Also, my speakers are quad wired which requires, with my particular type of cables, EIGHT runs per speaker. If there are any large risers that will accommidate this quantity of cables, please let me know.
I am a big fan of elevated cables, it creates instantly a quieter noise floor and a slightly blacker background. Though I have found out that with the more expensive cables it is less noticeable- but still there. I have used a number of different forms of elevators and they don't really seem to have a different sonic signature- I have used everything from plastic cups, coat hangers, pots, sticks(which is my favorite, more on that later...) stuffed animals, and fishing line hung from ceiling. I have found it is less import how you do and more important that you do it! Don't go out and waste hundreds of dollars on some ceramic elevator! I like the 3 stick method the best, they look nice(as nice as a cable elevator can look I suppose). Go to your local hardware store and by a number of short wooden dowels(3/8" or so should do it) you will need some form of rope as well. Make a small teepee(out of 3 dowels) but have the 3 sticks intersect about three quarters of the way up and you will now see a larger base and an area to rest your cables, tie the teepee together so it is solid and will not fall apart(that may take a little practice to get the hang of- this is where years of boy scout training will come in handy). Make as many teepee's as you need and put them where ever your cables need them to be, if you need a larger one make it larger, if you need something for big cables, get larger dowels, though I wouldn't go too crazy in either respect. Getting your cables 6 inches off the ground is MORE then enough. The idea is really very simple and it lowers the noise floor by increasing the surface area of air dielectric the cables see- it allows the electric field around a cable to be even and a few inches is near infinity in the cable world. The field itself- in theory- never dissapears, how ever a few inches of air dielectric is more then enough to allow an even field around your cables. I wouldn't recommend being too careful with your power cords though, they cancel out each other's noise by crossing each other's fields- so bunch them together! And of course keep your speaker cables, interconnects and power cords seperate and if they cross make sure they cross at as close to a 90 degree intersection as posible. This is cables 101 by my standards, so don't go crazy, just get those speaker cables elevated!
Tireguy is right on the money. They work great. If you need to support multiple cables try a 6"x12"x1/2" wood platform with two 3/4"x3/4"x6" wood extensions attached to the ends of the platform. Tie cotton string between the two poles and use that to suspend the cables. I use a short length of surgical tubing between the string and the pole for vibration damping on the ones I make. Try tireguy's idea. It works great but if this is not something you want to do let me know and I will make you some. Happy Listening! John
The good thing about this tweak is you can make some cheap ones to try in your system before you really spend any money, also you can add/remove cable elevators without disconncting anything so pretty easy to compare.
I know some people hear claim they hear difference, but I have had 2-3 people over and we tried several times with and without elevators and no one could hear any real difference, so I don't use them.
Some cables may be more effected than others, but I would experiment before spending any money on elevators.
Tim is right on, I have done the same thing at a fraction of the Mapleshade price. The only differnce between our teepee's is I used a ball between the three legs to build a common size. While the legs of the teepee were held securely I used wood glue to bond them together.
I use these tepee's to hold up my five meter pair of ICs too. They have worked very well but the initial setup can be tedious if you have heavier cables. My new Purist Museaus speaker cable is very heavy and give the stands a run for their money.
If I had it to do over again I would try using a short (1") section of shrink wrap placed over the form. It is easy to use and the small cup could help hold more glue where it is needed.
Good luck, and remember if you try it, this is a cheap tweek so don't get dicouraged if a couple of the tepee's break. Have fun!
Another solution is to use a four inch PVC pipe. Use a hole saw to drill the holes of the desired diameter in the PVC. These will need to be 75% larger than large enough to hold whichever cables you are going to be lifting. Drill the holes at a distance twice the desired height of the elevator. Next, cut the lengths needed at half way through the drilled holes and half between the distance of the holes. You will end up with elevators of your desired height with small (or large) troughs (sp?) in them. Work as well as anything else I've tried. Can be painted if desired. Best Regards.
Any type of paper cups or wood product would be best as it doesn't conduct static electricity, PVC or other types of plastic will conduct static on it's surface. Have tried many cable lifts and found no diffrence in sound, I think a big waste of money, and they all look like crap, Spend money on better cables!
Just my two cents. Happy Listening
Non-DIY recommendation: "Cable Elevators" from audionut.com -- work great, with a very clean look.
$160 for a set of 8. Use them myself.
You can use the side indentations for additional wires or power cords.
The dowel teepee seems to be in vogue right now. Very easy DIY project. Quick and simple, try some tall dixie cups. If you don't notice an improvement, you might not want to go any further. A lot will depend on what your cables are resting on. (carpet, floating wood, hard wood, tile etc....) If you do decide to go further, try any cup about 4-6 inches tall. Terra cotta clay pots work also. Material can be wood, clay, ceramic, porcelan, glass, they all will work. I had 2 speaker runs and a 25' balanced interconnect laying on carpet. I went to Home Depot and bought 25 terra cotta pots for $0.46 @. Did it make a difference, yes it did. A bit more air and extension, worth the small expence.
I am currently using folded pieces of corrugated cardboard to elevate my speaker cables and power cords. In my system, they seem to restore intertransient silence (i.e. the carpet sounds like it was blurring the sound of my system).
Anyone know how much difference I could expect by upgrading to terra cotta pots or the wooden dowel teepees?
Also, what is the minimal and "best" distance from the floor that others have found?
Thanks in advance!
In this thread on cable elevators, the explanation on why we need it, is well explained. But, also brought up were mentions of cable sepatation.
In my case:
1. To each speaker requires 8 runs, 4+ and 4-. I see no reason for sepatating as if with another brands of bi-wire sets would contain 4 each within one case, putting the runs really bunched together.
2. With my interconnects, I run balanced. So, any induced noise will be automatically removed via the balanced technology.
3. As with power cords, I do understand the need for separation from the speaker cables, but how much distance, and will foam or other materials be better.
Thanks to all!
Cut toroidal sections of a lightweight styrofoam pipe insulation sleeve of suitable size. If you have banana plugs it will be quite easy to insert the speaker cable through to fit snugly at few inches interval. Put in only as many as you need to suspend the cable off the floor, this reduces capacitance effect if any (paranoia).
I have done this with my AudioQuest Midnight2 and result is very good, airiness replaces the previous slightly bloatedness. Its amazing though the cable is only elevated a half inch! The cables look hitech cool is a bonus.
I plan to make some using 8" sections of 4x4 pine. Next, I will sell them for an astronomically high price. Finally, I'll come out with an MK-2 version that will be so advanced, you couldn't possibly listen to your system w/o them, rendering the original pieces usesless junk. Naturally, the price will rise accordingly. Hmm . . . I think that I just figured out a way to retire by age 39! To the U.S. Patent Office! Can't you just smell the success?