speaker wire to RCA or Banana plug? (shaker installation)

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Mike Shellito, May 30, 2006.

  1. Mike Shellito

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hello to anyone that might be able to help. I recently purchased some bass shakers, and will be hooking them up soon, using my old pro-logic receiver as the amp to drive them. I want to put one of them on my recliner, but with the WAF kicking in, she won't want the cable running across the floor - she doesn't even know I bought them yet (even though the visible portion is behind the recliner, only about 1 1/2' long). They are the aura, not the pros, so I was wondering if I could install a speaker wire "plug". Run the speaker wire to a male RCA type plug, and the shaker wire to a female RCA type jack, and when I want to use them, plug it in, when not using it, hide the wire under the couch. Can you buy banana plugs and run plain speaker wire in to it to make your own plug? This would be easier than having to get under the reclinder and twist the wire together each time I want to use it. I see radio shack has speaker wire ending in a plug, but only the male end.

    Ahh, the things we must endure in order to best enjoy our modest home theaters!

    Any help or advice would be appreciated. Probably pretty basic and straightforward, but I've never used the banana plugs, so I'm asking first. Thanks -

    Mike
     
  2. DougR

    DougR Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 1999
    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Deleted
     
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well.... I did something a little different.

    I use the dual-banana plugs from Radio Shack. The wires go into the sides and the back-ends have holes so you can daisy-chain them. The solid spacer bar prevents shorts. I just run the speaker wires and plug them in when I want bass shaker actions. Look for something like Radio Shack 279-308 or 306 (which ever is the dual plugs).

    Parts express has these as well:

    http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showd...number=091-332
     
  4. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Messages:
    403
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Don't use an RCA plug for this application, it's not designed for that amount of current. You can use a dual banana plug, or a speakon connector.
     
  5. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 1999
    Messages:
    6,123
    Likes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    6,610
    Location:
    Katy, TX
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    Chris is right, but current isn't the only issue with RCAs for this. The main problem is that RCA's are designed for tiny signal wire, not large-gauge speaker wire. You won't be able to use any speaker wire larger than 18 ga. with an RCAs. Otherwise, all the heat it takes to solder the larger wire will simply melt the plastic insulator the center pin sits in.

    A better solution would be professional-grade 1/4" connectors. Here are a couple from Parts Express that are suitable for speaker wire. Searching their site for "1/4 plug" and "1/4 jack" will get other options, but IMO these are the best they offer for this application.

    1/4" Plug:
    http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showd...number=092-149

    1/4" in-line jack:
    http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showd...number=092-134

    If you can't solder, then Bob's recommendation is probably your best bet.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  6. Mike Shellito

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks everyone. I have the shakers installed (hard-wired), they work, they're a fun, rather inexpensive toy for some movies, still need some tweaking. My wife didn't know what they were, and I installed them while she was gone. Put in Jurassic Park last night and invited her in. Her usual response: "why do guys like this stuff?" Her response last night: "These are kinda cool". I've ordered the banana plugs from Parts Express so I can easily hide the wire when not in use. Thanks for the info guys.

    Mike
     
  7. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Messages:
    403
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Wayne: The problem with a 1/4 inch jack is that it will briefly short out the amp when you connect/disconnect it. On most amps it's not a problem, but some don't like it. The pro solution at this point is a speakon connector.
     
  8. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 10, 1999
    Messages:
    1,698
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    second the banana connectors. We've always hated dealing with 1/4" connectors, and that's one of the two big strikes against Mackie mixers... (they really like 1/4", and they're also hard to "read" in low-light conditions with that gray on gray on gray paint scheme...)

    Leo
     

Share This Page