It doesn't matter where you will connect your cable HF or LF you can do both at LF or both at HF or +HF -LF and vise versa as long as you keep electric terminals same(pos neg).
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Stringreen, yes, that makes sense. I initially thought of doing that but the AQ cable is really thick and el wifo might not be very happy with more cable mess in the living room. Are you currently biwiring? are both (HF & LF) cables the same brand/model?
Stanwal, I agree that it makes a difference. Whether which way sounds better I guess would be highly system dependent. What brand of jumpers are you using? are your speaker cables solid silver too? ($$) a lot of users claim that the jumpers should be the same material or even geometry as the speaker cable.
I use Cardas GR speaker wire; a double run would be expensive and cumbersome. I formerly used Cardas jumpers; currently using bare solid silver wire I got from either Homegrown Audio or Chris Van [drawing a blank]. I actually do have some solid silver VDH cables but they are 1 meter in length. not long enoung to use with a non mono-block amp. My speakers are not wired internally with Cardas except for one set of S 100s; it may be ideally better to have one wire throughout but my set up sounds good to me now. I may try some Cardas Clear if it is available in raw cable form; most jumpers strike me as overpriced and I would rather have them un- terminated anyway. The solid silver wire does a good job and was about $60 a foot; which gives 4 3" lengths. My Spendor S 100s came with a length of bare wire for jumpers; the GamuTs came without any.
Stringreen, I believe the effect you are hearing is the splitting of conductors into two groupings rather than all dedicated for one set of inputs. IOW, total gauge matters significantly.
Want to have some fun? On a speaker with a single set of posts double up the cables. Yes, use two complete sets. Just make sure you have all connections absolutely parallel! You will be shocked at the difference in sound that additional total gauge makes.
There are some interesting tricks one can do with jumpers and cables, however I believe double cable bi-wiring (using two complete sets per single set of binding posts) would best them all.
I'm not sure I feel comfortable cutting my Audioquest Rockefeller to use the bare wire. I paid decent money for them new. I've heard repeated times that bare wire produces the best sonic results, but the resale value of the cable afterwards is null. I don't even know if this is easily doable with a cable with complex interior geometry. Plus, the nylon threaded jacket would look horrendous. Banana plugs have worked for me so far. So if I add an additional cable I think I'm gonna go with spades.
Audiopanda, it seems you may have an ideal situation! If your cables are long enough to get double runs if cut, simply send them to the mfgr. to do the job. Most cable makers will do such work for an agreed upon/set fee. It's WELL worth it as opposed to buying additional cables! And, if the cable maker does the work you are satisfied it's done cleanly. Perfect!
It can be a real PITA to work with the conductors yourself. One of the first times I obtained a brand name speaker cable was about 20 years ago, and it was a pair of very long Audioquest speaker cables. With fear and trepidation I cut them in half and finished the ends. I didn't reterminate them, but had to strip all the small conductors - 96 total between four unfinished ends - and twist them together. My hands were sore from all of it, but it was well worth it! If you do so you will have a harder time selling the cables as they are not reterminated, but you also might have a second rig to put them in down the road. :)
Wig, hey, shoot me an email. Yes, double cables is a glorious thing, is it not? :)
Maybe it's time manufacturers stop trying to make an all-in-one cable and do what they can to convince the audiophools out there (and here) that there are benefits to using two or more separate cables, looks be damned. (All of what I'm talking about applies to speaker cables)
Can it be that trying to squeeze all one can into a single sleeve (jacket?) brings forth too many problems; problems that can cancel out the benefits of the design? One then ends up with another compromise for the sake of looks and marketing.
Like your tri-wire run of the same make, Mapleshades Double Helix is simply two runs of the same wire shotgunned but with their own separate coatings.
It's what I'm thinking of getting next. Right now I'm using a single run of Helix and a single run of Clear Day silver and the sound is incredible.
I say if it is better to use separate cabling but it won't catch on with the general public, there are enough of us to constitute a market for those who seriously listen to their music.
Cable manufacturers can settle on values and performance for certain aspects and dedicate them to one type of cable. Other areas can be chosen for other aspects. Combining them can then become an audio alchemists dream as different cabling can apply to different amps, speakers, etc. Different parts of the frequency can be addressed.
It would all look kind of weird to the uninitiated, but I wouldn't care as long as it sounded great. I think all of this can be done at a low cost as well with sound that would rival some of the SOTA stuff out there.
On another note, being a reviewer and not betraying anyones trust, are there other reviewers out there that bi and tri wire like some of us do but just keep it to themselves?
All the best,
Nonoise, some interesting thoughts. I doubt that our use of speaker cables will catch on. The bulk (as in cable!) of listeners simply do not care how many or how vetted cables are used on systems. Most just want something better than stock factory supplied or Radio Shack stuff. BTW, you may get a kick out of my review of the Radio Shack braided speaker wire that some say is good; my conclusion a big YUCK! You can find the review at Dagogo.com; I don't seem to be allowed to post links on this site.
Anyway, what I would do ideally if I could physically fit them onto the posts of the amps would be to use six sets of speaker cables; double up by parallel runs all three sets of posts on the speakers. This sounds insane, I know, but the method is efficacious for any number of sets of posts. When I use the Kingsound King Tower, an omnidirectional speaker with two sets of posts, I have four complete sets of cables, 4 runs to each speaker, and the results transform the performance of the speaker. When ultimate sound quality with the gear you have is your goal you have to get extreme and lay out some money at whatever level you are at.
I had tried some mix and match double spkr cable tests but concluded that it prevents hearing the native sound of the cables, which in turn does not allow for direct movement toward or away from a particular cable in one's system. So, I have stayed with identical pairings since.
I would not have known all this had I not been reviewing and had I not reviewed the Legacy Audio Helix and Whisper models, which require three sets of cables. I would not have intuitively spent the money on extra sets to try with other speakers like the King Tower. But since I had them on hand I did, and WOW! what a difference they make when doubled up! Some people will discount my comments simply because I am reviewing. So be it.
Finally, I am so busy developing rigs and writing that I do not spend a lot of time looking at other reviewers' rigs. Pretty much everything they hear I have heard at shows, so I do not need to depend upon their opinions. It is likely the same for them. Reviewers I have met at shows are clueless what I am doing, and vice versa. It's common to start conversation with, "What system are you running..." It's only natural as we are engulfed in a myriad of other relations and activities in writing.
I thought I would explain the situation a bit as it would sound odd if I just said I don't pay attention to their rigs. :)
Douglas, unfortunately, my AQ is 8ft and cannot cut it to run separate cables from the same wire. I have to either buy another cable or re terminate. OR get a really good set of jumpers using bare wire as this is supposed to sound even better than bananas or spades? Replacing the jumpers seems the cheapest and easiest upgrade at the moment. I have access to AQ rocket 44 that i can open up and just use the copper conductors without the cumbersome nylon jacket. The manufacturers make a strong point about directionality, but i think this is critical when taking advantage of the +&- geometry in the guts of the cable with a longer run. Not so much with 8cm jumpers. I'm really happy with the sound I'm getting at the moment, two nights ago I moved my speakers a few inches in and the sound has opened up incredibly. So much so that i completely forgot about this thread and my cabling dilemmas hehehe :)
Nonoise, Im also interested in experimenting with speaker cables and using different properties of materials to tweak the sound in a biwire setup. The pdf I posted initially, though, has an interesting point. With a speaker with just a couple of posts, the crossover between bass driver and mid woofer is bound to happen somewhere where critical music information is being reproduced. Introducing different inductances and resistance of different cables can compromise the coherence of a melodic line or the tone of a male voice. As exciting as the tweakers route can be, this doesn't seem a desirable scenario. According to audioquest you should give utter respect to the midband by using exactly the same wire type to biwire.
I understand where experimenting with speaker cables of differing properties can negatively affect the sound where the crossovers are but in my case, I have Tonian Labs TL-D1s which use a Lowther widebander with a customized Raven supertweeter that covers the uppermost frequencies so that critical 2K region is unaffected.
But by all means, do experiment and trust your ears. One doesn't have to go exotic and spend lots of money. In my case, I had some time on my hands and simply experimented with some older cables I had laying around and simply lucked out on the results.
Now that I've had success with the bi-wire approach, I'm going to try out a double run of the Helixes to see if they better what I've gotten so far, when the urge (demons) get the better of me and my pocketbook.
All the best,
Douglas, the only thing im slightly concerned is that using double runs could increase the bass prominence, which I really dont need as there is a bump in the 40hz region. Could you elaborate a little on how the sound differs when using double runs? Sorry to be a pita, but getting a similiar cable would be well over $800. And my dealer doesn't have one to demo.
Audiopanda, all frequencies are influenced, not only bass. The only way this would perhaps be a problem is if the cables emphasize the bass in the first place. Then going to two pair would give more of that effect. Usually if you like what the cable is doing then doubling will give you more of what you like.
So, if you do not want ANY more bass at all than what you have now, the answer is yes, you will get more bass presence. But you should also get more Mid/Treble too, and more clarity, and more 3-D soundstage, etc.
I would assume that running two pair you will have the same bump in the 40Hz region, only the bump will be more beautiful sounding. I'm only half-joking. :)