I never noticed this when bi-wiring nor do I with my current bi-amp setup.
14 responses Add your response
Bi-wiring is a personal preference and system dependent. Not just speaker dependent.
In my experience, a better mono-wire has provided better overall sonics over lesser bi-wire where both versions cost about the same.
Remember that you are paying for the extra wiring and terminations. Sometimes you can get substantially better quality mono-wires for the same price.
Lastly, one should not feel that they must bi-wire simply because a salesperson or mfg'er suggests they do. Not saying that's why you are, but I just thought I'd mention it.
Thanks for your comments.
Your suggestion IMO, that the salesman as an interest in his suggestion is not correct, since he was complimenting the single wired option (with jumpers) over the biwered option.
I am also aware that, bi-amping was once evaluated by a revewer with the specific set-up he was working on, as increasing some aspect of the sound being reproduced but with a slight decrease in the "realness" or "directness" or "wholsomeness" of the musical event.
The salesman was basically suggesting that for him to be-wired was conductive to give the type of result that I have tried (excuse my french) to describe above.
I had never read or heard about it before, but this audiophile-salesman was definitelly using a single run and jumpers on his speaker set-up at home.
For what it's worth, I always biwired. Figured if two sets of speaker terminals were provided, it was best to use them. When I switched from Kimber 8TC (biwired) to Mapleshade Golden Helix and assumed I would biwire, Pierre Sprey of Mapleshade convinced me NOT to buy the second set of cables (despite the fact that it cost him money to make this recommendation) but to use his copper foil jumpers instead. The single Mapleshades left the biwired 8TCs in the dust. But obviously, YMMV.
I think this may depend on many, many factors.
1)Speaker cable quality
3)Whether you're using an "internal biwire" (some wires inside of the same cable connected to highs, some wires connected to lows) or true biwire (separate runs of the same cable for highs and lows)
4)Routing of runs of cable in a true biwire setup (the fact that I've read that the physical separation of the high frequency carrying cables from the low frequency carrying cables is important, leads me to believe that an internal biwire is not the same as a true biwire (maybe even same as using jumpers)
I have no idea.
I could appreciate a sizeable difference in a pair of B&W Nautilus 805s when used with high quality speaker cable, between a single run and a biwire run.
My new speakers use a dual voice coil setup on the woofer, so it isn't discrete like the 805 (meaning the top terminal pair is connected solely to the tweeter, the bottom terminal pair is connected solely to the woofer).
Honestly, I haven't A-B'd single vs biwire on the new speakers.
I think 1 great pair of cables will sound better than 2 crappy ones, but, obviously, it's never this clear cut.
For any amount of $$, there are many, many different choices. I'd suggest that you pick a dollar amount, and look at your options both ways.
I find that biwiring (via the 805s at least) just sounds less "smeary" and more articulate.
I have been a sceptic about bi-wire hookup, except for the fact that you probably end up with more copper (lower resistance). I have never heard any technical explanation of why bi-wire is better...just the usual "trust me it sounds better".
However, although it may not be original, I have one explanation that has come to mind. On the Hot side of the amplifier output the high and the low frequency drivers are iusolated from each other by the capacitors and inductors of their respective crossover networks. The returns from the two drivers, on the other hand, are tied together, and isolated (just a little) from the neutral output of the amplifier by the inductance of the speaker cable. So the high frequency driver sees "tailings" of the low frequency signal, and vica versa. This theory would predict that the benefits (if any) of bi-wire would be realized if you only doubled up on the return wire.
What do you think? Anyone got a better idea? (And don't just tell me it sounds good!)
OK. I cut my cable in two, (ART monolith), got rid of the jumpers and be-wired the cable to my Proac 1SC and yes, just like the Stereophile review on same, I perceived some added overall clarity and a little shift in perspective and tonality.
Yet, the overall impression a get, when attending a concert in Montreal was reduced, but more importantly, the expressivness, brillance and sublety of atmospheric moods on witch the Mendelsohn violon concerto was builded an appreciated for, became suddenly inaccessible, to say the least. The be-wired version, gave me sound that where dis-jointed or dis-associated with the musical intent of this particuliar genre of music, that I know now, and the salesman must have knowned then....
I second Gthirteen's post. My experience is with the N801's. I will add that I believe that your system should be fairly revealing if you are deciding to do a true biwire setup or else you may not hear the difference. Also, your level of playback and whether or not your speakers can produce a wide dynamic range will affect your perception of the effects of biwiring. When I first began experimenting with two sets of speaker cables it was with a double run of Tara Labs Air 1's. The 801's seemed to wake up and come alive. Everything played so much cleaner and tighter. The overall sound was much more coherant. Of course, I am using a high powered amp with two sets of binding posts that easily sends plenty of current through the cables. Just my two cents.
Ok, I am back, with, this time a more appropriate result, concerning the bi-wired version of the Proac1SC versus its jumper version. I haden done it entirelly properly, so here is the corrected result.
An added clarity was again obtained, sound sources where more distinct with less convergence giving in the process, an added stability to the imaging-soundstage phenomena. Thighter bass and over all tidyness could let in more details as well as more spring or jump to the plucked string guitar or other dynamiquelly contrasted elements.All interesting studio recordinds benefited and male's voices where as real and musical as I know them to be. I doubt that any musical elements has been lost in the process, althought the bass heavyness of the single wired version as help make my mini- monitor sound a little more concert like and the overall added looseness might have contribute to the little extra lyricism and velour like rendition of some female voices and the violon.
All and all, for me and in my set-up, (analogue, tube phono stage, SE 300b power amp.), the be-wired 1SC seems to be a clear gain over the single wired one.