Coiling XLRs.... yes or no?

I purchased some xlr’s that i was fond of a few months back. Shunyata sigmas

I was able to get them for a great price but unfortunetly they are 3m. I figured it was fine as it gives me flexibility in the future (such as going monoblocks), but for now my lumin x1 sits on a rack directly above my diablo 300 amp. Honestly with how close they are i could get away with 0.5m

So i have them susupended in the air but coiled. I’m reading that this is a big no-no but most of the stuff i have read is related to speaker cables.

what should i do in this situation? Is it so bad that I should consider selling my interconnects for shorter ones?

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or......ask Shunyata to quote retermination, create shorter cables that better suit your needs....sell off the ones you don't...


OMG! Tablejockey nailed it! Freaking nailed it! Next two posters prove, waste of time asking here, GO AND LISTEN!

Listen to it coiled, then uncoil and route the wire trying to keep it away from as much other stuff as you can, and listen again.

Any time you twist and bend a wire like that it is gonna mess it up and so give it an hour or so to settle in. Then listen.

It will probably sound better. More open, more detailed. But if not then guess what? No problemo! Coil it back up.

Step away from the keyboard. Go and listen. Unless you want a bunch of random guys who know a lot less than they think (tablejockey notably excepted) telling you how to spend money and waste time, that we have in abundance.

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for what it’s worth gene from audioholics measured this and while there was an increase in inductance, it wasnt enough to make an audible difference., if I coil my ICs'...'trash' that they may be....

Gee. I wonder....

What ever happened to just putting on some music and listening???  If  YOU cannot hear a difference in the presentation then either you are not that sophisticated of a listener to hear the difference if any, or your equipment is not resolving enough to resolve the difference, if any. 

If you do not hear any difference then sit back and be happy that you got a great deal. 



Doesn't coiling increase the "antenna" effect, pulling in more RF and EMF noise? Too lazy to google...

xlr = balanced, the main advantage is they do not pick up whatever interference. So coiled up or near to mains lead would not make any difference at all. 

XLR wires carry differential signals. It will not matter that much if you coil the wire. Especially only 3m long. You will not even hear the difference one way or another.

Note on a lot of pro audio stages, all the XLR cables are coiled up to keep the excess lengths tidy.  As a sound tech, I've been coiling balanced cables for nearly 40 years and can't hear any difference in coiled vs. uncoiled.  Hence the reason for using XLR; they are quiet no matter how you route them.


both ways sound great

I have routed it well. If there is a difference, i would need to record both ways and listen to the recordings back to back to be able to tell for sure. I like to think there is a difference at least; and its nice piece of mind.

Found a way to route it through my cabinet without interacting with any other cables and the way i did it you cant see the cables


Coiling will increase inductance, but only slightly and not enough to make an audible difference. The studios and stages where your music is recorded are full of hundreds of XLR cables coiled up. Of couse, most studio kit is balanced and so common signals are cancelled.

One possible choice is to "fold" the cable in half (i.e. stretch out the cable from both sockets) and then coil.

I have a pr of Cardas Golden Presence XLR from my phono preamp to amp and it is 1.5m as opposed to the 1m I need and the same as yourself, I got it at a great price!  So I have it coiled/looped, but not all crimped up tight. It is loose and just one bigger loop behind my rack and zip tied. There is no noticeable difference from looped or to just hanging loosely. 

Generally its probably not a good idea... but it also might not make a difference.


     Coiling any wire makes it an inductor.

     You’ll never know if it makes a difference in your system’s presentation/ your enjoiyment, without listening with the cables in both configurations (coiled and not).


Impedance of wire = R + jX

R = resistance

X = Xc (capactive reactance) + Xl (inductive reatance)

Xc is typically negative and Xl positive

By coiling the wire/cable, you would be increasing inductance.  The overall impedance would increase as a result, making it harder for the current to flow through it. Technically, it should make a difference, but at these lengths, it would be hard to distinguish audible difference.