Monsgter Cable

It was recently announced that Monster Cable reached some kind of a trade mark settlement with a string of Monster miniature golf
operations. Aside from that silliness, I have a question about the cable.
Is Monster Cable any different from what I would call litz wire? If they are litz wire, are there any knowledgeable people that have any legitimate evidence that these cables do any good?
To my mind, the improvement achievable by using litz would be minimal at the high frequencies where it could possibly help. A simple treble boost circuit should be able to handle any loss at high frequencies that people do not hear well anyway. Moreover, any normal room is going to have resonances that will rapidly fluctuate the response by one or two Bel as you move in location and frequency. To get rid of such fluctuations would make the room into an anechoic chamber and make it sound very unnatural.
Bill
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"Salmon Egg"

** Yes.
The copper strands are all in contact with each other - just like normal flexible cables.
..... Phil
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For audio, they do no good. Litz wire reduces resistance, but it is an effect that's proportional to the square root of frequency. Only with very long runs and fairly high frequency would it be important.

That's right. If you take normal 8-ohm speakers, you need an awful lot of plain old wire to get the audio-frequency resistance up to something comparable to the speaker impedance, so the difference would be heard only on very long runs.
Let's see some quick calculations (calculations are very unpersuasive to audiophiles, but here goes). The maximum audible frequency is roughly 20 kHz, though there's little spectral content in music that high. At 20kHz, the depth of penetration is about 0.5 mm. Current penetrates all the way to the center of each strand even in cheap lamp cord.
http://circuitcalculator.com/wordpress/2007/06/18/skin-effect-calculator /
Cheap 16 AWG lamp cord is either 7/24 or 16/30. That means the largest strands it might be made of are less than half a skin depth in diameter so the current distribution through the wire is roughly uniform. So at this frequency, skin depth doesn't come into play significantly at all. You pretty much have the same resistance at 20kHz as at 20 Hz. The wire resistance adds no distortion. What could add distortion, if you have very long runs, is impedance mismatch at both ends of the speaker wire, since you can't buy speaker wire with impedance that matches your speaker impedance.

Well, true audiophiles spare no expense. They do take steps to kill reflections in their rooms, and those effects can be large enough to affect audio quality perceptibly. The more you hear the speakers and the less you hear their reflections off the walls and everything else, the more the music sounds like what was recorded, and that is generally perceived as sounding good.
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So, that's why it works wonders: The audio signal or electricity from the source sort of surfs along the outer strands of the cable where there is less magnetic flux or "induction" effect to oppose it - I can almost see my audio certificate award already. Senseless Sencore Tech for mad yaers };-)
[we can dream doods] RQT
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Hope for the Heartless wrote:

That's not entirely true. With typical (non-Litz) wire made of non-insulated strands, the skin depth is with respect to the overall conductor radius, not that of the individual strands. That's why Litz wire (insulated strands) works. Current in a strand on the surface of the bundle remains the same when that strand is woven into the center of the bundle. So the current density in the conductor remains uniform. With uninsulated wire, the current can travel across strands, so when one strand is woven into the center of the bundle, the current migrates across the strands to those on the surface.
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Hope for the Heartless wrote:

So- how much improvement, in general, is provided by "Monster cable" except for the people who make and market it? Do we have a balanced technical analysis available-includiing, not only the cable but the mechanical./ acoustic factors (messy) and source factors? Look at the cable inductance and capacitance using no rmal models for parallel conductors My personal impression is "not much". Given that listening conditions and the acoustic factors involved with the speakers and enclosures will dominate, the characteristics of a few feet of conductor will, except in abnormal circumstances. will be meaningless. Lets not confuse cable effects with acoustic effects due to reflections, etc. If you want to include the effect of cable R, L ,C into the much more complex mechanical/acoustic regime- be welcome.You may find that, for typical usage, it really is unimportant. It seems that concentration on factors that really don't change much between lamp cord or "monster cable" disguises the real factors involved in the mechanical/acoustical part of the whole "satifaction index:" (itself measured with respect to money spent".
Having enough wine to lay oneself open to comments- so be it.
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Don Kelly
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Don Kelly wrote:

The speaker impedance quoted is usually close to the DC value of the voice coil winding. It's pretty close at about 1KC, but varies wildly over the audio range, and is a function of the mounting, enclosure, etc. The only place "impedance matching" is important is at the driving amplifier to get maximum power transfer.

Have a few laughs--look at these great "Technical Articles"--left side "Click Here":
http://www.taralabs.com/products.asp
There are four on the science of cable design that are true science fiction! (I especially liked the vacuum filled one!)
--
Virg Wall, P.E.

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VWWall wrote:

99.999999% pure copper ????? Vacuum filled (how does it not collapse?) ??? I think that the dielectric comes from the barnyard-solid or gaseous. Thank s for the laugh.
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Don Kelly
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The topic of speaker impedance is another thing I do not fully understand. The speaker impedance you would like to deal with is the acoustic radiation impedance seen at the voice coil terminals. But because voice coils are not made from superconductors we see the dc resistance mostly. I do not know to what extent the radiation impedance is masked by this background resistance. I will bet much more power from the amplifier goes into heating the voice coil than is radiated in sound.
Bill
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wrote:

The amp to speaker interface is not one designed with impedance matching in mind. Typical speaker impedance is 4- 8 ohms. Typical amp output impedance is in the mili-ohm range. The amplifier damping factor can attest to this. DF is the speaker impedance over the amps impedance and (excluding speaker wire resistance) is anywhere from 20 to somewhere in the thousands.
Also the acoustical power transferred to the air around a loudspeaker will be measured in single digit watts even with electrical input power of hundreds of watts.
peace dawg
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snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net says...>

The intent is not to match impedances at all, nor is "maximum power transfer" (another highly misunderstood concept). The maximum power to a load occurs when the amplifier's output impedance is zero, which is what the idea is here. There is no question that more energy goes into heating the voice coil than into acoustic energy (low acoustic efficiency). 100W of accoustic enerty is quite a bit. ;-)
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The point to impedance matching to get maximum power transfer is a bit confusing to some people. Given a source of impedance Z, maximum power transfers when the load impedance is Z*.That matching condition says nothing about whether the source can supply such power for long.
According to a biography of Edison I read a long time ago, Edison understood this matching concept while some academically trained people did not. In some cases, generator armature resistance was purposely increased to satisfy the matching condition!
Bill
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snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net says...>

Correct, but it does not mean that given a load impedance of Z, an output impedance of Z will provide the maximum power to the load.

I don't buy that one, at least as stated. The added resistance simply burns power in the armature.
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That was the point of my post. And also the reason the Edison had disdain for academics.
Bill
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On Fri, 09 Jan 2009 18:29:37 -0800, Salmon Egg

Sorry, I read your post as being in agreement with Edison.
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I AM IN AGREEMENT WITH EDISON on this point. He understood what i pedance matching, as we no call it was all bout. The usual way this showed up was: Given a battery with an internal resistance R, what load should you use to get maximum power transfer? The question did not ask for maximum efficiency. Not so smart mathematical types would conclude that the the generator's internal resistance should be increased to the load resistance.
I do not know how prevalent that view was. Given some of the posts on this newsgroup, I would not be surprised if this erroneous view is still widespread. I think I recall seeing a generator at the Perham collection while it was still at New Almaden that was a generator with added internal resistance. I cannot imagine that Lord Kelvin did not understand impedance matching. There is no shortage of quacks selling things like magnetic water conditioners and crazy cables. I expect they will continue to find fools willing to buy such items. What I do not understand is how people dumb enough to buy such items accumulate gthe money to do so.
Bill
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You forgot Ormes stickers you place them inside your electrical panel to reduce harmful emf's they claim it can actually reduce your bill too }:-o I stopped believing in them when they required I wear a tin foil hat };-)
RQT
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On Sat, 10 Jan 2009 12:10:06 -0800, Salmon Egg

Again, I misread your paragraph to say that *Edison* increased the armature resistance. I infered from "Edison understood... people did not" then "armature reistance was purposely increased" that Edison was the one increasing the armature resistance.

It is surprisingly prevalent. I've had this argument with "professionals" any number of times.

Wanna buy a whole house PF corrector?
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Peace dawg
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I think that what you want to avoid in sound systes are nonlinear effects such as limiting, intermodulation products, rectification of radio stations, etc. Modern electronics is usually pretty good in those respects. Certainly, even the lousiest conductors are going to be linear for all practical purposes.
Yet, some crazy audiophiles go to vacuum tube amplifiers for reasons not understood by me. Apparently there are good distortion and bad distortions and tubes only have good ones/
Bill
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