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Mic cables Summing Mixers
Old 6th September 2007
  #1
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Mic cables

I'm fairly new to recording and computers, and especially electronics. I don't mind paying more for gear if I know what I'm getting is worth it. Could one (or more) of you worthy slutz explain the difference between a $5 MF mic cable and a $45 Mogami?
Old 6th September 2007
  #2


You pay a bit for the name....

Other than that, durability is a factor. $5 seems too low, you should be thinking about $25 for something that will last.




-tINY

Old 6th September 2007
  #3
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junya-eskimo's Avatar
Its right..

For the most part there is not to much difference from $25 cables and mogami from a first look...Of course there are many plus points of mogami that the other does not have.

All my studio if fitted out with mogami..

Its nice to work your way up with gear and even cables...get somthing lower down and when you get more into it and more" knowledged " (for lack of a better word) then upgrade...Thats the way most ppl do it anyway..

Good luck with it all..

Jun
Old 7th September 2007
  #4
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Thanks! I thought I was gonna get a lesson in chemistry and physics--not that I'm disappointed, mind you...heh
Old 7th September 2007
  #5
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All cables sound different. I prefer the sound of aesebu wire, or canare non star quad. Plenty of others sound fine too tho. Mainly I wont use a cable that doesnt use a neutrik or similar copy xlr end.

On the cheap, audio technica and audiophyle offer pretty decent xlrs for $10.

Frost
Old 7th September 2007
  #6


Yeah, and I like the sound of the purple ones the best.

Except when I'm depressed, then the Yellow ones sound better to me....



-tINY

Old 7th September 2007
  #7
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If it interests you at all, it's very cheap to make your own cables. Chances are your local electronics supplier will carry some quality cable (Canare, Mogami, Belden - It's about 40-50 cents a foot) and Neutrik connectors ($2-$3 ea).
Old 8th September 2007
  #8
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making your cables are cheap, but it can be a headache if you don't have patience.

and cables do sound different. some better than others. I thought it was all bull**** until I tried a little shootout. Hosa vs Monster 100 & 500 vs Mogami 2549

Hosa was ok. Mogami did have a cleaner, more open sound over the Monster cable. but it wasn't a real big difference. So you can conclude that when you factor in having tons of cables, that little extra improve that EACH cable adds will become a real big factor.
Old 8th September 2007
  #9
I was feeling a little sheepish about buying into the whole Mogami hype... I even got the Mogami headphone extension cords... but Acoustic Cloud set me straight.

"Look," he said, "you've settled on quality, right? And now you don't need to worry about it or wonder about it, right?"

And that made me feel better. And it made me see... there's a difference between hype and a product that is just plain excellent.
Old 8th September 2007
  #10
Deleted User
Guest
The cable is part of the circuit.....

When you use a cable to connect one piece of audio gear to another, it becomes part of the circuit. This becomes critical when the cable is used in a passive interconnect, such as a dynamic mic to a preamp, and a low-level interconnect, such as a condenser mic to a preamp. In my experience, I have noticed the different sound of cables mostly with mic-level signals, and not as much with line-level signals.
Old 8th September 2007
  #11
Gear Maniac
 

Someone already suggested making your own cables if you have soldering skills and patience because it's cheaper(and in my opinion a good learning experience). They didn't tell you how much cheaper it was though. I bought enough cable to make 12 25' mogami(2549) cables and the neutrik connectors for 18 bucks a piece.
Old 8th September 2007
  #12
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The Beatsmith's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY View Post


Yeah, and I like the sound of the purple ones the best.

Except when I'm depressed, then the Yellow ones sound better to me....



-tINY

Old 8th September 2007
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B.Santillan View Post
. . . . They didn't tell you how much cheaper it was though. I bought enough cable to make 12 25' mogami(2549) cables and the neutrik connectors for 18 bucks a piece.

true...

you might save like 40% or so depending on where you buy your bulk cable and connectors and what brand & type. Sometimes ordering the cables from one place and connection from another place might also be cheaper.
Old 8th September 2007
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B.Santillan View Post
Someone already suggested making your own cables if you have soldering skills and patience because it's cheaper(and in my opinion a good learning experience). They didn't tell you how much cheaper it was though. I bought enough cable to make 12 25' mogami(2549) cables and the neutrik connectors for 18 bucks a piece.
I make my cables from Canare Quad and Neutrik connectors, and from the place I buy at, a 25' cable comes out to $14.50.

The 2 reasons for buying better cable are sound quality and durability. The sound quality comes from higher grade metal and better soldering (no cold joints). Durability comes from the connector and the cable itself. Those molded connectors on Hosa cables are impossible to repair if one of the connections breaks (you have to cut it off and get a new one), and Switchcraft connectors have the worst reinforcement ever. Neutriks have a little locking ring inside that is like a pair of pliers that clamps down on the cable, so the joints never get yanked on. The more expensive cables use higher gauge wire that doesn't break as easily. I like Canare cable because it has a densely braided shield that never separates (it takes a lot of work to do it on purpose). I've got some 14-15 or so cables that I've had for 3-4 years and used in a variety of places (remote recording) and never had a single problem with them.
Old 8th September 2007
  #15
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Thank you all! I'm currently just doing acoustic guitar and vocals, so two good cables will do me for a while. The DIY route is intriguing--I'd like to learn to solder small stuff. All of my experience is with pipe and large electric terminals. I guess those techniques wouldn't work so good on the guts of a mic...hehheh
Old 8th September 2007
  #16
Vogon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by briankonၺelman View Post
When you use a cable to connect one piece of audio gear to another, it becomes part of the circuit.
Isn't this exactly what is avoided by isolationg circuitry (i/o transformer etc)?
I'm no EE, just curious...
Old 9th September 2007
  #17
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I think that boutique cables should come with a free pair of boots...
Old 9th September 2007
  #18
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any decent cable, with decent connectors and properly assembled will sound exactly the same as any other and anyone that says any different is deluding both themselves and anyone gullible enough to be taken in by it 100% - and don't bother replying with 'I can prove it' because you cannot, plain and simple

DIY your own, it's very simple - and never, ever pay $45 for a name printed on the side of a bit of generic cable
Old 9th September 2007
  #19
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Cables

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssaudio View Post
any decent cable, with decent connectors and properly assembled will sound exactly the same as any other and anyone that says any different is deluding both themselves and anyone gullible enough to be taken in by it 100% - and don't bother replying with 'I can prove it' because you cannot, plain and simple

DIY your own, it's very simple - and never, ever pay $45 for a name printed on the side of a bit of generic cable
You've clearly never done any A/B ing between $10 and $50 cables! It goes without saying that a great cable between a lousy pre and lousy convertors will still sound lousy. But in a great chain, a bad cable brings the whole thing down! Read just about any interview with a AE or ME. The almost always talk (also) about cables....
Old 9th September 2007
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamwerks View Post
You've clearly never done any A/B ing between $10 and $50 cables! It goes without saying that a great cable between a lousy pre and lousy convertors will still sound lousy. But in a great chain, a bad cable brings the whole thing down! Read just about any interview with a AE or ME. The almost always talk (also) about cables....

Uh...I wouldn't expect a $10 mic cable to have decent connectors or be properly assembled. I think he meant the difference between a $20 Mogami cable and a $150 Monster cable with the phase correction B.S.
Old 9th September 2007
  #21
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ssaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamwerks View Post
You've clearly never done any A/B ing between $10 and $50 cables!
and you have clearly not understood a word I wrote tutt
Old 9th September 2007
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

For what it's worth, although it may not apply to your situation:

I am always thankfull for good service and advice. I needed new mic cables. Redco was highly recommended so I sent them a note:
Quote:
I need two balanced mic lines. One for my home VO studio from phantom pre-amp to my large condenser mic or my Sennheiser 416. 20ft. I would like higher quality if it makes a difference. XLR-F/M.

The other line I need is for on-location TV shoots. 25ft, XLR F/M. Hand-held dynamic to camera, or Sennheiser 416 (phantom powered) to camera...often on boom pole. I would like this line to be easy to handle and durable.
Quote:
For the mic lines I would recommend the Gotham Audio GAC-3, very good high quality cable.
I would recommend our TGS-QD Quad mic cable for the boom pole cable. It is flexible, but has a durable jacket and sleeving.

Thanks,
Chris Stubbs
Redco Audio
I would have never believed that mic line could make such a difference. It is an obvious difference. My old line was the regular grade we all used for years.
I understand that Gotham used to be the house brand for Neumann and it's great. The TGS-QD is Redco's house brand and it is made from Canare wire. The TGS is fantasic for the use I am putting it through. My videographer noticed an improvement the moment we used it.
I guess my appreciative rant is more about improving sound quality with the right cable as much as the excellent service from Chris and Redco.

Thanks, WE
Old 9th September 2007
  #23
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I did a shootout between the best grade of Audio-Technica cable (8314) and Mogami using 50 foot lengths. The AT cable is about half the price of the Mogami. I couldn't tell the difference on either acoustic guitar or vocals.

I mentioned this on another forum and a member said that he read that AT actually uses Mogami wire in their top grade of cable. I haven't been able to verify this but they sure sound identical to me.
Old 9th September 2007
  #24
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Meriphew's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by samwinston123 View Post
Those molded connectors on Hosa cables are impossible to repair if one of the connections breaks
If it breaks? You mean, when it breaks. You'll be lucky if the ends of the Hosa cable don't short out just by removing it from the package. Stay away from Hosa. Pure and utter crap IMO.
Old 10th September 2007
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by jowillie View Post
I would have never believed that mic line could make such a difference. It is an obvious difference. My old line was the regular grade we all used for years.


I notice you don't describe the difference.....




-tINY

Old 10th September 2007
  #26
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Quote:
I notice you don't describe the difference.....
I also notice that I've never seen anybody put up files that show a difference in cables. If anyone knows of such files posted for download I would like to hear them.

In the audiophile business they've run double-blind A/B/X test to see if golden ear'd listeners could tell the difference between interconnects. An A/B/X test only attempts to determine if you can hear any difference at all. It doesn't ask you to identify a cable. Anyway, it turns out that under these conditions people can't reliably hear a difference in interconnects. Huge differences that were described when the listener knew which cable he/she was listening to seem to disappear under these conditions.

We can easily tell the difference in recorded files between different microphones and preamps - just go to the Listening Sessions website if you doubt this. Maybe some of our more perceptive members can hear similar differences in cables but I'm skeptical. If you've got two brands of cables that sound like night and day, how about posting files that show the difference?
Old 10th September 2007
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samwinston123 View Post
If it interests you at all, it's very cheap to make your own cables. Chances are your local electronics supplier will carry some quality cable (Canare, Mogami, Belden - It's about 40-50 cents a foot) and Neutrik connectors ($2-$3 ea).
+1

I'm a musician, not a engineer, but I've learned that anybody configuring their own studio set-up will suffer if they don't know how to solder a cable.

Buy some good Mogami quad or Canare, some Neutrik connectors, a good soldering iron, and ask around about how to properly and easily solder cables.

The less you depend on others, the quicker you get to the fun stuff. And that stands for shopping too.

Also, I won't get into the 'notice a difference' discussion, but having a cable that lasts and holds up after bass cabs have rolled over it 20 times is important. Don't skimp out out cables, they're like tires to a truck. They will get USED.
Old 10th September 2007
  #28
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barbaroja's Avatar
 

I tested a cheap cable, a proel cable and a monster cable. Just an original signal and compared with the phase inverted cable-passed.

The very cheap one (chinese that came with a standard guitar) did show a different frequency response and little dots of noise)

The proel and the monster were the same. Good cables.

I think is more imporant to keep in mind the durability and the shielding. With decent cables you are done. They do not have to be ultra expensive.
Old 10th September 2007
  #29


Let's not start talking guitar cables or High-Z mic cables here. There is definately differences there. I can show you from specs and circuit simulations.

There may even be a bit of difference on longer runs with mics that have low output, weird transformers, or some other non-standard "features". Some mic pre-amps with "novel" designs may accentuate this too.




-tINY

Old 11th September 2007
  #30
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I've got two AT 8314-20s on the way for about $35 w-shipping. I will A-B them with the one Shure cable and the Mus. Friend cable I've been using. If there's a difference these beat-up ears can hear (or not), I'll post some clips for feedback. Since I have a barebones shoestring recording setup, I would think an audible difference would be very telling.

The main reason I bought the cables is that I just got a pair of Oktava M-012's and I thought hooking them up with cables of different lengths and brands was just dumb.

And thanks for all the info. This has been a very educational thread.
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