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Best Patch Cords

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by bass-shy, Jan 25, 2005.

  1. bass-shy


    Jan 11, 2005
    I know everyone has opinions as to what the "best" gear is, but what about patch cords? There isn't much info on them here but I know they are important to us pedalboard users. In your collective experience, what are the good ones and which ones should be avoided? I am using basic Hosa six inch cords now, and they work, but what would give me more clarity and less noise? Also, cost is a factor.
  2. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    IMO you don't get any sound differences. So make sure the cable is solid enough to step on and the plugs aren't sealed so you can open and repair them.
    Learn to make them yourself, and don't waste your money on gold-coated plugs.
  3. adam on bass

    adam on bass Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2002
    New Braunfels, Texas
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, GK, EMG and D'Addario
    i like the planet waves ones. a little pricey but good.
  4. Toasted


    May 26, 2003
    Leeds, UK
    i dont buy into this 'the cables sound different' thing. just buy ones that are sturdy enough :)
  5. i'm also using some 6 inch hosas and a couple horizons, its al lthe same to me, as long as they don't crap out on me it's all good
  6. Muzique Fann

    Muzique Fann Howzit brah

    Dec 8, 2003
    Kauai, HI
    another vote for the planet waves cables - although I admit to using a couple from radio shack and........they work.
  7. Heckxx


    Nov 2, 2004
    Libertyville, IL
    To me, its more of a matter of what cables last longer than others. I've had quite a few patch cables that just stopped working, or at least didn't work when u bended it in certain ways. As long as u get some new cables and never blatantly step on them or anything, we should all be good
  8. I bought George L's because of a thread like this that ended with, "Get George L's because the clarity is awesome...you've never experienced sound like this." So after buying 30 right angle plugs, 15' of cable and making 15 cables of varying length, hooking up my pedal board, and letting her rip...I found no difference whatsoever from Radio Shack cables in terms of sound or interference or anything.

    But, now I'm stuck with this huge investment in custom plugs, so may as well use them.

    So, yeah...George L's are teh bizzle.
  9. bass-shy


    Jan 11, 2005
    I have also heard people praise George L's for their clarity and it sparked my interest. Although I haven't had any problems with the Hosa cables, I wasn't sure if I was missing out on better tone due to using them. Good to know about the George L's. Any cables that definitely make a difference? I'll check out the Planet Waves when possible. Thanks.
  10. There are some people that will play with only George L's, because they made a difference to THEM. The same goes for Monster, Neutrik, TaraLabs, Planet Waves, Livewire, Dimarzio, Hosa, Fender, Spectraflex, and Radio Shack.

    My situation may be different than those people. My opinion: I dislike George L's, because the right angle plugs have a screw on cap that keeps loosening up on me. I now have 'regular cable maintenance' in addition to all the other things I normally have to maintain.
  11. Corwin81


    Mar 18, 2003
    Ames, IA
    I use Fender Electrovolts. They're simple and sturdy.
  12. DougP


    Sep 4, 2001
    i try to stick with Monster brand basically because i can find them anywhere and if they are ever break i get a free replacement.
  13. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    Most people will swear by George L's. I swear by Pro Co Pro Patch. Copper is a better conductor than gold and Pro Co PP cables have a copper tip (not copper-plated either as it extends all the way into the plug). Also, people get fooled into thinking gold makes a difference. The effects of gold are negligible unless what you're plugging into has gold contacts as well.

    Unlike other brands of cables they don't add any capacitors in the cable to make the sound different. What you hear with Pro Co is just the pure sound, nothing added or filtered. I know Monster puts caps in some of their cables if not all. Plus Pro Co PP cables are guaranteed for life as well. You can get them with any combination of ends you want.

    The only down side is that they are a special order item. You can special order them from Sweetwater or Guitar Center. You can also order them from Direct Pro Audio.com. It helps to know the model codes. Thankfully, I talked to Mary at Pro Co and she helped me out.
    PP = straight to straight
    PPL = straight to right-angle
    PPLL = right-angle to right-angle
    They also come in lengths of 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, 10, 12 on up through the evens. So say you wanted to order a 1-foot straight to right-angle. You'd put down a PPL-1.
  14. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    Fremont, Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I have had a lot of cables custom made for me by Performance Audio. Believe it or not, their prices are actually better than what you find in most music stores, and that is with shipping. They use Canare or Mogami cabling, and usually Neutrik terminators, though some of my RCA cables have Canare terminators. I have had them make cables for my bass rig, home studio, PA rig, and home audio, and I have been very happy with them.

    I have also noticed that Musician's Friend (and Guitar Center) now carry Mogami cables that are pretty good for the money. I just picked up some of their "silver" line of patch cables, and they are very flexible, with quality terminators, and pretty affordable.

    GSPLBASSDC Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2005
    Des Moines, IA

    GSPLBASSDC Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2005
    Des Moines, IA
    For those interested, here is a chart on the impedance of certain metals. The lower the number, the more clarity of the signal.

    Material Resistance
    Silver 0.936
    Copper 1.000
    Gold 1.403
    Aluminum 1.549
    Brass 4.822
    Tin 6.702
    Steel 9.932
    Lead 12.922
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I use Bullum cables, which I make. There's no guarantee, because they NEVER break.
  18. 6-3-2


    Sep 20, 2003
    I personally hear differences. When I switched my head to cab cable from the cheap one it came with to a monster cable, it sounded noticably better to me. You can't argue with the "no matter what" we'll replace them policy either.
  19. Sako


    Nov 4, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
    Although I've never tried them, I've heard a LOT of good things about Lava Cables. Good prices too.


    It's an independent cable manufacturer started by a guitar playing Army engineer. Worth a look.
  20. rockin982


    Jan 27, 2004
    NJ, USA
    While it's true that copper and silver have a lower impedance than gold, the reason to use gold terminators is because silver tarnishes and copper oxidizes - both of which can severely degrade the signal quality. Gold is extremely inert, meaning that as long as you don't let undue amounts of dirt and dust (and skin oils) acumulate on the plug, gold plugs will stay sounding the clearest for the longest in between maintenance.

    Personally as cables go, my vote is for Monster. It's not so much an issue of sound CLARITY - just about any major brand will give you that. It's about durability and construction, since the #1 reason cables need to be replace is because of physical failure.