Who makes budget speaker cables which are truly “good” or “exceptional” in quality?


A dealer of mine convinced me into buying Analysis Plus speakers cables that I have enjoyed for a few years now. I noticed some other companies making speaker cables for many multiples of $1k and wondered how many truly good companies are making budget speaker cables nowadays? Who are they? What are the prices?  I had Blue Jean speaker cables some years back and thought they were as good as the Analysis Plus brand I have now. What is your brand? 
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2psyop
Clear day. Double shotgun. Good enough for me as I am not rich. 
Cullen Copper Speaker Cables $120 6ft. pr. Best Morrow SP-7, which cost many multiples more, in mid/high's, although the SP-7's are superior in bass performance. So I use Cullen's on mid's/high's and SP-7 on bass. Incredible value, notice Cullen now have a Crossover Speaker Cable, would expect that to be exceptional.
Clear Day double shotgun. You absolute cannot go wrong for the price. I have LRC as well as 5x XLR. The sound is transparent, very detailed and neutral. I am actually having 1 more set of speaker cables being made right now and couldn’t be a happier client.

Paul also has a 30 day money back guarantee and is fabulous to work with.
Any cheap cable will be good enough. Take a thicker one for greater lengths, and that is it. $1 per foot will do it. Technically, ordinary thicker quality electricity cable is fine, but it helps if the cable has some marking of the two poles, like different colours or different shapes (like square vs round isolation). That is the only advantage of dedicated speaker cable. You do not wan to mix up the polarity. Two famous speaker designers (Peter Walker of Quad and Alan Shaw of Harbeth) are on record as saying the cable craze is technical nonsense. Spend your money where it does some good to the sound rather than the dealer's bank account.
Lots of people say cables are technical nonsense. Quoting Peter Walker is not only name dropping but an obvious Appeal to Authority. There are far many well known speaker manufacturers who believe cables ARE important. For those who might not know who Peter Walker is, it was his brilliant idea to place thick metal grills all around the Quad electrostatics.
Peter Walker was one of the most gifted and orginal amplifier designers, designing, first, an excellent for the day valve amplifier, next, one of the first high quality solid state amplifiers (the 33/303), designing very practical tone control and filter systems for these, and next the very clever concept of current dumping for the 405 power amplifier, still used in modern Quad power amplifiers. He was also the designer of the first practical full range electrostatic loudspeaker (the ELS 57 still admired by many) and next the ELS63 with its delay lines, a design that is still at the heart of the current Quad electrostats, viewed by quite a few as the most natural speakers money can buy.
Have you designed something better in the history of home audio?
Not to malign Peter Walker but he also used the absolute worst audio contact ever namely the DIN plug and sockets. The level of hum these things gave drove people to distraction and anyway one could not use any thicker cables in those other than the flying leads they supplied with their amplifiers. I remember in the late 70s a kit came out to adapt the 405 to take RCA phonos and when I did it and used what was audioquest cables the difference in quallity was astonishing. Mr Walkers company was not long in adapting their own production line to take the RCA phono sockets and the current dumping amp then moved up the field to take on later companies like Meridian and Marantz. As Geoff says they did put a big metal grill over their speakers and once when I was cleaning my 57s I left the front grill off and powered them up then had a listen to them . It was night and day the level of resolution flew up and they really opened up. Much as I loved the sound I had to put the grill back on as I had an infant daughter crawling around and didn't want to see her getting fried.
To the questioner I have to say that in my humble opinion there are not many cheap cables the come close to well designed thicker cables with anti RFI screening. I use JPS Kaptovators for my mains and NBS Interconnects for my equiptment and though I have tried other cables in my setup I have to say I am sticking to what I have now as other cables don't give me the levels of detail I get now.
the good news is it's free/cheap and easy to decide for yourself. some designers believe in cables, some don't, some don't say...just need to separate opinion from fact, as the line often gets blurred here...
though I do agree with Pass Labs advice that cables should cost less than the amplifier...
..another fan of ClearDay shotguns.....if you contact Paul, he'll most likely send you an audition sample for free.  Take advantage of his offer.
Analysis Plus, Kimber, Cardas, Wireworld and many more all make good lower priced cables. I would avoid cables made in someone’s garage, but there are exceptions.

Avoid anybody who says cables don’t make a difference. Just because they can’t hear it they think nobody can. $1 / foot is laughable, guaranteed to make your system sound like crap.

You simply have to try different things and see what you like. I have twice tried different Kimber cables and both times I preferred my Canare starquad cheapies to them.  But that's my room, my rig and my ears.  YMMV.
Supra, AudioArt, AntiCable, the list can go on but it's a good and fun one. 

Signal Cable makes excellent cable products.
Google them.
+1, Signal Cable. Punches way above its asking price. I found them to be quite neutral and detailed.
Another vote for Cullen Cable. An 8' pair runs $135 or $300 depending on model.

http://http//www.cullencable.com/

Cheers,

Scott
Peter Walker lived in a completely different age.

Obviously, one cannot say he would have landed in the significance of cable camp.  And given his ability to grasp good sound and unsurpassed intellect, it's equally unfair to say he would not have
+3 for Signal Cable

I've had a pair for six years. Never had any reason to "upgrade".

+4 for Signal Cable.

Happy Listening!

The best cables I have found were my Kimber PBJ's. Over the years I have tried about 6 or 7 different manufactures. Not a whole bunch but they were all budget IC under $100 a pair. I believe the PBJ may have slightly more as they are priced today. I purchased mine approximately 15 years ago. There is a difference for sure but we all have our own tastes. Order 3 or 4 cables on Amazon,try and keep what you like. The only draw back is they do not carry many of the small cable manufactures. Nothing wrong with cables from the big manufactures though, like  Audioquest, Kimber, etc.  You may find cable companies who will allow you to return cables if you do not like them.  Good luck! Have fun doing it!

Audio Art makes great speaker cables.  You order it direct and can specify different connectors.  Here is a tip, the least expensive connectors sound just as good and keep the price down.    I use them in an all McIntosh system and are very happy.

In my main rig I use Groneberg Quattro Reference speaker cables.  You can order these from Klaus at Odyssey.  He makes them to order and also uses it in all his higher price products. 

I had Speltz Anticables ($70) for many years and always returned to them after using Crimson, Morrow MA-4 & 5, DNM, even Harmonic Technology Pro 9+ at $1400.  The Speltz was always more live sounding and transparent until MG Audio Planus III (at $1495).  They were truly transformational in my system.  Later on Amadi Maddie Signature had slightly deeper bass and airier highs for even cheaper $600.  I now use Cerious Technologies Graphene Extreme with their jumpers.  I get even more powerful bass and more dynamics and a fuller sound.  They are about $630.  The more expensive cables were bought on Agon for about 1/2 price.  The Dueland 16 ga. are used by a couple of friends that used to have very expensive cables.  The Dueland's are about $120.
Bryston makes a pretty good cable for around $200.  It's a quad 12 and configures to a 9AWG at each terminal.  Comes with spades/banana terminations and is very flexible.
janewyman, I looked on Bryston's site; I see a 12AWG speaker cable, but I do not see a "quad 12" totaling 9AWG. 

Can you post a link or refer me to this? I appreciate it. 
I have purchased    from  Signal Cable http://www.signalcable.com/
both balance (XLR) and RCA . 
prices  very good for high quality cable.
Also can do custom..
use em with my bryston 4bsst2 
and Marantz AV7701
I used Mogami Blue Neglex 2477 on my KLH Nines for 30 + years. OFC copper coax.Cost me $40 for 40 feet! Does it sound better than zip cord? I doubt it! It just looks COOLER!
I guess my ears aren't "golden" enough to tell the difference!

Right now I am using RCA 14 ga zip on the Nines. And they still sound fine!
Same for my Ohm Walsh's!
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I just ordered some silicone jacket 600 strand silver plated copper 12awg from Acer Racing in Los Angeles. $46.00 for two 10' lengths of single lead, one black, one red. They also have 1000 strand 10awg pure copper. Adequate? I will report back.
After some of the usual agonizing 😫 I just sprung for an Audioquest Carbon HDMI Cable for my new LG Smart HDTV and LG Blu Ray player. The Carbon has 5% silver connectors and controlled for directionality. Oh, my! The Carbon cost 5 times more than what I paid for the LG player, which was almost new. Was that wrong? 😳
Any quality cable of consistent construction and sufficient thickness will do.  The companies foisting 1K+ speaker cables are simply scammers.  On Audio Asylum someone was seriously recommending the purchase a machine that burns in speaker wire and interconnects, and determines the proper direction of hookup.  When I commented that it was counter to common sense I was vilified. 
Geoff, yes, you should have gotten the Oppo UDP205. :)

I use Mogami 2921 in a biwire config for speaker wire for both my systems with quality copper banana BFAs. I also use Mogami 2549 with KLEI copper harmony RCAs or Furutech 126g RCAs. Take5 Audio or Douglas Connection built my RCAs and I got the 2921 bulk from a pro audio store and had my local stereo shop terminate it.

I would like to try the Clear Day cables. 
csontos
Geoff, yes, you should have gotten the Oppo UDP205. :)

Why? The LG Blu Ray was only $23. The LG Smart HDTV has a fabulous picture, as doe my LG smartphone, so I’m confident the LG Blu Ray player with the Carbon HDMI Cable will not be too terrible. 😛

Anticables! Speaker, Interconnect, and Power cords

Check out their testimonials and reviews.  Paul Speltz does not advertise; depends on word of mouth.  I have used many very expensive cables in my system, but Anticables have, to my ears, easily bettered all of them.  You can buy a cable, put it in your system and if you don't like it, you can send it back for a full refund.

Some say these are simply magnet wires--totally untrue.  But again, very reasonable prices and a money back guarantee.  How can you lose??  Lots of good info on their website to ponder. 
Actually, male enhancement pills are not (rpt not) really a good example to make your point since male enhancement pills work. At least that’s what I’ve read.
Geoff, okay, that's all that matters. What you don't know won't hurt me.
A very well reviewed company is blue jeans cable - bluejeanscable.com well reviewed and budget enough for my use. Their web is simple to use and order from. I've been very happy with them. 
douglas_schroeder
I cut the ends off a set of cables to "upgrade" to WBT Next Gen Banana plugs (bad mistake).  Bryston, I believe, epoxies the banana plugs to ensure no vibrations enter the cavity where the conductor meets the plug.  Anyway, I found four 12AWG(measured) conductors are used.  Two are twisted for the  plus side and two to the negative side.  I am not sure who makes the cable for Bryston, but on one site, it was suggested Wireworld does the actual manufacturing.  For further info just call 1 800 632 8217 for a Bryston rep.
I made two pairs for bi-amping my speakers using the instructions from http://image99.net/blog/files/category-002ahelix-speaker-cable.html that I found in another thread. I am pleased with the sound quality improvement.
In my limited experience, Kimber 4PR offer a good value for the price. I have been using them since 2001 (first on Vandersteen 1Cs, now on Ohm Walsh 2000s). But I cannot really compare them since it has been so long since I tried anything else. I will also be looking to upgrade at some point. My chief candidates are Kimber 12TC, Morrow (not sure which model yet) and Audioquest (again, not sure of which model). But I am in no rush as the 4PR speaker cables seem to be doing a good job.
Try Audio Sensibility, There Canadian so you can save on the dollar as well, best bang for the buck.   
Look up Douglas Connection.  www.douglasconnection.com.  Talk to Doug who is a Vietnam veteran.  He made and supplied all of the cables for my high end sound system.  He is very knowledgeable and can provide recommendations for whatever your budget can handle.
Tried many speaker cables over the years but only in the past twenty years did I begin to take notice that there are differences.  Nordost where OK but I moved to Supra after a couple of years which I liked better.
However after trying Clear Day that settled it for me I went straight too a purchase of their Double Shotguns ......... never looked back and have no intention to look beyond