Will this make my amp sound better?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Sunnyevan, Nov 20, 2019.

  1. martins3325

    martins3325 Member

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    It may make it sound marginally better...but no cable will make a poor sounding amp sound good! Changing the actual speaker will have MUCH more impact on the tone than the speaker cable IMO. Best plan is to save your money and get a great amp!
     
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  2. davidespinosa

    davidespinosa Supporting Member

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    @Sunnyevan

    There goes my respect for Mr. Fargen.

    But the Vox cable includes a 3 inch jumper cable (to bridge channels, I think).

    p.s. Sorry about your tone — would suggest wearing a 70’s vintage Zeppelin t-shirt, that usually helps me.
     
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  3. TYR

    TYR Member

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    Evidence Audio is great stuff but it won't make a bad sounding amp great nor will a mediocre cable make a great sounding amp sound like crud. Also remember that your signal chain is only going to be good as the weakest link. So if you use a great speaker cable but use mediocre guitar cable and patch cables, I don't really see the point unless you're upgrading your cables over a period of time.

    Mogami also makes great cables which will be a bit cheaper than the Evidence Audio cables. Free The Tone is another brand making great cables but just as costly as Evidence Audio.
     
    Humble Texan Fan likes this.
  4. DanSimon

    DanSimon Member

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    Not really, unless theres a problem with yours. I agree with martins3325, just save for a little better amp. Vox are ok but probably not

    the AC15. Those small practice amps, the amp companies dont really make them to function in a serious way. a slighly larger Fender

    would likely sound way better.
     
  5. Sunnyevan

    Sunnyevan Member

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    I prefer the Black Sabbath T’s, they have a more airy quality, they breathe better. Cleans up really nicely too.
     
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  6. teemuk

    teemuk Member

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    One should not expect that a high quality cable improves tone, but a reasonable expectation is that it will likely be more robust and reliable, and will likely provide more solid contact at the jack than lower quality cables. The latter can have distinct effect to overall signal quality in comparison to very worn out interconnects. Snake oil aside, sometimes one DOES get what he pays for.
     
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  7. zenas

    zenas Member

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    For combo amps I use the wire that used to be the AC wire on old two prong amps. The ones with round cords, there's one black and wire inside. Just have to remove the round plastic or rubber cover and maybe some paper and twine stuff.
    Mind you, this is 50 year old wire and will give a vintage tone, especially if using a vintage Switchcraft jack and NOS solder. (score the ham feasts for those) New manufacturer solder and a new jack will modernize the tone a bit. But new wire is needed for a full on modern tone.
    I would sell custom tuned speaker wires but I'd have to charge $598. Because the parts just aren't readily available.
     
  8. C-4

    C-4 Member

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    I look at the pico farad per ft specs. There is a sweet spot for them where the tone does not become too brittle or sharp, but that is going to depend on what else is hooked up in one's rig.

    I have Evidence Audio cables since they came out and they are very fine, but, they are very stiff and not stage friendly. I have Planet Waves American cables which are in the sweet spot and highly rated, Vox cables which I like, Van Damme cables, GLS, and several other company's cables.

    Earlier this year, I went on a cable purge and binge to get really good cables, and I also bought a fine wireless remote from StageClix in the Netherlands, which I currently use with four 6 ft. cables I bought on Amazon for very little money. The four cables are well made, and due to being only 6 feet in length each, the treble roll-off is practically nil. One goes from the wireless to the first pedal on my board. One goes from the last pedal on my board to the amp input, and the other two are for the send and return in the loop. The wireless acts as a buffer, and my sound is very clear, and sweet. I can really hear the difference between guitars as well, and nothing sounds offensive. That's really all I can ask.

    I haven't even gotten to use some of my $125 cables yet from Colossus and Van Damme, since getting the StageClix.
     
  9. deeval

    deeval Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I have been down that rabbit hole with cables and spent some good dough, I have used Alessandro Speaker cable that cost me 300.00 for a 24 incher, and Ribbon audio Power cable for 600.00 and unless you are in the recording studio you will never hear a tone difference from just a good 20.00 speaker cable difference when you play on a stage with a band
     
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  10. willie k

    willie k Silver Supporting Member

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    Skynyrd shirt is where you get the haunting mids.
     
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  11. doctorx

    doctorx Member

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    Want your amp to sound better? Practice your guitar, my son, practice.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
  12. darkphader

    darkphader Member

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    I suspect any guitar amp speaker cable that sounds different than ordinary lamp cord is itself changing the tone (influencing it via its capacitance/inductance). You may perceive this change (if it exists) negatively or positively.
     
  13. doc

    doc Member

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    I detect the faintest whiff of sarcasm here...
     
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  14. Sunnyevan

    Sunnyevan Member

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    I mean cmon, you're gonna charge $80 for about $3 worth of materials and 2 minutes of soldering, and then try and sell it as a vast improvement? Get outta here. $20 would have been more reasonable, but even then.

    And then theres the part of hes selling the exact same thing just labeling it as a "Super Champ XD" speaker cable for $50 less.
     
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  15. Timbre Wolf

    Timbre Wolf GoldMember Supporter Gold Supporting Member

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    I have never detected any significant sonic impact while changing varieties of speaker cable.

    I do notice bold changes from instrument cables, tubes, speakers, cabinets, pickups, neck changes, picks, strings, etc.

    In my opinion, the biggest issue is that your speaker cable be robust and reliable.
     
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  16. easyed

    easyed Silver Supporting Member

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    Have you ever seen TV drug adds that compare the drug's performance to placebo? In many cases the difference is not great.

    IMO high priced speaker cables are like placebos. If you believe that you're getting real improvement, then you will believe that you're getting real improvement.
     
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  17. gulliver

    gulliver Supporting Member

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    This post is about speaker cables, not guitar cables.

    Yes, thicker speaker cables will all sound the same.

    Guitar cables can sound different depending on capacitance. One, not being better than another, but different (assuming decent quality cables).

    For speaker cables, I have some Pig Hog cables, they seem nice.

    https://pighogcables.com/collections/speaker-cables
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
    Timbre Wolf likes this.
  18. HotBluePlates

    HotBluePlates Member

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    This was some good-natured tongue-in-cheek trolling from @Sunnyevan. It's a speaker cable; you get maybe 1-2 ft.

    Besides, cable capacitance in a speaker cable is a complete non-issue.
    ________________

    It's worth knowing the speaker cable is in a low-impedance circuit, not a high-impedance circuit as with an instrument cable between pickup(s), pots & tube grid.

    Because it's low impedance, speaker cables normally aren't shielded (and why people tell you not to use a speaker cable between your instrument & amp). That's because the low impedance prevents electromagnetic noise fields in the air from developing a meaningful noise voltage on the cable (which they can/do in unshielded high impedance circuits).

    No shield also means the pF/foot is usually lower. Capacitance increases when the area of the "plates" of the cap increases. A coaxial shield increases that "plate area" compared to two conductors side-by-side running down the length of a speaker cable. The irony is the plug ends themselves will probably be the majority of the cable's capacitance (which is also true in low-capacitance instrument cables; found that out the hard way making my own low-cap cables and measuring the total capacitance of the finished product).

    But even if the speaker cable had a bunch of capacitance, it won't matter. What's a "bad/high capacitance figure" for a cable? Maybe 250pF per foot? Let's take 2 feet of that, and consider an 8Ω speaker. The "output/source impedance" of the amp is going to be in the range of 3-4Ω (tube plate resistance & primary winding resistance, levered-down by the impedance ratio of the amp) even if we assume no negative feedback.

    - Okay, we have (at worst) 8Ω + 4Ω = 12Ω of circuit impedance, and 500pF of cable capacitance.
    - Frequency -3dB = 1/(2π * R * C) = 1/(2 * π * 12Ω * 0.0000000005F) = 26.5 Megahertz​

    Even if I'm wrong about source impedance and it's really 1200Ω (and we'd get precious little power developed across the 8Ω speaker), the treble roll-off is still up at 265kHz, more than 10 times beyond the range of hearing (and even further beyond the treble roll-off of the speakers).
     
  19. HotBluePlates

    HotBluePlates Member

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    Look, people want to believe there is some magic "upgrade" that will make their amp better, or maybe keep them from sounding like crap when they play (it's a lot easier to buy it than to practice). TGP is rife with threads about bolt-on "mods" that makes a guy's amp superior.

    I hate to say it, but Fargen is just giving people what they want. If he's fleecing them at the same time, it is what it is. I do notice he's selling about 1/3 the length at about 1/3 the retail price that Evidence Audio charges for the same cable, so he's just getting whatever dealer/wholesale markup they allow.

    I went through the same thing when I was building amp stuff. I offered a certain choice of "upgrade parts" that buyers could choose among. If anyone asked me whether they would really make their amp sound better, I'd tell them no, and offer my observations about what difference (if any) I'd heard between them in use.

    However, I offered the "upgrades" because the amp-buying public had already absorbed a level of magazine & book marketing-talk that convinced them a product was trash unless there was "visible quality" in the form of the specific parts they'd already read were "toneful." Gotta have a certain type/brand of capacitor, a certain type of resistor, a certain type of wire, a certain type of construction method. Doesn't matter that they could have had equally-great sounding amps for less money; and the tweak parts cost me more, even wholesale, so the only ones making out were the parts manufacturers & vendors.


    (Meanwhile, I just spent some time & extra money buying the exact capacitors that were in my 60's AC30 for the conversion from a Treble model to a Normal model. There probably isn't a noticeable sonic difference between them and any of a number of other caps I could use, but there's no guesswork when you use the exact part from the exact range of years the amp was originally made.)
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2019

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