speaker cables length

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Zigue

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speaker cables length
« on: 1 Feb 2023, 04:25 pm »
Dear all,
This is my first topic in the Bryston circle. Therefore, I will first introduce myself. My name is Ziad. I live in Montreal, and I'm a big fan of Bryston. I bought my first Bryston amplifier more than 20 years ago when I was a student. Today, all my audio system is Bryston (BDP-1, BDA-2, BP26, 4BSST2). My speakers are PMC IB2.

I just moved into a new house, and I have the following constraint: There will be a distance of 40 feet between my Bryston units and the speakers. I am hesitating between two options:

First option: Use long speaker cables between my 4BSST2 amplifier and the speakers (40 feet). In this case, I will use 3 feet XLR interconnect between the BP26 and the 4BSST2. The speaker cables will be Mogami 3104. The XLR interconnect cables will be Mogami Gold Studio XLR-XLR.

Second option: move my 4BSST2 amplifier closer to the speakers. In this case, I will use long XLR interconnect cables (25 feet) between the BP26 and the 4BSST2 and shorter speaker cables from the amp to the speakers.

Hence, my question is the following: Which is better: use short speaker cables and long XLR interconnect cables or vice versa?
Thanks a lot for your help.


I.Greyhound Fan

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #1 on: 1 Feb 2023, 05:36 pm »
It is supposed to be better to run long XLR's and short speaker cable.

Digi-G

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #2 on: 1 Feb 2023, 05:50 pm »
It's been my experience that long interconnects, with a low level signal, are much more susceptible to picking up noise.  In my case it was a lot of noise, not subtle. If I had to choose, I'd rather have the speaker cables, with an amplified signal, as the longer cable runs.

I'll admit that it probably depends on your cable quality as well.

Digi-G

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #3 on: 1 Feb 2023, 06:00 pm »
In my case the cables were single ended, not XLR.

I.Greyhound Fan

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #4 on: 1 Feb 2023, 06:14 pm »
It's been my experience that long interconnects, with a low level signal, are much more susceptible to picking up noise.  In my case it was a lot of noise, not subtle. If I had to choose, I'd rather have the speaker cables, with an amplified signal, as the longer cable runs.

I'll admit that it probably depends on your cable quality as well.

XLR's will not be susceptible to noise like single ended RCA's.

dpatters

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #5 on: 1 Feb 2023, 06:23 pm »
It is supposed to be better to run long XLR's and short speaker cable.
Absolutely.

Don P

jjss49

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #6 on: 1 Feb 2023, 06:31 pm »
that is the main advantage of XLR interconnects... can do long runs without degradation... just make sure your equipment is really balanced in their circuitry, to gain max advantage

very long rca interconnects are to be avoided when possible

NekoAudio

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #7 on: 1 Feb 2023, 08:10 pm »
+1 long XLR interconnects and short speaker cables since that will work for you.

If you do go with longer speaker cables, you'll want to double-up the 12awg conductors on the Mogami W3104 to get an effective 9awg, given the distance and your speaker's nominal impedance.

ragg987

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #8 on: 1 Feb 2023, 08:30 pm »
The Bryston pre and power should be fully balanced, so long XLR will be good option. Run a trigger cable from the bp26 to the 4bsst2 at the same time and you should be good to go.

Fyi I run 9m long mogami 2549 cable from my sp3 pre to 4b3. I chose 2549 as it is said to have low capacitance. Compared to a 2m length of boutique XLR I could not hear any difference due to xlrs. Your mogami gold studio is a starquad cable, in theory higher capacitance than the 2549 and this might result in rolled off high frequencies. I have not compared.

This gives me approx 2m speaker cable lengths.

JLM

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #9 on: 1 Feb 2023, 11:40 pm »
Another vote for long XLR and short speaker cables.

Bob2

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #10 on: 1 Feb 2023, 11:45 pm »
Another vote for XLR.
A couple of months ago I changed from single ended to XLR.
Blues Jeans cable made mine. At 34 feet both cables were just over $200 total.
Keep the speaker cables short.

Zigue

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #11 on: 2 Feb 2023, 12:20 am »
Thank you very much for all these convergent answers. I will go with long XLR cables.


Elizabeth

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #12 on: 2 Feb 2023, 01:29 am »
100% agree long interconnects (XLR) and short speakers cables.
MY setup is pre near me (BP-26) and Amp on floor between Magnepan 20.7 speakers using a 7 meter XLR pair to my Bryston 4B-SST²amp

J2Ordan

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #13 on: 2 Feb 2023, 03:43 am »
The Bryston pre and power should be fully balanced, so long XLR will be good option. Run a trigger cable from the bp26 to the 4bsst2 at the same time and you should be good to go.

Fyi I run 9m long mogami 2549 cable from my sp3 pre to 4b3. I chose 2549 as it is said to have low capacitance. Compared to a 2m length of boutique XLR I could not hear any difference due to xlrs. Your mogami gold studio is a starquad cable, in theory higher capacitance than the 2549 and this might result in rolled off high frequencies. I have not compared.

This gives me approx 2m speaker cable lengths.

Another vote for shorter speaker cables vs interconnects.

On another note, I recently did some experimenting with  XLR interconnects. I made a five foot pair using Morgami's 2534 a Star Quad design and another pair using Morgami's 2549. both used Neutrik gold plated connectors. I preferred  the 2549 not a real wide margin but preferred it none the less highs were better. As Ragg987 mentioned most likely due to its lower capacitance. Both of these I preferred to another pair i made using DH labs Pro Studio, silver plated copper with  their XLR connectors.
Having rearranged the system due to an amp upgrade, longer interconnects were required. One is 27 feet, the other 33 feet, using Morgami 2549 and Neutrik connectors. Very happy with the results.

John

Twiga

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #14 on: 2 Feb 2023, 05:01 am »
Do the cable lengths between the two channels have to match? :scratch: :scratch:

And is the answer the same for both long interconnect/short speaker cables and short interconnect/long speaker cable solutions?

Given that we try to minimize the resistance in speaker (and other?) cables, would a difference in length affect the volume or quality of output coming out of the speakers?

Speedskater

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #15 on: 2 Feb 2023, 02:57 pm »
Notes:
a] In classical music recordings, XLR cables are often 300 feet long or longer.
b] Interconnect cables may be have reasonable length differences. Say a 10 to 1 ratio.
c] Cable resistance only matters in speaker cables, and power amplifiers AC cords.
The exception would be very long RCA cable shield resistance.

I.Greyhound Fan

Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #16 on: 2 Feb 2023, 05:01 pm »
Do the cable lengths between the two channels have to match? :scratch: :scratch:

And is the answer the same for both long interconnect/short speaker cables and short interconnect/long speaker cable solutions?

Given that we try to minimize the resistance in speaker (and other?) cables, would a difference in length affect the volume or quality of output coming out of the speakers?

Yes, cable length should match.

Speedskater

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  • Kevin
Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #17 on: 2 Feb 2023, 05:47 pm »
Interconnect cables do NOT need matching lengths.
Speaker cables only need to match within maybe say a 2 to 1 ratio.
(depends on the end-to-end resistance of the cable and the loudspeaker impedance curve)

G E

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Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #18 on: 4 Feb 2023, 02:59 pm »
Long XLRs are preferable. I’ve used 21 foot runs without picking up noise and have done so with 4 different brands.


Speedskater

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  • Kevin
Re: speaker cables length
« Reply #19 on: 4 Feb 2023, 03:27 pm »
Yep, a long XLR interconnect system is preferable over long speaker cables.
The XLR analog interconnect system: balanced output stage >> balanced cable >> balanced input stage is a very robust system.
So almost any Shielded Twisted Pair (STP) cable will work great.