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The Difference Between Copper and Copper Clad Aluminum Cable


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#16 jay-cee

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 01:00 PM

Is this copper or CCA?
Knu 4 Gauge Amp Kit


It tells you in the description of the product if you read it. :peepwall:
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#17 Maddenkid2011

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 01:07 PM


Is this copper or CCA?
Knu 4 Gauge Amp Kit


It tells you in the description of the product if you read it. :peepwall:


I knew it was the OFC but the strands on the ground wires look more like the CCA example picture than the copper example picture
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#18 sandt38

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 03:43 PM

Is this copper or CCA?
Knu 4 Gauge Amp Kit


That is copper. The CCA is not really a transparent covering, it is opaque pearl blue, and the CCA ground is pearl white.

this is the 4ga CCA kit:
http://www.knukoncep...m?prodID=KLM-K8
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#19 98GMC

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 03:53 PM

I will stick to Stinger HPM silver tinned OFC. It doesn't corrode as easy as non tinned copper, especially under the hood.




Great post btw Duran! Thanks!
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#20 cobra93

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 07:45 PM

I will stick to Stinger HPM silver tinned OFC. It doesn't corrode as easy as non tinned copper, especially under the hood.




Great post btw Duran! Thanks!



I don't remember where I read about it, but with silver tinned copper wire the signal/voltage will travel the path of least resistance (obviously).
In this case the silver has a lower resistance than the copper and this signal/volts/amps will travel down the out side of the wire more so than the copper itself.
Does this matter? Probably not to my ears, but to some people they can hear the difference. I remember seeing a company that had home theater cable (diy) for more than $1200.00 per foot.

I realize this is way off topic, but.....
This was a quick search Audioquest cable

Edited by cobra93, 29 July 2010 - 07:46 PM.

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#21 98GMC

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 07:51 PM


I will stick to Stinger HPM silver tinned OFC. It doesn't corrode as easy as non tinned copper, especially under the hood.




Great post btw Duran! Thanks!



I don't remember where I read about it, but with silver tinned copper wire the signal/voltage will travel the path of least resistance (obviously).
In this case the silver has a lower resistance than the copper and this signal/volts/amps will travel down the out side of the wire more so than the copper itself.
Does this matter? Probably not to my ears, but to some people they can hear the difference. I remember seeing a company that had home theater cable (diy) for more than $1200.00 per foot.

I realize this is way off topic, but.....
This was a quick search Audioquest cable


Wow! Really wouldn't know about all that. I just stick with Stinger as I can get it local and cheap! :drink40:
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#22 cobra93

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 08:14 PM

I would like to say I read this in a home stereo magazine many years ago, not sure. Whoever was reviewing the different cables worked for this magazine, The funny part was that he struggled to hear any difference, while his wife would walk in from another room and say something like "The highs sound better, did you get new speakers?". I'm sure this irritated the crap out of him.

He also said that different frequencies travel through different parts of the wire (the skin or the core of the wire) and arrive at the speaker at different times. Is this true, I don't know. I would have the means to test it, but it was an interesting read.
In the 90's, I was told that twisted/braided rca's would reject outside noise from being introduced into the signal. Is that true, I don't know, but I never had any more issues with buzzing or other noise in my systems after i switched to them.

Edited by cobra93, 29 July 2010 - 08:15 PM.

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#23 sandt38

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 08:42 PM

Actually unshielded twisted pairs are not really designed to eliminate ground loops or induced noise, such as we see from car audio environments. They are intended to eliminate crosstalk. BUT! In a car we really are not terribly concerned about crosstalk.

Rarely in a car audio environment will we see UTPs used correctly. Ideal usage of UTP usually involves multiple runs of twisted pairs in a single insulator sleeve. In order to reduce, or eliminate crosstalk transmission between the 2 twisted pair in the same sleeve, the twist rates (and in some cases, direction) need to be different. Considering that most manufacturers twisted pair RCAs for in car use are all the same twist rate (it may vary by mfg, but who is going to use multiple mfgs, as they typically don't match?), their ability to eliminate crosstalk is nearly nil. However, outside EMI/RFI and ground loops really are what cause the noise issues we hear in a car. The noisy environment in a car really makes crosstalk a non-issue, as it is generally a very fine distortion compared to typical ambient noise in a vehicle.

A lot of people figure that twisted pair was the ingenious development that was cause for better noise rejection in car audio systems. In reality we saw better noise rejection technology introduced to our equipment including but not limited to increased low line voltages which help reduce noise on the input side by increasing the desired signal to interfering signal ratios. The best RCA to use for RFI/EMI noise rejection in a car is really good old fashioned shielded RCA cables. However, for the best of both worlds you can find shielded twisted pairs (STPs). But actually because today's noise rejection technology in our devices you could just about run your power cable next to an old school speaker wire type RCA cable without much noise issue, as long as the system is well gounded that is.
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#24 Impious

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 08:59 PM

I don't remember where I read about it, but with silver tinned copper wire the signal/voltage will travel the path of least resistance (obviously).
In this case the silver has a lower resistance than the copper and this signal/volts/amps will travel down the out side of the wire more so than the copper itself.
Does this matter? Probably not to my ears, but to some people they can hear the difference. I remember seeing a company that had home theater cable (diy) for more than $1200.00 per foot.

I would like to say I read this in a home stereo magazine many years ago, not sure. Whoever was reviewing the different cables worked for this magazine, The funny part was that he struggled to hear any difference, while his wife would walk in from another room and say something like "The highs sound better, did you get new speakers?". I'm sure this irritated the crap out of him.

He also said that different frequencies travel through different parts of the wire (the skin or the core of the wire) and arrive at the speaker at different times. Is this true, I don't know. I would have the means to test it, but it was an interesting read.


Really, just from what you've said, I would guess that the article you read was filled with techno-babble bullshit. It sounds like they were taking some general facts and extrapolating out useless or possibly incorrect theories. Stereophile'ish, for lack of a better word.

Silver has less resistance than copper, no doubt about it. And while I haven't done any mathematics at all, this is a pure guesstimation, I would have a hard time imagining the silver tinning having less resistance than the copper wire of comparatively much greater thickness.

Skin effect is real, and wire does have group delay. However, within the audible spectrum and with speaker wire the length we use in car audio (and in most homes), both of these issues can be completely ignored. The change in speaker wire "performance" as a result of these two items within the 20hz - 20khz bandwidth is well below the threshold of audibility. We are talking about hundredths of a decibel and nanoseconds. Nothing to concern yourself with. Now if we were talking RF frequencies, then it's something to consider. Nobody can hear the difference, but many people like to trick themselves into believing the can so they can justify either 1) spending more on speaker cable than most spend on a new car, or 2) to justify their other closely held but largely unfounded beliefs. It's a little like religion, really.....a loss of rational thinking so that irrational thinking can attempt to be justified. Also, skin effect only affects AC not DC. So no worries with your power/ground cables.

In the 90's, I was told that twisted/braided rca's would reject outside noise from being introduced into the signal. Is that true, I don't know, but I never had any more issues with buzzing or other noise in my systems after i switched to them.


This is actually a long standing debate. Some people swear by UTP (unshielded twisted pair), including the likes of Richard Clark.......others swear by shielded cable. This and amplifier sonics are probably the two most hotly debated topics.
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#25 Impious

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:07 PM

But actually because today's noise rejection technology in our devices you could just about run your power cable next to an old school speaker wire type RCA cable without much noise issue, as long as the system is well gounded that is.


You've been able to do that without issue for a couple decades. I know I've been doing it for over a decade without a single issue.

Power cable induced noise is an old wives tale in car audio :)
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#26 Julian

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:13 PM

the new KK CCA is very good, same jacket as their higher grade wire, the 1/0 CCA can take up to 250 amps, as pure copper its from like 300-350+, i wouldn't sweat it at all. 2 runs of CCA 4 bucks > Singe run of kicker hyperflex 5 bucks.
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#27 sandt38

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:14 PM


But actually because today's noise rejection technology in our devices you could just about run your power cable next to an old school speaker wire type RCA cable without much noise issue, as long as the system is well gounded that is.


You've been able to do that without issue for a couple decades. I know I've been doing it for over a decade without a single issue.

Power cable induced noise is an old wives tale in car audio :)



In today's systems, yes. But in the days of .5 and .25volt preouts we did see noise issues. I have been bundling my cables for years, but I still cringe in rememberance of the old days... back when Denon tape decks and CD changers were in my car... Yeah, Denon car audio.
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#28 Randal Johnson

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:22 PM

Very interesting read guys !!! :drink40:
So is welding cable ok to use ?? How bout coax cable for RCAs ??
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#29 sandt38

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:31 PM

Very interesting read guys !!! :drink40:
So is welding cable ok to use ?? How bout coax cable for RCAs ??



Yes and yes. Welding cable is a fantastic conductor, and exceptionally flexible. Coaxial cable is basically just a shielded conductor. IMO it is superior to all UTPs out there. Also, if you go ahead and step up to a Canare system, including their cable and connector technology, you wind up with what many consider as superior to the vast majority of low level transfer out there. Being that you are a clipper, I would assume you are using Canare or similar crimping device, so getting a good set of ends will get you set up right.
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#30 Randal Johnson

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:39 PM

Good. I have somewhere around 100ft of welding cable in my ride.
Being a cable guy, Yes I had to try my own touches to my system. I Used Mini RG 59 cable (Cable TV headend cable) with custom preped RCA compression connectors.
Thanks.
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