What kind of wire should I use for a 45' sub-woofer run?

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Erek_S, Jul 10, 2004.

  1. Erek_S

    Erek_S Auditioning

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    I am wiring my theater's subs, and wanted to know if I can use a 12ga. speaker wire for the long run to the wall jack (inside the walls, and ceiling) or if I need to use a regular shielded sub cable. Is there any differance? I am running two Klipsch sub's, one 15" and one 10". The first run is about 45 feet to the wall plate, and the second is about 28 feet. I want to make sure that I dont lose too much from the wire, once its in I'm unabe to change it. (not going to rip it apart!!!).
    Thanks Troy
     
  2. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    I'm using 12 gauge speaker wiring for a similar run for my sub. I purchased the in-wall wiring for this purpose and it is well-insulated.
     
  3. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    If the signal you’re sending to the sub is line-level, then you want a shielded cable, not speaker cable. The most economical way to do this is to use regular coaxial cable, RG-6 or –59, like they use for TV antennas. Radio Shack sells screw-on connectors that will convert the ends to RCA.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  4. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    I guess I should have clarified my reponse a bit better. My run is not a line level run, but, rather, a speaker level run between my pro audio amp and my sub cabinet.

    Wayne, from experience, I'll have to completely agree with you. Not having a properly insulated/shielded cable for such a run could be disasterous.
     
  5. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    However, for speaker level runs, the amount of power going through the run will not be affected my interference much, so regular speaker wire should do fine.

    Only with low-level connections like line-level connections is interference an issue, thus shielding.
     
  6. Yi Yin

    Yi Yin Extra

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    For the best quality, i suggest Canare LV-61S (RG59) / LV-77S (RG6) with Canare RCAP connectors. However they are relatively expensive and may be an overkill depend on your quality preference.

    Yi Yin
     
  7. RodN

    RodN Stunt Coordinator

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    Although it's speaker level I'd use quad shield RG6 for a run that long, just to be sure.
     
  8. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    You can easily get away with 12 or 14 gauge for a sub run, after all, what are you passing...frequencies below 120 Hz or so. Since you're running in wall, you should pick up the stuff that's rated CL2/3 to meet any building code. To quickly determine it's suitability buy yourself a 50 foot run (might be cheaper that way...maybe not) and just do a quick hook up. And how does it sound?
     
  9. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    Just curious about the two members who posted after me (and before Chu)...

    How do you manage to use RG59/RG6 coax for a speaker-level run? I've never heard of this method.
     
  10. RodN

    RodN Stunt Coordinator

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    Just strip it back and away you go (strip the shielding at the same level as the insulation. I had tried running the shielding to amplifier ground but found that made no difference, the shielding was acting as an EMF buffer anyway.

    Solid core vs stranded is an argument for another thread I would suggest [​IMG]
     
  11. Cornelius

    Cornelius Stunt Coordinator

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    You'd rather run 18-gauge shielded cable rather than 12-gauge? How would you ground the shielding so that it would make a difference?

    In my experience, 12-gauge speaker wire can be run several hundred feet without a problem.

    Thanks,
    CJ
     
  12. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    Well Erek, let us know what you did and how it worked out.
     
  13. Erek_S

    Erek_S Auditioning

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    In further investigations, I found that line-level runs, (not powered) are subject to noise, and interference that is amplified by the sub amp. I was worried about size, I had thought that the bigger the better, which is the case in speaker-level runs (amplified), but not in line-level.
    I went with RG-6 and used the adapter to RCA. It will be a while before I am able to test it, but I'm sure it will be some kicking base.
    Thanks Pflughaupt, and everyone else for their input.
     
  14. Erek_S

    Erek_S Auditioning

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    If anyone is interested, i have found using crimp-connectors on RG-6 or 59 has a fairly large loss per fitting. I use the compression fittings, and there is very little or no loss. Unfortunately there is a special tool (about $85 to $140) that is needed, and the fittings are only at a couple places, other than on line, and are ($.45 to 1.50 ea.) The difference is fairly huge, and very much worth it.
     
  15. Cornelius

    Cornelius Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry, RodN, I saw the above-response and didn't pay enough attention to realize that it wasn't the original poster clarifying his position. Your response is the correct one for line-level signals.

    CJ
     
  16. Cornelius

    Cornelius Stunt Coordinator

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    Erek_S, how are you measuring the dB losses? What kind of crimp and compression fittings are you using?

    Thanks,
    CJ
     
  17. Erek_S

    Erek_S Auditioning

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    I dont remember the name of the scope, had a friend on mine that I installed digital sat. for and he had the scope, and it was at that point that I switched to the compression fittings.
    The tool, and the fittings are digicon. The number on the Tool is #LCCT-1, and the fittings #DS6Q-06-02 There is a phone # on the tool 1-88-TeleWire. I'm not sure if its good, I got this tool last summer. There are others that make the same thing, dont know if this is better or worse? they also sell a cutter, that doesnt have any numbers on it, but it has two razers, and it rotates around the cable, and when you slide it off, the cable has a perfect cut, ready for the connecters.
     
  18. Cornelius

    Cornelius Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Erek. I'm using Canare crimp fittings for all my audio and video cables and T&B compression fittings for my RF connections. This makes me want to go back and test all my connections!

    CJ
     
  19. Steve_Wingman

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    Do what I did:
    RG6 Copper Coax cable & gold plated RCA's from rad shack,
    solder the core & crimp the shield-Done!
    -Steve
     
  20. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Interesting. I’ve done that with RG-59, but I didn’t know Radio Shack’s RCA’s had entry holes large enough for RG-6.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     

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