Cabling for future home cinema system

chrisw333

New member
Mar 7, 2013
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Hi

Hope you can help - I am completely new to this stuff, so please bear with me. I don't currently have a surround sound system, but would like to get one in the next year or so.

However, I am having my house rewired shortly so it would make sense to run some cabling for surround sound speakers whilst this is being done. Unfortunately, I know nothing at all about these surround sound systems or the best type of cabling to run (for example my old hifi has 4 wires per cable but I see a lot of cables are two wires). I won't be looking at a very high end system when I get one, just decent budget / mid price stuff and accordingly don't want to pay a fortune for the cable, but equally would like it to be of reasonable quality and not necessarily bargain basement.

I would really appreciate advise on what cables I should use (a link would be even better!)

Thanks for your help.
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Hi Chris and welcome.

There are hundreds of options, though many manufacturers make something thinner or more flexible for cinema systems (compared with regular stereo/hifi use).

This year's favourite is below, and the link will lead you to other options. The 'default' brand in the UK is probably QED, and unless you are going for a top system, a modest wire from them would be fine, I'd say (I used it for my Denon/KEF system). They do a cinema pack on a reel.

Otherwise, do get the measurements right, and then add 10% for luck (bear in mind the gear is off the floor and you might put rear speakers high up the walls).

http://www.whathifi.com/review/audioquest-flx-slip-144
 

chrisw333

New member
Mar 7, 2013
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Thanks very much for your reply, it's really appreciated. So it's plain two wire speaker cable.

Would this do the trick or should I go for something a little better?

QED 79 Strand - http://www.audiovisualonline.co.uk/product/2709/qed-79-strand-speaker-cable (@£1.50)

or should I go for something a little better? - eg

QED silver anniversary XT which is quite a bit more pricey

http://www.audiovisualonline.co.uk/product/739/qed-silver-anniversary-xt-speaker-cable (@ £4.30)

or QED XTC - http://www.audiovisualonline.co.uk/product/3657/qed-xt-c-speaker-cable (@ £3.60)
 

nopiano

Well-known member
The 79 strand will be fine for most AV amps up to, say, £500. Many would say it's all you'd ever need. That is plain two-core, yes. An AV installer might use something else, but I've no experience of that. If you were doing 7.1 it might be worth it.

So it depends on your budget and how much cable you need. I recall I bought 40 metres for a fairly normal living room, but with taking it over door frames and so on, I used it all up. Mine was the cheaper 42 strand, which is under £1 a metre from the website you linked. If you allow around 10% of the system cost for cables - bearing in mind you may need HDMI and sub-woofer cables too.

If you can afford the better stuff you'll never regret it, as long as it is alright for 'handling', i.e. bending round all the angles. Some of them are quite bulky so check the dimensions shown and/or ask for a short sample before committing yourself.
 

duaplex

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Feb 22, 2011
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If you are going to cable and plaster over the wires etc, make sure you buy a good shielded cable for starters with decent build quality to last you down the years. My van den hul is flat, flexible and highly durable, plus its embedded in my walls.

I would say, spend up to £10 at most per meter, no more. This will cover you for future upgrades.

Hope that helps.
 

chrisw333

New member
Mar 7, 2013
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Thanks Duaplex.

At the moment, I'm just looking at cabling under the floors then leaving c1m of cable either side of the sofa for future rear speakers. We don't think we'll need full redecoration, so not planning to embed into walls, although that would be nice!
 

duaplex

New member
Feb 22, 2011
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You're welcome.

Sounds good, I have my speaker wires running under the floor boards too so no big deal :)

Just remember, to pull that out later on will be a pain, so I always say do it once, do it right.
 

Andrew17321

Well-known member
Nov 12, 2008
24
2
18,525
If you think you might go down the digital route in the future you might consider putting ethernet cabling between where your internet hub is and where you might want to play your music/films etc.

I did not think of that before putting down carpets everywhere. “But I was young and foolish, and now am full of tears.”

What I did do for possible changes in the future was to make small holes in the floor and put strings between them underneath so that I could pull cables through later. Zero cost now!

Andrew
 

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