Different 1/4" plugs for instrument/speaker?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Captain Awesome, Jul 23, 2003.

  1. Captain Awesome

    Captain Awesome

    Apr 2, 2001
    I want to start making my own cables. Would all kinds of plugs handle enough power for speaker use, or would I need one specifically for high current?

    Would this be an ideal plug to use?

    Also- what are the pros and cons of zipcord/parallel vs. the braided kind?
  2. Well, I guess I'm kind of a snob when it comes to cables and connectors. I will only use Neutrik 1/4 connectors and Neutrik Speakon connectors. The Speakon connectors give you much better power handling then a 1/4 in plug will and have the added benifit of locking. 1/4 inch phone plugs were designed for telephone systems back in they day and are only made to carry a few watts of power, which is why they are so poor for todays high power amplifiers. Redco has good deals on Speakon connectors if you interested in them.
    The NL4FC is plug I use.
    Redco Speakon Connectors

    If you must use 1/4 inch plugs, spend the extra money to get the Neutrik plugs, they are much better quality then the switchcraft plugs
    The NP2C is a good plug for speaker and guitar cable use.

    Redco Neutrik 1/4 inch plugs

    Redco also has great deals on bulk cable, any kind you want from Mic cable to Guitar cable to all gauges of speaker cable.

    I use the Red 12/2 series 2 conductor 12 gauge cable for my speakon cables. Killer deal at .36 a foot.

    Redco bulk cable prices

    I'm don't work for them, just a happy customer and cable builder :D
  3. Captain Awesome

    Captain Awesome

    Apr 2, 2001
    How much of a difference does it make though? I'm guessing my soldering skills would be the main variable in my case.
  4. How much of a difference does what make?

    If you talking about 1/4 inch jacks it makes a huge difference. Cheaper jacks are press fit together instead of being cast in one piece, this gives you potential weak points in the press fit joints and under heavy use they will fail intermittently eventually.

    As for soldering skill, the Neutrik 1/4 jacks are actually much easier to solder then the switchcraft type, and Speakon connectors require no soldering at all, they have screw type wire binding posts built into them and you just need a screwdriver to put them together.

  5. Captain Awesome

    Captain Awesome

    Apr 2, 2001
    Unfortunately, there are no Speakon jacks on my gear. How hard is it to terminate with the Switchcraft design? I'm asking because there's a place near me that sells the Switchcraft line for very cheap.
  6. Switchcrafts are not hard to terminate if you have a decent soldering iron and basic soldering skills. Just be sure to wire the connectors on both ends of the cable the same, you don't want your speakers wired out of phase.