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Bridge Speaker Terminals with Solder?


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I was setting up some speakers yesterday and realised I'd pinched the connectors that bridge the terminals for another pair of speakers. I couldn't be bothered faffing around with replacing them or making up short lengths of skr cable so figured I could cheat and use lengths of solder. It sounds great! Any reason why this shouldn't be done?

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Keep it noice. I appreciate both answers but in the spirit of music, I used solder as the show must go on :)

 

But right or wrong it sounds good and makes me wonder if there is any point making up "proper" sections of speaker cable to bridge the terminals. These are not my main speaker but unless there is some blazingly obvious reason not to I'm going to try it out on my main speakers.

 

Anyone with the tech savy to advise?

 

Cheers,

L11

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Dumb Nerd here again,  Using solder was just a work around but fiddling and experimenting can be interesting. I could also try some solid core copper going by the charts above. Is it impedence that would also be a factor?

 

Has anyone had positive results from different bridging materials? I'm a believer in different cables having different effects on sound to some extent but am also a realist when it comes to dollars out benefits in etc.

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Ignoring for a second that it's thermal/electrical conductivity is awful compared to copper, the problems i see are:
-Terrible structural integrity
-Lack of insulation increases the chances of accidental short circuits.

 

The low conductivity shouldn't be an issue for a very short piece. Just don't expect it to handle 1000W...

 

Go buy yourself a meter of 16AWG stranded speaker wire from Jaycar and cut it into small lengths.
The reason i don't suggest solid core is because it makes poorer contact with most terminals unless you really crank down the terminals and crush the round core into a flat shape. Stranded wire doesn't have that problem as the strands easily rearrange themselves to make good contact with the terminal.

 

The only time i've heard a difference between cables is when a cable was used that was too thin, too long and had meters of excess cable bundled up at one end. The difference you will hear will be a roll off of the high frequencies due to the inductance, capacitance and resistance of the cable. Capacitance is minimized by using a better insulating material, inductance is minimized by placing the + and - conductors close together (that's one reason to use fig8 cable over two individual cables) and keeping the cables as short as possible. Bundling excess cable can increase inductance. Resistance is minimized by using a conducting material with better conductivity or a larger gauge conductor. If you can keep the resistance low it will compensate for the inductance and capacitance. Therefore you can make larger gauge copper cable with regular plastic insulation that performs just as well (for speakers) as a smaller gauge pure silver cable with teflon insulation.
 

If you use 16AWG copper cable, run at sensible lengths (say, under 20 meters) it will be audibly transparent.

Edited by TMM
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Thanks TMM. Can't argue with those first 2 points you made. It was just a quick fix to see how my little coax speakers sound in the main system when I noticed the links missing. I keep meaning to make up proper links as I've read true or not, that they are better than the links manufacturers provide with the speaker.

 

Cheers,

L11

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I'm a believer in different cables having different effects on sound to some extent but am also a realist when it comes to dollars out benefits in etc.

 

You're a firm believer in cable effects, but a length of solder as speaker cable (admittedly short, yes) sounded great ?!?! ......

 

In "theory" a length of solder would be pretty bad to use as a cable.    Does that make you question your beliefs a little?  ;)

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You're a firm believer in cable effects, but a length of solder as speaker cable (admittedly short, yes) sounded great ?!?! ......

 

In "theory" a length of solder would be pretty bad to use as a cable.    Does that make you question your beliefs a little?   ;)

 

Firm? I didn't say that. Does that mean your user name should be Davewantsmorewordsinmymouth?

 

When you're done with sharpening your nails feel free to add to the theory. 

 

God forbid anybody make do with what they have and then question it around here.

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God forbid anybody make do with what they have and then question it around here.

 

My intention was to highlight that acceptable sound can be achieved when using solder for speaker wire.....   which could be food for thought in the "cable debates".     That isn't to say cables can not ever make a difference .... only that the magnitude of the effect should be kept in perspective.

 

 

Back in the day, I also experimented with some "unconventional" things as speaker cable .....   the result was that I went looking for other places to affect the sound of my system.

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The conductivity of lead and tin is low compared to copper, but I guess the question is whether or not there is a significant real-world impact when the length of copper/lead is so short.

 

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Amazed at what I learn in this site.Hope this is not considerd going off topic but If copper has a better REC than gold why is it thought to be better to have gold plated connectors?

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Amazed at what I learn in this site.Hope this is not considerd going off topic but If copper has a better REC than gold why is it thought to be better to have gold plated connectors?

Gold is a noble metal and will not oxidise under normal conditions (unlike the base metals upon which it is applied). It's lucky that gold also has relatively decent conductivity overall.

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Gold doesn't oxidise as fast (ie rust for iron, verdigris for copper (the green stuff on copper roofs, the black tarnish on silver etc)

Read in Douglas Self's book that diamond is way better heat conductor than anything. They manufacture flat diamond sheets as the primary heat conductor to a larger heatsink

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