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Alternative to Canare

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brian Glaeske, Jan 11, 2002.

  1. Brian Glaeske

    Brian Glaeske Stunt Coordinator

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    I have been searching for lower priced alternatives to using the Canare system which requires buying some fairly expensive tools?
    Chris White has a really good site the outlines the Canare system really good at:
    http://www.bus.ucf.edu/cwhite/theater/DIYCable.htm
    Brian G
     
  2. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    Milestek, www.milestek.com also sells tools to make cables. It looks very similar to the Canare crimper but is less expensive. It might even work with Canare cable. I think the crimper body is $40 and a whole set of stuff including miltiple dies is $120 (part no. $40-50213). They also sell crimp type RCA plugs for $1.50 (e.g. part no. 10-21001-235) that are half of the price of the Canare ones. There also sell 75 ohm pin crimpers too as well as other tools.
     
  3. Sihan Goi

    Sihan Goi Second Unit

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    Belden is the obvious choice - 89259 for analog cables and 1505A for digital cables. For video applications, get the 1694/1695, which will also make great, although more expensive digital cables. All of the above will also make good analog cables.
     
  4. JoelO

    JoelO Stunt Coordinator

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    Which Belden cable would be best as an all around cable? I mean if suppose you can only choose 1 cable, which cable would you use for Interconnect, Digital & Video?

    Would it work if I use Canare RCA jack as the terminator? I'm thinking of making my own cable, and it seems everyone recommends Belden over Canare for cables, but for terminator, I prefer the crimp type over solder.

    Joel
     
  5. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Joel: You DONT have to buy the tools to wire up Canare coax or connectors. They simply make it a lot easier.
    You can get a cheap plier type wire-stripper and a knife to cut & strip the ends. Just make sure to make the dimensions as published in the Canare catalog. Just take your time and be patient.
    On Chris White's web site is a listing for a $20 ratching crimper that is quite good. (I bought 3). The more important part is the matching Canare dies that perform a perfect crimp for the Canare plugs.
    But you can get the generic HEX crimp dies that will do a good job on the center pin & the crimp ring on the end.
    Even if you go with Belden/Mogami/Canare coax, the stripping/crimping issues are going to be the same.
    If you are going to go with the cheap tools, I strongly recommend you buy several feet of extra coax and 3 or 5 extra RCA plugs and first practice stripping the ends 4 or five times. Then strip and crimp a RCA plug. I can almost promise that you will mess up the first few either by over-crimping or under crimping. This is where some skill comes in and you dont have it at first.
    Try to deliberatly under-crimp the center pin. Then re-crimp with a little more force until it is solid. Once you have a good feel, snap on the connector and try crimping on the retaining ring.
    After you have ruined a few, then made a few succesful "test" cables, cut/strip/crimp your first real cable.
    And dont forget: shrink-tubing can hide many sins [​IMG]
    What Cable: I would suggest getting coax stock to make good Video cables. 75 ohm coax with a 2 gig frequency limit will cover everything from HD/Progressive video to Digital Coaxial (which IS a video cable). It will also make fine analog interconnects as well. It's overkill for a subwoofer cable, but at $0.40/ft - why not?
     
  6. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    For an all around cable that is good for analog, digital, video I would go with the Belden 89259 noted in the 1st post.
     
  7. JoelO

    JoelO Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok guys.. so Belden 89259 is the cable to use.

    For the connectors, I still can use the Canare RCAP-C5F? Or other model #?

    For the tools, here's what I need (from Chris' website):

    - Coax Stripper

    - Crimp Die

    - Crimp handle

    - Coax cutter

    What's a crimp die anyway? It's still sort of vague for me. I know you use it to tighten the connector to the cable, right?

    Thanks guys,

    Joel
     
  8. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    I would not suggest the use of 89259 as the best all around Belden coax cable.

    Its their best analog audio cable but not the best choice for Digital or video. Will it work? yes. Its also very expensive! I do not believe it makes a very good digital or video cable because of its small stranded center wire and inferior shielding (single bare copper shield)compared with other Belden cables

    IMO the better all around cable would have to be 1695a or 1506a.

    If you decide to use 89259 then no the RCAP-C5F is not the correct choice. Canare does not list a connector for this cable but I and others have found the RCAP-C4F works well.
     
  9. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    I would respectively disagree with the above post. I believe J. Risch also lists this as the best all around cable from his web site. Below is his quote:
    "Belden 89259, My highest recommended multi-purpose audio cable, coaxial. Can be used for interconnects, speaker cable and digital cables. Available in 100 foot spools which only weigh 5 pounds for minimal shipping charges. Usually in stock or only a few weeks from availability at Belden, so your distributor can usually get it quickly.
    Newark: 100 feet $142 plus S&H Best Local Price: $0.92/foot cut to length (small local shop had
    some leftover, not typically available at this price)
    Typical Price, 100 foot spool: $100"
    His website is http://www.geocities.com/jonrisch/i2.htm
    I would regard him as one of the most knowledgeable and helpful individuals with regard to DIY stuff. I myself have worked with over a thousand feet of 89259 and 1506A on different systems and still have some of each in some capacity in my systems.
     
  10. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    Phil A,

    The key word is analog audio. JR recomends its use in analog audio as in stereo,speaker and subwoofer use. He recomends 1506a/1695a as the best for digital and video. Yes 89259 can be used for digital cable however its bettered by 1506a/1695a. The short coming of 89259 for digital and video is the shielding. The 1506a and 1695a uses 2 shields therefore less potential for RFI/EMI. There is no one cable that is perfect for all uses.

    My basis for suggesting the 1506a/1695a cable as the better all around cable is they are good for analog audio (better than most coax cables), great for digital and great for video use. While the 89259 is great for analog audio its good for digital (added shield helps) and IMO poor for video. IT's cost is also an issue with the price being almost 100% more than the above.

    Phil, I too have numerous cables in my system using 89259,1506a,1695a,1694a. I have played with numerous brands and have tried all the these cables in many roles and I like many others came to the same conclusion as JR.

    Guess the argument could be made that the best all around cable would depend on your system and where your priorities lie. If being used for a mix of HT and music and all around performance is your goal then my suggestion makes more sense. If your system uses mostly analog audio while digital and video performance is secondary then you could argue that 89259 is the better choice.
     
  11. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    None of the mentioned cables are terrible. As a cheaper alternative, Belden 8281F and is flexible and decent. I bought a little bit at $0.37 ft. The 1506A is definitely better for digital. I use my own design for analog which is primarily for SACD sources.
     
  12. Brian_C

    Brian_C Stunt Coordinator

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    Check this cable out:
    Monster MV2 @ PartsExpress
    Very similar specs to Belden 89259, 95% bare copper braid with stranded center conductor. The nice thing is that it's on sale for $0.09 cents a foot. Just bought 200 feet myself.
     
  13. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    JoelO: The Crimp frame is a ratcheting pair of pliers that can crimp/bend/deform metal on a connector so it grips wire.

    But each model connector could be a different size which means that an ordinary pair of pliers COULD work, but you would have to be carefull to not over-crimp.

    To solve this, the crimp frame comes without "teeth". You must buy separatly 2 small pieces of metal that screw into the crimp frame and has holes exactly the right size for a particular connector. Using the correct dies for a connector makes it possible to make a perfect crimp every time.

    These pieces of metal are called "Dies" or "Crimp Dies" (because they go into the crimp frame).

    (The sad part is you now must buy different dies for each brand & model connector you plan to use. Real manufacturers typically have a wall of nothing but crimp tools, one for every type of connector in a machine.)

    Does this help?
     
  14. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    Brian C,

    Sorry but the MV2 is not even close to the belden 89259 cable.

    The 89259 cable is unique in that it uses a stranded bare copper core, teflon insulation, single bare copper braid (not tinned copper) and a Teflon jacket.
     
  15. Brian_C

    Brian_C Stunt Coordinator

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    Mark, no offence, but I'd really like for you to justify your statement. I don't have the MV2 in my hand yet, so I really can't say. If you're so determined that the MV2 is "not even close" I'd like to hear why.

    The 89259 and MV2 shares the copper stranded center conductor, the foil shield, and the 95% bare copper outer braid. These are the most important parts of the cable. Belden 89259 is an RG59 cable, I don't know what the MV2 is.

    The 89259 has teflon insulation and a teflon jacket while the MV2 has unknown (to me) material for insulation and jacketing. I'm not a believer that non-conductive materials will make a difference in delivering electric signals. It's like in another thread someone praised the plenum jacket when they didn't even know what it was for...
     
  16. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    Brian C,
    The MV2 cable does not share the same properties as the 89259 cable. The MV2 is nothing special in fact its just like 100's of other coax cables out there. On the other hand I have yet to find another coax cable that shares the 89259's unique properties. The MV2 jacket is PVC and the insulation is PE not Teflon. I have no idea what the shield is either but it may be tinned or bare copper. There is nothing wrong with your monster cable but when it comes to analog audio its simply not in the same league. The 89259 cable is simply sonically superior. It has been compared favorably to many entry level audiophile cables in the $1oo-300 range. Insulation type, thickness and conductor type, shields and yes even the jacket has an effect on the sound of the cable.
    To get the full story on 89259 you should follow the link above and read up on Jon Rische's info on cable design. He is the one who popularised the cable and his research is more credible than my opinion.
    Over time I have purchased and auditioned many cables as well as making many types of cables using numerous brands. This does not make me an expert (far from it in fact)by a long shot but I do have some experience with cables.
    If you are a believer that cable is cable then nothing I can say will change your mind. I have no desire to enter into yet another debate on this subject. Enjoy your purchase after all it only has to please you.
    Yes, I am aware of what a plenum rated cable is[​IMG]
     
  17. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    Brian - you can also go to Belden's site. They have good information and recommendations too. The site is: http://bwcecom.belden.com/college/college.htm
    There will be a certain percentage of people that say wire is wire and carrying digital bits does not make a difference and I don't work for the cos. that make the wire and nor to change anyone's mind. I have done blind tests with engineer types on several occasions since my preamp allows for 3 connections so that I can just define each of them and go '1,' '2,' '3,' etc. I have even had my brother do the switching while this was going on so I had not idea what cable was where. I have yet to have anyone who has done this not notices differences, not that they necessarily agreed on what was better. The cable being sold is a perfect example of why it is better to either make your own or to get an upgrade from one of the more down to earth priced cos. There are other posts with listing of the cos. The cable you noted probably has some mid-grade connectors attached to it by whoever sells it and may end of retailing for about $25 or more for an analog pair. For less than $1.50 a foot, the Belden cable noted would be about $9 the cable and decent connectors could cost $14 and you would get a great quality interconnect at the same price point. Making good cables is not a difficult task, just takes some time, patience and tools and can yield nice improvements at a reasonable cost when you go the DIY route.
     
  18. JoelO

    JoelO Stunt Coordinator

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    Bob,
    Thanks for the explanation. It's a lot clearer now... [​IMG]
    Which cable were you referring too that's $.40/ft?
    For the others,
    Thanks for the discussion of the different cables from Belden. I check the prices for some of them, and I'm afraid the 89259 might be a little too expensive for me. $1/ft for a cable is a little too much for.. [​IMG]. So I guess the next cable to consider is the 1506A? Markertek is only selling that in 500ft. roll for $299. That's quite a bit of investment on my part too, coz I won't know how good I'll be at this cable making business... [​IMG] (Unless I can buy it somewhere in 100ft roll, the I don't mind giving it a shot)
    I saw another model the 1505A for $109/500ft and the 1694A for $134/500ft will they work? or I should really try to get the 1506A? Thanks guys! Any idea which Canare RCA Crimp Connector will work for any of this cable? Thx a lot!
    Joel
     
  19. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    Joel,

    What qty of 89259 or 1506a were you interested in?

    boldercables.com sells 89259 for $4.60/m or 1695a $4.15/m

    Yes, its pretty expensive but I dont know who else would sell just a few feet of it.

    You could try e-mailing one of the cable makers that use these cables. They may sell bare cable if they can spare it:

    Diycable.com,Boldercables.com,Rhinocables.com

    Radio Shack used to sell belden 1506a, they may still through on-line sales.
     
  20. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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