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Noob question - guitar cable length for DI
Old 9th November 2009
Registered User

Noob question - guitar cable length for DI

Hi, sorry for the probably quite stupid question, just to make sure...

I read somewhere about cable length of guitar cables affecting the sound, something about impedance and high freq roll-off and stuff like that.

Is there something like an "optimal cable length" if you want to record a guitar through DI? I have limited workspace, so I would actually prefer a really short cable like 1.5 m or so.

Signal chain: ESP Vintage Plus (SD Antiquity II pickup set) -> cable -> Apogee Duet (right now using the normal included breakout cable, want to buy the balanced Duet Breakout box later) -> MacBook/Cubase 4/Guitar Rig 3.

Any recommendation on a brand? I would have thought Vovox might be excellent, but their shortest instrument cable I have found is 3m.
Old 9th November 2009
Lives for gear
nosebleedaudio's Avatar

A good cable should work fine at 15 to 20 feet...
Old 9th November 2009
Gear Guru
kafka's Avatar
Cable length only gets to be noticeable when you get over 20 feet or so. And even then, there are some that are just fine. My favorite cables usually seem to be in the 12-15 ft range. However, there is no such thing as an optimal length. When it comes to high frequency roll-off, it's not always a bad thing with a guitar - especially if you have a fairly gainy sound.

Guitar players always have their favorite cables. I certainly have always had mine. If you swapped them around in a blind test, I probably couldn't tell the difference. But they do seem to be different, at times. You certainly don't need to spend a lot of money to get a good guitar cord. Any Belden will do. I don't know anything about the Vovox brand at all.
Old 9th November 2009
Registered User

Thanks for the replies! thumbsup
The Seymour Duncans in my ESP sound really really good for the quack and twang that a strat should deliver, but they are certainly not "high gain" like a humbucker à la EMG 81 or so...
Sounds then like a shorter-than-usual cable of only 5 feet will be fine. I'll check what my local dealer here has in stock.
Old 9th November 2009
Lives for gear
TurboJets's Avatar
Antiquity's are nice pickups. I use a 10 ft. Mogami Gold series for short runs and love it. Not too pricey really...$40 U.S.
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