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  • Speaker cables connections

    good morning
    in moving my stuff around in my audio room I just noticed something that needs to be posted.
    We all have read about our interconnects removing and re installing them giving things a bit of a boost. While I have done this it never did anything for me. The why may lead to more discussion as a person I highly consider feels even moving out cables about yields changes and they need time to settle again.
    But what I found was simple loose wires so loose that what I used pliers to tighten is now tightened by my hands

    as an electrical contractor and engineer I know copper can compress over time. Checking in the field with heat detection type cameras or guns helps locate them.
    But our audio will not yield such heat.
    I feel my posts expand as well as the copper wire settling in. This is the second time I have tightened them by the way. I am going to solder the beaded copper or put Spade lugs on them. Also Spade lugs loosen too. Even the expanding banana plugs do as well.
    I think our audio connections for speaker binding terminals
    is sub standard in some ways.

    At at any point does anyone have any input in this also is here a rule of thumb for checking this some use. ??
    analog stuff.
    otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
    otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
    sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
    new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
    thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
    thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
    kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
    phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
    speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
    mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
    digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
    Dacs lampi various

  • #2
    Spares or bananas I always have to tighten them at one time or another. Would be nice if the speaker connector manufacturers would provide some torque requirements for their lugs.
    Chris
    ----------------------------------------------------------------
    Kef 201/2, Pass xa30.5, W4S STP-SE, Manley Chinook, VPI Classic, Dynavector DV20x2L, ExaSound e32, Acoustic Zen cables. (Office): Vincent SP331 Mkll, Quicksilver Pre, Lumin D1, (Ken Lau Signiture Edition PSU), Bryston BCD-1, Vapor Audio Breeze, WooAudio W6se,Questyle Audio CMA800R LCD-3,HD800s, HD600, Mr Speaker Ether C Flow,

    Comment


    • #3
      hand tightening binding post with spades should be sufficient, if you think its still too loose then the posts are of a poor design. pliers, socket wrenches and the like are a recipe for disaster. over the years Ive seen so many amps with 'pin wheeled' post from over tightening. When i buy used amps or speakers, a tell tale sign--of whether the previous owner was caveman or not--are teeth marks from wrenches.

      A good friend of mine that's been an audio tech for 30+ years has seen everything and has replaced lots of over-torqued (broken-off!) binding post from uber high-end gear, more than I thought possible.
      TechDAS | Graham Eng | ZYX | B.M.C. | Boulder | Magico

      "Listening to Analogue music is an act of rebellion in a digital gulag" - Simon Yorke

      Comment


      • MylesBAstor
        MylesBAstor commented
        Editing a comment
        And then there were the Edison Price posts that were made made with Cu-Tellurium and were too soft. Even with normal tightening, they stripped. I eventually gave up and went to the Cardas posts on my old Maggies.

    • #4
      Originally posted by Rob View Post
      hand tightening binding post with spades should be sufficient, if you think its still too loose then the posts are of a poor design. pliers, socket wrenches and the like are a recipe for disaster. over the years Ive seen so many amps with 'pin wheeled' post from over tightening them. When i buy used amps, a tell tale sign--of whether the previous owner was caveman or not--are teeth marks from wrenches.

      A good friend of mine that's been an audio tech for 30+ years has seen everything and replaces lots of over-torqued (broken-off!) binding post from uber high-end gear, more than I thought possible.
      Yep torque wrenches have no place in an audiophiles tool belt.
      Chris
      ----------------------------------------------------------------
      Kef 201/2, Pass xa30.5, W4S STP-SE, Manley Chinook, VPI Classic, Dynavector DV20x2L, ExaSound e32, Acoustic Zen cables. (Office): Vincent SP331 Mkll, Quicksilver Pre, Lumin D1, (Ken Lau Signiture Edition PSU), Bryston BCD-1, Vapor Audio Breeze, WooAudio W6se,Questyle Audio CMA800R LCD-3,HD800s, HD600, Mr Speaker Ether C Flow,

      Comment


      • #5
        Guys relax I am not going crazy just marking things snug. No ripping or stripping threads. But my
        point still stands how many here have tested even by hand a few months later to see if they are loose or not.
        When I say pliers they are tiny lol not 9 inch linemen or torque hahahha. Some
        posts do loosen more than others
        analog stuff.
        otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
        otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
        sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
        new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
        thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
        thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
        kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
        phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
        speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
        mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
        digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
        Dacs lampi various

        Comment


        • #6
          The ones I like the best are the banana ones that have an invert that as it's turned except and he diameter inside a home in the post
          analog stuff.
          otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
          otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
          sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
          new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
          thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
          thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
          kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
          phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
          speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
          mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
          digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
          Dacs lampi various

          Comment


          • #7
            Originally posted by Alrainbow View Post
            Guys relax I am not going crazy just marking things snug. No ripping or stripping threads. But my
            point still stands how many here have tested even by hand a few months later to see if they are loose or not.
            When I say pliers they are tiny lol not 9 inch linemen or torque hahahha. Some
            posts do loosen more than others
            we're chill a few things to consider and you know this because you're an electrical contractor, binding post and electrical connectors of all kinds use conductive metals that are inherently soft. In audio the metallurgy is typically a combination of brass, bronze, copper and maybe silver/gold, all very soft with poor shear strength. Whats good for electrical conductivity is relatively poor in mechanical strength and durability.
            TechDAS | Graham Eng | ZYX | B.M.C. | Boulder | Magico

            "Listening to Analogue music is an act of rebellion in a digital gulag" - Simon Yorke

            Comment


            • #8
              Not completely true there are alloys that look like alum or even stainless steel types that are very hard . I use them for 600 mom wire even copper ona threaded spindle is better than any post I ever seen. But t do get your points.

              Now while on this wire topic hiw about wire direction ? Some feel wires have inherent direction for audio cables . Funny it's seems to be a speaker or headphone cable thing but no interconnects lol. Also a type of silver of copper called one something I laugh when I read this things
              analog stuff.
              otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
              otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
              sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
              new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
              thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
              thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
              kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
              phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
              speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
              mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
              digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
              Dacs lampi various

              Comment


              • Guest's Avatar
                Guest commented
                Editing a comment
                Quite a few manufacturer's indicate direction on their audio cables, including interconnects. It can be as obvious as an arrow imprinted at a terminal, or as subtle as the direction of the writing on the cable's skin.

                I'd like someone who knows metallurgy and electricity to explain cable directionality.

              • Rob
                Rob commented
                Editing a comment
                Al, who uses aluminum or steel core wire for transmitting audio signals?? I've seen those types used to carry power but not audio.

            • #9
              I posted this other forums . One answer I got was they test a roll when rapped up and listen lol.
              http://www.norneaudio.com/litzheim/N...Audio-Feedback
              this is the type of wire. I honestly get a headache in reading this.
              What I would like to know is has anyone act sully claim to hear the difference ?
              Silver or copper or combo f each many strands each would tight some bundled and groups wound together .
              Anyone have any thoughts ?
              analog stuff.
              otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
              otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
              sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
              new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
              thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
              thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
              kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
              phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
              speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
              mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
              digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
              Dacs lampi various

              Comment


              • #10
                If anyone has taken a materials engineering class, metals are elastic. When you pull a metal (like a spade lug or compress a banana) it stretches according to a stress-strain curve. The stretched metal will ultimately reach it's "yield point" where it will no longer spring back and has permanent deformation. And then will ultimately break. Theoretically you tighten a nut (binding post) just prior to the yield point for maximum clamping force/pressure. But never go past the YP.

                Since metals are elastic, they will relax over time. One of the assembly tricks I have is that I wait about a half hour after assembly to re-tighten... Then tighten 6 months to a year later as a fine-tuning exercise...

                An interesting industrial project I did many years ago was to design a circular overhead bridge crane located between the turbines and generators at the Grand Coulee hydroelectric power plant 3 in Eastern Washington, the largest dam in the world at the time. The purpose of the crane was to transport the nuts that bolt the turbine to the generator. Turns out they don't use gigantic wrenches to tighten the nuts, but use a hydraulic stretcher to pull the threaded stud a precise distance. The nut is made snug then the stretcher is removed leaving a precise clamping force. This is a great example of materials science.

                A torque wrench is an excellent tool as long as you know what you are doing by having the correct/optimal settings. And a bad tool in the wrong hands.
                Speakers/Amps: Genesis G2.2 Jr with Powered Servo-Sub Bass, Genesis GR1440 Mono Amps, 5,000 watts total power
                Preamp: SMc Audio VRE-1C Preamp (fully balanced inputs and output)
                Phono 1: VPI Signature 21 Belt-Drive Turntable with 10” 3D Printed Fatboy Gimbal Arm and Ortofon MC Windfeld Ti Phono Cartridge driving Lehmann Decade Phono Preamp
                Phono 2: VPI HW-40 Direct-Drive Turntable with 12” 3D Printed Fatboy Gimbal Arm and Ortofon MC Anna Diamond Phono Cartridge driving Genesis Gold Phono Preamp
                R2R Tape: Studer A810 with Bridge Console
                Digital: Lumin Network Player with Lumin NAS
                Cables: Genesis Advanced Technologies/Absolute Fidelity Interface Interconnects, Speaker, Phono and Power
                Power: Audio-Ultra Power System, IsoTek Super Titan Passive Power Conditioning for Amplifiers
                Accessories: Custom Acrylic Equipment Stands, Klaudio Ultrasonic RCM

                Comment


                • Rob
                  Rob commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Joe, i use torque wrenches to tighten many things in the shop. where in an audio system would you use one and how many amp/speaker companies still use binding posts that accept a socket or an open-end wrench? the vast majority of current speakers and amps I've seen have posts with ears (large wings) or oval shaped knobs for hand tightening (w/ thumb & forefinger).

                • Joe Pittman
                  Joe Pittman commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I use a Proto 6106 Torque Screwdriver when doing the final tightening of power cable connectors. My torque setting is based on experience. Another thing for everyone is to remember that most of the wire we use for cables is multi-stranded wire. Clamping solid wire versus stranded wire is different. Stranded wire relaxes more quickly than solid core in my opinion, that's why I always re-tighten stranded wire using the torque driver. Using a torque setting is also more consistent/repeatable.

              • #11
                Good evening joe
                you make good points But in audio we are using small amounts of tourq on metals of no origin we know of . so what the manufactures intentions we mostly don't know . As for metals we do in most applications of large wires or alum in general there is limits to adhere to and yes we tighten to just below the break . In my use its always a manufactures specs I go by period . I am an installer not a design company lol. Even the bolts I use are speced to a footpunds setting. Copper is a much more forgiving non ferrous metal to work with and does not have issues we have In audio for the most part anyway . A few years ago I had a port authority contract and some bolts had to be cold set only and then torque checked after . Pressure is what is the focus in an electrical connection if not welded of sorts and if made correctly it does not need to be made tight again. There are products being made today that are just a spiral of wire around a post . Anyway thanks all for your inputs and thoughts .
                analog stuff.
                otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
                otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
                sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
                new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
                thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
                thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
                kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
                phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
                speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
                mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
                digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
                Dacs lampi various

                Comment


                • #12
                  I cannot say if alum is used in Audio. I can say it's not pure it's an alloy
                  also alum is less resistance then the steel on some amd I'll bet it's less then brass too. My point was do we check these On a reg basis as some do with interconnects
                  also I have tinned some as well this helped
                  its common on plugs or in line body connectors
                  the banana ones that expand are soldered in place
                  analog stuff.
                  otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
                  otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
                  sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
                  new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
                  thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
                  thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
                  kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
                  phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
                  speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
                  mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
                  digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
                  Dacs lampi various

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    I think there are binding posts and then there are binding posts. Take the binding posts on the back of the Mark Levinson amps. Click image for larger version  Name:	mark-levinson-no533h-review-tn-2.jpg Views:	1 Size:	39.9 KB ID:	35348




                    They have these big flanges that give you a firm grip and a good, tight, long term spade lug connection. Thus nothing else is needed.

                    The Mundorf binding posts on the back of my Magicos are very nice, you don't kneed a pair of pliers to tighten and don't seem to loosen with time. Click image for larger version  Name:	mundorf.jpg Views:	1 Size:	5.5 KB ID:	35349




                    Without a doubt, the EU approved spade lugs make the worst spade connections I've ever encountered. Not to mention, big spades won't fit.

                    I think there are many other issues involved in the spade connection, eg. the thickness of the lug. Some believe that thinner lugs are easier to clamp down on and conform to the clamping pressure. Sometimes I find that thicker spades don't seat properly but that bad connection only rears its ugly head with time. Sometimes the two sides of the lugs on the thick spades aren't quite aligned so the connections isn't quite what it should be. Sometimes on thick cables, you don't quite have enough (+) and (-) single wire at the end to play with. As a result, one side of the wire puts strain on the other leg and that may affect tightness over time. (especially in my case where I have to correct for absolute phase at the speaker end.)

                    Now there are more types of male RCA connectors out there than you can shake a stick at. Some tighten down on the female, others don't and some just loosen with time (though that was more of an issue years ago). I don't know what to think here because sometimes what might be a good mechanical connection might not necessarily be the best sounding connector (Of course there are many other factors that go into making a good RCA).
                    Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
                    Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
                    ________________________________________

                    -Zellaton Plural Evo speakers
                    -Goldmund Telos 300 stereo amp
                    -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
                    -Doshi EVO and Goldmund PH3.8 phonostage
                    -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
                    -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
                    -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga Mk. 2, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
                    -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
                    -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 6, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
                    -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz 3 racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA OHIO Class 2.1+ platforms.

                    Comment


                    • Joe Pittman
                      Joe Pittman commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Back when I was into Mark Levinson amps (33H's) I removed the "wing nuts" and replaced them with conventional nuts and used a torque wrench. I was also using speaker cables using Bochino connectors which were so heavy and stiff they would loosen easily. The cables were so heavy, they actually broke the posts one time. I don't do that anymore. Many 5-way binding post nuts can be replaced, but do so at your own risk.

                    • MylesBAstor
                      MylesBAstor commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I played with some two ICs (CRL and Audioquest) outfitted with Bocchino RCAs. They must be the largest RCA connector ever made. The connectors were so long that had to move my equipment forward so had enough room in the rear for the cables to clear the wall. Never saw the spades but given the RCAs, no surprise.

                  • #14
                    Myles those too look good. Does anyone make set screw types a think post that has say two set screws would be nice. Or could even have a typical screw down terninall that could go inside where he set a screw type
                    there are lugs inuse that have set screws that's have two screws it's used for pulling wires.
                    This hi end stuff is a diy in many ways
                    not that I knock it in any way.
                    Years ago I work at a hospital unused to help a brain surgeon make some tools lol not kidding

                    binding posts need a better design I feel
                    analog stuff.
                    otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 made new by soren
                    otari mtr 10 2 track 1/4 1/2 combo made new by soren
                    sota sapphire used eminent tech ver 2 arm
                    new sota nova table has magnetic levitation platter and full speed control and latest motor same arm as above
                    thorens td124 sme ver 2 arm
                    thorens td125 sme ver 2 arm
                    kenwood direct drive sme ver 2 arm
                    phono preamp Ml no 25 all re capped
                    speakers cust infinity IRS V , new caps and LPS , magnets etc.
                    mark levivson pre no 26 amps no 33
                    digital three cust servers , win ser 2016 , AO
                    Dacs lampi various

                    Comment


                    • #15
                      I don't know how they sound but George Cardas has a a patent on these binding posts. I think Jeff Rowland uses them.

                      http://cardas.com/cpbp.php
                      Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
                      Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
                      ________________________________________

                      -Zellaton Plural Evo speakers
                      -Goldmund Telos 300 stereo amp
                      -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
                      -Doshi EVO and Goldmund PH3.8 phonostage
                      -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
                      -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
                      -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga Mk. 2, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
                      -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
                      -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 6, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
                      -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz 3 racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA OHIO Class 2.1+ platforms.

                      Comment


                      • Joe Pittman
                        Joe Pittman commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Yes, the Cardas binding post are very good sounding. They are used by DartZeel.

                      • Rob
                        Rob commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Ayre uses them as well. They came standard on my Joseph Audio Pulsars and Rowland amp, I think they're excellent used with George's spades, but they wont accept bananas without adaptors (which I abhor)
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