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Cab rewiring?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Daytona955i, May 28, 2005.

  1. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    So I was cleaning out my 4x10 and got to wondering, would changing the internal wiring to a bigger gauge do anything good? Or bad? Say going from 16 to 10?

  2. throbgod13


    Mar 26, 2005
    it does make a big difference.. you should use a high quality cable.. something OFC, and using as many fine strands as possible..

    solder all connections..

    it does make a difference that you will hear and feel..
  3. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    Okay, thats good to know, what happens if I don't use fine strands?

    I have 12 volt (10 gauge) copper wire, but the strands aren't exactly what I would consider thin or fine...

    There are 18 individual copper wires in the 10 gauge wire I have.

    ETA: OFC?
  4. r379


    Jul 28, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    Finer strands carry current better. You want finer strands.
  5. Let's see, there's hundreds and hundreds of feet of very tiny wire in your speaker coils....but you're worried about the few feet of 16 gauge wire connecting the speakers together and to the jack?

    Disregard the other poster. Changing the wire from 16 to 10 gauge is a waste of time. It wouldn't hurt anything, but it wouldn't help either. And oxygen-free copper (OFC) is another myth perpetuated by audiophile snobs. There ain't a speaker cord out there that can be scientifically proven to be any better than plain, ordinary "zip" cord.

    Edited: The ONLY benefit to finer strands is the flexibility of the wire. There is no benefit to fine-strand wires from an audio standpoint.
  6. Let me repeat myself: finer strands DO NOT carry current any better than a solid strand cable, at the frequencies we are using. But the wire will flex more easily, which is a benefit.
  7. Worry more about the cables coming from your amp to your speaker. The problems multiply with distance. Many feet from amp to cabinet require thicker cables than a few inches from speaker to input jack inside the cabinet.

    10 - 12 GA cables going from amp to cab are appropriate for high powered (ballpark around 1000W, 1500W and up) amps driving 4 ohm loads over longer distances.

    Unless your speakers can handle that much power by themselves, and the cabs are big enough that theres 5-15
    feet of cable between the drivers and the input jack, and the drivers are 4 ohms (instead of usual 8 or 16), there's just absolutely no need for 10 GA wire inside the cabinet. Madness I say! Sheer madness!

    Regarding OFC: Oxygen free copper supposedly has less resistance than regular copper. And alien spacecraft are supposedly stored at Area 51. Who knows, maybe that's all true. Hard to say which is more likely. Arguably OFC is audiophile propaganda. Area 51 may or may not be more likely.

    Regardless, thicker guage wire is guaranteed to have less resistance. I think its probably much cheaper to get the next biggest gauge copper wire instead of paying a premium for OFC wire. 10GA copper=12GA OFC copper at half the price. That's my theory, haven't actually priced it out.

    But don't bother with all that inside the cabinet.

  8. There's no difference in resistance between regular cable and "OFC" wire.

    This is from an article written by Blue Jean Cables:

    Many cables today are advertised as using "oxygen-free copper," copper which has been annealed in an oxygen-free atmosphere. OFC is popular in audio cables, and has begun to make inroads into the video cable market as well.

    We all know, of course, that oxygen is bad for things made from copper. Copper oxidizes and turns green and flaky; in so doing, it loses its high conductivity and begins to fall apart. But the amount of oxygen present in conventionally annealed, non-OFC copper is so tiny that it simply isn't a factor in cable quality. We have cut into pieces of Belden coaxial cable twenty-five years old that have been used in radio transmission applications--and found them clean and bright, completely lacking any sign of oxidation. Modern coax is better still, with nitrogen-injected foam dielectrics that keep oxygen entirely away from the center conductor.

    As it is with silver, there's nothing wrong with OFC; but electrically speaking, OFC wire is indistinguishable in audio and video applications from ordinary annealed copper wire.

    Regular copper wire is already something like 99.99% pure copper.....

    As steveksux pointed out, the main factor is having heavy enough cable for high-current, long distance runs, such as main speakers...

    For more articles that debunk the cable and interconnect myths--including a link to the Blue jeans piece I quoted, go to:

  9. So I was right, alien spacecraft hidden at Area 51 are more likely than OFC copper actually having less resistance? Good to know... :D

  10. throbgod13


    Mar 26, 2005

    i wasn't talking about "audiophile" type cabling..

    most speaker wire that you buy is OFC, to prevent corrosion.. and it does work to prevent corrosion..

    multi-strand cable is for flexibilty, but it does make a difference.. and it's easier to tin, and solder.. a better soldered connection..

    i have 12 Gauge "zip wire" speaker cable in my cabs.. i bought it at a car audio shop for .85/ft..

    electricity takes the path of least resistance.. the less resistance/reactance/capacitance/impedance you show to the amp, the better..

    and you will hear it in the transient lows.. it's a cumulative thing..

    it's not expensive to do.. about 20 bucks.. try it.. if you like it, then it's a great thing.. if not, rewire it with what you had..

    i do hear and feel a difference in my rig.. and it's blatantly apparent to anyone who is subjected to my rig..
  11. r379


    Jul 28, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    My comment about fine-strand wire was based on my days fooling around with amatuer and CB radio. The guy who did my teck work always used fine-strand wire wherever possible. His tech work and advice always seemed to work and it also came from his obsession for sound quality with home audio stuff. Is it overkill in bass reproduction? Maybe it is but I'll continue to stick with my belief in fine-strand wire.
  12. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    The good news for all those who have spent a lot of money on esoteric wire is that research has shown that there are distinct differences in the frequency and phase response of different types and gauges.

    The bad news is that these differences are barely measureable even with the most sensitive measuring equipment, let alone human ears.
  13. I think you would have to run 100 feet or more to get a real benefit from using larger gauge wire, not that it would hurt anything.
  14. remo


    Jan 15, 2005
    do it... if your bored, and for no other reason.
  15. throbgod13


    Mar 26, 2005
    right.. bored.. ;)
  16. Yes, and be sure to neatly coil the 100ft of 10ga thin strand oxygen free copper wire inside the cabinet. Don't want it flopping around in there... :D

  17. throbgod13


    Mar 26, 2005
  18. philiprst


    Mar 24, 2005
    If you don't mind the effort of rewiring, then I would to to Home Depot and wire them up with the biggest gauge speaker wire they have. It certainly won't do any harm although I doubt that you will notice any difference. If you really want to improve the sound your time would be better spent on upgrading the crossover components. You don't have to spend a lot of money on fancy capacitors; bypass the mylar caps in the horn circuit with poly foil caps and replace any low value series caps with poly film types. That will improve things with minimal cost.
  19. throbgod13


    Mar 26, 2005

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