Speaker Cable Recommendation

I'm wondering if someone could recommend a pair of speaker cables.  I have looked at Nordost entry level, but they may be too thin for my system. Looking for cables that may add some "weight" to the following system.

Decware 300b tube amp (8watts),  Klipsch Forte IV,   Holo May Dac, PS Audio BHK Pre with 12AU7 input tubes. My room is 20X12, not treated, vaulted ceiling, fair amount of glass. Not a great room :) In the $1,000.00 range

Thanks, Mark


Your observation on the Nordost is right on. Their top end products are world class and unbeatable, but their lower end stuff is “thin” sounding. I would recommend looking at Cardas first… the higher the level the more transparent they are (clearer😊). DHLabs are really good for the money, Transparent work phenomenally well on my equipment, solid sound dead quiet background… no tonal change). They are exactly as the name implies… but means you want to hear every nuance of your components… so all of your components must sound good. AudioQuest is worth a try… they most recently have been sweeping the audio world with their Storm series power cords.

You might be able to get away with Nordost blue heaven speakers cable, because of your tube amp and preamp.

Get Auditorium23, specifically designed for high efficiency, SET application and the next best thing to buying $$$$ Shindo originals

Consider vintage Western Electric cables.

There’s a seller here.

Have you rolled those 12AU7 s?

"Not a great room". It seems counter intuitive to me that you would want to spend up to $1000 to counterbalance the room problems, especially when expensive cables tend to be neutral and likely to expose problems in you room/system. In your place, personally speaking, I’d cheap out and get some Belden 10 ga cables sold by Blue Jeans. They might just do what you want, and if not you won’t have spent much money. The Mogami (12ga) is a good option too, but it's different from the Belden in that it is more info rich in the mid-range, but not high on warmth.

Very pleased with my new Anti-cable 3.1 reference.. a bitch t install on my Thiel CS2s but the sound stage and imaging are worth the effort!

Cables can't fix the room. I second the Mogami or Canare recommendations and suggest you consider using the funds saved to add a little acoustic treatment to the room. Carpets, drapes, acoustic panels, bass traps, whatever. GIK or ASC will make plans for you for cheap. You don't need to follow them, but they'll give you ideas. The improvement will far exceed what any cable change can provide.

ghdprentice  I have been using Transparent Cables, and liked them. I moved my gear and now I need about 12' to the speakers. I could get Transparent again, but if I'm going to spend the $, curious if there is a better match for my system.

noromance's avatar

Thanks newbee  I appreciate your comments, this system is in my living room, and I have family considerations in regards to treatments, and other upgrades. I have simple 16/2 cable serving the speakers now, but I'm curious what may be a good fit with low watt, high efficiency speakers. They dont have to be expensive.

You're the second to mention Mogami, I'll be looking at those

Thanks mike_in_nc   I realize cables wont fix the room, but this is the room I have. I'm not looking to treat the room at this point. I'm not a purest, so I dont mind compromise. The system sounds great as it is, but I do need longer cables, so why not ask the question.

Obviously, there are many choices and good recommendations here. FWIW,  I really like my Analysis Plus cables. 

I’d highly recommend looking at these 12’ Acoustic Zen Satori cables that are well within your budget if they’re still available. They have plenty of tonal weight but are also well balanced with excellent and natural upper-octave detail and throw off an excellent 3D soundstage.  Read the many positive reviews.  I’d jump on these if they’re still available, and if they don’t work out for some reason you can likely sell them for little/no loss as there’s a very liquid used market for AZ cables. Best of luck.


For a great value and great sound try Kimber Cables, had them for a few years. Cardas is absolutely outstanding but fairly expensive, my whole loom is now Cardas Clear and very happy with results. 

Also I treated my room with Acoustimac panels and made a world of difference and not expensive at all, one of the cheapest ways for a big difference. 

Parts Connexion will make you a custom pair of Duelund's for less than $400.   I recommend 12 gauge, sans connectors (bare wire).  I've been using Duelund in both of my systems for probably 5 years, having replaced and outperformed considerably more expensive Auditorium 23's.  They do take about 150 to 200 hours to break in, so be patient.  


+1 @noromance 

Have you rolled those 12AU7 s?


Try some Tungsram NOS 7DJ8 tubes in your BHK pre amp.  I use them in my BHK Pre amp and BHK 250 power amp.  In my system, the stock tubes sound thin; the Tungsram NOS 7DJ8 tubes sound "fuller" and more natural.  I've tried other brand 7DJ8s - none of them sounded as good as Tungsram.

Good Ole Kimber Kable 8 or 12 TC is surprisingly great at fixing this kind of issue. I'm not a fan of cables with boxes on them either. Cables are tone controls, its important to find ones that make the changes you like.

Another vote for Mogami. Very affordable and very good. If you try them and don't like them, you're not out very much money. If you do like them, you have money to spend elsewhere.

My faves: KImber 8PR (current version)...bargain cable yielding 9 or 10 AWG, which is a lot of AWGs, and it sounds great.


After reading all the published papers by real engineers on the subject, and doing the impedance calculations myself, I am still convinced that plain old resistance is the dominant factor by about 100:1  So, 10 gauge twisted pair seems to still be the rational choice. 

You can pay a lot more if you wish, but for actual sonic improvement, I doubt it. 

Amazon:  KnuKonceptz Kord Kable 10 Gauge  $51 for 50'

I did not like the bright blue so I slipped a length of expanded sheath over it. 

+1 Auditorium 23. I’m using them with several low watt tube amps including a Decware ZMA. I learned about them from watching John DeVore’s YouTube channel.

@tvrgeek, I use the 12/14&16 gauge for my basement setup, with nice results. 

My main setup, I use, Furutech OCC wire. FS-36, made a significant improvement over the Monoprice 4/12 I was using before.


I have a couple pair of the Western Electric speaker cable as well as ICs. Member here in AG who makes them does awesome work, really great member to work with, excellent communication. I’ve had them with Klipsch H 4’s, Tyler T1’s, and Volti Razz. I really like them, not thin at all, in fact quite the opposite. I find them very full and sweet. I also have Nordost and IMO, simply disappear, I haven’t found them to be thin sounding.

IC between pre-amp and mac240, and a source to Pre, excellent 


DH Labs Q10 (silver clad over copper) is what has worked best for me, with both Harbeths and Maggies.

Don’t be a stingy cheap spend about 10 grand on Kubala Sosna Temptation mid level cables. NO ENTRY LEVEL CABLES SOUND GOOD

Call Jason at the cable company and get several out of their lending library

Good luck Willy-T

"Significant" ?   I think some folks should look up the word in the dictionary.  Different? Yes, but tiny, tiny, tiny unless you are letting your belief system modify what you hear vs. the actual sound.  A very real cause of difference I don't discount. 

"Cables are tone controls"  Should they be?  Only bad ones are in my view. The goal is for them NOT to be. We have much better ways to do that. 

"No entry level..."   Are you a salesman?   Otherwise I hope that was a joke. If not, I have a bridge for sale...

"Silver over copper" OK, but that does change the velocity vs frequency adversely if you believe that to be a factor.  Remember at AF, skin depth is 100% in an 18 gauge wire.  Silver over copper is sometimes used for RF over long runs where it does matter. 

I actually run 4TC on my desk. 3 feet.  Why? Because I had it.  I had some cheap CCA 16 gauge temporary cable. Difference?  Maybe but I would not swear to it.  I run a sub so the difference DCR and effect on DF is irrelevant. I keep telling myself it helped imaging, but I am probably fooling myself.  Resistance  being the primary controlling factor is more significant on a full range and of course the longer the cable.  Still tiny. 

If you want to believe cables are "significant" and have thousands to spend, then at least go check out Iconoclast as it is the result of a real cable engineer designing the very best that they know how to make using objective measurements. Kimber takes a different but not dissimilar approach. If you are a normal person with normal income, then give "good" cable as specified by real engineers a try and save your money for speakers. 

ANY cable that they don't publish the specs on I would consider suspicious. No specs, no science, no proof. Just advertising snake oil.  Maybe some are OK. Maybe not.  B.T. Barnum was very astute. 

I guess the price goes up if you need "magic" spades or bananas. You actually only need a good firm gas-tight connection.  I wish amps and speakers still had terminal blocks. If a difference in connector is audible, it is either one was crap  ( steel?, poor connection? ) or placebo.  

Dan, not surprised. That Monoprice 4/12 would have higher both C and L.  Belden 1313A, 5T100, 1810H , Mogami W3103 would all be similar.  ( and very similar to the genetic OCC wire I mentioned) Kimber 8PR is lower inductance but much higher capacitance if one wants to go that route.  I am sure there are plenty of other similar wires.  If I could find some 10 gauge ultra fine strand TP with thinner PTFE insulation and no jacket, I might give it a try "just because" .  Yes the outer jacket does effect the velocity as measurable in a laboratory. 

All of this is IGNORING what goes on in the speaker.  Caps, inductors, resistors, voice coils, wires and circuit boards.  Some very expensive speakers have dime store crossover parts.  Is that silver wire going to really make a difference when the tweeter has a couple aluminum foil caps on it?  How about that woofer wound with aluminum wire to keep the mass down?  Think about it as a SYSTEM and then decide what to attack first. 

Just because "believers" will accuse me again of saying cables make no difference, they DO. It is just very small, it is reasonably well understood, and excellent solutions are cheap. 


I really like these speaker cables, I use them with my Coincident Frankenstein 300B stereo (8watts) Klipsch Forte IV or JBL 4319. Take advantage while they are on sale.

"Significant" ?   I think some folks should look up the word in the dictionary.  Different? Yes, but tiny, tiny, tiny unless you are letting your belief system modify what you hear vs. the actual sound. 

What constitutes "significant" is mostly subjective. What you insist is that others accept your definition of what's important, and what's not. If I happen to not agree with you, it's the fault of my belief system? What a load of nonsense.

Just because "believers" will accuse me again of saying ...

You see "believers" and magic and pixie dust everywhere you turn, it seems. That says a lot about you.


Audioadvisor take AudioQuest Rocket 88 cable and puts decent ends on the for about a third less than AQ sells it. You don’t get the 72volt battery, but.

Well in your price range.

All the best.

I have Kimber 8PR old style in a 3/5 biwire with my Decware Mini Torii and Ref 3A de Capo speakers.  Have also used this setup with a pair of Klipsch Quartets  Great cables for a great price

@marktheshark there are a lot of great recommendations here. You should reach out to The Cable Company that has a lending library and try a few. Only you and your system can determine what will work for you.

Don't get mired down in the theater around here or the pontificating by certain members around here in particular @tvrgeek.  Personality I like @stereo5 recommendation and the Canare S411 cable. But heck a cable costing more may be the ticket for you. I find the only constant in @tvrgeek engineering is that he cannot afford it he shites on it using some so called analytics (engineering speak for bs and can’t afford it), it doesn’t matter what the topic is either, DACs, Cable, Amplifiers, Ethernet Switches. His bias is obvious in his one quotes “ I can not afford it as a retired civil servant on social security” think that sums up his engineering. 

CL, Only on this forum.  Your comment is proof.   Woodworkers and British car owners seem far more rational. :)

ORT, What do you think is different with horn speakers?   What is amazing is the price and NO specifications to justify it. 

z23, I can only find their interconnects on e-bay. WEB not up. Some of their construction description makes sense, basically a low dielectric constant coax. Might qualify as a "good" cable and a nice find.   No specs though.  Shame they then fall into the total snake oil side like cryogenic connectors. Degrades their credibility where they may make a good product. Pandering to the "believers" I guess. 

lak, At least Vouge offers some details that are sound engineering.  Low C, but what is the L and R which have been shown to be more significant in a speaker cable.  11 gauge and silver alloy maybe decent DCR.  I would want cold-weld/crimp or soldered terminals, not set screws.  Compare their pricing, high but not insane, with the companies who have no specs and just advertising!  Are they an actual premium product find? 

Bay, Break in:  About 10 seconds after a voltage is applied depending on the dielectric. Darn physics again. 

Are there means to try some of these cables for 30 days and see if they really make a difference. Money is not the object here, I can and have spent plenty ... although I just use OFC (oxygen free copper) 12 gauge and I honestly can't imagine that dumping $1000 or even $10,000 on speakers cables versus $100 is going to make my speakers sound any better. 

(for prospective with regards to amp/speaker equipment, etc, I have McIntosh amps and Utopia speakers) 

Side note, I often wonder why something like Noalox is not used in the speaker connection world, it's used for electric power panels on the input power lines to increase connectivity, the grease itself can carry voltage, and it would seem like it would help keep oxidation off the copper connections as well (if using raw copper)

Doesn't matter. Is it possible that wires people believe sound "thin" because the wires are thin? Baffling.


well unfortunately you're wrong again the top Nordost stuff is beatable and it's very overpriced as well they use regular silver wire, OCC single crystal silver sounds even better and the rectangular OCC single crystal is even better than the round single crystal, Neotech The Amazon and The Sahara which is their flagship cable line would beat the Nordost silver and copper top of the line stuff.

I would love to do a blind sound test and see people fail this test over and over ... or perhaps pass and actually notice different cables ... and I mean a "legit" real factual test would be amazing.

I have Focal Chorus 836 (that I need to sell) that were powered by a Denon 4311 ... when I changed to MC152 those speakers became alive. The copper 12 gauge wire was the same, the speaker seemed like a different speaker instantly. I do believe there is places to put money, but cables are really at the end of the list of many or most other improvements.

With these speakers you will hear zero difference in cables. So $100.00 speaker cables are the kit for you. With the MC152 you will benefit from better speakers and one day better speaker cable. 

I have Focal Chorus 836


I do believe there is places to put money