Faulty Speaker Cable

Discussion in 'The Workbench' started by Gibson_83, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    today at band practice, I was jamming with my SLO-100 and noticed my sound drop out a few times over 30-45 mins of playing. Thinking it was a guitar cable I switched it out, but after it happened again I jiggled the speaker cable and noticed it was that!

    This is like my worst nightmare come true! It a good quality george l speaker cable i bought a few years ago. After switching out the speaker cable the amp worked fine for the rest of the rehearsal.

    Do you think any major damage would have been done? Im so pissed off as I've always tripled checked that a speaker cable is plugged in before switching on, but never though the cable itself would fail.
     
  2. jimmyjames

    jimmyjames Well-Known Member

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    Should be OK mate, especially if it only dropped out for a short moment each time. The trannies in your amp would be able to take it I reckon. You can't undo what happened, you sorted it quickly, play on :)
     
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  3. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    thanks mate yeah I spoke to my amp tech who said not to worry as well. I'm ordering a new speaker cable this week, maybe a good quality lava cable or something like that.

    Shit happens and cables fail.
     
  4. johan.b

    johan.b Well-Known Member

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    If the amps is still strong and the sound didn't change, your fine. But replace that cable, cut it in half and throw it away. ..intermittent load, as in faulty speaker cable, is probably the worst offender when it comes to frying output transformers. ...no load is clearly bad, mismatched impedance hard on the tubes. But intermittent load turns the transformer into an ignition coil and can get flash over between windings, shorting the transformer out of commission
    ..but again, if the sound didn't turn into weak fuzz, but stayed strong, you got lucky. ..don't gamble with that cable again. ..
    j
     
  5. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    Well there was no smoke or flashing over from what I could tell, it was probably about 30 seconds at the most. As soon as my sound drops out I always hit standby anyway, just as reflex incase a speaker cable failure, or speaker jack failure is ever the problem. And to my horror this time it was the problem!

    The amp still sounded good and very loud when I changed out the cable, but i think the power tubes might have copped it a little bit. The SLO has very strong transformers but I still would never want to put them to the test like that again.

    That cable is already in the bin and a new lava cable is on its way, I also will be buying a new one every few years just to avoid this happening again as much as possible.

    Thanks for your response Johan and Jimmy.
     
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  6. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    Important:
    It may not be the cable, it may be the jack on the amplifier or the jack on the speaker cabinet.
    I would see to it that the jacks are replaced w/ CLIFF UK or Switchcraft.

    Also: beware of Fake CLIFF jacks.
    These fakes do not say: "UK" on the jack. Make sure the jack says: UK.


    The cable should have:
    A. Switchcraft plugs (preferred) B. Neutrik Plugs C. Amphenol Plugs

    If the cable does not have one of those 3, you are probably buying substandard junk.

    The markets are flooded with junk speaker cables with defective plugs. Most of these are made in China. They are absolutely worthless.
    Don't buy or use them....they can destroy your amplifier.

    Example: "hot wires" speaker cables which are worthless garbage. The plugs are defective.

    Lifetime Warrantee: it's worthless.
    The warrantee does not pay for amp repairs.
    So do not be lured into buying a China speaker cable with a "lifetime warrantee." It's just garbage with a lifetime warrantee...which is essentially worthless.
     
  7. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    which brand of speaker cable do you recommend?

    I forgot to mention that I tried the suspect george l cable on my friends amp, jiggled it and it did the same thing. Switched out the cable for the rest of the rehearsal and there was no problems.

    As far as the jacks go, I'm not 100% sure what they are but they are metal on both the back of the SLO-100 and the matching cabinet both made in 2013.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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  9. SG~GUY

    SG~GUY Well-Known Member

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    -you don't need expensive speaker wires, all they need to do is handle the load-

    -some use stranded 14/16 AWG lamp cord or extension cords, with good soldered 1/4" male ends/jacks

    -one of the worst things you can use is a shielded guitar/instrument cord-(not big enough wire diameter)-

    -all this is multiplied by how long of run it is-

    -was the cable/cord warm?
     
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  10. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    no the cable wasnt warm to the touch when I checked it, but it hadn't been used in around a month till that day. It wasn't an instrument cable though for sure :

    [​IMG]
     
  11. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    It is not necessary to spend a lot of money to get a good cable.

    Rapco Horizon w/ switchcraft plugs
    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/accessories/rapco-horizon-speaker-cable#productDetail

    18 GA, 6 foot. It is not necessary to use wire larger than 18 GA.
    Big thick wire - is a waste of money and accomplishes nothing.

    The cable should cost less than $10.
    It is not necessary to spend more that $10 on a good speaker cable w/ Real Switchcraft plugs.

    Beware of FAKE switchcraft plugs:
    Make sure the plug says "Switchcraft" on the metal.

    I do not think that there is any better connector available...I doubt it.

    Switchcraft has proven to be the most reliable connectors, and I will always use them.
     
  12. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    Don't ever use cables with "solderless" connectors. They are absolute crap.
    (see above picture? avoid that!!!)

    Only use SOLDERED connectors. Especially for the speaker cable!
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
  13. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    thanks very much, I thought that by spending more on cables it would prevent this from happening. I have an old planet waves one that i've had for more than 10 years that I use as a spare, its never done that to me and isn't a boutique brand name or anything fancy.
     
  14. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    yes i've leant my lesson about these solder less george l cables, never ever again!

    Many thanks for your wisdom guys, I got a bit sucked into the george l hype and even replaced all my pedal board with them.
     
  15. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    I cannot think of a less reliable way to make a cable.:ohno:
    IMHO, it's a joke.
    I can't believe that these would be sold to hook up speakers to a tube amp.

    The connection between amp and speaker needs to be rock solid. It needs to be infallible, like the Pope.
     
  16. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    I wrote them an email complaining and never got a response, I feel like an idiot for using them now but I just thought they were good cables.
     
  17. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    But I can't change whats happened, just learn and move on being grateful that the amp didn't blow up.
     
  18. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    You never hook up a speaker w/ a shielded cable, that can blow the output transformer.
    (the cable was a shielded solder-less guitar cable)

    They should have warned customers about doing that.

    Always use UN-shielded wire for the speaker, the same as lamp cord (a real speaker cable).
    Make sure the connections are soldered.
    You cannot depend on "set screws" for a speaker connection, it's high power and the contact points are not designed to handle the wattage.

    These type cables with solder-less connections have never been very reliable when I used them.
    IMHO I have never seen one work right...not for very long anyhow. Every one of these that I have seen -failed.
    I'm not sure what the attraction is.
     
  19. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    :jam:
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  20. Gibson_83

    Gibson_83 Member

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    this is how it was sold to me, as a speaker cable from the e-bay description. I guess I was just a bit clueless, and thought george l was good brand without really getting the whole solder less connection being a bad thing (learned that the hard way).

    George L's 10' Speaker Cable

    [​IMG]
    George L's cables have been honored by every major publication in the music industry and continues to win numerous awards. NOW you can have that CLEAN CLEAR SOUND that you have heard on countless recordings. Regardless of style, genre, instrument or equipment GEORGE L’s delivers the clarity you've been craving.

    George L's has been judged #1 in Best Sound Clarity by Guitar Player Magazine in the USA, with numerous top honors and award around the world. Along with a lifetime warranty on our plugs you can't go wrong.

    Features:



    • 10' of George L's speaker cable
    • (2) George L's unplated brass straight speaker plugs
    • This cable comes pro-assembled, tested, and ready to plug'n'play
    • Custom lengths and quantities are available, contact us for info.
     

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