#1
Hey folks,

I remember reading on a thread on another site that upgrading your cabinet's wires to heavier gauge wire can make a small improvement to your tone. Specifically, cheaper cabs (i.e. -- mine) tend to use 22 gauge wire or even thinner, whereas sometimes high-end cabs like Mesas, Oranges, etc. are wired with thicker wire; as thick as 14 gauge. The benefits, supposedly, are that the heavier wires can help warm up the tone a tad and allow for a slight amount more top-end clarity.

It's been a long time since I looked inside my cab, but I'm pretty sure the wiring is not heavy 14 gauge or even 16 gauge. Probably 22. On that thread, a guy even suggested that not using spade connectors but rather soldering the wire directly to the tabs is important as well -- but I'm pretty skeptical about that. If there's contact, there's contact IMO. Could be wrong though.

Anyway, before I try this, I just wanted to hear some opinions/experiences from you guys. It wouldn't cost much to do this, but if it turns out to be hocus pocus or cork sniffery, I've better things to do with my time. However, if there's even a 3% improvement in tone, heck, why not do it? Thanks!
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#2
no. but it could provide better safety. small wires tend to break.

That being said...the jacks and little tabs on the speakers themselves don't even accept bigger gauges.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#3
If i'm going to be 100% honest I would not bother. It's not going to make it sound any worse, but I don't think it's going to be as clear as you hope it's going to be. Put it like this, if I was building a guitar cab I'd make sure I used the best wiring etc, but I wouldn't replace current wiring unless needed. Whats going to make your cheaper cab sound better is buying a higher end cab to replace it.
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#4
Quote by cliff_em_all
If i'm going to be 100% honest I would not bother. It's not going to make it sound any worse, but I don't think it's going to be as clear as you hope it's going to be. Put it like this, if I was building a guitar cab I'd make sure I used the best wiring etc, but I wouldn't replace current wiring unless needed. Whats going to make your cheaper cab sound better is buying a higher end cab to replace it.


Well, I should have mentioned earlier that my cab is equipped with nice speakers -- Eminence Governors and Swamp Thangs, and is virtually identical to a Marshall 1960A cab in both dimensions and build material. So it was a cheap cab as in, it didn't cost me much to purchase, but the quality of the "box" is not bad, and I upgraded the speakers. So this would be an "icing on the cake" type of upgrade (if it's truly an upgrade at all.)
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#5
If the wire is conducting and not exploding it's doing all the job it can possibly do.

Are you going to replace your speaker cable as well and all the wiring in your amp?
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#6
Yeah I'm putting that firmly in the realm of "corksniffer." I'm sure if you got your spectrum analyzer out and looked at the frequency response of the two sizes of cable, you would see a difference, but at what range of frequencies? To what magnitude?

If we were talking about producing incredibly high fidelity signals, I'd say it MIGHT be worth considering. We are talking about guitar, though. And YOU, kailM, like some pretty nasty sounds. I don't think it's going to make a bit of difference.
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#7
i doubt that the wire will do much of a difference, but i wonder if it would change if the joints are soldered?

i solder my speaker connections. mainly because it can't fall off from vibration (not like i have ever heard of that happening), and if one were to fall off, it would change impedance and if you don't know it blow an OT.
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#8
Your speaker wire (internal) is probably fine, even if it is 22 gauge. You won't see an upgrade in sound by replacing it.
#9
Depends on the amp wattage output, total length of speaker wire, speaker load in ohms, and dampening factor of the amp. 50w at 8 ohm and only a few feet of wire would make no difference. 500w 2ohm for a bass amp I would want heavier 14 GA wire. Generally, the more current you run through the wire, the larger gauge is needed.
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#10
This article has probably the most stringent audiophile standards applied to speaker cable that I've seen: http://www.audioholics.com/audio-video-cables/speaker-cable-gauge

Crutchfield makes it a bit more basic: https://www.crutchfield.com/S-Z3ZPpXDZZly/learn/learningcenter/home/speakers_wire.html
"For relatively short runs (less than 50 feet) to 8 ohm speakers, 16 gauge wire will usually do just fine."

In general, spade connectors work perfectly. I solder mine only because I hate pulling the back (or front) off a cabinet because a connector fell off, not because it's a sound advantage. Your improvement in tone for any of this is likely to be far less than 3%.
Last edited by dspellman at Feb 2, 2017,
#11
Quote by Cajundaddy
Depends on the amp wattage output, total length of speaker wire, speaker load in ohms, and dampening factor of the amp. 50w at 8 ohm and only a few feet of wire would make no difference. 500w 2ohm for a bass amp I would want heavier 14 GA wire. Generally, the more current you run through the wire, the larger gauge is needed.


Pretty much this.
Changing to a larger gauge of wire isn't going to do shit for the sound.
It might make it more durable though.
To me, that's a good enough reason.
#12
dspellman

In general, spade connectors work perfectly. I solder mine only because I hate pulling the back (or front) off a cabinet because a connector fell off, not because it's a sound advantage. Your improvement in tone for any of this is likely to be far less than 3%.


That is why I do mine.

however I am sure that you couldn't tell the difference.
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youre just being a jerk man.



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#14
Quote by dementiacaptain
Yeah I'm putting that firmly in the realm of "corksniffer." I'm sure if you got your spectrum analyzer out and looked at the frequency response of the two sizes of cable, you would see a difference, but at what range of frequencies? To what magnitude?

If we were talking about producing incredibly high fidelity signals, I'd say it MIGHT be worth considering. We are talking about guitar, though. And YOU, kailM, like some pretty nasty sounds. I don't think it's going to make a bit of difference.


Hehe, I do fancy some pretty obnoxious tones. But I do have a pretty discerning ear. Some people claim they can't hear a difference between preamp tubes but I always can. And I do play cleans and lower gain overdrive through this cab too; not just brootz with my 6505s.

In any case, you guys convinced me it's not worth my time. Thanks for the input and cheers!
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#15


Thicker wire physically cannot 'add warmth to the tone'. Wire is a passive electronic device. The only way the illusion of more 'warmth' would be created from a passive device like a cable is by the cable filtering off treble frequencies like a capacitor on a guitar's tone control, or really shitty tone sucking pedals. I don't understand why that would be desirable. People sometimes spend hundreds of dollars on low capacitance guitar cables to PREVENT the cable 'adding warmth' to the tone. And now those same people are suggesting that you add that tone sucking effect back into the signal through the speaker cable?



Their stupidity knows no bounds.
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#16
fuck it use 2ga.
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Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



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2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#17
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE


Thicker wire physically cannot 'add warmth to the tone'. Wire is a passive electronic device. The only way the illusion of more 'warmth' would be created from a passive device like a cable is by the cable filtering off treble frequencies like a capacitor on a guitar's tone control, or really shitty tone sucking pedals. I don't understand why that would be desirable. People sometimes spend hundreds of dollars on low capacitance guitar cables to PREVENT the cable 'adding warmth' to the tone. And now those same people are suggesting that you add that tone sucking effect back into the signal through the speaker cable?



Their stupidity knows no bounds.


I don't know about "adding warmth" but theoretically the frequency response could change offer a wider range of frequency and giving the tone more bottom end or more high end. Regardless its a pretty silly thing to worry about in the grand scheme of things.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#18
Quote by dementiacaptain
I don't know about "adding warmth" but theoretically the frequency response could change offer a wider range of frequency and giving the tone more bottom end or more high end. Regardless its a pretty silly thing to worry about in the grand scheme of things.

Even if that was true, very doubtful that's happening in reality given the limitations of what guitar speakers can reproduce, the limitations inherent to human hearing, the limitations of the amps we use and the fact that the length of wires used inside cabinets is far too short for any difference in wire gauge between an 18 gauge to a 22 gauge to mean anything.

This sort of thing is only really going to mean anything in a practical application with something like a guitar cable were the signal has not already been buffered. Where the signal to noise ratio is poor, the impedance of the signal is very high and the current is extremely low. Speaker cables though? lolnah.
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#19
Quote by KailM
The benefits, supposedly, are that the heavier wires can help warm up the tone a tad and allow for a slight amount more top-end clarity.
I'm thinking that "warming up the tone" and "more top-end clarity" are mutually opposing benefits.
#20
If the wires get hot or even warm then replace them. If not they are probably doing their job correctly. If they are aluminum then they could benefit from upgrading to copper. Silver wire would be the best. Braided/ stranded wire is better. The better materials you get the more week links you run in to. You might want a gold plated input jack only to find your voice coil is made of aluminum and the gold is not even able to perform. Getting bigger wires is only a benefit if it actually has more surface area than the ones you have. The ones you have might be skinny but also contain very thin braided wires and make up for the surface area that way. Soldering the wires to the speaker is good because you use silver solder instead of a tin spade connecter but then what material is the speaker connecter?
Last edited by geo-rage at Feb 3, 2017,
#21
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Even if that was true, very doubtful that's happening in reality given the limitations of what guitar speakers can reproduce, the limitations inherent to human hearing, the limitations of the amps we use and the fact that the length of wires used inside cabinets is far too short for any difference in wire gauge between an 18 gauge to a 22 gauge to mean anything.

This sort of thing is only really going to mean anything in a practical application with something like a guitar cable were the signal has not already been buffered. Where the signal to noise ratio is poor, the impedance of the signal is very high and the current is extremely low. Speaker cables though? lolnah.


Oh I mean I agree, I made the same point pretty much earlier I was just attempting to rationalize the claim of "warmth."

Its all a load of shit, though.
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#22
I think about it this way. The wiring in the OT is tiny and significantly longer than the speaker wire so how is the gauge of the speaker wire relevant? It's going through a much smaller bottleneck before it even gets out of the amp.
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#23
Says you Cath. I rewrap all my OTs in 12ga wire, for the toanz
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