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1/4" female to female Speaker Cable Adapter??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ashtray, Feb 14, 2016.

  1. I have two cabinets that were designed for combo use and only have a male 1/4" plug coming out the back (short cable meant only to reach the head).

    Where can I buy a 1/4" female to female adapter plug for speaker cable use? Only few I have found seem to be for instrument cables. (I checked Amazon, Musicians Friend, Reverb, and Monoprice)

    (and yes, long term plan is to remove back plate and wire up the cab for speakon connectors, etc - but for right now I'd like to just try the cabinet out with a different head. Cabinet is an Aguilar GS212 - but the combo one.)

  2. The ones for instrument cables should work fine.
  3. samson3382


    Apr 26, 2009
    Boise, Idaho
    That was my understanding as well.
  4. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Not really. Use speaker cable. [edited for clarity]: It doesn't have the (fragile) shielding that can cause dangerous shorts when powering speakers (with a powerful amplifier).
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2016
  5. Go with this one the jacks will overheat before the coupler will.
    macmanlou likes this.
  6. You could probably pick one up at Radio Shack.
    bassmeknik likes this.
  7. IF you are going to replace the jack anyway, just cut the male end off and wire a female on it for now.
    Fxpmusic and Old Garage-Bander like this.
  8. samson3382


    Apr 26, 2009
    Boise, Idaho
    I've got a couple- of those couplers- I'm my "just in case" kit.
    B-string likes this.
  9. Could you please elaborate on how a shielded cable between an amp and a cab would cause a ground loop?

    As to instrument cables being used for speaker cables, it will work fine as long as the wires in the instrument cable can handle the current produced by the amp. Often, instrument cables use pretty small wire for the center conductor.
    So unless you are sure, speaker cable is advised.
    But in general, you would be better off using speaker cable for high power amps.
    And the adptor should also work until you exceed current ratings.
    You can't go wrong with Switchcraft. Many cheap 1/4" jacks/plugs don't hold up as well, especially for speaker use.
    Killed_by_Death likes this.
  10. Rad Shack will be of lesser quality. Maybe OK in pinch. But good speaker connectors, even the 1/4" type are worth the investment.
  11. If you crank the 400 watts through to 4 Ohms, you're talking about 10 amps of juice, and I don't think any instrument cable could handle that. It would fry the amp.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  12. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    OK. @ashtray — Really a simple short is the real problem, though a ground loop might happen. Here is an old post that nails it in a few sentences:

    Instrument cables are actually more fragile than speaker cables in terms of the electrical load they can carry.
  13. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    I find that those female-to-female adapters can be flakey. Not something that you want with a speaker cable connection. You can get a small hammond box and put two ¼" jacks in it. But any type of coupler or box can get yanked apart.

    Even better, remove the cable and plug and mount a plate for a ¼" jack or speakon on each cab. Plates (dishes) are available like these Cabinet Hardware, Jacks and Jack Plates | Speaker Hardware or these penn-elcom dish - Parts Express Ships Fast and Ships Free.
  14. An instrument cable can have very small center conductors only capable of 1 amp, or less. The cable could act like a fuse and burn open. If SS an open won't hurt. If tube... bad news. The other cable failure mode is to get hot, melt the insulation and short internally... aka putting a short (0 ohms) on the amp output. Bad news for either SS or tube, though a tube amp might survive a very brief short, IF YOU ARE LUCKY! Also if your amp has speaker protection. It should shut down the output. But I wouldn't trust it. So bottom line, and to sum up what others are saying... USE PROPER CABLES!
  15. Yeah - this is why I wasn't sure how the internal connections were on those adapter plugs. If both tip and sleeve of the adapter insides can handle hundreds of watts, then I'm good to go.

    This will be for home use only - will rewire cabinet with speakon connectors on the back plate in the future.
  16. Tube amps survive dead shorts very well, but it is hard on output tubes.
    bassmeknik likes this.
  17. Those GLS are sold by Orange County Speaker for speaker level use. You should be fine.
    Rob22315 likes this.

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