WHY does bi-wiring improve sound?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Martin Rendall, Dec 31, 2001.

  1. Martin Rendall

    Martin Rendall Screenwriter

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    I don't get it. If the speaker has separate posts for the upper and lower sections (and a passive crossover built in), why does running two sets of speaker wires from the same amp to each section improve sound over having an external jumper at the speaker? It doesn't make sense to me, since the same signal sees both sections.

    I guess I could see it making a difference if the cables were very crappy, but if you use good cables, this shouldn't be an issue.

    Also, if I were to do this, how would I connect the two sets of cables at the amplifier (assuming a 5-way binding post)? Using 12 guage, I don't think I can fit both wires into that little hole, together. Would it be OK to use the "B" post for mains on my receiver for the other cable?

    Thanks,

    Martin.
     
  2. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Can opened.....

    Worms everywhere......

    My opinion: It Doesn't.
     
  3. BruceD

    BruceD Screenwriter

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    Phillip,

    Great response!!

    I agree.

    BruceD
     
  4. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    quite so...no improvement from biwiring to running the same effective gauge as a single run. people 'think' they hear improvement because they want to. speaker manufacturers provide the capability because its a 'me-too' world. biamping is another issue. cable companies make biwire sets to cater to those who want to do it. can't say as i blame them. try contacting some speaker manufacturer's as to what their thoughts on bi-wiring are...try and get past the first wave of responses from the marketing fluff person with the standard responses.
     
  5. Mark C.

    Mark C. Supporting Actor

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    OK, here comes a squiggly worm...
    Martin, this is a topic of much (and endless) debate. Does biwiring improve things? Heck, I guess that's up to the person doing the listening. I have my speakers biwired (custom DH Labs built by Jeff at www.value-audio.com) and I prefer them that way. But there's no definitive test that I know of that proves better sound. Most biwire setups have four connectors at the speaker terminals, and two connectors on the amp/receiver end, thereby eliminating the need for a jumper.
    Any more worms out there?
     
  6. RicP

    RicP Screenwriter

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  7. TylerN

    TylerN Stunt Coordinator

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    The way I always understood it is that a speaker not only uses energy, but produces it. The farthest you can keep a woofer from a tweeter (electrically) the better.
    Here's a good link to some Jon Risch lectures on the subject:
    http://www.audioasylum.com/audio/cab...ages/4953.html
     
  8. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

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    is there a scientific proof that biwiring is better?
     
  9. Christian Speights

    Christian Speights Stunt Coordinator

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    I tried it on a pair of Paradigm Monitor 7s with a Denon 3200. I heard no difference...maybe it was the tinitis, I don't know.
    Have since moved to Vienna Acoustics and they don't provide the option. I don't miss it.
    But what do I know? My ears are straight up bronze.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. Dave Nibeck

    Dave Nibeck Stunt Coordinator

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    If you spend a lot of money on your speaker wire, and you just doubled the cost by using 2 pair per, you would think they sound better.

    IMO.
     
  11. JohanK

    JohanK Second Unit

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    If you want some theory, read up on Jon Risch's articles/comments available on the web.

    If you can, try it. I have and I concluded that it was not fruitful in my system.
     
  12. Sundar Prasad

    Sundar Prasad Stunt Coordinator

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    I'll take Jon Risch seriously if he has any articles in peer-reviewed journals.
     
  13. Martin Rendall

    Martin Rendall Screenwriter

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    Sorry if I got worms all over your floors... [​IMG] Perhaps I should have done a search before posting this question... Anyway, thanks for the great responses. I think I'll pass, for now. I'd rather put money into a nice IR transmitter...
    Martin.
     
  14. Marc Rochkind

    Marc Rochkind Second Unit

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    An interesting way to phrase this question would be not does bi-wiring make an improvement, but whether it makes an improvement over the alternatives, given the same budget. Ignoring the connectors, bi-wiring doubles the cost.

    So, you have to compare bi-wiried cables of Brand X to:

    1) Just doubling up on Brand X, to effectively use a smaller gauge, and

    2) Getting Brand Y cable (not bi-wired) that costs twice as much as Brand X.

    I would say that if the wire is already pretty heavy, say 12-gauge, #1 above will accomplish nothing.

    That leaves #2. Take this example:

    Monster MC Clear Jacket 12-gauge ($1.50 per foot) bi-wired vs. AudioQuest Type 4 ($3 per foot).

    I would rather have the AudioQuest Type 4, giving up the bi-wiring to get it.

    Note that I answered this question without once getting into whether bi-wiring makes an improvement. My reasoning is this: If it makes an improvement, the improvement is very slight, while the improvement (in my opinion) of going from Monster MC to AudioQuest Type 4 would be large. If bi-wiring does NOT make an improvement (some think that), then clearly putting the money into better cable makes much more sense.

    This leads to the following general principle: Put the money into better cable until the incremental gain from upgrading the cable is less than the incremental gain from bi-wiring. At that point, put the money into bi-wiring.

    For the vast majority of HT owners, they are using very primitive cables, and the money clearly ought to go into better cables, since they are a long way from the point of diminishing returns.
     
  15. Marcel Saring

    Marcel Saring Auditioning

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    I just bought a pair of Energy speakers e:XL 26 five days ago.
    When I was in the store auditioning them the guy said to me that I really should consider bi-wiring them, we got into the hole thing as to why I should bother. He was having a hard time convincing me to do this and he knew it, so he disconnected the bi-wires that were hooked up Monster?? Cables of some sort and connected single wire monsters?? And we listened to the same music as before . We were listing to some classical CD, It’s hard to describe but it seemed that all the string instruments seemed a little bit more realistic some how.
    I would have to say that there is a difference with bi-wire however small it may be I went a head and paid the extra for the bi-wire and I’m happy with my choice.[​IMG]
     
  16. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  17. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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  18. Brian OK

    Brian OK Supporting Actor

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    Gee Martin,

    You got about 11 posts and bagged. I agree, you reaaly need to do a Search and investigate and learn about bi-wiring before you wander into a minefield looking for a nice picnic area.

    Anyway, if you are just doing basic HT, without any real concern for sonics... then spend your money on other things other than double runs of speaker cable.

    BOK
     
  19. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    I Bi Wired my mains because for me it was cost effective.
    I sat down and built my own cables so that I could say "hey
    I did this myself" and if I saw an improvement then that was
    great, and even if I saw no improvement then I didn't loose
    out on anything.
    I can't honestly say that I noticed a major diffrence from
    the Bi-Wiring because at the same time I made other changes
    like better positioning of the mains, adding spikes and such.
    I am not displeased with the way they sound and when the time
    comes I plan on Bi-Amping. I gaurentee I will hear a diffrence
    then! [​IMG]
    I think as some others have stated, some speaker manufacturers
    add Bi Wire Binding posts just to look Chic` but they have
    no functionality if the crossover networks are not actualy
    broken down into 2 seperate networks. I can say that my particular
    model of speakers is intended to be Bi Amped and they describe
    in the instructions that since they are meant to be Bi Amped
    that you could Bi Wire them if you so choose. They never make
    mention of any benefits of this.
    It all comes down to your own opinion because it is very hard
    to prove one way or the other what works and what does not.
    And even if we could say "Bi Wiring does NOT work" some people
    would still do it..
    It's just like some of the other suposed audiophile tweaks
    like CD Stop Mats and CD Pens and Wire Bridges and Adding
    Rubber pads under everything.. Some say it work some say it
    don't... It's 6 of this and 10 of the other..
     
  20. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    which leaves 4 in your pocket and answers the question, what price glory?
     

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