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Recommend me a cable tester?

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by nsmar4211, May 1, 2010.

  1. nsmar4211


    Nov 11, 2007
    After learning how to solder and now going through my 4th cable that *somebody* set something on/stepped on too much/etc, I'd like to buy a cable tester so I can test cables to make sure they are indeed bad before I strip them out.

    The only thing I found online was a Signal Flex Cable Tester box.... couldn't find any reviews of it.


    Is this the only choice, is it any good, and any other ideas? Thanks guys!
  2. MonkeyBass


    Mar 22, 2009
    Denver, CO
    I have one of these and it works just fine.
  3. uhdinator


    Apr 20, 2010
    Get a good multi meter, Can't check fuses with a cable tester.
    Sears (obviously you want one with the continuity tone feature)
  4. nsmar4211


    Nov 11, 2007
    I have a multimeter......how on earth would I test a cable with it?
  5. uhdinator


    Apr 20, 2010
    touch the tips of each end of the cable with the two probes
    if the meter has continuity mode you get a tone

    then touch probes to sleeve on each end and same.

    No tone, bad cable
  6. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    El-cheapo alternative: 9 v battery. It'll give you a "yes / no" answer but that's about it.

    Plug the suspect instrument or speaker cable into any working speaker enclosure (the shielded / unshielded thing won't come into play with this scenario). Touch the + / - terminals on your battery with the tip / ring of the cable. Polarity is not important. The speakers should lurch forwards or backwards in response to the 9 v current. Rather primitive but effective when in the field.

  7. RustyAxe


    Jul 8, 2008
    Check out these guys ... Markertek (click the link)
  8. flight120


    Mar 10, 2008
    Denver, CO
    I have a cheapie Behringer CT100 ($30) and it works great. I use a meter if I need to, but it is really nice to be able to plug a cable in and know without needing three or four hands to hold both cable ends, both meter leads and the meter. Also, the ct100 has an intermittent function where you can plug the cable in and wiggle the ends and it will tell you if something is flaky. If i think I have an intermittent cable I'll do this and I can flex the cable all up and down its length to find the trouble spot.
  9. MonkeyBass


    Mar 22, 2009
    Denver, CO
    It's worth just getting the tester. A multimeter is a pain for testing cable. Especially XLR's.

    But, the tester won't check certain connectors like RCA to 1/4" or 1/4" balanced to 1/4" unbalanced etc. So, you still need a multimeter for that sort of thing.
  10. singlemalt

    singlemalt Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2007
    White Salmon, WA
  11. I have a SM Pro Audio CT2 that was around 30 bucks but I don't recall from where. It has all the usual and a few unusual connectors to test 1/4", 1/4 trs, xlr 3 & 5 pin, 5 pin din/midi, phono/rca, bnc, speakon and a continuity tester with probes. A tad bulky but it works great.
  12. alembicguy

    alembicguy I operate the worlds largest heavey equipment Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    +1 for the mulit-meter.
  13. TL5


    Jun 27, 2005
    I use a multi-meter.

    I was under the impression that the Ebtech Swizz Army was the standard for cable testers.
    It's not cheap, I believe the B'ger is a knock-off of this design.
  14. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005

    Same here...

    - georgestrings
  15. MNAirHead

    MNAirHead Supporting Member

    There are some $20 versions on Ebay.. they'll do the trick.. I own Fluke Mutlimeters.. when it's gig time and there's a failure.. a cable tester is nice.

  16. The Berhinger cable tester works just great. I know people who hate Behringer, but swear by the cable tester.
  17. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    +1 for the Behringer.
    The only Behringer product that is not totaly crap.
  18. groove pump

    groove pump

    Oct 24, 2006
    Another handy aspect of a multi meter is that you can use it to check the resistance of a cab or maybe a pair running together. Nice to know that you're not going to melt your amp with the wrong setup.
  19. fujithebassman


    Mar 19, 2009
    Fluke multimeter for me!
    Can check cables, batteries, plugs, outlets,wiring etc.
  20. MNAirHead

    MNAirHead Supporting Member

    OK.. I'll put the avoided plug check ebay (not mine) for Peavey And Cable tester

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