Speaker Wire Routing and Inductive Coupling

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Marvin E, May 26, 2002.

  1. Marvin E

    Marvin E Stunt Coordinator

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    I read the following in an article about speaker wiring:
    "Keep mains (AC power), line level, and speaker cables separated whenever possible. Do not route them parallel to one another if they are close together. If cables must cross, route them at right angles to each other so as to minimize inductive coupling from one to the other."

    Not having the luxury of a prewired Home Theater I was forced to route line-level cables and speaker wires in parallel. My front tower speakers have built-in powered subwoofers. Line level cables, subwoofer amp power cords and speaker wires all share the space behind each tower speaker.

    Is inductive coupling something to be concerned about if line-level and speaker wiring are bundled together or if speaker wires are located close to amplifier power cords?
     
  2. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    It's one of those things that CAN be a problem.

    Try this: set your receiver to a un-used analog input. Start turning up the volume until you hear a hissing sound.

    The closer your AC power wires are to your other cables, the sooner/louder that hissing will start. In bad cases, the hissing is audible during quiet scenes in a movie.

    Try to bundle/route your power cords together and keep them away from the other cables.

    Put your receiver on the BOTTOM shelf of your rack so the speaker wires can flow out without obscuring/touching the other equipment and cables.

    Leave the interconnects loose or lightly bundled.

    Try to avoid loops of extra speaker wire behind your towers. You only want a foot or so extra and you can distribute this in a zig-zag pattern or large "S" curve.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Marvin E

    Marvin E Stunt Coordinator

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    Bob:
    Thanks for the advice. So inductive coupling is only a problem if there is an audible hiss. I'm in the process of rewiring my Home Theater System. In the past, I think I broke every rule when routing speaker wires and cables: I had line-level and speaker wire bundled together under carpeting for the full length of the side walls, line-level, speaker wire and power cords bundled behind the television, and speaker wire and line-level cable with the excess coiled together behind the audio rack and I never had a problem with inductive coupling, (at least to the extent that I could hear it). With my new Home Theater setup, I'll be using a receiver as a preamp processor and two power amplifiers. Based on your response, these should be on the last three shelves of the audio rack. True?
     

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