Uh Oh, Not another Bi-Wire thread...

So being a 2-chennel guy and abiding by the universal laws of the audio-fool I adopted early on the philosophy of ‘less is more.’

I have always looked at audio with the idea of quality over quantity.

If I have $5000, what would get me better sound?

No matter how much money I had or have in the future, I still look the sum amount and think that it still get me better two-channel sound than surround sound.

So taking this idea a little further what is everybodys opinion on single wire vs. bi-wire? Wouldn’t it be better to allocate $1000 to better single wire than the same amount to bi-wire?

This idea came to me after reading the Lavardin website and there opinion on Bi-Wire…

“Is it worth bi-cabling speakers ?
Bi-cabling speakers implies using double quantity of cable. Now, if one pays attention to cabling, this implies one is aware that cabling can reduce musical quality. ?To be logical, if one want to, everything must be done to reduce the quantity and the lenght of cable between amplifier and speakers. ?Cables manufacturer's marketing now explains that if two cables are used instead of one, each one will see a lower charge, thus will behave a better way. We do not share this point of view. To our point of view, the signal will receive two times more pollution. ?In a very high quality system, doubling the cables doubles the problems and can clearly be heard : loss of details, nuances, micro dynamic ....Thus the sound will appear more punchy but also poorer...”
I say spend the most you can on single wire. If you funds are unlimited, then go for top of the line biwire.
Well, here is what a speaker manufacturer says ... my listening agrees with him. Does yours agree with Lavardin?

There are a tremendous amount of variables in this situation. Every sound is system influcenced. The question of brand of cabling may influence the sound more than than bi-wiring! Sorry, no easy answers.
Wouldn’t it be better to allocate $1000 to better single wire than the same amount to bi-wire?


Yes, IMHO. I played around with this idea myself for several years, and came to the conclusion that bi-wiring with cheaper cable does not sound as good to me as single wiring with better cables. If you have a $1000 budget, buy the best single cable for that $$$, two $500 cables would not sound as good, IMHO. Of course the cable companies will want you to buy two $1000 cables, but you have to draw the line somewhere.

In my limited experience, at best bi-wiring can provide perhaps a 5 - 10% gain in sonics. Small but noticeable and pleasant. But that is only under certain conditions, ie speaker type, cabling type, amps, etc..

At worst, there is little or no audible improvement.

If my budget allows I definitely bi-wire.

On the other hand, if you still have other open-ended issues that need addressing (who doesn't?) like proper line-conditioning, proper vibration management, amps, source, preamps, speakers, dedicated lines, ics & scs, cryo-treated romex, connectors, outlets, inlets, etc. I would focus monies and attention on those other areas first. But only because the potential of properly addressing any one of those other areas first could easily provide far more sonic benefits and pleasure.

Bi-wire certainly changes the sound. I like single wire as bi-wire seems to seperate the woofer from the mid & highs, kind of like bi-amp sound, as opposed to the homoginous sound of single wire. The only way you'll know for sure in your system is to try it.
Bi-cabling speakers implies using double quantity of cable.

not necessarily. Some will terminate their cables as bi-wire for a small fee. Cardas adds $200 to the cost of their Clear Cygnus as an example.

this also assumes that spending more on cables gets you more.. uh oh.. another can of worms !!

A bi-wire can give a small increase in sound quality, but you need to start with a cable that is large enough.  Many cables (even some of the more expensive ones) are not large to start with.  Audioquest speaker cables are an example as they are only 13awg to start with.  When you bi-wire them, you will split the cable into two smaller cables (probably a 15.5awg / 16.5awg combination). 

I would recommend not doing a bi-wire unless the cable is at least 9-10awg to start with.