Audio Cables

User NameUser Name Posts: 106
edited June 2004 in 2 Channel Audio
How much should an audiophile on a budget (which is what most of us seem to be) spend on cables? Which brands should you stay away from? Which brands do you recommend? And for discussion purposes - why do cables even matter?

Also, could somebody give me a quick rundown on audio connectors? Not to hog the discussion, but banana-plugs, what the heck?
Post edited by User Name on

Comments

  • TerraxTerrax Posts: 483
    edited June 2004
    User,
    There is some excellent info on cables the the thread "Cable swap program" that doro started some time back. Signal Cables which you'll see reference to alot, can be had for a price that want break the bank, and they are of very good quality. Takes a bit of reading through, but I'll think you'll find some of what you need there.
  • dorokusaidorokusai Posts: 25,488
    edited June 2004
    If you would like to demo some cables, prior to purchase, please join the program....it's free. Signal Cable is a Club Polk supporter.

    Thanks for the plug Terry :)
    CTC BBQ Amplifier, Sonic Frontiers Line3 Pre-Amplifier and Wadia 581 SACD player. Speakers? Always changing but for now, Mission Argonauts I picked up for $50 bucks, mint.
  • pjdamipjdami Posts: 1,898
    edited June 2004
    User Name,

    Yes as suggested you should sign up for the cable swap program. The reason being to find out if different cables make a difference for you. I find that different cables make tonal quality changes in my systems. One cable may be darker sounding or another cable may be brighter sounding. Most of my two channel rigs now I have no tone controls (bass / treble) so cables are used to change the sound or I change out and try different tubes.

    Popular cable manufacturers that I have tried include, Signal Cable, Transparent, Kimber Kable, Acoustic Zen, and DH Labs. Some others that I haven't tried include Nordost, PS Audio, Audioquest, MIT, and Analysis Plus. Lot's of cable choices man. I found a nice difference in separation and clarity / detail between the $150 ICs and the $50 ICs in my system. Loudspeaker cables I found to affect the tonal quality of how dark / laid back or zippy / exciting the sound gets.
  • Mark of CenlaMark of Cenla Posts: 35
    edited June 2004
    I have has good results with Heartland Cables (online) and AR interconnects (Best Buy). The Heartland Cables improved both the sound and picture on my DVD player. Good luck.
    Mark Wellman ><>

    "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
  • pjdamipjdami Posts: 1,898
    edited June 2004
    Hey Mark,

    What part of La. you from man? Lafayette or Alexandria? Good to see another crawfish eating Polkie on here. I'm near New Orleans.

    Welcome to the board by the way.

    Paul
  • dragon1952dragon1952 Posts: 4,736
    edited June 2004
    User,
    Speaker cable terminations like banana plugs and spades basically just make it easier to connect up your speaker cables....it's like plug and play, especially if you're like most of us who are constantly swapping different equipment in and out of our systems. Many consider just bare wire the best connection anyway so if you're just going to set it up and not screw with it don't worry about it.
    As far as audio cables, just start with Radio Shack or AR's (as mentioned above) and then go from there. Stay away from the cheaper Monster cables, IMO.
    ____________________________
    2 channel - PS Audio Stellar S300 amp, PS Audio DirectStream DAC, audio optimized NUC7i5 running Windows 10 Pro/JRiver MC24, Matrix X-SPDIF 2 USB interface, Blackbird SSD dock with 500 GB Samsung 860 EVO, Tom Tutay modded EE Minimax preamp, Furman Elite 15 Pfi power conditioner, Martin Logan Electromotion ESL speakers, Rythmik F12SE subwoofer, Kimber 4TC speaker wire, Gabriel Gold Reflection V2 IC's, VH Audio power cords, Wireworld USB and HDMI/I2S cables
    Computer - Windows 7/JRiver, Topping D10 DAC, Fostex PMO.4n monitors
  • amulfordamulford Posts: 5,198
    edited June 2004
    Another place I've found to have relatively good cables for a reasonable price is here:

    Blue Jeans Cable

    The actual cables used are well respected brands and they are of a good quality.

    I, too, would suggest you join the cable swap. I discovered Signal Cables through it, and wound up getting some for my rig.
    I smell ****, burning ****, glowing cherry red spanked ****.

    RT1
  • VR3VR3 Posts: 23,937
    edited June 2004
    Ratshack discontinued the Fusion line of cables - atleast on the website they did, u may still be able to find them in stores though.

    IXOS is one to look at as well.
    - Not Tom

    "No, that's silly talk. Dude, you can't possibly be this audio dumb so quit the act." - Doro
  • Mark of CenlaMark of Cenla Posts: 35
    edited June 2004
    Originally posted by pjdami
    Hey Mark,

    What part of La. you from man? Lafayette or Alexandria? Good to see another crawfish eating Polkie on here. I'm near New Orleans.

    Welcome to the board by the way.

    Paul

    Thanks. I live in a very small town called Plaucheville in Avoyelles Parish, which in between Alexandria and Lafayette and a little east . I am very familar with the N.O. area (lived there for most of the 80s). Where do you live?

    P.S. Sorry, but I don't like crawfish although my wife does.
    Mark Wellman ><>

    "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
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