What Gauge Speaker Cable Do YOu Use?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Mario Lewis, Oct 16, 2001.

  1. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    What gauge speaker cable are you folks using now-a days?

    I can easily tell the difference between 12 and 16 gauge in my sound. I was thinking about 10 gauge, but was wondering if that would be overkill? Is there a difference if I use solid core vs. braided or stranded cable?

    Here's the scenario:

    Gear is Alembic Orion to Alembic F1X and then an SF2. Power amp is a Stewart World 2.1 and cabs are two Epifani 212's.

    The Stewart only has Banana plugs for outputs, but the Epifani has Speakon and 1/4 inch. I started out using 16 gauge from the Stewarts Banana's to a 1/4 inch male end into the Epi's. Then I bought a 12 Gauge Speakon Cable and cut off one end and attached the respective polarities to the Banana. WOW!!! What a difference. The folks at Stewart REFUSE to use speakons, so this is as good as it gets, but would a 10 gauge cable from Banana to Speakon make a difference?

    Is there a "signal chain compromise" by not using either both speakon or both Banana?

    In one better than the other?
  2. 2x6mm core.

    i prefer thick cables..
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
  4. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    10 gauge Pro Co's

    I just received them and did some research on them before buying. Several times I saw the advice to get;

    - heaviest gauge you can afford
    - shortest runs you can operate with
    - make sure they don't have some crummy "Made in China" jacks/connectors

    ...among other things
  5. Rickbass: where did you get those 10 gauge ProCos? I'm also in the market for some good speaker cables.
  6. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    THe lows have got to be better defined, with all else being equal, you can tell a difference?
  7. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    I think they are 14-gauge, but I am not really sure. I'd also like to go with a heavier gauge.

    What are the reasons for using speaker cable to wire your cabs as opposed to using instrument cable?
  8. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member


    I don't know if they're running a sale or if these are being discontinued, but for some reason the 6 ft. 10 gauge Pro Co Lifelines was originally $28 and they are selling it at $20, same sort of lower pricing with the 3 footers. The packages had price stickers with the higher price on them and the backside of the packages had the lower prices I paid.

    So, what that tells me is that they actually did sell for the higher prices before.

    Mario - Ruling out expectancy theory, ("I bought it so it must be better, right??? :rolleyes: ), I plugged in this morning and the lows were "bigger sounding" and just everything in general sounded better, more "lively" than the Carvin 1/4" cables I had before.
  9. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I do believe it is because instrument cable is shielded and you don't want shielded cable for speakers.

    I also believe that it is the distance of cable used where the gauge really has an effect on sound quality.

    I could be wrong, but unless you are going over 50 feet in length, there is no need to go larger than 14 gauge as with lighter gauge over longer lengths there is a loss in signal quality. Someone correct me if you know different.
  10. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    I'll bet that if you bought a Stewart in Europe it would have Speakons. Euro safety regulations have outlawed high voltages at exposed terminals (i.e. bananas) so all high powered amps sold there now use Speakons instead.

    Some companies like Crest still use bananas for US models while export versions have Speakons :confused:

    I doubt you'll hear a difference between banana and speakon. Both have large contact surfaces.
  11. WarwickFRK

    WarwickFRK Guest

    Oct 14, 2001
    Well right now I'm using two studio 1000 monster cable speaker cables. Not sure what gauge they are so if anyone knows, please tell me!!!!
  12. I've been using a Fat 12 gauge speaker wire lately, that's been measured just right so there's no excess cord.
  13. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    12 Gauge with Neutrik Speakons
  14. EString


    Nov 20, 2000
    Los Altos, CA
    I use 1.5 gauge speaker cable. The stuff is wider than my wrist.
  15. lo-end


    Jun 15, 2001
    I saw some high end home theatre setup at Tweeter that had speaker cable the thickness of a you-know-what ;)

    can you use 10 gauge speaker cable with speakons? what about even lower than that?

    [EDIT]I just reallized what I creep I must sound like. anyway, Im not gonna edit this because I cant think of a better example of how thick the speaker cable was. Sorry.[/EDIT]
  16. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    I use 14s...couldn't get my hands on a 12 or 10 at the time, and I NEEDED some cables, so I had o settle for less, and I'm going ok with them now. I can't for the life of me remember the brand. It wasn't well known, but the name seemed to ring a bell when I bought it...
  17. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I'm using 3', 12 gauge cables, sold by Venemans back in the day (2000;))
  18. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    I took a section of 10 AWG cable to a store today to see if it would fit in the contacts on a Speakon Connector. It won't. In fact, the Speakon Literature specifically states that the max size is 12 AWG.
  19. How about trimming some jumper cables?
    Isn't that 8 gauge?