Lets talk guitar and speaker cords

Discussion in 'The Workbench' started by Sharrack, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. Sharrack

    Sharrack New Member

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    I'll admit it..... for years, i'll use any old cord
    in any old hole! lol.
    So... its time to purchase some new cords
    and speaker cords ( a differrence?)
    What brand would you recommend that
    is reasonably priced?
    Is there such a thing?
    thanks, kenny s
     
  2. Wilder Amplification

    Wilder Amplification New Member

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    Any 12 gauge speaker cable will work. You can even make your own out of extension cords if ya want. Nothing too critical here. The most current your cab will draw is about 5 amps, and that's assuming a 4 ohm cab on a 100 watter so 18 gauge will even work. I just prefer 12 for its rigidity and ruggedness.
     
  3. shredless

    shredless Well-Known Member

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    If you must spend on cords (I dont think Ive bought more than 2 in the last 15 years) buy the cheapest one with a warranty, better yet, just learn how to solder and repair the ends when they go bad.
     
  4. Sharrack

    Sharrack New Member

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    thanks....so a guitar cord is Not recommened for a head to
    cab connection?
     
  5. thrawn86

    thrawn86 Well-Known Member

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    No. Use a Speaker cable for Head to Cab.

    On the subject of Instrument cables, this is a touchy subject to some. There are those who believe a quality cable 'adds' to the sound somehow, and others who don't believe this to be so. IMHO, buy a quality cable to avoid problems down the road and one that has a good warranty and reputation. At least that way, you lessen the chances that a cheap cable will keep giving out on you.
     
  6. JohnH

    JohnH Well-Known Member

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    For your guitar cords, there's a big difference in tone dependent on cord length. Shorter cords sound clearer and brighter and there are proper technical reasons why this is so, based on the capacitance of the cord and pickup impedance.

    This does not apply to guitars with an active output, but for any normal guitar I dont use longer than 10' from guitar to first pedal. After the first active or non-true-bypass pedal, you can have a long cord if necessary from there to the amp.

    And of course, some may prefer the sound of a longer cord, or need one anyway due to the stage set up.
     
  7. MajorNut1967

    MajorNut1967 New Member

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    12ga for a guitar speaker cable! LOL good lord Why? Durability & rigidity, isn't that what Viagra is for?
     
  8. Adwex

    Adwex New Member

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    I'm not sure.
    Absolutely not.
     
  9. Wilder Amplification

    Wilder Amplification New Member

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    Not just "No" but "FUCK NO".

    First and foremost, the center conductor on instrument cable is VERY thin and cannot carry the current that the speaker draws from the amplifier, which is usually in the range of several amps.

    Second off...instrument cables have a capacitance to them. At higher frequencies they can appear as a dead short across the output.

    Speaker cable on the other hand, is heavy gauge wire that is paired in the same jacket...not shielded like instrument cable is.

    Not only is instrument cable not recommended to connect a load to the amp, it is a HUGE no no.
     
  10. Clammy

    Clammy Well-Known Member

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    I use 14 ga speaker cables for head to cab connections, and George L's cables (coaxial, very low capacitance, solderless plugs) for instrument input. I use a wireless, though, so except for studio, my bass/guitar is not physically connected to my amps. I've just picked up a Line 6 Relay G50 wireless unit, and I a/b'ed it with plugging directly in with the George L's cable, and there's NO difference. That blew me away. I've used high end Nady wireless systems live for years, and they always compressed my signal and coloured my tone somewhat. The G50 doesn't at all.

    Cheers!
    :dude::dude::dude:
     
  11. Sharrack

    Sharrack New Member

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    Thanks for the explanation guys....
    Learning.... always learning!
    Kenny S
     
  12. frethand101

    frethand101 New Member

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    IMPO, go with Monster Cables for speaker/guitar or whatever.. They're a good quality cable that's not too hard on the wallet.. Cords do make a difference but the crowd would probably never notice the change from one cord to the next.. Especially when your playing the heavy distortion stuff..:cool2:

    As for clean channel & strictly acoustic performances where clarity is a plus??.. Yes, cords can & usually will have a audible effect on your sound..:Ohno: With this scenerio a bad, cheap or run of the mill cord can give you a low hiss or static type sounding noise.. Kinda like a tape hiss sound..
     
  13. Sharrack

    Sharrack New Member

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    Cool.......I just started reading all my cables and I have a 3 ft Pro co.
    16/2 speaker cable that I'll use for my JCM800 head to cab.
    I just need a 3 wire cable to get my marshall reverb/boost footswitch working correctly.

    urrr.......now I just need to remove the instrument cable from the cabinet jack............:lol::lol:
     
  14. Wilder Amplification

    Wilder Amplification New Member

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    That's called a TRS cable (Tip/Ring/Sleeve). Most shops that deal in Pro Audio carry them.
     
  15. TubeStack

    TubeStack Well-Known Member

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    I really like my Bullet coily cable.
     
  16. j_cizzo

    j_cizzo New Member

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    I gotta agree with this one.. I bought the cheapo cables waay back in the day and they worked for a while (so I thought).. once i really started putting a rig together, i started having problems.. i dunno where I heard it from, but what ever it was, i changed all my cables.. i just so happened to use monster cables (although there are plenty of good ones out there) and the difference was night and day, NO BS..

    YES, i'm well aware that my original cables were junk and you probably won't get the results that I did; my point is that using really good quality cables is very important in achieving a solid, clean signal.. otherwise you'll be compensating for a crummy sound by adjusting the settings in your electronics, or purchasing things you never needed to help you limp along...
     
  17. RustyPlayer

    RustyPlayer New Member

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    I don't buy into all the marketing pitches being used to sell cables for 100's of dollars.A Perfect example would be gold connectors. The sales pitch being better tone and signal strength due to its improved electrical conduction properties but when you think about it, your not plugging it into a jack with gold contacts so whats the point.

    To back up my thinking, when replacing memory in a computer, you must use RAM with contacts made from the same metal or you will get errors due to the low voltage created by the two different metals.

    For good quality extremely affordable cables check out

    South Creek Audio - Home Page


     
  18. Aberle

    Aberle New Member

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    I swear by Planet Waves custom pro series. I use 25' from guitar to pedals, then 25' from pedals to amp with no issues. Huge improvement over the cheapest house brand cables I used before. At one point I thought I would 'upgrade' to the Monster "Rock" cables, but I found myself trying to e.q. some high frequencies back in. Now I have a nice set of expensive backups.
    As for speakers I use 12/3 SJOOW cord with Neutrik connectors. I use the SJOOW cord for extension cords at job sites where a forklift or truck might run over it. Tough stuff. But any cheap speaker wire will work as long as it can handle the power from the amp.
     
  19. brp

    brp Well-Known Member

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    12 awg speaker cables for a guitar amp!?


    Well... unless, is it this guy's amp?



    [​IMG]
     
  20. Classic 59

    Classic 59 New Member

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    Like anything else you can spend as little or as much as you want on guitar and speaker cables. Over the years, I have been purchasing cables from Lava Cable and have been very pleased with Mark's professionalism and level of service.

    Lava Cable

    Lava Cable Buying Guide
     

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