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Amp > Cabinet Cable...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by fast ricky love, Oct 12, 2006.

  1. fast ricky love

    fast ricky love Supporting Member

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    Is it OK if I use a high end guitar cable (Lava ELC) to run between my amp head and the cabinet?
     
  2. pureoldsound

    pureoldsound Member

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    I thought you need a Speaker cable to do this????
     
  3. QuickDraw

    QuickDraw Member

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    only if you want to fry your amp.

    you need to use a speaker cable, there isn't enough wire in a guitar cable to handle the power. you would most likely fry your OT with sustained useage.
     
  4. fast ricky love

    fast ricky love Supporting Member

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  5. jamison162

    jamison162 Member

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    Canare GS-6 works for both according to their website (Read the last sentence):

    "A specially designed Oxygen Free Copper 18 AWG cable for connecting Guitar/Bass or Keyboards to amps, mixers, effects pedals and all outboard signal processing gear. Low capacitance and low series resistance provides improved frequency response (flat to 50kHz). A bright, ringing characteristic sound is preserved, even when using HI-Z guitar pickups with long cable runs. The proprietary double Carbon/Braid Copper shield construction eliminates microphonic handling noise, especially on stage where amps are often set at maximum volume levels. Also highly recommended for Amp Head to Speaker Cabinet leads."
     
    guitar007 likes this.
  6. rmconner80

    rmconner80 Cantankerous Luddite Silver Supporting Member

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    Guitar cables are shielded, meaning they use one conductor (tip) shielded by another (ring). The shield on a standard guitar cable only needs to pass low voltage/current, and is light duty. The shield will burn out instantly and the conductor possibly soon after on the downstream end of an output tranformer.

    Speaker cables comprise two dedicated conductors of much higher duty to handle high swings of AC at high current.
     
  7. alanbass1

    alanbass1 Member

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    I would be very wary about using any shielded cable to run any speakers regardless of manufacturer claims. My concern would be greater when using valve amplification which relies on speaker impedence matching within strict tolerances (more so than S/S equipment) to protect the output transformer from damage. All cables will affect the impedence load on the transformer, but unshielded cable far less so and transformer tolerances can easily cope with this. However, shielded cable affect the loading to a much greater degree than non shielded cable and the wisdom is that this is not recommended and use such cable at your own peril. It maybe that this particular company has overcome the problem of loading within shielded cables but I would not want to risk it. The other thing to put into the equation is the design of Output Transformer. Many modern day amps (my Kingsley and Carr are two) that accommodate 4 and 8 ohm loads from the same speaker socket. This is because the transformers have been engineered (they would claim 'over' engineered) to deal with this tolerance. However, many amplifiers are not, including the majority of older designs.

    Another consideration is that there is very little reason to use shielded cable between the amp and speaker as cable noise pick up issues are extremely low post 'amplification' of the signal. It's when you pick up noise and then amplify this with alongside your low strength guitar pickup signal that the real problem arises. If, for any reasons you have particular issues with RF interference, there are many designs of high end speaker cable that have non loading techniques to reject this such as multiple weaves of cable (Kimber Cable is a good example).

    The last thing to consider is that accepted wisdom in hi-fi circles is that the music signal is 'less impacted' by non shielded cable and that the resultant sound quality is higher. It is just unfortunate that shielding is necessary due to the reasons that the noise picked up pre amplification will then be amplified along with the music signal.
     
  8. whoismarykelly

    whoismarykelly Oh look! This is a thing I can change!

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  9. g-nem

    g-nem Member

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    Thanks blue jakester for that link- the post he is talking about is very good and informative.
     
  10. Bradders

    Bradders Member

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    an old "specialist" (!) friend of mine told me that the best speaker cable he'd ever made/experienced/used and recommended every time was actually heavy duty electrical cable - the kind you get attatched to electric applicances like garden equipment like shears and strimmers and the like - very ordinary cable......NOW i am NOT suggesting anyone do this - but it's an interesting thought - cananyone substantiate this? - just plain old heavy duty 2-core electrical cable?

    Interesting....

    Bradz
     
  11. whoismarykelly

    whoismarykelly Oh look! This is a thing I can change!

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    There is always the "lamp cord" type argument and many people are very adamant that I or anyone else cant hear a difference and we are lying but I have tried both and true speaker cable did work better for me than electrical cable.
     
  12. gixxerrock

    gixxerrock Member

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    Most of the combos and cabinets I have looked inside have some form of heavy guage twisted pair wire going from the connector to the speaker.
     
  13. nashvillesteve

    nashvillesteve Member

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    My main speaker cables were made by an old shop guy and they look more like lamp cord than guitar cables.... not that I haven't used them as guitar patch cables for effects every now and then...
     
  14. alanbass1

    alanbass1 Member

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    This will not do any harm as such cable is not shielded and designed to take high current. There is a difference in sound and in Hi-Fi circles it is considered to dramatically colour the sound to the detriment of the original recording (which is negative to what Hi-Fi bods want as they typically ant to accurately reproduce the recorded sound). However, some of us musician types who are creating the sound might just like the way electical cable 'colour' the sound.
     
  15. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    I dont see why a shielded cable of, say, 18 gauge or more would affect impedance any more than non shielded of the same gauge. Generally speaking as far I know shielded cable cant handle the current because of its small gauge not its impedance.
     

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