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guitar amp speaker cable

Discussion in 'Accessories / Connections' started by Murdock, Jun 21, 2005.

  1. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    What do i need to say in a electric shop that i wan to buy a cable that can handle the power of my guitar amp to my speaker? Isn't the same as the cable that runs the signal from my guitar to the power amp...

  2. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    12 guage oxygen free copper cable is fine for a guitar speaker cabinet.

    12/2 - No shielding - Should be about 20 cents a foot or so.

    That's even overdoing it - 14, even 16 guage would work also.
  3. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Massive said it already. I would add, #12 AWG is fine.
    AWG is (American Wire Guage)
    Just so you understand a bit more, #12 AWG is good for 20 Amps.
    The National Electric Codebook states not to use more than 80% of the rated amperage. So the wire doesn't get burned up.
    So, #12 AWG is good for 20 Amps. And 80% of 20 Amps = 16 Amps.
    Thats the most current you "should" put on #12.
    #14 AWG is good for 15 Amps. 80% of 15 Amps = 12 Amps
    #16 AWG is good for 12 Amps. 80% of 12 Amps = 10 Amps

    Your amp really should not draw more than 3 amps or so. Maybe 4 or 5 if it were cranked ALL the way up.
    So you could use #14 or #16. But don't start loading it up with effects pedals and bass rigs plugged into the cord run.
    Good luck :wink:
  4. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    If i start loading up the cord run what change's i need to do?

    By the way, i'm in Europe so if you can tell the measures i europe system it's a pleasure...


  5. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    The speaker cord from the output of the amp to the speaker cabinet should be 2-conductor UNSHIELDED "lamp cord"....the common type of cord that is used for electric lamps, many appliances, and lightweight AC extension cords. Most any gauge will work for this application unless you are running over, say, 30 meters in length(!). You are probably going to need about 1-2 meters, right? You should be more concerned with the load this speaker cab is putting on the amp (which we don't know what brand/model you have). The majority of guitar amps on the market are designed to be used with cabinets that are 4,8, or 16 ohms. Be sure that you are matching this up properly and that the +/- connections in the plugs NEVER touch each other (short circuit)!!!
    These conditions can kill an amp! PEACE!!!
    Chris likes this.
  6. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    By the way,DON'T use the same type of cable from the amp to the speaker that you use between the guitar and amp/effects!!!!
    Guitar cables are a single conductor, with a shield as the 2nd connection. The conductor is too thin to handle the output current of the amp, and the shield adds too much conductance to make it useable on the AC current thyat the amp is putting out. This results in an "unstable load" on the amp that can RUIN the amp, or burn up the cable!!!! Or both. Remember: shielded cord - good for guitar, bad for speaker!!!
    Chris likes this.
  7. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    So that's why my amp blew-up!

    No, it didn't... But I did(Out of desperate need of saving income - MY income - for the day) use a shielded cable to run to a speaker earlier this week.

    I DO appreciate the info, though. For the price of lampcord, it does not pay to be without an extra or ten......

    Teddy G.
  8. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    You got that right! I don't know how many amps I have seen smoked by using a shielded guitar cable as a speaker cable.
    And these were NICE ones, too-Marshalls and Fenders,etc.
    By the way, did you know that Jim Beam makes a great contact cleaner, and that the more you use, the better it sounds?PEACE..

    Is that compression or did my girlfriend just wreck my pick-up?
  9. Murdock

    Murdock Guest

    Hi mon baby!

    Thank's a lot...

    That contact cleaner works with the pot's of my volume and bass from my Marshall?

    By the way, sometimes a Marshall 6100 or a Plaxi 1960 into a satck loaded with four greenbacks... 16 ohms!

  10. Murdock

    Murdock Guest

    Sorry! Moonbaby... :wink:
  11. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Sorry, but I was making a joke. Jim Beam is a whiskey here in the States. If you want to really keep the pots in your Marshall amp clean there is a product called, "Caig DeOxit Gold".It is a spray-type contact cleaner and it is GREAT on any audio gear (jacks, switches,and pots)...by the way, if you are making your own speaker cables, be sure to use a good quality 1/4" plug.In the States, the popular one would be a Switchcraft #280. This is available from many dealers on the internet. I'll bet that the business you see selling the Switchcrafts will also sell the Caig DeOxit Gold I mentioned earlier. You might have an easier time getting Neutrik connectors where you live. The Switchcraft is the industry standard and is made from stainless steel. The Neutrik is more plastic (but rugged,too) and is made in Europe. How do you like the Plexi? I had a real 50-watt many, many moons ago. It even had tremolo! Miss that amp...
  12. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    I think i will by some type of cables used in the hi-fi speakers or electric cable that can handle some 4 to 7 amperes and buy some Neutrik stuff! It's the same stuff in terms of electric spec... I think! Know I understand a friend of mine that uses normal electric cable to connect the amp head to the speaker!

    The difference in my case is that I run a Power Brake in the middle of the connection… it’s nice for some moderate playing in housing stuff!

    I love the plexi... the plexi with the green's (what a speaker) is a nuclear bomb of tone; good with any speaker but with the green's :D :D :D

    In my opinion, there are few amps that can make your tone get out from your fingers ... the plexi is one of them! When you need more distortion, tap in the screamer pedal and voilá, it’s magical… I also try to run the amp with a bass cab and it was dam crazy sound… lot’s of pumping bass with the natural compression of the plexi… Some people adjust the bias to have that compression changed… or built into variac … I never try it, maybe someday when I find a nice technical… were I live.

    What kind of tubes you have used?

  13. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Before the war in Eastern Europe, I could get tubes from a company called Tesla. They were highly regarded for their lead-crystal-type glass, and have superb tone. But the factory (it was in a Slovic state, I believe) got bombed and they were out of business. I understand that they are back, but I have been using Svetlana's for my EL34 needs and Sovtek's for my 6L6/5881 needs (mainly Fenders). I try to stay away from the Chinese tubes altogether. The Russian tubes seem to be more consistent and last longer. I have not heard of adjusting the power tube bias for "compression" before. I have used it to "clean up" or "dirty" the amp some, but this will shorten the life of the tubes and can affect the output transformer as well. Good, strong clear tone from properly-biased output tubes is the best way to go. Use that Tube Screamer when you want DIRT, Baby!!!
    By the way, how do you like the Power Brake? And please note: you STILL need to use a SPEAKER cord, NOT a GUITAR cord between the amp, the Power Brake, and the speaker...you just need 2 cords rather than 1....DIG? Tell your buddy that "regular" guitar cord on the speaker connection will eventually cause expensive problems in the future! He needs one, too!! So will that
    extra bass cab, the future "talkbox", and the extension cabinet you will be putting in the bathroom for "reverb"...! PEACE!!!!

    Moonbaby promotes a sustainable planet using vaccuum tubes and LOVE,Baby!
  14. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    Svetlana's rules!

    Tesla tubes? Where they are? This baby's rock's...

    I like the power brake a lot, it does the wok so well! But, when you want the all power, go to the direct... amp, speaker! Just for the shake... power it work's better just at the top!


    Extra bass cab is good when available... :(((

    I want a talk boxer to... i love that sound!

    Peace to, my Friend

    p.s. - tell me some tricks about tube bias, please!
  15. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    If your gonna have a bigger load, then def. go with the #12 AWG (sorry, I don't know the kcmil on that conversion to Germany's math system) But I'm sure it makes more sense than America's insane measuring means.
    You will not have any problems with the #12.
    Let me know if you can't convert the wire size to your countries math system, I'll look it up in my code book for you and do the math, so there's no fires :!: :lol: :cry:
  16. Murdock

    Murdock Guest

    Hi its that guy again...

    Can you convert the wire for me? The 12# are inches?

    By the way, you can choose teh avatar from your hard drive?

  17. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    ...and yes :lol:
  18. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    Give me that measure in europe measures...

  19. Murdock

    Murdock Guest


    6 mm of diameter will do...


    p.s. - the cable with the small resist. better.......

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