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Speakon connections

jhaider

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#61
Is that really necessary?
Yes. Some people think it’s important to know who they’re dealing with. If people have different opinions on whether they should materially support a given entity and act on those opinions, that is how a functioning market should work. But generally concealing knowledge is objectively bad.
 

AudioSceptic

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#62
Another point is that connectors used internally in speakers or amplifiers are out of the scope of connectors used externally on cables between loudspeakers and amplifiers such as Speakon.

Also, there are some known brands to avoid too. Molex is owned by the Koch brothers...

@AudioSceptic did you just hit on a means to fund Amir’s speaker testing? A few changes: make it a four tiered line of “Tuning Forks” -low E, middle C, Perfect Pitch, and Perfect Pitch A4-432 Maestro Edition. The difference? Break in time of course :)
They will come in different thicknesses, depending on which instrument you want to enhance; thick for double bass, thin for violin, extra thin for piccolo, etc. And there will be a cobalt version for blues and jazz aficianodos.
 

GrimSurfer

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#63
They will come in different thicknesses, depending on which instrument you want to enhance; thick for double bass, thin for violin, extra thin for piccolo, etc. And there will be a cobalt version for blues and jazz aficianodos.
Will they be Roon ready?
 

DonH56

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#64
Yes. Some people think it’s important to know who they’re dealing with. If people have different opinions on whether they should materially support a given entity and act on those opinions, that is how a functioning market should work. But generally concealing knowledge is objectively bad.
I don't think blaming the (a, any) corporation and all those who work for it because you disagree with the politics of top management or the owner is reasonable. Boycotts and such hurt the rank-and-file much more than the board IME/IMO. But I am also guilty of that; I try to avoid Google and its liberal bias and so forth. Nor do I see how that fits into a discussion of speaker connectors and would prefer to keep politics out of ASR; seen too many good fora die over the years because political debates drove members away. But, I'm a conservative, so by all means put me on your ignore list.

Will they be Roon ready?
Many years ago there was a joke about a new computer that had the speed of a Cray (supercomputer, Seymour worked not far from where I work now), a thought-interface so no display or keyboard was needed, "infinite" storage, consumed practically no power, and fit into a shirt pocket. The first consumer question: "Yeah, but is it PC-compatible?" :)
 

jhaider

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#66
The connector is one thing but it's the manner of crimping that gives mechanical strength and ensures a good electrical connection. I've seen (and done) so many bad crimps that I solder critical joints (though one can just as easily bugger this up too).

Purpose built die kits do, however, take a great deal of drama out of crimping.
This discussion would have gone over my head until a couple years ago, when I had to learn all about crimping to troubleshoot and fix some failing crimps on Speakon jacks terminating our in wall cabling. In case others are in that boat, here are some hastily-snapped pictures that may help:

Here is a locater for female quick disconnects attached to a common ratcheting crimper.

locator.jpeg

This particular tool is made by Rennsteig in Germany, and is special because the jaws remain parallel through the whole crimp. This tool is rebranded by many connector makers, including Neutrik. The crimp die in use is designed for open barrel terminals.


A locater operates simply: you slide the quick disconnect end over the tab on the locater, and the connector barrel is perfectly located in the crimp die.

nlfaston setup.jpeg

Leading to a perfect crimp every time. (Yes, I stripped too much wire here. I would trim it before crimping if the terminal was intended for use.

knipex crimped.jpeg

However, Neutrik nl-Faston has a longer body than normal quick disconnects due to the locking mechanism. As a result it does not fit in the standard locater. The open barrel sections are the same size on both terminals, so the same die will work for both.

standard vs nlfaston.jpeg

You have to be a little bit more careful with nl-Faston, but on a ratcheting tool like this Rennsteig you can lock the tool down slightly and get it lined up pretty well.

quick disconnect in locater.jpeg

However, these terminals are hard to crimp with a simple pliers style crimper, based on the failure rate of the ones crimped with one by our CEDIA guy. Being careful and using a good tool with the right die leads to excellent crimps, as shown below, but a locater would reduce time and fuss.


nlfaston and knipex crimped.jpeg

I don't think blaming the (a, any) corporation and all those who work for it because you disagree with the politics of top management or the owner is reasonable.
I respect your opinion. I also trust you to respect mine, which was expressed well by Republican macher Grover Norquist: starve the beast.

I am also guilty of that; I try to avoid Google and its liberal bias and so forth.
Now that statement has nothing to do with speaker connectors, though in it one can hear tragicomic echos of an audiophile triggered by the suggestion that fancy new speaker cables won't lift veils and bring them angelic new heights of system synergy.

Here's a recent take regarding Google's alleged bias grounded in empirical research:
https://www.economist.com/graphic-d...ds-reputable-reporting-not-left-wing-politics

Nor do I see how that fits into a discussion of speaker connectors and would prefer to keep politics out of ASR; seen too many good fora die over the years because political debates drove members away. But, I'm a conservative, so by all means put me on your ignore list.
Are you trolling? The question arises because "you trigger me, so you should put me on your ignore list!" is almost too on the nose as satire of the white grievance cancel culture that calls itself conservatism to be sincerely meant.

If you are being sincere, brandishing your political identity is a novel way to keep politics out of ASR! Regardless, inasmuch as you were triggered by my factual statement that the Koch brothers own Molex, I apologize.
 

GrimSurfer

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#67
Really good hand tools are works of art... and worth every penny, considering all the nasty variables they avoid. Doubly so for the German ones!

@DonH56 is one of the good ones... so I think he was winding you up a bit (and most definitely not/not a Gauleiter or Imperial Wizard).
 
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DonH56

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#68
<elided>
I respect your opinion. I also trust you to respect mine, which was expressed well by Republican macher Grover Norquist: starve the beast.

Now that statement has nothing to do with speaker connectors, though in it one can hear tragicomic echos of an audiophile triggered by the suggestion that fancy new speaker cables won't lift veils and bring them angelic new heights of system synergy.

Here's a recent take regarding Google's alleged bias grounded in empirical research:
https://www.economist.com/graphic-d...ds-reputable-reporting-not-left-wing-politics

Are you trolling? The question arises because "you trigger me, so you should put me on your ignore list!" is almost too on the nose as satire of the white grievance cancel culture that calls itself conservatism to be sincerely meant.

If you are being sincere, brandishing your political identity is a novel way to keep politics out of ASR! Regardless, inasmuch as you were triggered by my factual statement that the Koch brothers own Molex, I apologize.
I didn't follow most of what you said or implied ("starve the beast"? -- please don't answer, rhetorical). There is plenty of conflicting evidence about what Google does or does not do to influence politics. I don't much care, and actually prefer another search engine because of the information they retain rather than their political leanings (or not). As to that, I think everyone here knows my political leanings (as well as audiophile cred, or lack thereof), but I really do try to keep it out of online fora. Politics is forbidden on the trumpet forum I help moderate, and I'd much prefer it be that way here, so yeah you could say it's one of my "buttons". It wasn't what you said, it was the way you said it... You said you wanted to know who you were dealing with, and hiding is bad, so I figured I'd just state it flat-out and move on. Ignoring was a reference to your implication (perhaps just the way I took your post) that you'd prefer to not interact with folk like me. I'd prefer political statements, even veiled ones, not be on ASR but not my call. But yah sometimes I just can't let something pass. Please accept my apologies for adding fuel to the fire; should have let it slide and moved on.

The point I was trying to make, in my too-dry too-snarky fashion, was that acknowledging the good one does or knowledge one has to share can be independent of politics. I work with a lot of great people who have different political (and many other) views, and that does not change the respect we have for each other, nor how well we work together. Similarly, I interact with many people on-line that I would consider friends that do not share my views on various subjects, and it does not get in the way of our interactions online or in person. Try being a conservative on a music forum! :) Or just playing in an orchestra...

I tend to stick to the technical stuff. That's what I know and, as I've said many times over the years (only half in jest), I became an engineer so I didn't have to deal with people since I'm so bad at it. I come here to read about and share what I can of the science and would rather see ASR remain focused on that. It is too easy to take something wrong in today's supercharged climate.

One the Internet, no-one can see you smile - Don

p.s. Molex is a company I have to work with on a semi-regular basis in my day job. I have recently been going back and forth with them to improve the performance of some of their high-speed (22.5 Gb/s) cables (failing some compliance tests), so was overly sensitive. The people I've been working with have been really good.
 

Thomas savage

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#69
Not sure what's happening here but there's a outbreak of grumpiness on the forum of late , if we could get back to being pleasent and keeping things in perspective I'd be most appreciative.

There's enough drama in the world we don't need to be creating more here.

Cheers
 

Rja4000

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#72
Pro connections are done with Speakon.
Benefits are: can't be confused, connects in seconds, good contact, allows huge current (30Arms), lockable, robust, may even be IP54 certified for some.
And, most important for pro use: they are safe.
No risk of touching a lead, to get a short, or of leak to the plug frame if a lead gets disconnected inside.

Before Neutrik invented them (1987), one could find XLR or 1/4" Jack. XLR had advantage of locking and being robust too
But, as I remember from those ages, there was always a risk to confuse a mic cable and a speaker cable with XLR.
Clear route for some disaster.
Therefore, the pro industry adopted Speakon pretty quickly.

We see the same thing with EtherCon nowadays, by the way.

For non pro use, or fixed installations, speakon drawbacks are size and price.
And, well, they don't look very sexy nor like luxury items...
 
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Blumlein 88

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#73
I think SpeakOns are really good connectors. I wish they'd would quickly become the overwhelming norm. And maybe they will. Remember for lower level signals XLR's while maybe not the all time optimum are pretty good, but weren't the norm not all that long ago. If all gear used XLRs for everything except high power connections which are SpeakOns we'd be in a pretty good place. Well that and EtherCon for digital.

I really wish digital microphones would standardize on something.
 

March Audio

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#74
I don't think I have ever seen a copper speaker spade lug, usually plated hard brass.
I blued up (applied engineers blue) to a spade lug surface decades ago since it looked like a crap system and found only the tinyest negligible IMO actual contact.
The little soft thin ones used on low current wires are maybe fine but I haven't seen them on speaker cables.
The plating is very thin and any decent pressure created by tightening should provide a good contact area. Spades and lugs are very common place in electrical (power) work and you dont see things failing and burning down due to high resistance.
 
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Frank Dernie

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#75
The plating is very thin and any decent pressure created by tightening will provide a good contact area. Spades and lugs are very common place in electrical (power) work and you dont see things failing burning down due to high resistance.
Maybe it was just the hifi ones I blued up which were just stamped and poor. I would imagine anything designed for power work would have well made flat parallel surfaces and a good perpendiculat to the thread screw clamp, or washer. The ones on the speaker cable I checked were poor. I shouldn't judge from one sample though.
 

March Audio

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#76
Maybe it was just the hifi ones I blued up which were just stamped and poor. I would imagine anything designed for power work would have well made flat parallel surfaces and a good perpendiculat to the thread screw clamp, or washer. The ones on the speaker cable I checked were poor. I shouldn't judge from one sample though.
I was a sparky many, many years ago and there was not a lot of precision in those components.

There is of course the issue of how tight you can get a post to screw down. Thumb tight may not be good enough.

Perhaps this is a good test for @amirm. Amir do you have a 4 wire resistance meter? It would be a good investigation to see the differences between different types of connection.
 
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ajawamnet

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#77
I was a sparky many, many years ago and there was not a lot of precision in those components.

There is of course the issue of how tight you can get a post to screw down. Thumb tight may not be good enough.

Perhaps this is a good test for @amirm. Amir do you have a 4 wire resistance meter? It would be a good investigation to see the differences between different types of connection.
I have a few kelvin 4 wire millohmeters and yea - screw terminal torque is critical - at least in my line of work.

One thing submariners will do is go up to your breaker box, slam it with their fist, and watch to see if any of your lights dim. Resistive connections are typically bad mojo...


The one electrician that did a lot of our fixed install had a 5/16" 4-way (the screwdrivers with the bits you can flip) and the bit was rotated in the hex handle so that it'd never come out - just from him torquing stuff down.

Typically all of the mil stuff we design and build has torque specs for the screw terminations. They sell torque screwdrivers

As to Pro speaker connections - we used to use Hubble twist locks before Neutrix came up with the speakons - here's a JBL double scoop on EBAY:
s-l1600.jpg


As to crimping connectors, Molex has a great book on validation of crimping their connectors

https://www.molex.com/pdm_docs/ats/TM-640160065.pdf

Note Section 3 definitions...


And if you want to see silly expensive crimp tools - check out what we have to buy/use for mil stuff:
https://dmctools.com/

this is one of the cheaper kits :
https://dmctools.com/oscar/catalogue/dmc286-02_1279/

One kit we have is about $20K... and every year AccuCal has to come in and cal the Molex, TE/AMP and Daniels stuff for things like pull force tests as well as all our torque screwdrivers/wrenches.
 
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