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What subwoofer cable would you recommend?


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I'd like to ask upfront for people who believe that "cable is cable" not to respond to this thread. While I do respect that position, my experience tells me otherwise so a response that "cable is cable" would not be at all helpful to me in answering my questions.

 

I have Gallo Strada speakers and a Gallo TR3 subwoofer. Speaker wire for the Stradas is Audience AU24SE. I am similarly looking to upgrade the subwoofer cable and I'm seriously considering the Audience AU24 subwoofer cable for 495 USD. Whereas as the AU24SE's gave me huge bang for the buck for my main speakers, what kind of improvement in sound quality can I expect by spending more than, say, 50 to 75 USD for subwoofer cable, especially considering that the subwoofer's most effective range is, perhaps, 30 to 80 Hz(where it meet the point of crossover)?

 

While I'm entertaining the thought of Audience subwoofer cable based on my experience with their AU24SE wires and also system synergy, I'm also open to hear what recommendations other folks may have regarding their own favorite subwoofer cable.

 

Esau

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How far is the sub from the amplifier and is the cable distance from the main speaker shorter?

 

The main speakers are 3 approximately 3 feet/1 meter away from the amplifier and the sub is 6 feet/2 meters away from the amplifier.

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How far is the sub from the amplifier and is the cable distance from the main speaker shorter?

 

 

Question. Since the sub is dealing with frequencies below (ostensibly) 400 Hz, why would the length matter? Attenuation due to cable length occurs at the top of the audio spectrum, not the bottom. I can't see how cable choice could, under any stretch of the imagination, have the slightest effect on a subwoofer signal.

George

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I do believe in good quality cables and do believe that the right cable can make a difference though in many cases it can be quite subtle. My personal take on your consideration is a sub cable that costs about 1/3 of the cost of your sub is too much for the potential return. Why not try The Cable Company and their trial program. I'm sure they would have a couple of reasonable recommendations for you.

"If you fly a flag of hate you are no kin to me"

Ry Cooder

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I would stick with the Audience AU24 as per your speaker cables always good to stick with cables from the same family. Don't be fooled and buy cheap so called sub woofer cables they are what they are. You would be amazed at the difference in overall sound quality by adding good quality subwoofer cables. Anything that improves the bass improves the whole sound in my book especially critical midrange and higher frequencies.

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what kind of improvement in sound quality can I expect by spending more than, say, 50 to 75 USD for subwoofer cable, especially considering that the subwoofer's most effective range is, perhaps, 30 to 80 Hz(where it meet the point of crossover)?

None. Get a cable that works. We are talking about a subwoofer. Those frequencies will be coming from your room, not the woofer. I'd save my money for something else.

Michael.

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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I agree that length shouldn't matter. I have a a Tributaries series. 5 cable that I paid 30 USD for. It seems perfectly adequate and maybe I'm asking for too much. Thecableco is a reputable outfit that I've had positive dealings with but they are also in the business of selling cable.

 

Reminds me of Joey Covington's story about his audition to play drums for Jefferson Airplane. As Joey tells it, the band plays a song and Joey sits out for the whole performance. When it's all over Joey says "that song didn't need drums" and he gets the gig.

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Agree with dallasjustice above.

Aurender S10--> Berkeley Alpha USB—> Meitner MA-1 --> Audio Research REF6 Pre --> Audio Research REF-110-->Vandersteen Quatro CT Speakers

 

Sonore UltraRendu with Uptone power supply —> Meitner MA1

 

AQ Sky XLR Interconnects, Audioquest Diamond USB, Wireworld Platinum Starlight USB, Nordost Heimdall 2 AES-EBU

 

AMG Giro Turntable w Lyra Delos Cartridge —> Audio Research Ref 3 PhonoPre

 

HRS RXR Rack with Isolation Bases

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Question. Since the sub is dealing with frequencies below (ostensibly) 400 Hz, why would the length matter? Attenuation due to cable length occurs at the top of the audio spectrum, not the bottom. I can't see how cable choice could, under any stretch of the imagination, have the slightest effect on a subwoofer signal.

 

The reason for asking the question on cable length is two fold.

 

 

If there is some distance like 5m+ between the amplifier and the sub, then it is appropriate to use speaker cables, rather than the RCA inputs. The amplifier's low output impedance won't cause induced noise, but expensive cables increase in cost substantially once they exceed 'commonly stocked lines'.

 

If the distance is long again, an XLR transmission would be in order to try and keep noise out from parallel lines.

 

Since the distance is short, there's no problem.

 

 

The OP's sub can accept speaker inputs, or RCA inputs, with corresponding HF Pass and attenuation levels. This means the internal amplifier in the sub, has dropping networks for the speaker connections, whereas the RCA inputs are a direct feed in to the line level on the amplifier. In this case, preference is given to the RCA, since the dropping circuits are out of the equation and less is more. The speaker attenuator circuits just get in the way. I can see why the manufacturer adds them, but if the mains are 4 Ohm speakers or less and a new parallel speaker is added (albeit high impedance), there 'could' be an issue with amplifier stability.

 

 

Given the distances involved, and if the OP's amp has a pre-out, the preferred method is to use the RCA inputs. I'm sure the OP would have a high quality cable in a drawer at home, ready for use.

 

As always, recommend to use a shielded power cable.

AS Profile Equipment List        Say NO to MQA

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Esimms86

I have Stradas with a tr-3 sub.

 

Have you tried running speaker cable to the sub's high level inputs?

 

If not, I suggest you give it a whirl.

 

Although, it's best to use the same or similar cable that you're feeding the Stradas. (the speaker cable to the sub will affect the sound of the Stradas too - in my experience)

 

I run a second set of speaker cables to my sub. The speaker cables to my sub are thicker and shorter. I initially tried 18awg before switching to 12awg (of the same kind of wire). The latter was much better.

 

Tweaks you might try

 

- Removing the tr-3's feet and stumps was worthwhile. (suggested by Pierre at Mapleshade)

 

- float on a timber base (i use two bases sandwiched by nuts)

 

- replace both fuses (the only ones I've tried have been AMR's - I'm very happy with them).

 

- bass traps (tightly rolled insulation batts in wardrobe organisers worked a treat for me)

 

I had wondered if I needed a second sub to get decent bass. Not any more. I am now able to get fantastic bass from the tr-3. The difference from stock is massive.

 

I mount the Stradas on the wall, but still like to use the sub up to 180hZ (or is it just 150hZ?).

 

Tuning the sub's settings using the M.A.T.T. Test was brilliant. Well worth it. (who'd have thought a mp3 test tone would become an essential reference recording??)

 

Luke :-)

TF cards (LPSon  usb hub) -> GentooPlayer in RAM on mini fanless/supercap NUC -> Audio GD R-27 -> S.A.T. Infinity monoblocks -> Gallo Stradas + TR-3 sub Hifiman HE560

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...what kind of improvement in sound quality can I expect by spending more than, say, 50 to 75 USD for subwoofer cable, especially considering that the subwoofer's most effective range is, perhaps, 30 to 80 Hz(where it meet the point of crossover)?...Esau

 

Hi Esau,

 

Since I don't equate a cable's price with its performance (too many expensive bad ones), I would submit the question *might* be "What kind of improvement in sound quality can I expect with a better cable feeding the subwoofer...?"

 

My response would start by saying one must consider the crossover region, where the main pair and the sub "hand off" to each other. It is important to have coherence here, lest they each deliver sound with different character -- something to be avoided if one seeks to have the speakers (and the rest of the system) "get out of the way".

 

A good cable feeding the sub should provide exactly the same benefits a good cable will provide for the main pair. In terms of the bass, what I hear is better definition of pitch and better dynamic response. One area I find to be weak in many systems is that they produce bass *quantity* but what they produce lacks the speed, the definition, the clarity of pitch that bass has in real life. The other concern is dynamic response or how effectively the system tracks the attack and decay of bass notes. (To my ears, not many get the full swing of the attack, hence lacking "punch", and *very* few settle fast enough to avoid the lingering "woof" and its obscuration of low level detail.)

 

The subs in my system are crossed over at 30 Hz, so they're only working from ~30 Hz down to their low end spec of ~ 16 Hz... the bottom half of the bottom octave. I've had good success feeding them with WyreWizard (I think it was the Enchantress model) interconnects and recently switched to (and am thoroughly enjoying the sonic results of) using Nordost's Heimdall 2 interconnects. By the way, neither of these is sold as "subwoofer cable", both being regular analog interconnects with RCA connectors at both ends.

 

My best suggestion would be to either borrow cables from a dealer (or friend) or utilize the services of something like the Cable Company if you can. As you know, there will be folks in Internet fora who will argue all sorts of things, often confusing what they might hear (or not hear) with what others might (or might not) hear. Listening for yourself, on your own system, is the only way to find out what *you* hear and what is (or isn't) meaningful to you.

 

Have fun!

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

The Soundkeeper | Audio, Music, Recording, Playback

Barry Diament Audio

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I'd like to ask upfront for people who believe that "cable is cable" not to respond to this thread. While I do respect that position, my experience tells me otherwise so a response that "cable is cable" would not be at all helpful to me in answering my questions.

 

I have Gallo Strada speakers and a Gallo TR3 subwoofer. Speaker wire for the Stradas is Audience AU24SE. I am similarly looking to upgrade the subwoofer cable and I'm seriously considering the Audience AU24 subwoofer cable for 495 USD. Whereas as the AU24SE's gave me huge bang for the buck for my main speakers, what kind of improvement in sound quality can I expect by spending more than, say, 50 to 75 USD for subwoofer cable, especially considering that the subwoofer's most effective range is, perhaps, 30 to 80 Hz(where it meet the point of crossover)?

 

While I'm entertaining the thought of Audience subwoofer cable based on my experience with their AU24SE wires and also system synergy, I'm also open to hear what recommendations other folks may have regarding their own favorite subwoofer cable.

 

Esau

 

Hello Esau,

 

Purchased my subwoofer cables at the same time I purchased my JL Audio F112 (x2). That was in 2011. Agree with Barry Diament AND considering the performance I experience with Synergistic Research's Tesla LE Subwoofer 2, I can easily recommend them. I use XLR connections, Low pass set at 55Hz. New models replace older model cables and I do not know what the current replacement is for the Tesla LE Subwoofer 2, but this cable is worth the price. Again, Barry is correct, borrow, let The Cable Company loan you a cable or pair or as needed and listen for yourself. I am a Mingus, Carter, Brown Chambers, McBride etc. etc. etc fan so bass rendition/SQ is very important to me. Highly recommended. My one caveat, I have very little experience with other cables, i.e., AudioQuest which in no way compares and that was a lifetime ago.

 

Good fortune with your decision whichever you choose.

Best,

Richard

 

PS

(my terminations are XLR) from Bryston 10B crossover to F112s)

 

TESLA LE Subwoofer 2 cable is the perfect Active subwoofer cable for most music and home theater systems. It delivers all the performance found in TESLA LE Subwoofer 1 cables, but with a level of refinement and frequency extension that they cannot match. This cable delivers a huge expansive sound field; many times bigger than is possible without a TESLA LE Subwoofer 2 cable in your system. The increase in detail in the upper registers is possibly the most amazing aspect of this cable. At first listen, many users report hearing details from their favorite recordings for the very first time. Home theater buffs report imaging so improved they find themselves turning down their systems in the middle of a film to see if what they are listening to is coming from the score or from outside. To say that the TESLA LE Subwoofer 2 cable is a breakthrough is an understatement. This is a must audition product.

 

The new Active TESLA LE subwoofer cables feature the ability to change the voicing of your system via three different Active Shielding circuits, called “Enigma Bullets”. Each circuit features a different sonic characteristic:

 

• Silver Module = Open and airy

• Black Module = Warm and rich

• Grey Module = A hybrid of both the Black and Silver

 

The “Enigma Bullets” enables you to fine tune any component for a perfect system match.

 

 

Subwoofer-2.jpg

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None. Get a cable that works. We are talking about a subwoofer. Those frequencies will be coming from your room, not the woofer. I'd save my money for something else.

Michael.

 

Hi Michael,

 

If those frequencies are in the program material and they are coming from the room and not the woofer, I would say there are some serious setup issues with the system.

 

Room's will "ring" (if untreated) all the way up to ~300 Hz. These room modes must be addressed or they will hinder performance through the range and not just in the bass. --It is very easy to hear how properly treated room modes result in much more clarity of low level detail in frequencies all the way up the range.

 

With the room properly addressed and program material that contains real bass, optimal subwoofer setup improves the entire experience. From what I've heard over the years, the performance benefits of good cables (just like a good amp or any other component), occur throughout the range, all the way up, and all the way down. Neglecting any part of the range means coherence is compromised.

 

If I was baking a cake, I wouldn't want the top 90% baked to perfection and the bottom 10% either under baked or burnt. It is as much a part of the experience as the rest. Same with sound. That's how *I* hear it anyway. I realize we all hear it differently.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

The Soundkeeper | Audio, Music, Recording, Playback

Barry Diament Audio

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I'd like to ask upfront for people who believe that "cable is cable" not to respond to this thread. While I do respect that position, my experience tells me otherwise so a response that "cable is cable" would not be at all helpful to me in answering my questions.

 

Please explain what cables you have tried and what the differences were, and what "sonic features" you are looking for in a sub cable.

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Esau,

 

With all due respect, I do not understand your position. You say the "a cable is a cable" crowd would not be helpful at all , but I fail to see how the "cables make huge differences" crowd could be any more helpful...

 

In the end, it is you and only you who decides what you perceive to sound best, not the opinion of others.

 

I would recommend starting with two lengths of 16 square millimeter multi-strain installation-wire. That should set you back only a few dollars, and it should be able to pass the energy without restraints... Maybe it will sound incredible to you, and if not, you have lost a few dollars. Big deal!

“We are the Audiodrones. Lower your skepticism and surrender your wallets. We will add your cash and savings to our own. Your mindset will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.” - (Quote from Star Trek: The Audiophile Generation)

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