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Is 14 gauge speaker wire good enough for...


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Originally posted by SteinbergerHack



How long a cable will you be using? If it's less than 10 feet, 14 gauge should be just fine.

Myself,and many professional sound companies use 14 gauge for live sound aps for runs of 30-40',with 500 watts or more going through them. If you studied a chart on resistance and line loss for wire diameter,you'd realize that 14 gauge would be fine for runs far longer than 10' in this situation.

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True - it's under .1 Watt/foot loss with a 60W amp into an eight-ohm load (~ 3 amps). Personally, though, I like to go with overkill. I don't ever use the IEC, NEMA, or NEC codes - they're only looking at safety (i.e., heating). I look at how much loss I'm willing to deal with in the signal chain, and how much I'm willing to have the cable impact the sound.

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Originally posted by guitarNed

For a

Go to the live sound forum. Most of the big-timers there recommend 14 gauge as being plenty thick. Certainly nothing harmful about going with 12 gauge. But my thoughts,which have also been echoed by the real in-the-know folks there is that once you start getting into cable that is so thick that it makes soldering to small terminal tricky and iffy you are better off going a little smaller and having connection points that you know are healthy.

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Originally posted by guitarNed

Don't do it!!!


The live sound forum is full of useless gits. You will get nothing but empty time-wasting non-responses. The live sound forum is where people hang out when they can't play an instrument.

Thanks for the compliment. I can play my instruments just fine,thank you.

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I'm an Electrician ...... Wire is rated by amps/current . To determine what wire size to use you have to know how much current is going to be flowing through the wire .

 

Number 14 copper wire is good for 15 amp . Number 12 copper wire is good for 20 amps . Number 10 copper wire is good for 30 amps . Aluminum wire is rated different than copper wire of the same size .

 

But anyway you should have no problem using number 14 wire for speakers . As long as it isn't bare wire .

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Originally posted by tlbonehead

But my thoughts,which have also been echoed by the real in-the-know folks there is that once you start getting into cable that is so thick that it makes soldering to small terminal tricky and iffy you are better off going a little smaller and having connection points that you know are healthy.

 

Uhmmm...you shouldn't be using a solder joint for anything larger than about 16-ga to start with. A wire that big should be compression-connected (i.e., banana plugs or screw-downs with ring/spade lugs or pins). Frankly, I'd be worried about heating and vibration stress-fracturing on ANY soldered connection that's running over about 4-5 amps, regardless of the wire gauge.

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My second car was a volkswagon bug and this one time i went to see a movie when i came out my car wouldnt start so i checked the engine. Some jackass stole my coil wire off the coil to the cap. I used a 14G speaker wire and drove it for about 2 weeks till i had the money to get all new wires.

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Originally posted by SteinbergerHack



Uhmmm...you shouldn't be using a solder joint for anything larger than about 16-ga to start with. A wire that big should be compression-connected (i.e., banana plugs or screw-downs with ring/spade lugs or pins). Frankly, I'd be worried about heating and vibration stress-fracturing on ANY soldered connection that's running over about 4-5 amps, regardless of the wire gauge.

Hard to build a passive crossover w/o soldering. Many speaker terminals are soldered. And most patch bays have some soldering on them as well.

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Originally posted by BowerR64

My second car was a volkswagon bug and this one time i went to see a movie when i came out my car wouldnt start so i checked the engine. Some jackass stole my coil wire off the coil to the cap. I used a 14G speaker wire and drove it for about 2 weeks till i had the money to get all new wires.

 

Hippie! :D

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Originally posted by sandfly

I'm an Electrician ...... Wire is rated by amps/current . To determine what wire size to use you have to know how much current is going to be flowing through the wire .


Number 14 copper wire is good for 15 amp . Number 12 copper wire is good for 20 amps . Number 10 copper wire is good for 30 amps . Aluminum wire is rated different than copper wire of the same size .

 

Yeah, but that's based on NEC (National Electrical Code), which is really only concerned with safety (heating) and permissible voltage drop - at 60 Hz. You can legally install a power circuit that would have enough inductive and resistive losses to really mess up an audio signal.

 

You have to take into account the wire capacitance and resistance per foot to determine what the actual losses are, and what the frequency response of the cable would be - it's a lot more complex than deciding what size wire you should use for something like a 277-Volt three-phase lighting load.

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Originally posted by dot-dot-dot

Is that cork I smell?


14 gauge is plenty.

 

No it's the smell of burning 8 track cartridges.

 

I have a friend who swears by them for lighting BBQ's.

 

VHS cassettes work well too apparently.

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Originally posted by SteinbergerHack



Yeah, but that's based on NEC (National Electrical Code), which is really only concerned with safety (heating) and permissible voltage drop - at 60 Hz. You can legally install a power circuit that would have enough inductive and resistive losses to really mess up an audio signal.


You have to take into account the wire capacitance and resistance per foot to determine what the actual losses are, and what the frequency response of the cable would be - it's a lot more complex than deciding what size wire you should use for something like a 277-Volt three-phase lighting load.

 

I know about LCR circuits . I went to school and studied electrical theory . I am also aware that the length of a conductor effects the resistance . But the guy is only talking about wire 10 foot long . So 14 gauge wire is certainly fine for what he is going to be doing .... And yes current flow is the most important thing to consider when choosing wire size .

 

Anyway I'm not going to argue with you . Check out these links if you don't think he can use 14 gauge wire ..... They are talking about car radios but the theory behind it is still relevant . The rectifier in your amp converts the AC from your wall socket to DC .

 

This link explains some of the theory(math) to determine wire size .

 

Speaker wire calculator .

 

Since you think figuring out a 277 lighting load is so easy ....... Do you even know ohm's law ? ....... How much current does a 60 watt light bulb connect to a 277 load use ?

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Originally posted by SteinbergerHack



Uhmmm...you shouldn't be using a solder joint for anything larger than about 16-ga to start with. A wire that big should be compression-connected (i.e., banana plugs or screw-downs with ring/spade lugs or pins). Frankly, I'd be worried about heating and vibration stress-fracturing on ANY soldered connection that's running over about 4-5 amps, regardless of the wire gauge.

socapex is an industry standard multipin connector, used for both lighting and sound, that uses exclusively soldered connections, 19 of them... i trust that to over 2000w per core daily...

 

thats with proper voltage mind...

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