Sorry if this has been done before, Im new here
I just wanted to know more about a topic that usually isn't discussed during guitar equipment chats with my friends. I understand that generally low-impedance cables are the way to go, but I dont know what exactly makes some cable wires better then others.
Recently I've been getting into a lot of effects, so I'm ready to get some decent jumper cables to connect them all, other then my random jumbled bunch of wires I have now. I'm willing to spend a bit of money, but nothing rediculous...Is there any paticular brand I should check out (specific kinds of wires too?), or does it not make that much of a difference on tone to invest so much in?
Im first to welcome you to GN. Hey welcome to the greatest Forum in the universe. I use "livewire" Cables. There very good quality and transfer effect quality great. LIVEWIRE. Welcome, - metallica man
Sing Me A Song Your a Singer, Do me a wrong, your a bringer of evil. - Dio
what i've heard is, the longer the cable you're using, the more important it is to get quality wiring to avoid buzz and signal degredation.
As long as you don't get the cheapest you can find you should be just fine. Anything in the middle of the road will be about the same. I'd avoid any with molded on plugs because you can't fix them if they break.
Great point, Paul!
"I play live as playing dead is harder than it sounds!"
Would Dimarzio Be a good brand? Im only fimiliar with their pickups, but their wiring seems to have good reviews...about $10 for a 6" jumper cable. Planet Wave i heard good about too, and some wiring kit by George L's that Ive seen on display at some places were you make you own wires with some required soldering skills. That might be useful when I finish my new pedal board and may need different legnth wires...but is the sound quality of handmade wires comparible to big name brands?
Thanks for all the advice so far guys.
hey paul, what do you mean by molded cables?
Would Dimarzio Be a good brand? Im only fimiliar with their pickups, but their wiring seems to have good reviews...about $10 for a 6" jumper cable.
I recently bought some of the DiMarzio coupler cables and I really like them. They're those 6" deals which has really cleaned up the cables at my feet. They seem to be of really good quality also. Here's a link: Pedal Coupler
I also really like these for the other cables: Tweed Cables
I'm not a performing guitarist though, so take what I say as "it works well for me at home". YMMV.
"Rock And Roll Ain't Noise Pollution"
because theyre very cheap, and 100% shielded being that the entire outside case is metal. What ever you buy, don't get had on magical super sound quality promises. There is no cable that is going to make your tone sound more crisp or clear *cough*monster*cough*. As long as a cable is well shielded and made out of decent materials, it will sound just as good as any other cable out there.
The first time I heard a Beatles song was "Let It Be." Some little kid was singing along with it: "Let it pee, let it pee" and pretending he was taking a leak. Hey, that's what happened, OK?-some guy
Moulded cables are those which have the wire/jack plug encased in plastic, that has been moulded around them. It means that, if a connection becomes bad, you can't just open the jack plug and resolder the connection. You have to destroy the cable to do a repair, basically.
The DiMarzio pedal couplers, that CranknJam linked to, have moulded jacks
While the moulded cables are hard if not impossible to repair. The moulding around the jack piece stops the cable from bending and kinking at the jack. Which is where the great majority of problems occurs.
So unless your cutting and splicing your own wire for very specific length or purpose I feel that the moulded head is the way to go for reliability and length of service.
Just my opinion.
Playing an instrument is good for your soul
I've been using these lately and have been quit happy with them.
I've also used Mogami cables and have been very happy with those as well.
"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." -- HST
I've just finished a lot of research on the subject for an article. Here are some of my findings:
Impedence? When someone wants to sell you a cable and mentions impedence... run! That's total BS. Impedence is totally irrelevant because the differences are too small to be noticed.
Shielding is important; the more shield, the better.
Type of wire is important. Silver is theoretically the best, but those who use it somehow don't obtain the best results. Almost everyone uses copper. Solid copper is the best but rarely used. It's less flexible (and a lot more expensive), but the difference is amazing.
What do you want to come out of your sound? George L is so bad that you can bury all your mistakes in it. A bad guitarist will sound better because of it.
I haven't tried every cable on the market, but the conclusion is generally: be ready to pay more because the difference is substantial.
Start with the cable you're using now. Play something. Use a different cable and play the same thing (always short bits; 30 seconds at most). Return to the original cable, then back to the second. Do this many times until you start really noticing all the differences. Some will be obvious, others less so.
I compared George L ( http://www.georgels.com ), Lava ( http://www.lavacable.com ), Horizon ( http://www.horizonmusic.com ), Spectraflex ( http://www.spectraflex.com ), Evidence ( http://www.evidenceaudio.com/ ), Whirlwind ( http://www.whirlwindusa.com ) and Digiflex ( http://www.digiflexcables.com/ ).
Evidence (solid copper) outperforms everything else without question. Spectraflex lacks in the middle range but in counterpart has a huge sound (it just sounds big) which I love. Horizon, Digiflex and Whirlwind are very respectable, affordable cables. They all lack in certain areas; choose according to what you like.
George L and Lava I wouldn't touch.
I've also tried Planet Waves; I didn't do any actual comparison. I just hate the sound overall; way too bright. So much so, I thought there was something wrong with my amp.
Do your own tests, but it's amazing the amount of difference there can be between two cables.
Remember that even if you pay a lot, most have long time guarantees:
Digiflex: at least 10 years
Spectraflex and Evidence: lifetime
How did you compare them? Did you just switch between them and play or did you do some reliable testing?
I started off by using each cable by itself in every configuration possible; just to see what I would get straight off the bat.
Later on I compared them as mentionned in the other post: playing the same bit with each cable and recording everything in 24-bit 96,000 Mhz. I used an acoustic guitar, plain electric, electric with distro, electric with full effects. I intentionnally played badly in order to see what mistakes would be picked up. I used a lot of subtleties; same here, to see what would be picked up.
Some of the cables were opened up and ripped apart. I got detailed info and reports from the manufacturers, several of these I can't make public, I compared them. I checked out independent sources also.
Essentially, most brand name cables will at least last you ten years or so. But you still have to be careful. As I said, George L is very bad, but the cable will last you your whole life and more. You can beat it to death and it will go on and on and on. You can't do this with the Evidence because of the solid copper wire.
Generally, as I said, the best is to go with sound. If you're playing death metal and jumping around the stage all night, you might prefer reliability and I don't thing a high sound cable will make much of a difference.
If you're playing melodic you'll want higher definition. Again, what do you want in your sound? It's hard to take someone's advice as so many guitarists honestly can't hear the difference because they've been playing too many gigs and their hearing is impaired.
Also, you'll hear a lot about Neutrik connectors. They are top quality, but a cable doesn't have to have these. Evidence, Whirlwind and Spectraflex don't use them, yet the results are there.