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And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

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  • And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

    I need to run about 40' of speaker cable in my living room and so I decided to buy a 100' spindle of generic speaker cable (12 gauge to minimize resistance).

    I also have a couple feet left of Monster XP (16 gauge) that I bought some time ago.

    So, just by curiosity, I cut a length of 3' each and measured the resistance of both cables (with a multimeter and double checked with DATS).

    I am still shocked, the 12 gauge generic cable has about 30% more resistance than the 16 gauge Monster XP cable!

    I then tested a 14 gauge cable of the same length, and ended up with TWICE the resistance of the Monster.

    WTF?

  • #2
    Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

    can't explain your results. the 12 g should have lower resistance.

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    • #3
      Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

      Some really cheap wire is cut with tin or aluminum. Monoprice/Dayton Audio both sell high quality copper wire without breaking the bank.

      Unless they are lying, they should all measure the same.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

        Originally posted by generic View Post
        Some really cheap wire is cut with tin or aluminum. Monoprice/Dayton Audio both sell high quality copper wire without breaking the bank.
        Tin is only used as a coating over copper. Aluminum has about 75% higher resistance than copper, so it would give a higher reading. Back when aluminum was allowed for household wiring you had to go up one gauge compared to copper. But there's nothing special about Monster, the copper they use is the same as the copper that everyone else uses, they just charge a lot more for it.
        www.billfitzmaurice.com
        www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

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        • #5
          Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

          Originally posted by billfitzmaurice View Post
          Tin is only used as a coating over copper. Aluminum has about 75% higher resistance than copper, so it would give a higher reading. Back when aluminum was allowed for household wiring you had to go up one gauge compared to copper. But there's nothing special about Monster, the copper they use is the same as the copper that everyone else uses, they just charge a lot more for it.
          '

          I don't know about other places but aluminum household wiring is still allowed here but I believe we must up-size more than one gauge vs. copper.
          "We are just statistics, born to consume resources."
          ~Horace~, 65-8 BC

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          • #6
            Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

            Please, what were the various readings?

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            • #7
              Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

              Originally posted by djg View Post
              Please, what were the various readings?
              I would post my numbers, but I can't find that little piece of paper anymore!
              We're talking about very small numbers though. I don't think it will have an effect on sound quality at all, but I was just surprised that the Monster,
              being a smaller wire, had a much lower resistance.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                Something I've come across, a lot, with car audio power wire is most of the cheap off brand stuff isn't true AWG. In other words, what's advertised as 4 AWG wire is really closer to 6 AWG with a thicker jacket. Don't know if this is the case here but it's possible the "generic" wire you got is thinner than advertised.

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                • #9
                  Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                  Originally posted by emilime75 View Post
                  Something I've come across, a lot, with car audio power wire is most of the cheap off brand stuff isn't true AWG. In other words, what's advertised as 4 AWG wire is really closer to 6 AWG with a thicker jacket. Don't know if this is the case here but it's possible the "generic" wire you got is thinner than advertised.
                  Also what is often called copper wire is actually copper clad. It may or may not be mentioned in the fine print. As mentioned the pure copper Monoprice wire is a good deal.
                  “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet”

                  If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally ASTOUND ourselves - Thomas A. Edison

                  Some people collect stamps, Imelda Marcos collected shoes. I collect speakers.:D

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                    Originally posted by thekorvers View Post
                    Also what is often called copper wire is actually copper clad.
                    There's that, too.

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                    • #11
                      Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                      http://stores.ebay.com/Sky-High-Car-...=p4634.c0.m322

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                        Originally posted by Audiotorium View Post
                        I need to run about 40' of speaker cable in my living room and so I decided to buy a 100' spindle of generic speaker cable (12 gauge to minimize resistance).

                        I also have a couple feet left of Monster XP (16 gauge) that I bought some time ago.

                        So, just by curiosity, I cut a length of 3' each and measured the resistance of both cables (with a multimeter and double checked with DATS).

                        I am still shocked, the 12 gauge generic cable has about 30% more resistance than the 16 gauge Monster XP cable!

                        I then tested a 14 gauge cable of the same length, and ended up with TWICE the resistance of the Monster.

                        WTF?
                        You measured 3 foot sections of wire??? I wouldn't trust a multimeter to do this accurately for one second - it may spit out a number, but take a minute to consider that the real resistance will be around 10 milliohms (for 16 gauge). Unless you have some gear that is certified to measure this low, your reading is likely bubkis. Not sure what DATS is (Dayton Audio Testing Something-or-Other?) but I would be surprised if it could measure a couple of milliohms accurately.

                        So can you at least recall what the readings were or remeasure and post?

                        Is your gear certified to measure down to a couple of milliohms accurately???
                        Charlie's Audio Pages: http://audio.claub.net

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                          Originally posted by Tin_Ears View Post
                          '
                          I don't know about other places but aluminum household wiring is still allowed here .
                          http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/19/re...home.html?_r=0
                          www.billfitzmaurice.com
                          www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                            That article has it right, but only up to a point. If the aluminum wire has anti-oxidizing compound properly applied at the terminals and junctions, it's completely safe. If it doesn't, it's not to Code, and the builder (or electrician, if it's a retrofit) is liable if it causes a fire. Loose connections with copper wire can start fires as well, so let's not just blame the metal here, ok?

                            Mark
                            You go your way, I'll go mine. I don't care if we get there on time.

                            ~Pink Floyd

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                            • #15
                              Re: And I thought Monster speaker cables were over-priced snake oil...

                              Originally posted by charlielaub View Post
                              You measured 3 foot sections of wire??? I wouldn't trust a multimeter to do this accurately for one second - it may spit out a number, but take a minute to consider that the real resistance will be around 10 milliohms (for 16 gauge). Unless you have some gear that is certified to measure this low, your reading is likely bubkis. Not sure what DATS is (Dayton Audio Testing Something-or-Other?) but I would be surprised if it could measure a couple of milliohms accurately.

                              So can you at least recall what the readings were or remeasure and post?

                              Is your gear certified to measure down to a couple of milliohms accurately???
                              You are correct in your statements. Resistances that low should be measured with a Wheatstone Bridge.
                              “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet”

                              If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally ASTOUND ourselves - Thomas A. Edison

                              Some people collect stamps, Imelda Marcos collected shoes. I collect speakers.:D

                              Comment

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