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Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by darkfish01, Mar 13, 2005.

  1. darkfish01


    Feb 11, 2005
    San Marcos, Tx
    I've been using a regular 1/4 cable to be plugging my amp into cabinet since like... ever... but I've heard that you should be using speakon cables? What's the difference, and why should I use them? Is there something they have (other than the lockable feature) that the 1/4 cables don't?
  2. greater overall surface and thus better contact i think ?

    the lockable feature is great as it means the jack doesnt come flying out the back, which ive heard has happened to some ppl before . . . meh
  3. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    1/4" cables and plugs are perfectly adequate, until you start running "really" high power, like a kilowatt and above. In the latter case, Speakon's might be a benefit. The surface area is good, the contact is good, and the wire gauge with Speakon cables is usually a little bigger, which means greater power handling capacity with slightly less heat dissipation. I use Speakon's for my woofers (2100 watts), but not with my WW Ultra (1200 watts). Somewhere in there, the "need" might arise. But Speakon's are relatively more expensive, and there's really no need unless you're running the high wattage. IMO. :)
  4. darkfish01


    Feb 11, 2005
    San Marcos, Tx
    So a speakon cable wouldn't be necessary for a 300 watt head powering a 1000 watt cabinet?
  5. not at all, its only 300 watts, even tho its a 1000 watt cab, your only running 300 watts through it
  6. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    My understanding of the "problem" is that on a 1/4" phone plug, the contact area between the tip and the jack is often extremely tiny, which in higher-wattage transfer can cause heat and even arcing problems and in less high-current applications can cause noise under vibration, bumping and so forth. I know I've encountered that problem a lot over the decades.

    The Speakon has more contact area and makes a more positive connection.

    More importantly, at least for export, it's a CE requirement. There are a number of CE requirements that apply to amps that don't actually make any sense, but they are shared with wide varieties of electrical devices where they do have some merit.
  7. I personally prefer Speakons but they generally aren't required. Maybe it's that satisfactory *click* that I like the most.
  8. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    One of the big advantages of the Speakon is that you can't accidentally short it when inserting or removing it. It's trivial to short a 1/4" phone plug. One ZAP! and you can kiss your kilowatt amp good-bye.
  9. ErnieD


    Nov 25, 2004
    same topic... I have the speakon cable that came with my GK1001RBI amp that I bought new about 3 yrs ago. Have never used it, but if it does fit correctly, could I use this cable with my GBE 600 amp to my SWR Goliath III 4x10 cab? Are all speakon cables fairly universal or are they brand specific? Guess I could first see if it "clicks" into place behind both the amp and cab, but would not want to run it only to damage something later. And if it does work for one cab, could I then just run a 1/4" cable to a second cab when I use 2 cabs til I purchase a 2nd speakon cable. Whadday think?
  10. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Speakon is Speakon is Speakon... Just like 1/4". The only time they are different is if pin 2 is required and that is a whole different thing. Mostly, pin 1 + and - are used. Speakon cables have 2 major benefits over 1/4". They lock into place. I personally like this feature. Second, the contact surface is far greater than on a 1/4". Better, Same, Worse, or Indifferent. It is a choice not a requirement.
  11. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I think you could use it with your GBE into your Goliath III, assuming that both would use the 1+ and 1- connections. The GK cable is a four connector Speakon to take advantage of GK's bi-amp system, so you COULD NOT use it with your GK head into the Goliath III. It is not a normal Speakon cable. You could, however, use a standard two connector 1+/1- Speakon with your GK head into the Goliath III.