If you look at a shotgun, you will notice that it has 2 barrels. Basically, shotgun speaker cable is a double run of cable terminated into one connection at the speaker and amp ends. This differs from bi-wire which usually implies 1 connection at the amp end and 2 at the speaker end. Bi-wire can also mean 1 connection to the woofer and one to the tweeter with an independent wire run for each driver. In theory, a shotgun run would cost twice as much as a single run. Personally, I think this is a waste of money unless you have very inefficient speakers and a very powerful high current/high wattage amp to drive them.
I though that shotgun is a single connection at the amp end, and two connections at the speaker end. Biwire would have two connections at both ends.
I believe you are right themadmilkman.
Gosh- here is what I think:
An internal bi-wire has a single connection at the amp end and a double connection at the speaker end all housed in a single cable.
An external bi-wire or "shotgun" cable has two separate runs of cable with a single connection (a '+' & a '-') at the amp end and each separate run of cable has a '+' & '-' at the speaker end. So you have four runs of cable total. If you break the single connection at the amp end you could single wire two sets of speakers.
I think the term external biwire is aptly descriptive. Where the term "shotgun" came from is anybody's guess.
Jig has it right. The mad milkman has it wrong.
Example: Kimber 8tc has eight wires in the cable and a pair is two eight wire cables. A regular pair has eight wires with pos. and neg. at each end, thus four for pos. and four for neg. Shotgun wire for 8tc has the same eight wires with only one connector at each end or four cables with eight wires each. Thus eight wires for pos and eight for neg. Oh and biwire generally has two connectors at amp end and four at speaker end.
The first time I heard the term "shotgun" was in the early 80's. It was used by MIT to describe a double run of 750 speaker wire.
I believe the term 'shotgun' refers to the cross-section resembling a 'double barrel shotgun.' That means two separate runs; one end of both cables terminate to a single point(amp end), the other terminated to connect in common bi-wire configuration.
Actually, I realize now that what I have described above is an external bi-wire configuration. True shotgun would be as mentioned by Jig: two separate cables joined to single pairs of terminations at BOTH ends.
This just keeps getting better, doesn't it?
So let me see if I have this right. If I was just hooking up one channel, this is what I would be faced with:
Shotgun = A strand of wire that terminates into 4 spades/bananas on the amp side and then 4 spades/bananas on the speaker side?
Traditional bi-wire = A strand of wire with 2 spades/bananas for the amp end and then 4 spades/bananas for the speaker side?
Sorry if this all seems quite redundant, but sometimes the nomenclature in this hobby loses a simpleton like me.
Well, what is it called when there are 8 connections at EACH end?
4 on left speaker, from 4 at left amp output. This duplicated on the right.
audio - how confusing! :-)
I dont think the term shotgun has anything to do with terminations!
Bamafan has it right in that the term first was used by MIT in the 80's for an upgrade of their Music Hose 750 Speaker Cable.The original cable was already atleast 1.5 inches thick.From what I rembered having owned both the 750 cable and the Shotgun 750 Cable many years ago,they(MIT) ran another set of cables tie wrapped together and at termination had your normal set of speaker spaded termination,But both positive runs were incorporated together and both negative runs incorporated together.This cable at the time cost about 1K IN THE EARLY 80'S AND WAS CONSIDERED EXTEMELY EXPENSIVE back then.My how times have changed.I don't think at the time MIT offered a biwire option to this cable.They would sell jumper cables for biwire speaker applications back then in the 80's
I hope this may clarify what you are asking
When I look at a shotgun (the kind police carry), I notice they have 1 barrel. I try not to look down it ;)
Rob, thats true! ...I believe thats called a "pump," if you want to see two barrels get pumped, I can point out a few websites for you!?!
So this is probably a stupid question, but this thread has me somewhat confused.
So what's the sonic benefit of running wire from your speaker with 2 connections on amp end and 4 on speaker end, versus running normal cables and using jumpers on your speakers? I'm sure there's a difference, but just curious how much of a difference (i.e. would replacing my Analsysis plus cables and jumpers be worth it, especially since I'm moving to a powerful integrated soon: JRDG concerto, MF TriVista, Accustic Arts Power 1, etc).
No thanks distortion. I couldn't take the recoil of 2 barrels. I'm getting old LOL