What type/brand of wire do you use to wire up your speakers in your cab?

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by Chi, Jan 29, 2003.

  1. Chi

    Chi Member

    Jan 5, 2002
    Hey guys-

    I've looked into about a dozen or so speaker cabs over the past week, and have also looked into the back of my own speaker cabs. I've noticed that the thickness of the wires used to wire speakers together has varied in thickness from cab to cab.

    For example I've got a white Marshall anniversary cab with reissue greenbacks in there (that are about to be replaced) and the wiring is this super thin dental floss-like stuff. Looks pretty flimsy.

    I have a Tony Bruno 2x12 with blues in it, and the the wire used to wire the speakers is so thick you have a hard time bending it.

    Now following the whole "quality of the guitar cable" and "quality of the speaker cable" (from head to cab) theories we see on the forum, and are somewhat proven through the use of Goerge L's, monster cable, two rock crystal clears, etc., wouldn't it be just as important for the speaker wiring to be taken into consideration when looking for the best tone?

    What is the best kind of wire to use? is there a specific brand name? material like silver or copper?

  2. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Administrator ^/|\^ Co-Founder of TGP Staff Member

    Jan 3, 2002
    I favor 16 guage Mogami or like qualty speaker cable. It is thin enough to work with and fat, err, "phat" enough to make me happy that I am not choking my speakers with thin wire. :D
  3. TippyRacer

    TippyRacer Member

    Jan 6, 2002
    Orlando, Fl
    Where do you get 16 guage Mogami speaker cable?
  4. JacksonAmpworks

    JacksonAmpworks Member

    Jan 29, 2003
    Fort Worth, TX
    Have you ever noticed that people use HUGE speaker cables and some people use HUGE wire inside the cabinet, but the Output Transformer secondary leads are using 18AWG wire. Kinda ruines the whole purpose doesn't it.

    I would like to experiment with a OT that has lugs on it like some of the PT's do and use HUGE cable from the OT to the speaker jack and continue to use HUGE cable straight to the speaker.

    I'm thinking that 18AWG wire has to be a bottleneck for the sound.
  5. Gabriel E.

    Gabriel E. Guest

    I read that Ken Fischer likes plain old lamp cord.
  6. JohnnyL

    JohnnyL Member

    Sep 5, 2002
    I read that Ken Fischer likes plain old lamp cord. I read this too in "The Amp Book" by Weber.

    But I recently was speaking to a friend of mine, an electrician, who wires home audio and video systems. He strongly recommended that I use wire denoted as speaker wire and pointed out the lamp wire is not wound to the same density as the speaker wire. He also advised me that 16/2 or 14/2 is ideal for carrying a signal from a 50 or 100 watt head. He recommended using monster size cables when carrying a load of several hundred watts.

    So I paid a little more for the 'speaker' wire.

    What's up with the amp and cab builders using such small wiring in some of these cabs anyway?

  7. Gabriel E.

    Gabriel E. Guest

    Since I posted above, I did some wiring on my house using 12/3. That stuff's solid core copper and it's huge. Cheap as hell too.

    I'll get me some 14/2 for sure for making speaker cables with.
  8. Carl Zwengel

    Carl Zwengel Guest

    18awg is more than adequate for internal cab wiring. We're only talking about a few feet of wire and under a 4 ohm load you can push something like a quarter mile without any signal loss.
    Your signal loss comes from cheap high capacitance cable, and NOT the wire gauge. You can do the math to prove it but it's long and messy.

    A major reason they use 12 and 14 awg wire in household service is because you're pulling upwards of 20 to 30 anps through the run and they don't want ANY chance of fire or circuit failure. In comparison, a 100w amp pushes around 6 amps through a 4 ohm load. BIG difference!
  9. Gabriel E.

    Gabriel E. Guest

    Thanks for the clarification Carl. I guess I'll put off the trip to Home Despot. :)
  10. Carl Zwengel

    Carl Zwengel Guest

    Just to make sure I spoke right I ran the numbers on 18awg wire. You'd need approximately 300 feet of cable to get 0.5dB of signal loss. A 3dB loss would require 900 feet of cable at 4 ohms. Not quite a quarter mile but either way that's a LOT of wire!

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