AudioCircle

Industry Circles => GR Research => Topic started by: Rock Ball on 7 Sep 2020, 03:03 pm

Title: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 7 Sep 2020, 03:03 pm
My brother bought Danny's speaker cables kit and realized he didn't have the proper equipment to assemble them, so I built them for him. 

Danny gave him instructions on how to put them together, but I don't think I followed those instructions exactly.  Here are some photos of how I built my brother's cables.  I'm not saying to do it this way.  I'm just posting pictures for those who like to look at pictures.

The downside is that it took me about 12 hours to assemble, due to my OCD.  The upside is that I got to listen to the cables for a day before my brother picked them up.  Unfortunately, these cables sounded much better than the new cables I just bought from another company.  Now, I'll have to assemble a new set for myself after I order them from Danny.

Here are some photos.

First of all, the cable is beautiful.  It's constructed of 24 wires (12 white/12 clear) braided in a way that forms a tube.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214218)

I separated the wire into two twisted groups.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214219)

Each wire contained 7 strands of different gauges.  For each wire, I isolated the two largest strands from the rest.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214220)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214221)

I took the larger strands from all the wires and twisted them together so that they would fit into a male tube connector.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214222)

These fit very tightly.  I did not crimp the tube because I wanted to keep it round.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214225)

I soldered inside the tube first.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214226)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214227)

I wrapped the remaining smaller strands from all the wires around the outside of the tube connector and soldered them.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214229)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214232)

I applied heat shrink.  Do you see anything wrong with this picture?
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214237)
(My OCD failed me.  I didn't notice that I had the red and black heat shrink swapped, but the mistake was obvious the first second I listened to the cables.  I had to redo the heat shrink only on these two.)

I applied the white heat shrink over Danny's 'secret sauce' wrap (in red box) before the Y and covered all of that with white heat shrink.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214242)

I didn't use tube connectors on the opposite end so I formed it for bare wire use.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214239)

I ran out of red and white heat shrink.  Here are the final results.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214240)

I drew red boxes around the secret sauce.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214241)

Here's a quote from my brother after he put them in his system:
"I don't think I have ever heard such a significant difference in a cable or speaker wire as these."

I agree.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 7 Sep 2020, 03:13 pm
Beautiful work! I'd love to hear them someday, but I've spent enough money for the time being.. :P
Ill stick to my cheap zipcord for now... :P
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mlundy57 on 7 Sep 2020, 04:03 pm
What's this "secret Sauce", I didn't get any with my cables  :cry:

I did mine similar except I did crimp the tube connectors and used clear shrink wrap so not as pretty.

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214243)

Instead of bare wire at the amp end I used Furutech locking banana plugs

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214244)

 :thumb: :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 7 Sep 2020, 04:17 pm
What's this "secret Sauce", I didn't get any with my cables  :cry:
I'll let Danny chime in on the 'secret sauce' since I didn't speak directly to him about what they are.

Instead of bare wire at the amp end I used Furutech locking banana plugs
 :thumb: :thumb:
I like those banana plugs that you used

Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: SoCalWJS on 7 Sep 2020, 04:29 pm
Rock Ball - Beautiful work! Those terminations look very Professional. If I tried to make them look like that, it would take me a week and they would look like a Crafts project from an 8 year old’s Summer Camp session.

Well done!

Which cables are those? I see the Electra’s on the website, and these look different.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: jn316 on 7 Sep 2020, 04:45 pm
Do they come pre-braided? I'm assuming no as that probably was the bulk of your 12 hours constructing them.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mlundy57 on 7 Sep 2020, 05:07 pm
Do they come pre-braided? I'm assuming no as that probably was the bulk of your 12 hours constructing them.

Yes, they come braided. You have to unbraid them to put on the connectors.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 7 Sep 2020, 05:12 pm
Rock Ball - Beautiful work! Those terminations look very Professional. If I tried to make them look like that, it would take me a week and they would look like a Crafts project from an 8 year old’s Summer Camp session.

Well done!

Which cables are those? I see the Electra’s on the website, and these look different.

Thank you.

These are not the same cables that are shown on Danny's website.

The cables look just like these:
https://www.kimber.com/products/12TC
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 05:12 pm
I purchased a set of Electra B-6 speaker cables from Danny last month, but asked him to perform the labor -- male tube connectors on the speaker end and bananas on the amp end. Geez, 12 hours of OCD??? -- glad I didn't go DIY on these.

Anyway, the speaker cables sound fantastic. A real no brainer for the price. What I really don't like about them is the white color. They scream at you from across the room. So I covered them with 3/4" black tech flex.   

Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 05:19 pm
Thank you.

These are not the same cables that are shown on Danny's website.

The cables look just like these:
https://www.kimber.com/products/12TC

Huh?

In your original post, you said your brother bought Danny's speaker cables, but these aren't Danny's speaker cables???? Are you saying they're rebranded Kimber cables?
 
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: jn316 on 7 Sep 2020, 05:34 pm
Yes, they come braided. You have to unbraid them to put on the connectors.
Great! Hmmm...wasn't planning on speaker wires just yet but I'm going to place an order for some subs this week so I might have to ask Danny about them.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Elizabeth on 7 Sep 2020, 06:03 pm
well after reading this as of GR was copying Kimber 8TC  i went to check on what GR really is using as it is nothing like the (apparent clone as the Kimber-clone uses different gauge wires but not the large difference seen in the photos. So IMO this similar looking to Kimber 8TC is not Kimber 8TC but some aftermarket clone most likely from China?) used in this thread
Anyway the title of this thread is utterly misleading as the wire is not GR and the construction technique is only vaguely similar to GR's.
So all in all I would wonder why it has a header GR Research speaker cables at all.
I send Danny a note telling him of this travesty of a thread
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 06:27 pm
well after reading this as of GR was copying Kimber 8TC  i went to check on what GR really is using as it is nothing like the (apparent clone as the Kimber-clone uses different gauge wires but not the large difference seen in the photos. So IMO this similar looking to Kimber 8TC is not Kimber 8TC but some aftermarket clone most likely from China?) used in this thread

These aren't clones. Although Kimber and Danny's cables are similar in appearance, the descriptions are totally different:

Electra B-6:
The B-6 speaker cable uses six 16 gauge conductors made from four 9's purity, solid core Copper. The dielectric material is made from a 30 mil polyethylene insulator. Three conductors are used for positive and three are used for negative. The total gauge is just over 11 gauge per leg. These six conductors are braided in a counter rotating geometry around a poly-cotton core to cancel out RFI and EMI effects resulting in a lower noise floor. ERS paper shielding is also used.

Kimber 8TC:
- 16 strands of 19.5 AWG OFE (oxygen free electrolytic) copper with industry leading conductivity. (102% IACS).
- Aggregate combination of 8, 19.5AWG strands=9AWG per +/- leg.
- Teflon insulation. White/Clear

Kimber 12TC:
- 24 strands of 19.5 AWG OFE (oxygen free electrolytic) copper with industry leading conductivity. (102% IACS).
- Aggregate combination of 12, 19.5AWG strands=8AWG per +/- leg.
- Teflon insulation. White/Clear

Also note that Kimber is significantly more expensive.

Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mlundy57 on 7 Sep 2020, 07:29 pm
This cable and the B6 are not the same.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 7 Sep 2020, 07:32 pm
Guys, we've been trying out this new cable for a while now and I decided that I liked it better than the hand braided cable that we were making with our internal wire.

You might have see it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DC0s6KqQz3g&t=352s

We are buying it in bulk from a supplier already braided. I don't know if it is the same supplier Kimber gets their wire from or not. It does look identical in every way that I can see. And it is not cheap. But no more hours of hand braiding.

This one shown here is a 24 conductor cable just like the Kimber 12TC cable.

I also have several hundred meters of the 16 conductor cable just like the Kimber 8TC.

So here is the deal:

For $39 you get your choice of tube connectors, spades, or banana's, the secret source ESR paper strips, solder, and heat shrink.

The 24 conductor cable is $13.50 a foot.

The 16 conductor cable is $9.50 a foot.

In the end it not only sounds really good, but is a LOT less expensive then the Kimber brand.

Keep in mind though, that you guys have to terminate the ends yourself. This is not a fully assembled, ready to plug and play, cable.   

Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: jn316 on 7 Sep 2020, 07:41 pm
And I think you referenced this cable in the third video of Ron's visit to GR Research when you were talking about the cables you were using in your system and mentioned that the speaker cables were something you were trying out and might sell....something like that.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 7 Sep 2020, 07:51 pm
And I think you referenced this cable in the third video of Ron's visit to GR Research when you were talking about the cables you were using in your system and mentioned that the speaker cables were something you were trying out and might sell....something like that.

Yes.

And they really are very good.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 08:10 pm
Danny --

OK, so I don't have the Electra B-6 speaker cable. I have the new cable that appears identical to Kimber 12TC cable, but is "modified" with ESR paper. Is that correct?

You got a name for these speaker cables???

Geez, man -- I'll be glad when you get your new website up and running.     
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: SoCalWJS on 7 Sep 2020, 08:36 pm
Yes.

And they really are very good.
Have you compared them to the Electra’s? Any circumstances where your preference for one over the other would change?

I imagine it takes a few dollars more to get enough heat shrink, plus some manpower hours (“Peoplepower”?, “Personpower”?) to get them terminated. Looks like it wouldn’t take too long if had all the supplies on hand as well as some experience soldering and with heat shrink, especially with the nice photo tutorial in this thread. :thumb:

Something to think about. Seems like a really good deal for those in the market.

(PS - plan to shoot you an email to order some x-over stuff)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 7 Sep 2020, 08:36 pm
Danny --

OK, so I don't have the Electra B-6 speaker cable. I have the new cable that appears identical to Kimber 12TC cable, but is "modified" with ESR paper. Is that correct?

If it looks like this then you do.

Quote
You got a name for these speaker cables???

I guess I should figure that out.

Quote
Geez, man -- I'll be glad when you get your new website up and running.   

Oh, I know...
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 7 Sep 2020, 08:38 pm
Have you compared them to the Electra’s? Any circumstances where your preference for one over the other would change?

I like these a little better than the hand braided ones we were making and selling as the B-6 and B-4 models.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 09:03 pm
OK, here are some proposed names for the speaker cables:

GR Research "Crisscross 24" and "Crisscross 16"

How about the Twisted Mystics?

If you want to maintain a similar nomenclature among your product offerings, how about the Exotica cable line? Add some ICs.

If you want to keep it super simple, what about the GR24 and GR16?


Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 7 Sep 2020, 09:04 pm
Danny --
You got a name for these speaker cables???
I guess I should figure that out.

Whatever you do, don't name it the "GR-Research Speaker Cable Kit"....
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 09:06 pm
No wonder I was confused. My speaker cables arrived in this box:

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214250)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 09:14 pm
Whatever you do, don't name it the "GR-Research Speaker Cable Kit"....

Definitely not!!!  :lol:

And a kit for speaker cables? Unbraiding and re-braiding the ends just to attach bananas or spades? 12 hours of OCD? Nah. These speaker cables are too "high end" to be offered in kit form, IMO. I was gladly willing to pay a little extra to get them professionally terminated. If they were sold in kit form only, I wouldn't have bought them.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Tyson on 7 Sep 2020, 09:20 pm
I've been using this cable in my upstairs system for about a year and it's excellent.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 7 Sep 2020, 09:24 pm
I've been using this cable in my upstairs system for about a year and it's excellent.

Agreed. It outperformed my previous custom copper ribbon cables that I owned for many years.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 7 Sep 2020, 09:39 pm
Whatever you do, don't name it the "GR-Research Speaker Cable Kit"....

But see that's not a bad way to do, just not fully written out.. :P

SC-16
SC-24
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Barryg443 on 7 Sep 2020, 10:07 pm
I’m gonna have to try these out!
Barry :D
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: S Clark on 7 Sep 2020, 10:09 pm
I like these a little better than the hand braided ones we were making and selling as the B-6 and B-4 models.
Many years back, Danny helped get started on a pair of the B-6 cables- and then I took it home and spent close to 2 days trying to save a few bucks.  I've still got the cables, but I'd certainly not do that again.  This sounds like a MUCH easier way to build a set of good speaker cables. 
That experience ranks right next to replacing tonearm wires as something I'd pay to have someone else do after days of cussing. 
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Jon L on 8 Sep 2020, 12:11 am
At first, I thought this was a variant of VH Audio's CHeLA speaker cables, which I have in my system, but this version is not as expensive.


(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214270)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: corndog71 on 8 Sep 2020, 12:23 am
For what you get that’s a great price!  Very tempting.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 8 Sep 2020, 12:24 am
We feed a poly/cotton rope through the center of the ones we assemble in house.

You can see it in Early B's pic. 
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: RonP on 8 Sep 2020, 12:49 am
Can we get a cryo'd version?  :icon_twisted:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 8 Sep 2020, 01:27 am
We feed a poly/cotton rope through the center of the ones we assemble in house.

You can see it in Early B's pic.

Here's a couple of better pics:

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214271)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214272)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Elizabeth on 8 Sep 2020, 12:22 pm
Thank you Danny, I am glad you cleared up my confusion.
I would also suggest adding a 1" diameter 100% cotton rope in the center of the braid. The braid pops open by pushing it together lengthwise. get the rope* inside and the braid can be pulled back down over it tightly (I suggest wearing leather or fabric gloves to pull the braid back down saves your skin Teflon is really hard... Anyway to get the braid tight against the rope twist it back and forth a little bit while pulling it out, letting one hand slide along the cable while pulling. works great.
1" rope .If you could find a smooth 1 1/2" rope even better. but I never found one.
Also I wonder about the long pigtails at the ends. just a waste of the design. when I made my 'other brand' set I left the ends braided as close as I could leave them so only about 1/2" at the end not braided. It is true this made it harder to keep the wire lined up to get into the ends (I used WBT connectors, and WBT sleeves so easier... But is possible to do and looks way better.

*Taping/glue the very ends of the rope so the end does not unravel as you push it inside) really helps, I also trimmed/tapered the end of the rope just the last 1/2" in a cone shape to look better in the ends. It is very hard to judge the exact length of rope needed
For a perfectionist you might conplete adding in the rope once and then measure and take that rope out if too short. or trim it if too long. but then the second cable you will have the ability to measure the rope correctly from the first one.
Also is the insulation of The GR cable Teflon? as that is the main reason the Kimber is expensive. Plus the Teflon takes a long time to break in vs poly. The Teflon will sound 'bright' for weeks..
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 8 Sep 2020, 02:13 pm
We feed about a 5/8" rope through the middle of it, and push it through using a teflon tube.

They claim the jacket is Teflon, but it kind of feels a little like Polyethylene, but it is not like the polyethylene on our internal wire.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 8 Sep 2020, 05:35 pm
Also I wonder about the long pigtails at the ends. just a waste of the design. when I made my 'other brand' set I left the ends braided as close as I could leave them so only about 1/2" at the end not braided. It is true this made it harder to keep the wire lined up to get into the ends (I used WBT connectors, and WBT sleeves so easier... But is possible to do and looks way better.

Long pigtails are required in some applications...
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214284)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mkrawcz on 19 Sep 2020, 01:48 pm
So I just built a set of these and i happen to own a pair of Kimber 12VS cables that I use with my NX-Oticas. After about 8hrs of run time I compared the two and I think Danny's cables are slightly better. Not sure if its the actual cables or the fact that Danny's have tube connector barrels on the speaker end instead of bananas. I suspect they will get even better after 50hrs. So I would say the price is a steal and it's worth the hours it takes to terminate them.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 19 Sep 2020, 03:20 pm
So I just built a set of these and i happen to own a pair of Kimber 12VS cables that I use with my NX-Oticas. After about 8hrs of run time I compared the two and I think Danny's cables are slightly better. Not sure if its the actual cables or the fact that Danny's have tube connector barrels on the speaker end instead of bananas. I suspect they will get even better after 50hrs. So I would say the price is a steal and it's worth the hours it takes to terminate them.

Did you insert rope in the middle of the cable?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: richidoo on 19 Sep 2020, 04:28 pm
The braided white and copper certainly is prettier than the typical black techflex.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mkrawcz on 19 Sep 2020, 04:38 pm
Did you insert rope in the middle of the cable?

No rope
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 19 Sep 2020, 05:14 pm
I just received another GR Research 24 Strand Cable Kit from Danny.  The first one was my brother's.  This one is for me.

After reading the discussion about inserting rope and talking to Danny, I was curious about how easy it would be to install the rope.

I experimented with compressing the cable lengthwise to widen the center area.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214796&size=large)

Width of cable as received:
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214797)

Width of cable with 5/8" rope inserted:
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214798)

Width of cable with larger diameter such that the wires cross at a more perpendicular angle:
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214799)

I think it looks really cool with the larger diameter.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214808&size=large)

It seems to stay in place pretty well if not moved around.  I don't have pets or children so I suspect the cables would be safe.  If bent, I could form them back into shape.

Has anyone experimented with the wider diameter?


Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: corndog71 on 20 Sep 2020, 07:41 pm
After Kimber came out with their Select series I experimented with the design on my 8TC cables.  Kimber used anti-static materials and the cheapest alternative I could think of was dryer sheets. So I saved a bunch of them and stuffed them down the middle of the expanded braid.  I compared the stuffed to regular 8TC and sadly couldn’t really tell much of a difference. 

In all honesty it was a silly experiment and mostly done out of boredom and mild curiosity.  I could hear how 4 and 8TC and even VS cables were better than ordinary zip cord and even larger twisted cables.  But my experiment was ultimately not well done and I just threw my hands up and said “whatever”.  I still use them on occasion but mostly as back up cables as they’re only 5’ long.


(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214879)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 22 Sep 2020, 11:47 pm
I finished the second set of speaker cables.  I did a few things differently so I wanted to mention them here.

I ended up not using rope because I liked the look of the wider diameter cable with nothing in the center.

I bought a very nice wire stripper which made stripping all 96 wires much easier, neater, and faster.

Instead of using my soldering iron, I used my SMD/Rework Station.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214997)

It enabled me to heat the end of the tube connectors so that solder would flow completely to the ends, filling all air gaps.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214998)
(OCD note:  12 largest strands + 4 next largest strands fit inside end of tube.  Added more next larger strands as needed to fill the larger tube opening.)

The completed cable.
(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=214999)

With the experience I gained from building the first set of cables, I was able to build these in much less time.

EDIT:  I failed to mention that I received my cable in one piece.  After I cut it in two, I marked the ends on both pieces to keep track of the 'direction' of the cable.  I added red heat shrink on the proper ends to indicate the original direction.  I'm not claiming that I can hear a difference in cable direction, but I just wanted to keep track of it.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: lincolnmat on 23 Sep 2020, 01:32 pm
So I just built a set of these and i happen to own a pair of Kimber 12VS cables that I use with my NX-Oticas. After about 8hrs of run time I compared the two and I think Danny's cables are slightly better. Not sure if its the actual cables or the fact that Danny's have tube connector barrels on the speaker end instead of bananas. I suspect they will get even better after 50hrs. So I would say the price is a steal and it's worth the hours it takes to terminate them.

I have used both Kimber VS and TC speaker cables. The TC is MUCH better than VS - much greater clarity. I have no experience with Danny's cable, so I am not trying to make a value comparison between his cable and Kimber TC. If it is functioning in the TC ballpark I would expect it to beat the VS.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: gguy on 23 Sep 2020, 06:34 pm

I bought a very nice wire stripper which made stripping all 96 wires much easier, neater, and faster.


Can you share which wire strippers you purchased?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 23 Sep 2020, 06:41 pm
Can you share which wire strippers you purchased?
https://www.tequipment.net/Ideal45-174.html

This is a case where you get what you pay for.  They make a less expensive version that doesn't have the special mil-spec die.

My cheaper wire strippers tore up the wire.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mkrawcz on 23 Sep 2020, 08:50 pm
I have used both Kimber VS and TC speaker cables. The TC is MUCH better than VS - much greater clarity. I have no experience with Danny's cable, so I am not trying to make a value comparison between his cable and Kimber TC. If it is functioning in the TC ballpark I would expect it to beat the VS.

Now that I have several days playing time through Danny’s cables, I can say that they are significantly better than Kimber VS.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: apstoltz on 24 Sep 2020, 12:56 am
A few questions, did I miss where Danny stayed what type of copper is used? Also is the smaller 16 strand version the same color scheme as the larger strand?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: corndog71 on 24 Sep 2020, 03:18 am
Now that I have several days playing time through Danny’s cables, I can say that they are significantly better than Kimber VS.

Better than 12VS?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mkrawcz on 24 Sep 2020, 10:16 am
Better than 12VS?
Yes, better soundstage, richer midrange. IMO
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: bprochford on 28 Sep 2020, 07:41 pm
What's the purpose of the ESR paper strip used in the construction of these cables? I'm not familiar with this concept in building speaker cables.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 28 Sep 2020, 07:57 pm
What's the purpose of the ESR paper strip used in the construction of these cables? I'm not familiar with this concept in building speaker cables.

Check it out:  https://www.stillpoints.us/index.php/product/ers
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Jaytor on 2 Oct 2020, 11:22 pm
I've been really impressed with these cables. Danny made a set of 8 ft cables for me about six months ago and I've been enjoying them since. Excellent clarity and imaging, with a nice neutral sound.

I just ordered a kit to make another pair of shorter cables to use with my monoblocks which sit right behind the speakers.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: uncola on 3 Oct 2020, 07:41 am
Maybe the ers paper is for the amp end terminations?  Electronics will emit a lot of crud(non scientific term)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mikeeastman on 3 Oct 2020, 01:25 pm
I just received my kit, are  there instruction on applying the ers paper any place? Everything else is well covered in Rock Balls posts.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: mkrawcz on 3 Oct 2020, 09:26 pm
I just received my kit, are  there instruction on applying the ers paper any place? Everything else is well covered in Rock Balls posts.
The paper gets wrapped around just before the conductors split into the +and - groups. It goes underneath the large heat shrink.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: smilesrs on 8 Oct 2020, 06:02 pm
Wow, this is a great thread.  I've been in the market for new cables and this will do the trick for me.  Thanks
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: pinkfloyd4ever on 8 Oct 2020, 08:29 pm
https://www.tequipment.net/Ideal45-174.html

This is a case where you get what you pay for.  They make a less expensive version that doesn't have the special mil-spec die.

My cheaper wire strippers tore up the wire.

Whoa. You can get a thermal wire stripper from eBay in good used condition for around $100 that should do the trick as well.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 23 Oct 2020, 07:41 pm
The instructional information in the first post and pictures were so good that I had to make it a sticky.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 23 Oct 2020, 07:51 pm
Ill probably be putting my order for a set over the weekend! :thumb:
(Congratulations on the sticky!)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 23 Oct 2020, 11:04 pm
Ill probably be putting my order for a set over the weekend! :thumb:

Smart move.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Wig on 23 Oct 2020, 11:28 pm
Think I'll be placing an order over the weekend as well and possibly use some KLE bananas I already have on hand.

Does anyone know if the copper is OCC or OFC?

Wig :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Monkey123 on 24 Oct 2020, 01:59 am
Is there someone on the forum who could terminate them for me, for a reasonable price?  I love DIY and used to be an electrician, so it is frustrating to need help with something so simple, but I am a quadriplegic due to an accident and have very little use of my arms/hands now. 

Thanks in advance! 
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Chilkoot on 24 Oct 2020, 05:33 pm
123, Whereabouts are you located?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 25 Oct 2020, 01:29 am
Ordered 12' (6' per side) of the 16-strand cable with tube connectors & banana plugs it'll be my project for next week!  :thumb:
Really interested to see how much of a difference it makes, compared to my cheap 12 gague zipcord. :D
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Monkey123 on 25 Oct 2020, 06:12 am
123, Whereabouts are you located?

Hi Chilkoot, I'm in NJ Near Philadelphia
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Monkey123 on 25 Oct 2020, 06:17 am
Ordered 12' (6' per side) of the 16-strand cable with tube connectors & banana plugs it'll be my project for next week!  :thumb:
Really interested to see how much of a difference it makes, compared to my cheap 12 gague zipcord. :D

Cool! Do your speakers already have the tube connector installed, or are you upgrading those as well??  I'm wondering if it is possible to easily replace the stock binding posts on KEF LS50 Metas.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 25 Oct 2020, 02:47 pm
Cool! Do your speakers already have the tube connector installed, or are you upgrading those as well??  I'm wondering if it is possible to easily replace the stock binding posts on KEF LS50 Metas.

Yup! My XLS didn't originally have on my kit, but I did upgrade them a few weeks ago & i can easily use either connection or as needed.

Is imagine upgrading the LS50 with Tube connectors is possible, but i dont have any direct experience with them personally, it will likely require drilling out the binding posts to fit the tube connectors.

Alternatively, you can drill out a 2nd set of holes & have the binding posts connect to the tube connetors then connect to the crossover so you can easily switch back cand forth to compare the differences.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: EHill on 26 Oct 2020, 12:13 am
Hello,

Why would someone choose the 24 strand over the 16 strand cable?

Does it have something to do with high current amps or longer speaker runs?

Thanks
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Carmel on 26 Oct 2020, 06:41 am
Why would someone choose the 24 strand over the 16 strand cable?
Larger cross section = less resistance lengthwise.

Does it have something to do with high current amps or longer speaker runs?
Potentially yes, but not necessarily. Esthetics also play a role.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Carmel on 26 Oct 2020, 06:45 am
Here is another question:
PTFE tubing is often used inside braided cables to lower their capacitance, right? Why would you opt for synthetic rope instead?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 26 Oct 2020, 02:12 pm
Here is another question:
PTFE tubing is often used inside braided cables to lower their capacitance, right? Why would you opt for synthetic rope instead?
I believe Danny mentioned it in his latest video, being that the rope is more flexible than PTFE. But you can alway use your own preferred materials as you see fit, even if its none at all & simply compressed cable like rockball did with his personal set.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 27 Oct 2020, 02:15 am
Looks like Danny sold out of his banana plugs so my order is on hold until more come in.  :(

Probably would have gone with spades if my Sprout had regular binding post, but it's just holes for banana plugs that are a little too big for tube connectors. But it'll be well worth the wait, & I'm excited for the A/B comparisons! :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Wig on 27 Oct 2020, 03:14 am
Looks like Danny sold out of his banana plugs so my order is on hold until more come in.  :(

Probably would have gone with spades if my Sprout had regular binding post, but it's just holes for banana plugs that are a little too big for tube connectors. But it'll be well worth the wait, & I'm excited for the A/B comparisons! :thumb:

Depending on the length of the back order, may be a good idea to have the cabling shipped to start the tedious preparation for your bananas  :thumb:

Wig
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 27 Oct 2020, 03:18 am
Depending on the length of the back order, may be a good idea to have the cabling shipped to start the tedious preparation for your bananas  :thumb:

Wig

I'm not that worried about it, I'm pretty patient, plus with the holidays coming fast I've got enough to keep up with for the time being.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Stickman on 5 Nov 2020, 01:48 am
Is ESR tape applied to both ends of the speaker cable?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 5 Nov 2020, 03:35 am
Is ESR tape applied to both ends of the speaker cable?

Yep, it's placed at the split on each end.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 5 Nov 2020, 02:50 pm
I took some measurements a few days ago on a 12' cable with and without the rope added.

The rope did drop the capacitance of the cable.

Also we just got in a LOT more spades and banana plugs. So all is in stock and shipping now.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 5 Nov 2020, 04:06 pm
I took some measurements a few days ago on a 12' cable with and without the rope added.

The rope did drop the capacitance of the cable.

Also we just got in a LOT more spades and banana plugs. So all is in stock and shipping now.

Woo! I saw that my order shipped yesterday, gunna make for a fun Sunday :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 8 Nov 2020, 10:34 pm
Got my kit (16 strand version) yesterday, got myself some rope, and spent the afternoon assembling, feeding, twisting, soldering etc, & now it's all done!  :thumb:
(No process pics tho cuz im feeling lazy today. :P )

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=216752&size=large)

I went with Tube Connectors and banana plugs.
Honestly the hardest part was finding rope. Most places didnt carry 5/8" rope, or if they did it was poor quality or an ugly color like yellow or blue. I think i had to drive to 5 locations to find something usable.. the only polyester/cotton rope i found was 1/4" so i went with black polyethylene.

What I learned:

- Order at least 1 extra foot for every 6 feet of length you think you'll need. I ordered 12', and with the rope inserted each half shrank to roughly 5'4" cables. Luckily, just enough length for my needs.
Better to have too much than not enough! :D

- 5/8" rope is probably a better option for the 24-strand model, while 3/8" or 1/2" rope being better for the 16-strand version.

- Have decent wire strippers. Mine are old and worn out, so I had a couple issues with either shredding the jacket, or cutting some of the wire along with it.

-Make sure your ends are even before soldering on connectors and the heat shrink,

How they sound:

Simply put; AMAZING.  :o

My previous upgrade adding tube connectors to my XLS added a ton of clarity. A huge step up from bare wire to be sure.

These cables had all that extra clarity, but also added something i have only ever really heard when I listened to Danny's NX-Tremes, DEPTH & WIDTH in the soundstage.
Even in the near field at my desk, there's much better imaging and soundstage now, esp front to back, where you can easily place how far away an instrument is, or where its moving.

So far, I've only listened to 2 songs so far, & I was impressed how easy it was to pick out these differences, im absolutely thrilled, and am so excited to spend more time hearing what more my music has to offer!  :thumb:

Just like with my conclusion with Danny's Tube connestors, if currently you're in the fence about getting these and making a pair for yourself, I 100% recommend it!  :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: routlaw on 2 Dec 2020, 12:29 am
These look like a nice set of speaker cables should be a fun project to build. But the use of the ERS cloth makes no sense to me. Its been my long understanding speaker cables are NOT susceptible to RMI/EMI so what possible benefit could come from this addition? Also has anyone tried using teflon tubing or any tubing for that matter instead of the rope concept. The video with Danny demonstrating the build mentions there was a difference but doesn't go on to say what that audible difference might be.

Thanks.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 2 Dec 2020, 02:41 pm
That ERS cloth is like a sponge that soaks up RF noise.

I have tried Teflon tubing. It works well and sounds good, but is not very flexible.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: routlaw on 2 Dec 2020, 04:06 pm
Thanks for the response! Understood on the use of tubing, makes sense. I do believe cables make a difference but have a few more questions.

I watched your video measuring cables as an antennae and while I do not mean any disrespect I am still skeptical how the implementation of the ERS cloth could possibly make a difference with speaker cables. After all this is not how speaker cables are actually used, but rather connected to an impedance load as opposed to two leads in open air. If any of those speaker cables had been connected to either a 4ohm or 8 ohm resistor (on the open ends) implying something similar to a speaker load would they still have served as an antennae?

Has anyone ever measured the capacitance of these cables? Seems as though capacitance on the cables might be very high and troublesome for some amplifiers inducing oscillation.

Thanks

That ERS cloth is like a sponge that soaks up RF noise.

I have tried Teflon tubing. It works well and sounds good, but is not very flexible.

Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Loudspeakerboy on 2 Dec 2020, 04:07 pm
Here are a couple build pics of the 16 strand GR cables.

Very pleased with them. The blisters from twisting and stripping wires have almost fully healed....


(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=217726)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=217727)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=217728)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=217729)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: corndog71 on 2 Dec 2020, 04:20 pm
The company known for braiding their cables started this over 40 years ago because they found traditional cables could pick up rfi/emi.  While capacitance is higher than average inductance is fairly low.  Cables like these have been around for years and if there were major problems with amplifiers they would have likely been identified by now. 

Even an engineer at Belden confirmed that braiding and teflon insulation are ideal for speaker cables (although he differs in overall cable geometry.)

Personally, I’ve been a fan of braided cables for over 20 years and prefer them over others I’ve tried.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Early B. on 2 Dec 2020, 07:14 pm
...I am still skeptical how the implementation of the ERS cloth could possibly make a difference with speaker cables.

There's a simple test you can do to demonstrate to yourself the value of ERS -- build a set of speaker cables and listen. Then apply a small amount of ERS to the ends and listen again. Report your results in this thread. If there's any improvement at all, it could be very subtle, and that would be great.

With many things audio, you gotta use experience, not intelligence. The hobby itself makes no sense at all. It's like chasing windmills.
 
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 3 Dec 2020, 11:14 am
Here's my understanding of the ESR strips. They're only applied at the points where the the cable is split.

The woven nature of the cable naturally rejects EMI/RFI. But that is lost at the point where the cables are unwoven and separated into their individual strands at each end. And since each end is now shifting, so are the small magnetic fields each wire produces. That point is where they will be most susceptible to RFI/EMI. By adding the ESR strips at those points, you reduce the likelihood of any interference being a problem.

As far capacitance, I'm not aware, I'd have to look into how to test that since i do have a set of the 16-strand cables..
they sound fantastic tho tbh. :P
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: ketchup on 3 Dec 2020, 02:52 pm
What is the combined gauge of each leg of the 16 and 24 strand cable that Danny sells?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Loudspeakerboy on 3 Dec 2020, 03:21 pm
I think I read that the 16 strand ends up at 9 per side.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: ketchup on 3 Dec 2020, 03:26 pm
I think I read that the 16 strand ends up at 9 per side.

Curious where you saw that.  Page one of this thread indicated that the Kimber 8TC is 9awg per channel, but I'm curious about this cable since we are not 100% sure it's the exact same cable that Kimber uses.

Rock Ball, did you notice how many different gauge wires were in each conductor?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 3 Dec 2020, 03:34 pm
I believe Danny mentioned in the video that the 24 strand cable came to roughly 9 gague? So the 16-strand is probably closer to 12 I'm guessing. Its 1/3 the # of wires, so probably equivalent to 3 gagues smaller.

Having worked with the 16-strand cable myself, I remember there being 2 or 3 large strands, 1 medium & the rest were all quite small.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Loudspeakerboy on 3 Dec 2020, 04:10 pm
It came as a responses to a thread I started.

“If you are going to use the tube connectors, I like that the 16 strand cable properly fits into the male tube connector. And 8 strands of this wire adds up to 9 gauge. That should be big enough for most anything. Also, if someone has tight spaces and/or bends, the smaller cable may be easier to work with.”
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: routlaw on 3 Dec 2020, 06:33 pm
Just curious what is the advantage, if any, of the tube connectors? I've been at this hobby for many years and this is the first time I've seen these, bananas of course which are sort of similar but still not quite the same.

FWIW in the conversation, last night I taped  a couple of strips to the end of my existing speaker cables at the amp connection only. I could not hear any difference with or without. My cables are some older PS Audio Statements massive heavy gauge stuff probably 6 AWG or at least 8 AWG if memory serves me correct. Over the years I've tried a number of other speaker cables but none of them have outperformed these in my system. One thing PSA did in those days was impregnating the sheathing with particles of ferrite, but I don't think they shielded them. Need to go back and find the specs to be sure about that.

Thanks
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 3 Dec 2020, 07:07 pm
Tube connectors are about as close as you can get to running wire directly from your amp to the crossovers.
The internal wiring is crimped and soldered to the female connector, with the same done on the speaker cable/male end. The cable feeds all the way to the tip of the male connector and is then crimped and soldered, so that when inserted, the tip of the male end directly touches the end of the wire inside the female end. (Naughty, I know :P)

They remove any extra mass & connection points used in standard binding posts. (i.e. nuts, bolts etc)

On my X-LS, I only had the binding post cups and cheap 12 gague zip cord, with banana plugs on the speaker end.
I later upgraded to tube connectors, still using the same cheap zip cord & the difference was immediate, much better clarity & detail across the board.

Then when I made the decision to make a pair of Danny's new 16-strand cable kits, I used tube connectors and banana plugs & polypropylene rope in the core. The jump was just as noticable, tho in a different way, they added lots depth to the recording, and I caught the difference within just a couple seconds of the first song.

With my recently purchased X-Statiks I only have binding posts and the stock AV123 crossover, and despite using the same drivers, i could tell that it lacks the clarity of my XLS. Even with the better cables, I gained better depth and imaging, but was still missing the same level of detail or clarity.

I know diminishing returns definitely kick in pretty quick with cables, and I've only ever used Zipcord until recently, and I've never heard your cables to truely compare, but each jump was bigger than I expected.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: ketchup on 3 Dec 2020, 09:31 pm
Danny,

What country is this cable made in?  Just curious.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 4 Dec 2020, 12:37 am
Danny,

What country is this cable made in?  Just curious.

China.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: ketchup on 4 Dec 2020, 03:04 am
China.

Thank you.  I'm really liking the thought of making of these cables.  I actively biamp my Maggie 3.6Rs and originally thought that the 16 conductor version would work fine since there will be two runs per channel, but would there be a downside to going with the 24 conductor cables?  I'm sure the answer is that it depends, but I'm throwing this out there in case anyone has any ideas.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Dpoteat on 4 Jan 2021, 04:48 pm
Any suggestions on the best connection for the amp side of the cables? Regular bananas seem to defeat the purpose of tube connectors.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Hobbsmeerkat on 4 Jan 2021, 09:33 pm
Any suggestions on the best connection for the amp side of the cables? Regular bananas seem to defeat the purpose of tube connectors.

Depends on your amp, & if you're willing to mod it..
Some people really like spades, others swear by bananas..

My little PS-Audio Sprout 100 only works with bananas, but the cable itself was still a big step up over my old zipcord with Tube connectors & low mass bananas.

Bigger amps can be modded to support tube connectors, but it will obviously void any warranty or support on the amp, but it should also add even more clarity to the setup.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Deano452 on 28 Mar 2021, 12:55 pm
Beautiful work! I'd love to hear them someday, but I've spent enough money for the time being.. :P
Ill stick to my cheap zipcord for now... :P
They look fantastic well done
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: DGoosen on 12 Apr 2021, 05:59 pm
Just put together a pair of 24 strand cables w/ pin connectors and have another pair ready to solder. I have an LFD integrated amp that will accept pins, my Coda amp probably won't. Pins are kind of loose in my current speakers, (kind of obvious that it was dumb to order pins for both ends in hindsight... assumed they would work well w/ most binding posts). For the second set thinking it might be best to order 8 banana terminals from Danny. Hoping someone can weigh in on how pin connectors compare w/ bananas and maybe why one is better than the other.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Tyson on 12 Apr 2021, 06:34 pm
If you're going to do banana plugs, the best out there (IMO) are the KLEI you can get at Parts Connexion.  The fact that they are so inexpensive is just gravy:

https://www.partsconnexion.com/KLEI-83432.html

The second best are the low mass banana plugs from ETI that you can get at VH Audio.  The only downside is they are less robust (the plastic is prone to bending if you are not careful):

https://www.vhaudio.com/bayonet.html
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: DGoosen on 12 Apr 2021, 08:56 pm
Thanks Tyson!
After seeing this,  http://www.image99.net/blog/files/f6ae775e30339e2b0375b739988237b7-77.html   The KLEI bananas look pretty good. The 12 strands of copper wire that each male end will get soldered to is in total an 8 gauge conductor. Not sure if the KLEI bananas can take that much wire. It seems like maybe six strands can go into one barrel and the other six can go into the second barrel (the second one that would usually be used to allow for bi-wiring). Do you know if this is a viable option?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Tyson on 12 Apr 2021, 09:19 pm
I just twisted my speaker wire so that it sort of came to a point (was thinner at the top) and then used that and soldered the rest.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: kenfx on 13 Apr 2021, 04:09 am
I'm constructing a pair of 24 strand cables w/tube connectors and ran into a soldering gun tip issue.  I have a Weller 9400PKS that came with some cheapo tips, one of which broke after my second soldering job.  Luckily the kit came with a couple other tips but they're not really the right tool for the job.  Soldering iron needs to get HOT quickly to do this right or the polyethylene jackets can get too hot, discolor, and ultimately become brittle.

I'm considering upgrading to a better soldering iron now.

Any recommendations on a good quality 200W or higher soldering iron/gun?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: subsonic1050 on 19 May 2021, 09:11 pm
I just got my set of cables done. Overall I'm very impressed with the quality for the price! I haven't been able to listen to them yet because I don't have my NX-treme's built yet and don't have any other speakers with tube connectors.

I did want to just mention a few things that I think could improve this kit if Danny or someone else at GR research is reading this. First, the solder I received was only about half as much solder as I needed to do both of my cables. Not a big deal, but it would have been nice since it's included to have enough to finish the job. Second, and this is the important one to me, the red and white heat shrink tubing included in the kit is just too small. It just barely fits over the separated strands. I ended up lubing my wires with wire pulling lubricant in an attempt to pull the heat shrink down as far as possible, but it just didn't go far enough. I spent almost as long trying to pull heat shrink as I did on the rest of the cables! Some slightly larger heat shrink would make these a breeze to build.

Can't wait to listen to them!
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: E-Zee on 23 May 2021, 11:30 pm
I posted some assembly tips for this same speaker cable kit on an outside page at the link below. I also posted a little bit of overview and some basic specifications.  I figure i'd share those tips here in case they can be of assistance to anyone assembling these.

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=224852)


https://ezeescrossovers.com/braided-speaker-cable-assembly (https://ezeescrossovers.com/braided-speaker-cable-assembly)
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Cheytak.408 on 24 May 2021, 02:38 am
I'm constructing a pair of 24 strand cables w/tube connectors and ran into a soldering gun tip issue.  I have a Weller 9400PKS that came with some cheapo tips, one of which broke after my second soldering job.  Luckily the kit came with a couple other tips but they're not really the right tool for the job.  Soldering iron needs to get HOT quickly to do this right or the polyethylene jackets can get too hot, discolor, and ultimately become brittle.

I'm considering upgrading to a better soldering iron now.

Any recommendations on a good quality 200W or higher soldering iron/gun?
Just go and get a good one: 

https://www.zoro.com/weller-solder-gun-300200-watts-120v-d650/i/G0934744/?msclkid=0c92ca06a92610e18b77aaadb97643b9&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=PLA_US_Bing_SSC&utm_term=4586131721909142&utm_content=All%20Products&gclid=0c92ca06a92610e18b77aaadb97643b9&gclsrc=3p.ds

They last for years when used as most non-pros will use a soldering gun. Having used them in an industrial application 3 - 4 years is the average life expectancy.  They are good ones.  Make sure to buy some extra elements.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: kenfx on 27 May 2021, 06:29 am
Well, I didn't buy a new soldering iron but rather followed an excellent tech tip from "Mr Carlson's Lab" channel on YouTube: https://youtu.be/79uD6XwBg5E

Basically, I took a 3" piece of 14 gauge copper from some extra electrical in-wall wiring (Romex) and hooked up to my Weller 9400PKS as described in the video.  It turned out to be an outstanding tip (no pun intended) for this soldering gun and I was able to achieve high heat and phenomenal results with my 24-strand speaker cable project.  The bundle of 12 wires wedged into/wrapped around the tube connector as described in this thread was heated very quickly and melted solder traveled through the entire inner diameter of the tube connectors all the way to the tip.  This ensures positive contact through the entire length of the tube connector and made my project go much faster! This tip should work for any gun-type soldering device as outlined in the video.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: GaryPC on 28 Jun 2021, 07:16 pm
Whoa. You can get a thermal wire stripper from eBay in good used condition for around $100 that should do the trick as well.
Home Depot has 8-20 AWG Solid /10-22 AWG Stranded wire stripper for $30.  I've used this and older version for years and no problems they are both like new. This newer one has wire cutter in the center.
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-Tools-Katapult-Wire-Stripper-and-Cutter-for-8-20-AWG-Solid-and-10-22-AWG-Stranded-Wire-11063W/204660476?MERCH=REC-_-PLP_Browse-_-NA-_-204660476-_-N&
I just completed my GR cable build with spade/banana connectors and ended up using the Vise-Grip Wire Stripping Tool/Wire Cutter, 8-Inch (2078309) amazon $10.98 https://www.amazon.com/VISE-GRIP-Stripping-Cutter-8-Inch-2078309/dp/B095KJV33D/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=irwin%2Bwire%2Bstripper&qid=1626632564&sr=8-3&th=1.
Because with the Klein auto stripper (same as the Ideal but 1/8th the cost) I started cutting the odd strand.  On the Irwin I ended up using the smallest hole to just cut the insulation with one squeeze on the handles, then I used the next smallest hole #18 to push the insulation off.  Sometimes I would do the pushing with a thumb nail.
As much as I absolutely appreciate the build attention to detail and photos here by Rock Ball I stuck with GR's recommendation on the 24-strand cable to simply grab the first 6 conductors to insert them into the connector, rather than separate out the larger individual strands. Doing the separation does give a nicer build for sure, but that's where I drew the line. 

The spade connectors have a slightly larger hole that the bananas or tubes. I was able to spiral all 24-conductors together, then after soldering used the knarly teeth on electricians pliers to gently taper the end, clip to the right length, insert, crimp and final solder.
The bananas came with single set-screws. I tossed these and used solder to fill - this seems to work nicely. To do this again I would insert 9 conductors instead of 6, and wrap the remaining 3, as I believe 8 or 9 conductors will fit snugly. As discussed above I also ran out of solder, fortunately I had some Cardas on hand which is likely the same stuff. Cardas Soldering Wire Quad Eutectic Silver Solder with rosin flux 1/4 lbs $32 at Amazon
https://www.amazon.com/Cardas-Soldering-Eutectic-Silver-Solder/dp/B015X68HXW/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?dchild=1&gclid=CjwKCAjwos-HBhB3EiwAe4xM9xnMsUSEmOZJqsfo0iXTqUHdRZiKgJXqInzTzvxlUnJX8V_CklAqmBoC79cQAvD_BwE&hvadid=410003278523&hvdev=c&hvlocphy=9032587&hvnetw=g&hvqmt=e&hvrand=2556977277036610102&hvtargid=kwd-3660914565&hydadcr=24662_11410883&keywords=cardas+solder&qid=1626635814&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&smid=A1O44Z2C3OZAM9&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUFTVFYySzhSTldFVDQmZW5jcnlwdGVkSWQ9QTAxODkxMTkyS0pRNTZRTVRQWkIzJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA0ODgxNzIxVEZRUTdQVDVCTUlLJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ== (https://www.amazon.com/Cardas-Soldering-Eutectic-Silver-Solder/dp/B015X68HXW/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?dchild=1&gclid=CjwKCAjwos-HBhB3EiwAe4xM9xnMsUSEmOZJqsfo0iXTqUHdRZiKgJXqInzTzvxlUnJX8V_CklAqmBoC79cQAvD_BwE&hvadid=410003278523&hvdev=c&hvlocphy=9032587&hvnetw=g&hvqmt=e&hvrand=2556977277036610102&hvtargid=kwd-3660914565&hydadcr=24662_11410883&keywords=cardas+solder&qid=1626635814&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&smid=A1O44Z2C3OZAM9&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUFTVFYySzhSTldFVDQmZW5jcnlwdGVkSWQ9QTAxODkxMTkyS0pRNTZRTVRQWkIzJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA0ODgxNzIxVEZRUTdQVDVCTUlLJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==)

I am not sure why, but unlike Danny's video where the ESR tape wrapped around the cable more than once, mine barely went around once.  I assume I should have wrapped it past where the rope ended where the overall diameter is smaller. I wonder what the impact might be on RFI/EMI and if I need to move it.  I just bought a Rigol DS1054X scope and am very curious if it can measure the differences.
I had the same problem covered above with the heat shrink tube barely fitting over the joints. I did not resort to lube but it took a lot of coaxing. 

At the end of the day if I were to do it again I would probably go with the 16-strand.  With 16-strands they would all fit into the connectors.  No doubt going with the 24-strand is an expression of my own OCD  :D  I do have a 12-ft cables (closer to 11'-1" with large cotton rope installed) and what I understand is a high-current speaker/amp setup, but I bet the 16-strand would be fine.   
Total time spent was 3 hours on the first cable and and 2 on the second.  After this learning curve I reckon I could do them both in under 2 hours the next time  :roll:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: LouM5 on 16 Jul 2021, 04:36 pm
Hi All,
 Any thoughts on using this cable for bi-wiring?
 6 strands each?
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: nrenter on 16 Jul 2021, 04:47 pm
The wire itself is so aesthetically pleasing, these builds deserve an attractive splitter and/or pants.
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: RonP on 12 Sep 2021, 02:23 am
I was lucky enough to have Rock Ball bring over his speaker cables today. My amps and speakers have tube connectors so they were all ready to go.

These cables are a nice,noticeable upgrade. I was hearing more of everything good I am accustom to hearing. And they are not insane priced. You
just need to put in some effort to get them assembled. Overall, a pretty amazing deal I think.

(I'm currently putzing around with turntable upgrades - I'm leaving tube rolling and audio cables to last in my todo list)

Thanks again, RB!
 :thumb:
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Rock Ball on 12 Sep 2021, 12:01 pm
I was lucky enough to have Rock Ball bring over his speaker cables today.

Actually, I was the lucky one.  Ron used the NRD LOTS technique to setup his speakers, which were custom built by Mike Lundy.  The sound stage was absolutely incredible.

I was so impressed that as soon as I got home, I disassembled my home theater seating and moved it back.  Then I brought my speakers about 2 feet further into the room.  Wow!  It was an incredible improvement and it cost me nothing.

Thank you Ron!
Title: Re: GR-Research Speaker Cables build by Rock Ball
Post by: Danny Richie on 18 Sep 2021, 02:04 pm
Hi All,
 Any thoughts on using this cable for bi-wiring?
 6 strands each?

I just shot a video on bi-wiring and bi-amping. It will be out next week.