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Speaker Cable Advice - Bi-wiring

Old 02-19-01, 01:45 AM
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I just purchased a pair of B&W 603s2 speakers and a Marantz SR7000 receiver - I'm pretty excited.

The B&W speakers can be bi-wired, but I don't have a whole lot of experience (actually, no experience at all) with bi-wiring speakers. Will I see any real benefit if I bi-wire? Are there any good online resources explaining the benefits of bi-wiring speakers?

Does anyone have any suggestions for cables that allow me to biwire that aren't inordinately expensive? Is there an easy way to terminate cable to allow for bi-wiring? Am I OK if I just set up two sets of cables with spade plugs and stick the spades together at the receiver end?

Any help you can provide me with would be greatly appreciated; I'm something of a novice when it comes to audiophile stuff, so I can use any help I can get. Thanks!

[Edited by ScottJ on 02-19-01 at 12:57 AM]
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Old 02-19-01, 10:45 PM
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Nice equipment choices!

I may be wrong, but I thought you needed two amplifiers to biwire effectively (one for low frequencies, one for mid / high).

You might contact the dealer that you bought the equipment from. They should have info on doing this, and would be happy to help you.


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Old 02-19-01, 11:29 PM
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People are now moving away from the bi-wiring because most have discovered that there is NO DIFFERENCE audibly and the extra money is wasted! Just use good Oxygen-Free 12 gauge wire and you'll be fine!
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Old 02-20-01, 09:13 AM
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>>>I may be wrong, but I thought you needed two amplifiers to biwire effectively (one for low frequencies, one for mid / high).<<<

This would be true for "bi-amping" not bi-wiring.

>>>People are now moving away from the bi-wiring because most have discovered that there is NO DIFFERENCE audibly and the extra money is wasted! Just use good Oxygen-Free 12 gauge wire and you'll be fine!<<<

This is a debateable issue among audiophiles, with people firmly entrenched in both camps. I don't have much experience with biwiring myself. I've never done a true A/B test to see if there is a difference - which you would need to do to tell. Why don't you test it out and give us your opinion?

>>>Am I OK if I just set up two sets of cables with spade plugs and stick the spades together at the receiver end?<<<

Make sure to take the "crossovers" off of your speakers and then don't just "stick the spades together", obviously you put one set of cables in the "top" set of inputs and the other in the "bottom" set. This should work fine. There are high end cables made to do this, but 2 sets of regular speaker cable will work fine.

BTW, don't your B&W speakers come with a manual that explains how to bi-wire them?


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Old 02-20-01, 09:31 AM
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Originally posted by knit-witt

Make sure to take the "crossovers" off of your speakers and then don't just "stick the spades together", obviously you put one set of cables in the "top" set of inputs and the other in the "bottom" set.
I think knit-witt meant to say "jumpers" when he said "crossovers." Two very different things.

Anyhow, here's my $.02 on bi-wiring:

1) People who are against it tend to think of it as "Buy Wiring!" since that's what the dealers are telling you to do.

2) You may or may not notice a difference, but the only way to tell is to try it in a double-blind test. This has been mentioned, but it's worth repeating.

3) Bi-wiring using a receiver (even a pretty nice one like your SR7000) is kind of like putting a giant wing on the rear deck of a Toyota Camry.

4) You might be better off spending the cumulative amount you would have spent on a bi-wire set-up for one higher-quality set of speaker cables.
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Old 02-20-01, 11:33 AM
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>>>I think knit-witt meant to say "jumpers" when he said "crossovers." Two very different things.<<<

Yeah, that's what I meant, that's why I put "crossovers" in quotes. I just couldn't think of the term "jumpers". Oh well, I am a knit-witt after all. Although, if you think about it, crossing over to different crossovers is what you are doing isn't it?


[Edited by knit-witt on 02-20-01 at 12:33 PM]
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Old 02-21-01, 11:28 AM
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I can tell you from experience, it made no difference in my set-up.
I've got a Denon AVR3200 wired to Boston VR30's.
I decided to try it for myself, as suggested. I can tell no difference from the big jumpers to the bi-wire.
The Denon receiver has the jacks on the back for bi-wiring, so I didn't have to force the wires into the same jack on the receiver.

Now, I should tell you I am running the system bi-wired today, but this is ONLY because I had no other use for the speaker wire I bought to run the test. So, I figured I've got the wire, it sounds no worse, may as well hook it up.

If I ever need that wire, I will un-hook it without a second thought.
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Old 02-21-01, 02:17 PM
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From a theoretical standpoint, I can't really see how two cables could be an improvement. There's more opportunity for crosstalk between the cables, and unless your cables are identical in length, composition, and termination, the signal velocity of propagation will be different. I believe you'd be better off with a larger gauge, higher quality cable than trying to double them up, although the average listener may not detect any differences without the use of test equipment.
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Old 02-21-01, 06:06 PM
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I fail to see how bi-wiring with a single amp could have any positive effect. You've still only got one amp! My system is bi-amped (and therefore bi-wired) - now this gives a very noticable improvement in bass speed compared to a single amp.
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