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Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/28/2012 10:14 AM

I'm looking for new banana plugs for my speaker system as the ones I am currently using barely hold in the wire. The problem is that most plugs are geared toward stranded wire and I use exclusively solid core. I was originally looking at Sewell Silverbacks but I'm not sure they would hold tight. Any suggestions?

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#1

Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/28/2012 10:22 AM

Think they'd hold OK, but could you screw the grubscrews in far enough? They don't give the dimensions of the cable entry, an you haven't stated your core diameter.

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/28/2012 10:45 AM

I'm using 14 AWG wire. In one of the reviews it says that 10 AWG stranded is the largest and 12 or 14 for solid. However, this is just the best guess of an Amazon reviewer so I wouldn't buy them on just that.

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#3

Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/28/2012 1:24 PM

Tin wire, tin connector, join and solder, they'll never get loose.

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#6
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 1:36 AM

Precisely!

Just don't forget to put the connector shell onto the cable (the right way around) first.

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#4

Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/28/2012 1:51 PM
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#5

Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 12:03 AM

Just curious: Why use solid core wire?

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#7
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 1:37 AM

I'd like to know too.

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#8
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 6:57 AM

My guess, because it is cheap and you can use Romex. It makes sense if the cable is inside a wall. Even so, usually wall mount terminals are employed so normal stranded wire is used from the wall to the speaker.

If the cable is not in a wall, I can see no reason not to use stranded zip corp of appropriate gauge.

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#9
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 12:00 PM

Good point. I might be reluctanct to use Romex for low voltage wiring. The NEC can be pretty arcane and sometimes the rules laid out don't always seem intuitively obvious especially for engineers. Something in the back of my head is telling me there might be some rule that low-voltage wiring shouldn't use the same type wiring as the premises power. I do recall that if low-voltage wiring and premises power wiring share the same space, the low voltage wiring must be rated for the highest voltage of any of the conductors in that run.

I might be all wet on this one but I have been "surprised" before by things I've read in the code.

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#10
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 7:21 PM

I came across a 200ft spool of wire for free. I tested it in A-B fashion against standard 16 AWG zip chord and heard a noticeable improvement (possibly just because of the increase in thickness) so I've been using it ever since. As I said in a previous thread, I plan on buying from Blue Jeans Cable once I have some extra cash but, as a college student, that's hard to come by.

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#11
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 7:30 PM

If you think you can hear the difference you are hearing things.

This well known test demonstrates the futility of spending money on speaker cable.

I do recommend good quality connectors, but that should be common sense for making a good connection, but what goes between those connectors is not important.

Buy 12 gauge zip cable from Ace Hardware and you will have just as good performance as any other commercial cable at any price.

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#12
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 8:34 PM

I'd certainly go along with that.

Further (my hearing at age 60 is obviously not up to many others') I'd suggest that at normal listening levels (i.e. when it's still possible to have a conversation) in a normal domestic living room with reasonably efficient speakers, more than 95% of the population would not notice the difference (in a double-blind test) between the most expensive/highly spec'd speaker cables and bell wire - despite Maplin having chickened out with"No sorry this product does not support that." in their FAQ.

I'm prepared for the barrage of shouts of 'Audiophobe!' etc.

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#14
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

07/02/2012 9:44 AM

I'm not implying that the cable I was given is of better quality than zip chord, just that it is of thicker gauge.

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#15
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

07/02/2012 9:58 AM

You sort of did when you claimed that 16 AWG zip was inferior in audio quality to the solid wire.

You did not specify the length of run for each cable, so it is difficult to comment on the true nature of your test. My point is that people tend to think they hear a difference many times when it is really listener bias at work.

The coat hanger test simply demonstrates that as long as the gauge is adequately sized for the length of the run, any difference in wire type or construction is inaudible.

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#13
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Re: Banana Plugs for Solid Core Wire

06/29/2012 10:48 PM

Well, it's your money.

But this veteran analog EE knows better. If I were in your shoes, the free cable is the best. Even in my shoes, the free cable is best and I could easily afford that folly. Even the late Bob Pease totally de-bunked the Monster Cable myths. And he was one of the most prominent analog engineers ever.

http://electronicdesign.com/article/articles/what-s-all-this-hoax-stuff-anyhow-6134

Bob's Mailbox

http://electronicdesign.com/article/analog-and-mixed-signal/bob-s-mailbox13908

Good luck with your quest !

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