Please help me prioritize my money on cables and interconnects

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Thad_C, Mar 9, 2002.

  1. Thad_C

    Thad_C Agent

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    In order of importance, where should I allocate funds for cables/interconnects for my HT system:
    Paradigm Monitor 7's
    Paradigm cc-370
    Paradigm Mini Monitor surrounds
    Carver Knight Shadow Subwoofer
    Onkyo 797 receiver
    I do not yet have a component video TV (S-Video only) or progressive scan DVD player, but I'm thinking of spending money to upgrade the following:
    S-Video cable (DVD to TV
    Coaxial cable or Optical Cable (DVD to receiver)
    Composite cables (from my cable box)
    Speaker wires
    Subwoofer cable
    Where can I get the biggest proverbial bang for my proverbial buck? Any recommendations are highly appreciated!
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    You can spend $800 for a 1 meter digital interconnect. Its easy to over-spend.
    I'd take 10% of your speaker cost and use this as a estimate of what to buy without going overboard. (Think of a guy who puts 220 mph speed-rated tires on his Yugo.)
    Then, in order of priority:
    Since your eyes are much more sensitive than your ears, start with a good video cable. There are some guys on eBay that sell SVideo cables made with Belden Brillance cable.
    Coaxial Digital - Here is where you can SAVE money. The feed is digital so it's very insensitve to the wire. (Can you tell if I am typing on a PC, Mac or a $20K Sun workstation?) Stick with a inexpensive video cable for this.
    Subwoofer cable - The physics say that the low-frequency sounds for a sub mean nearly any coax cable will work. But.. people do swap cables and hear differences. I suspect a tight-fitting RCA connector, not the coax, is the reason. You might want to consider a custom cable, or a Monster cable with the extra-tight RCA plugs.
    (Note: in general, the best bang-for-the-buck come from the custom houses. They use production studio quality coax/wire/connectors, custom build for you. More expensive than Radio Shack and low-end Monster, but perform like the high-end stuff.)
    Composite cables - I dont think you can do anything to make this "low quality" source look good. Stick with Radio Shack /AR brands for these cables.
    A better upgrade would be something like a Dish Network PVR system. It offers SVideo connection, Digital audio output, etc. And the ability to pause/record will make you never watch CATV again.
    Speaker Wires: Whatever you have left over in your 10% budget should go to speaker wires. Do the Center first, then the L/R, and I'd may even suggest skipping the rears. (Critical sounds dont usually go here anyway).
    Once again, the custom sites will make up some nice speaker wire sets for you as the best "bang for buck".
    www.bettercables.com
    www.wickedcables.com
    www.cablesolutions.com
    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Thad_C

    Thad_C Agent

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    Bob-- thanks for your very helpful post!
     
  4. Andrew Pratt

    Andrew Pratt Producer

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    I agree for the most part with the poster above...spend the bulk of your money on a high quality s-video cable since you'll easily see benefits there. You don't need fancy interconnects from the cable box nor would I spend a lot on digital cables. So my suggestion would be to seriously look at one of the silver video cables from someplace like www.catcables.com or www.betercables.com
     
  5. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    I use mid-line Monster Cables and some CatCables. They work for me. YMMV. 10% of your system cost seems about right too me.
     
  6. Mark Rich

    Mark Rich Second Unit

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    Some good suggestions especially from BoB M.

    You may also want to check out RhinoCables.com best bang for the buck IMO.

    Advantage with a company such as Bettercables.com is their 6 month return policy though I think their cables can be bettered by Rhino and others listed above.
     

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