?


All the best
‘Best’ is subjective. I have used the Blue Jean Cables and have been pleased. 

I am auditioning other speaker cables and to me I believe the Kimber Kable’s Bifocal XL are wonderful BUT not cheap and the 12TC didn’t sound better than the Canare 4S11’s I got from Blue Jean Cables. 
Enjoy the music and the process. 
Transparent Audio is a sonic match for B&W speakers.

Happy Listening!
all cables sound different in different systems.....price is not the determination.
Their website is being revamped right now but you might check River Cables. Seem to be well built in the USA at a reasonable price. They also test each cable. I had bought a pair of the starflex biwire a few years ago. Put them in the closet while using more expensive audioquest then went back to them recently for my Monitor Audio Golds. 
Morrow makes a good mid grade cable, they are very easy to use as well. Also check with Audio Sensibilities and Audio Art, small shops, but make great products, well priced. You could also go the DIY route and build your own. Speaker cables are probably the easiest to terminate (usually). Check out VH Audio or Parts Connexion. Your speakers BTW, are just fine. There are so many cables to choose from...
Actually hombre you're pretty stupid cuz wires do matter maybe if you listen to some different ones and clean your ears out you'd figure that out. What a dumbass you are LOL
Transparent audio are very dead sounding cables those boxes screw up everything they're terrible.
Audio sensibility is very good they use OCC single crystal wire which is way better for audio than OFC crap.
I use canare 4s11 but combine all of the wires in one length together, meaning, I bought four lengths of 4s11 (2 for each speaker) for my B&W 803 D3s. The wires take a while to "mature" but the sound is rich. 
So I know there are electronic manufacturers and vendors that offer customers to take gear home to evaluate before purchase.  Are there any cable manufacturers or cable vendors that offer the same?  Seems reasonable...less risk of damage to the cables....I’d love to try, but am reluctant without an eval....
Hombre = troll.

Thanks for the info...I purchase simaudio interconnects and have been super happy with them and may get their wires as well but it would be more than I wanted to spend right now for 3.
I know each speaker and speaker range is different and I really feel like these could get bright with the wrong cable.

I know I had my own personal experience with changing out cables in my guitar setup and they made a very big difference.   I bought some that were not road worthy and gave me trouble.  I replaced them with others and while more reliable...they were just too bright.  I then replaced them, ironically, with Moogamis.  It was one of the best investments I've ever made with regard to tone and reliability.
I may eventually but some more expensive ones but thought I'd try some cheaper ones first.
I've had nice results with Neotech.  They make good quality occ cables in all price ranges both factory made and DIY.  In Europe it's audiophonics that distribute at lowest price ( from what I have found) like https://www.audiophonics.fr/en/cables-hautparleur-conducteurs/neotech-nemos-3080-loudspeakers-cable-...
Don't know who retail Neotech in USA  but Google can help you there .. 
On another note, members like hombre of the flat earth society would be better of keeping the flat earth theories on their own forum! In my opinion..
Audioquest type 4 and be done with it. I would have them custom made at Audio Advisor. You can pick from any connector you want for both amp and speaker end and they will perform a high quality termination for you using silver solder. There is a dedicated guy there that does this all day long. The price is right for the "no-frills" type 4 AQ speaker cable. It is also a stereophile recommended component and has been for years. 
Mogami 3082 coax speaker cable sounds very clear, open and balanced in my system. It's 14 ga, but sounds better than my blue jeans Belden 10 ga. I bought the cable and terminated it myself = about $60 for 8 ft cables. I've never owned expensive cables.
I just bought Pinetree Audio Kinietic Bi Wire 9AWG speaker cables for my Magnepan. 7's The cables are 10 feet long very well made with high quality locking banana connectors on both ends. I had the option of choosing what color l wanted.  All for the cost of $200 delivered  I definitely what function and performance, but at the same time l appreciate quality and how good something looks

If you want a nice project and have the skills I would recommend https://youtu.be/Uqx6VhWq9E8 This video includes the use of Mogami W3104. I have used many different cables over the years and have been very satisfied with Mogami. BTW Mogami's RCA can be used as coax cables. Mogami cables like Canare  have been used to create and produce legendary recordings . 
Transparent cables 1/2 the time IMO get a bum rap that is not really justified .Transparent Cables will work very well with certain types of electronics and speakers. I can say two things critical with transparent. They must be used with the entire system. If Possible when ordering you should tell your dealer about your system. Today I have 5 different systems and they are 95% Mogami
You tried cables and heard what they can do and so you probably have a pretty good idea that it will be worth it if you can just find the right ones. This can be a whole lot easier than you think. Synergistic Research has been making really good really high value cables for so long now (going on like 40 years) there is a good fairly steady supply in the used market and since the quality over the years has been really steady you can simply find the best you can afford and be just about guaranteed of a good experience.  

The Synergistic house sound is big and bold, smooth and detailed, and they all have very good imaging. Never any harsh hyped top end, never any anemic bass. Just good quality sound you will enjoy. The newer the better. But some of the older ones are depreciated enough they can be great deals. Like my Element CTS were $7500 new in 2005, now only about $1200, very hard to find anything that good around that price. Same goes for the lower end/cheaper wire. Not saying they are the best. Saying this is your high-percentage low risk move to get the kind of sound you will feel was worth the money. 
I have an 8’ run of Canare 4S11 with spade connectors purchased from Blue Jeans to my Vandersteen Treo’s and have been very satisfied with performance and the build quality of the cables. I am also using Wire World interconnects from the Cable Company and am very satisfied with them also. Worth a try and if you don’t like them the return policies are decent.
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Hello,
I like the ideas of the speaker cable upgrade. You don't have to break the bank like a lot of people think. I’m going a different route. Try upgrading your power cable even if it’s for a surround sound receiver. Go with 12awg cable if you can but 14awg is ok too. You can start by trying some inexpensive ones on Amazon. This way if they don’t work you can return them. They will need a week or so to settle or burn in. My thinking is your basic 16awg power cable you received with your amp/ preamp or surround sound receiver is not letting your system breathe. If your amp or engine can breathe it will push your speakers more efficiently. If this works and I know it will think about upgrading to a better power cable than the one from Amazon. You can return the Amazon cables or use it on the subs which also get hungry for power. Just so you know I did this and I have all upgraded power cables to Nordost in my system. Many of the companies listed above by other members have power cables. If you live in the Chicagoland area this store lets you try before you buy. https://holmaudio.com/
That way you can really see if it works. In Nordost I would go with Red Dawn power cable. It is 14awg but really, really good. 
audioquest rocket 11 or 22 in single bi-wire configuration. If you you use bare wire, it keeps the cost way down. AQ bananas are expensive. Both cables were recommended by What Hi Fi. B&W's definitely benefit from bi-wiring, I have owned several pairs over the last ten years: 684's, 704's & 803's. 
Hi goodman077,

I recently picked up some used B&W CM9 S2’s, and I’ve been listening for less than a couple weeks. So I’m still learning about them. I’ve mostly heard people say that B&W are (1) unforgiving, (2) have a sharp treble, and (3) that they benefit from super clear equipment. I haven’t been bothered yet by anything that I would attribute to an unforgiving nature, or from a sharp treble region. (This might be because my equipment is sufficiently clean?) For me, I am bothered by the bass not being as articulate as I want. I believe that I can affordably tighten the bass up with some silicone or sorbothane feet, which I already have added to the sub.

I have put some work into lowering the noise floor of my system. Power cables and low noise power supplies have done wonders for both my stereo system and my home theater system. You mentioned you are running your B&W in a home theater. I wonder about your home theater electronics since home theater equipment is generally considered to focus on features rather than quality. I would recommend looking at power cables (receiver, TV/projector) and low noise power supplies (streamer/Bluray player) if you haven’t already. I added an iFi power supply to the Chromecast streamer and an AQ PC to the TV. The lower noise floor resulting from those additions has made the colors on the TV much more vibrant. People who come over are startled at how good the TV looks. The sound was similarly affected.

That said, in my stereo system with the B&W’s, I have been using simple 14 gauge ofc 99% oxygen free speaker cable. I haven’t tweaked the speaker cables yet the way I have everything else because my electronics sit off to the right of the speakers. The differing cable lengths needed to reach each speaker likely mean I’ll take the DYI approach to speaker cabling. I’m eyeing Mogami like another poster mentioned. I haven’t yet played with bi-amping or bi-wiring yet.

In interested in your findings.
soix,

I mean, what the hell are “pedestal-mounted” speakers???

"Standmount(s)".

Next time check the dictionary and accept that some people are more adept at using words than you are at understanding them.
goodman770,

I would recommend Zu Audio. For your assumed price range you could check their outlet on eBay. Cables come in different lengths and 2-2.5 meter pair would, roughly, run in $200 range. They look good.

Why would you start a thread asking for opinions and then call a person who gives you an opinion a troll? It is actually a trollish behavior.

As for Zu Audio cables, they work. They have worked the same with four pairs of speakers, and a few associated amplifiers, I have tried them with. Which is the same as what old Monster Cable and lamp cord that preceded them did. In some way, they may be called "neutral". Whatever you do, they do not change the sound. For that, an amplifier with tone controls or different set of speakers may be better cost/benefit option.
@fastninja12... the Cable Company does a try before you fully commit cable trial. They have a library.
DH Labs. Ridiculously good regardless of the fact that they are not super expensive. IMHO
I last went with some speaker cables from Schmitt Custom Audio. Very affordable and sound and look better than basic connections. Not high end but improvements were noticeable and he is a small business owner so was nice to support. Not sure I could discern the difference from a more costly product so worked for these ears.
B&W speakers like to be bi-wired. By a set of used MIT terminator 2 cables. They will suprise you. Afer that by used MIT 330 Plus interconnects. More suttle but thye will add musicality. 
Hombre, choice of speaker cable can make a huge difference to the sound.
I have Kimber 12TC from B&W CM9S2 to a Classe CAP-150 integrated and I am very happy with them. I cant say the difference for me was night and day but there were some notable subtleties and I got a good deal on the set, they also look very sexy.

A couple of my buddies run Blue Jeans cables and swear by them, they have pretty decent rigs (Pass amp/vintage JBL and GoldenEar Triton/Modwright tube) I have heard both rigs and they sound terrific.

Unless your system is ultra resolving or you are looking for a specific altering to your sound id say try the Blue Jeans and see how you like it, you can spend the rest of the money else where in the system. If you want to try something a bit more exotic you can keep your eye on the second hand market while you run the Blue Jeans cable, im sure you can resell them too.
I had a pair of the B&W 704's and an HTM 7 center. All bi-wired. I replaced my Kimber 8TC with the Mogami W3103 (under $3/ft). Speakers opened up and were more detailed.
If you can do a direct termination, cold-terminate, or solder; the Mogami is an excellent option. 12 AWG OFC copper.
Several dealers sell in bulk. The OD is almost a half-inch - fairly substantial cable.
You can download the Mogami catalog for more detailed information if desired.