Cables - Does big bucks for a cable make a difference?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Tone Disciple, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. Tone Disciple

    Tone Disciple Gold Supporting Member

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    I was just reading the new Guitar Player article on cables and my question is - are you paying big bucks for your cables - and do you think they make that much of a difference in your tone?
     
  2. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    Yes, big difference. But there are some drawbacks with certain ones, microphonics being one. It's not noticeable while playing but I have a mid-grade cable I paid about $75.00 for that when dragged on the floor, it makes some noise. But it's far more articulate than a standard cheap cable. I actually kept my old cables because certain guitars (my Tele) are very bright and the cheap cable attenuates the shriek and shrill some. But yes indeed cables make a difference. Good and bad. And thats coming from a guy that refused to believe it until I tried it.
     
  3. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    That's a question each player must answer for themself.

    As far as tone factors go, it's way towards the bottom of the list.

    My advice:

    If you've got the money, and think you can hear the difference, by all means, go for it.

    Loudboy

    PS - This is for guitar > amp cables only. Paying hundreds for speaker, or AC power cords is for the OCD, IMHO. ABX tests will back me up on this one.
     
  4. kurtsstuff

    kurtsstuff Member

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    I see it all day long....Someone will spend 3-4K on gear and then
    say....give me a cheap cable! Ok! We'll also put retreads on your Ferrari
    Anyways...A good cable makes a difference...Now....those 1.5 million dollars a foot cable might be a little extreme......lol!~
     
  5. Tone Disciple

    Tone Disciple Gold Supporting Member

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    I have been using Monster Cables and Planet Waves, so I definitely do not just ignore the cable, but Jeez - some of these things are a couple of hundred dollars each ! I was going to buy a new amp, but now it looks like - if I am to have a good, uninterupted, quiet, shielded., and durable signal path it could end up costing $1000 for five good cables!

    This article was a good read and presented the facts in a pretty straightforward manner. Worth a look.
     
  6. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    Some of the mid range cables got great reviews, George L especially.
     
  7. franksguitar

    franksguitar Member

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    I have the gold plated ends, thick monster 22 ft.and was around $50. I don't how far different the tone is to a standard Switchcraft but the monster sounds fine. but haven't done my own A/B testing. I've read the GP review, but depends on which combination with your own guitars & amps to do an accurate litmus test and then how do you measure it besides your ears or with a DB meter?
     
  8. Flyin' Brian

    Flyin' Brian Member

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    By far the first thing I want in a cable is reliability. I just stopped using solderless patch cables for that reason.
     
  9. illini

    illini Member

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    I have been replacing mine as well.
     
  10. hottub

    hottub Member

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    need to try me one of the dimarzio steve vai ones. they seemed to be pretty high on that one.
     
  11. scottlr

    scottlr Member

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    +1! When the cables I now have need replacing, I intend to just buy a roll of Belden and a bag of Switchcraft connectors.
     
  12. daddyo

    daddyo Guest

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    The most expensive cables have pschycoacoustic properties that mid priced cables just don't have.
     
  13. JPF

    JPF Member

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    I spent a few months comparing cables and finding the perfect 3m one for my ears, which only cost me around €70.

    Now I find I like 5m cables a lot more.

    Sigh.
     
  14. Dickie Fredericks

    Dickie Fredericks Member

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    It never ceases to amaze me how folks will get on here and tell us their George L's woes.

    Seriously, I have never had one fail. Ever. I just dont get it. Ive got 40 right angle connectors and a good amount of cable on the board and not one problem.
     
  15. vchizzle

    vchizzle Supporting Member

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    Yes, definitely makes a difference. I used Monster for a long time. I ended up having the jacks break often and got tired of returning cables. Always happened during gigs it seemed.

    I use Canare and George L's with Switchcraft ends(seemingly the most reliable) and haven't had issues.

    The difference I heard in sound was pretty noticeable to me. There was greater clarity and balance to my guitar sound. Some people like the effect of darkening their tone with cables. I didn't mind it until I switched them all out, then much preferred the clearer tone. $200/cable is out of hand to me. I wouldn't pay that, some might, but everyone's gotta draw the line for themselves I suppose.
     
  16. guitardr

    guitardr Silver Supporting Member

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    I really didn't care too much until I was given a Klotz LaGrange & Tara Labs pair for the holidays a couple of years ago. It was similar to getting added EQ to my signal. The new article in GP and the tutorial review in VG (available on Lava Cable's website) are very informative.
     
  17. rosscoep

    rosscoep Member

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    With the non-jacketed DIY George L's all one has to do to upkeep is snip off a little cable at the connect and Voila.

    More $ usually translates to better craftsmanship and quality components. This often equals better quality.
     
  18. kimock

    kimock Member

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    Yeah, sure. It doesn't make it better, or right or wrong, but if the rest of your rig and the sound you're going for and the application/venue etc. allows you to hear a difference and you have a preference based on that, there you go.

    I use the Hi-Fi stuff for that Hi-Fi sound, but I love the way my older steel guitars sound through the old cloth covered cables that came with the Supro guitars in the '50's, and I don't go anywhere without a couple of curly cords.

    The old blue Belden wire that Boogie used to use was nice for guitar, and there was some cheap Italian cable that said "Audible purity guitar instrument cable low capacity" that sounded real nice too.

    The Two Rock cables are my usual reference point for the Hi-Fi thing, but I've gotten good, slightly lower fidelity performance out of some short homemade solid copper (Radio Shack) cables.

    At some point everybody winds up with a couple of guitars and amps and speakers and cables, and decides this goes with that etc.
    No biggie.
    It's more of a mix-and-match, right tool for the job deal than "throw money" imho, so just experiment with whatever you can get your hands on, and if that helps, great. If not, so what?
    More money for something else, right?;)

    peace
     
  19. Austinrocks

    Austinrocks Member

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    I have been using GeorgeL cables, I have a 30 foot cable I bought at a show from him, the thin one for $30 or so, really love that cable when playing at home, and I have made some effects cables which cost $10 to $15 each, connectors are $5 and cable is $1/ft I think at Charley's. The GeorgeL has a really clear tone that I notice, I also have a couple planet wave cables that I paid $20 each for, they are all right alright, not the tone gods like the GeorgeLs, but they are so much better than the monsters which I also have a couple of, and they will last a lifetime since I never use them, I also have the regular cables, and really don't care for them, the nice thing about the planet wave and GeorgeL's are that I have right angles on them, which is especially good for effects, I have a bunch of right angle adapters, but being able to use the cable with out one is better.

    I saw some 30 foot cables for $90, I am not sure how they sound but I really happy for the GeorgeLs which IMO really don't cost that much, or the planet waves.
     
  20. OOG

    OOG Member

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    everything in your signal path
    makes a difference

    it's your signal path
    so use what works for you

    i really like Vovox cable
    i really like Monster Jazz
    i really like coil cords
    depends on what i'm playing

    the Vovox does get the most play
    and is waaaay "worth it"
     

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