Are $$$$ cables worth the money?

Discussion in 'Ampage Area' started by Randy99CL, Jul 4, 2020.

  1. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    I made one once with it, but it doesn’t have enough body and felt too squiggly. Sound was good. I did the same as you though - madE some patch cables with the gs4 and sp400 plugs. Really like the results.
    Bertotti likes this.
  2. Bertotti

    Bertotti Friend of Fred

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I had two that I made with a resistance or 1.5 ohms. Bought some flux and got it down to nothing readable with the fluke. I have enough cable I think I’ll try it. Thanks!
    stevo likes this.
  3. pmac11

    pmac11 Country Gent

    Mar 4, 2018
    Toronto, Ontario
    True. When you buy quality, you only cry once.
  4. Tadhg

    Tadhg Gretschie

    Aug 8, 2019
    Qld - Australia
    But... A GS-6 has a capacitance of 160pF/metre of cable length. That's quite high.
    A Mogami 2524 has a capacitance of 130pF/metre of cable length. Still high.

    I'm not debating durability, but those figures are very high. A Sommer Spirit LLX has 1/3 of the capacitance of the GS-6, and 40% of the capacitance of the 2524.

    Worth a watch...
    pmac11 and TV the Wired Turtle like this.
  5. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    The GS6 is recommended by Canare as a speaker cable as well. I thought they never should be mixed(up)?
    Might make the ideal cable for that special someone. :)
    pmac11 likes this.
  6. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
  7. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    It sounds great actually. I tried a few of the very low ones - Gotham, Sommer, BTPA and Gepco. The Sommer, BTPA and Gotham are sitting in a box - didn’t sound better in my 15’ cables and didn’t like the handling. Over 15’ - don’t know. Under 5’ - too bright.

    Some say the sweet spot for guitar is around 30 pf/ft and Canare and Mogami are well over that. Gepco is right in that sweet spot if I recall correctly, but can’t find it anymore. It handles a lot like the Canare.

    Did he really just make a 500’ guitar cable? That’s pretty funny.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
  8. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    it doubles decently as one because the center conductor is 18 gauge. You can use it and the Canare isn’t bad for low power but the cutoff frequency is typically below your highest frequency for hi fi etc. and you’ll lose some highs. But speaker cable won’t go the other way and you’ll hear it hum immediately.
  9. Tater

    Tater Electromatic

    Jan 1, 2017
    Port Kent
    A 3 foot patch cable? 300$ wouldn't be worth it to me, even if it did sound better. A 20 foot stage cable? Perhaps - but it would have to be bombproof.
  10. Berington

    Berington Electromatic

    Jan 6, 2014
    Los Angeles
    I've just been building my own since about 1975. I'll buy a 100' or more spool of Mogami or Canare standard 2-conductor (plus shield) mic cable, so I can build mic cables as well. For guitars, using both conductors together, with good Switchcraft plugs, my cables have lasted for many, many years. For guitar cables, an added plus is, on one end, to use the larger-barrel Switchcraft shorting plugs with a tiny spring-button switch next to the connector shaft. (About $11 at some pro electronics stores) No speaker damaging explosions if you unplug your guitar. I've only had one fail on me... after MANY years of use, the tiny internal spring went bad. Amazing track record. the plug didn't fail, only the shorting switch, so I can still use it just fine. I've seen expensive ($50+) NEW Monster & other brands with cute manual switches on them fail at only weeks old, many times. As one writer put it, if you build your own, you can always fix 'em. Saves LOTS of bucks in both the short & long runs.
  11. Tadhg

    Tadhg Gretschie

    Aug 8, 2019
    Qld - Australia
    Yep - he grabbed a roll of cable, stuck a connector on each end, and plugged in! :D

    Too bright? That's the bit where using the cable as part of your tone is relevant. But I get the impression many wouldn't notice that (because it's just about cost for most of us).

    It might also be relevant if people are saying, "Broadtrons are terrible," but they're using GS-6 cable... :confused: Change the cable to something with lower capacitance and we change the tone of the guitar.

    Ultimately, as long as each person is happy with their tone and durability, what more could you want? :cool: But capacitance is one of the few things I think you could use to justify higher costs. Capacitance and warranty.
    larryr likes this.
  12. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Speaker cables should be twisted pair or zip cord 18 gauge or heavier. Coax would work in a pinch, but there'd be a lot of signal loss. Using speaker cable between a guitar and the amp would work---poorly. As you said---the twain shall never meet.
    stevo and Ricochet like this.
  14. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    I didn't like my Power'tron, but that was even when playing through a 4 foot 21 pf/ft cable. o_O My too bright comment would have been about my ultra short 21 pf/ft cable. It tells me that the theoretical limit of having no capacitance is not a desirable thing.

    But that video is helpful for giving a sense of what will impact tone before buying. When he gave his capacitance for a 500' cable to be equal to that of a tone cap, a 15' cable with double the capacitance/ft would be 1/15th of a tone cap - how will that sound? I don't have a great sense of what a given tone cap will do until I try it.

    If you're looking for great low capacitance wire that doesn't cost too much, LAKE AVB20UGC (Gepco successor) or Gotham GAC Ultra Pro are great choices in that <30pf/ft range that don't cost too much. I can't find the Lake anymore... :(
  15. fsdphcorrigan

    fsdphcorrigan Electromatic

    Aug 30, 2019
    Lake Oswego, Oregon
    Before you spend money on an expensive cable, watch this:

    If a cable meets specs it should not affect the quality of the sound. The major difference between lower-cost cables and quality cables that meet specs is that higher-quality cables tend to hold up better than less-expensive cables.
    Yes, you can buy really cheap cables that don't meet specs, and you can also buy over-priced cables who's "advantages" are total BS.
    stevo likes this.
  16. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    Canare advertises their GS6 as being able to double as a speaker cable and I've used it in a p inch for short run, low power, limited spectrum stuff and it was great. But I don't think it will carry well over a distance with broad spectrum/higher power stuff. It's signal cable - it has a cutoff frequency.
  17. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    I did have a cheap guitar cable once that had no semi conductive sheath between the shield and the dielectric. It was actually noisy and static prone when you would roll it around on the floor. I guess that would be called "not meeting spec".
  18. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    these threads are always hilarious to me.

    sgarnett and Andy Fortune like this.
  19. amp360

    amp360 Gretschie

    Oct 21, 2012
    I generally make my own cables. I use Mogami wire and Neutrick or Switchcraft ends. I mainly do this because I can make custom lengths, ends that orientate certain ways, etc.... It's also much cheaper.

    They sound fine to me. Sometimes I'll use Canare cable for mics.

    You can build a Mogami cable, which has four solder points, for a lot less than buying one at GC.
    stevo and Bertotti like this.
  20. MTurner

    MTurner Friend of Fred

    Aug 17, 2010
    Clayton, North Carolina, USA
    No. You can build a Mogami cable for a lot less than buying one at GC. If I tried it, I'd just screw it up.
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