It was the Americans that started it

According to Mr Gilbert, it was the Americans that came up with the idea that cables matter.

In this review from Gramophone in 1980 by John Gilbert, a leading recording engineer, reminisced about using lighting flex to connect speakers. Twisted pairs, flexible, insulated, what more could you want? Those were the days. This is what it looks like.

In the UK QED42, then QED79 became all the rage in 1975, and it is still a standard cable. It’s gone up in price, it was about $1/m, it’s now $3/m, not bad for 45 years. QED42 had 42 strands, QED79 had 79 strands and this was for 138 strand cable for longer runs. It was called C38 presumably because in those days people still knew a bit of Latin.

Like a good engineer, he described the engineering issues with cables and what is required, cut off a length and measured its electrical properties, before giving it his seal of approval and guidance as to how it should best be deployed, including using the QED screw-on connectors (were $4 in 1980, now $26).

Plug it in and listen to it? Who on earth would need to do that?


now, see i miss that cotton covered twisted mains cable, it had a good look about it!
not that i’d use it with mains, but for 12 volt dangly lights it would look good. (this may be retro/nostalgia silliness on my part, which i can live with).
probably also great for speakers :wink:

It comes in lots of nice colours and I was giving it a thought. Very wife friendly. It would look good on one of those new Leak 130 units.
They do a 6A cable with 16x0.3mm conductors that are PVC insulated, unlike the old stuff that set your house on fire.

My family was in the electrical business and I used to wire up lamp holders and sockets with this stuff when I was a kid. Strolling down memory lane. I used to help my great-aunt, who wired up electrical fittings all day, every day, in a basement, for over 60 years. she then took more home and wired them in front of the TV. This cable and brass fittings were all over the place.

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Ooh I may have to get some and make dangly light fittings!

Not much fun if it’s not flammable enough to burn the house down though :wink:

My great grandfather made oil lamps and all the brass turners were in Birmingham. I remember going up there seeing them make brass candelabras, turning the arms in huge sweatshops. Very skilled work. All you can get there now is a Biryani. My aunt wired those up, they sometimes had 2 dozen candleholders, wire everywhere. I got to do switches and the easy stuff, but probably caused a few house fires.

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Good to know you have left your mark!

The far more serious point about this thread is the complete failure of today’s reviewers to measure cables for inductance, capacitance and resistance. I respective of whether the cable cost $10,000, they need to cut out a length of exactly 1m and measure it. Otherwise, they’re not doing their job.

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Do Stereophile and the like not do that?
The presumably have the kit since I’ve seen measurements of electronics in the reviews.
The review up top of this thread would be of more use to me for sure.
I have been using their 79 strand stuff on and off for years, along with the “vehicle LT cable “ I still have stashed :slight_smile:

The first cable I looked at is $4,500 for 12 feet and no measurements. Only the most basic specification.

The funny thing is that it uses a network and when asked the manufacturer won’t explain it. There is, mind you, a whole page of bulls***t about networks. My cables use a network and are 12 feet, they didn’t cost $4,500, they didn’t even cost $450. The specifications are stated on the website - very rare for audiophile cables.

The network is simply explained. The cables have very low inductance, relatively high capacitance. This would kill some amplifiers, the network fixes the problem. I understand the box contains a simple inductor and that’s it.

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$15,000 and not a measurement in sight.

I happen to know these are very low inductance as Quad use a cheaper versos of this brand in their demo electrostatic system.

L C R are well understood, no excuse for not measuring - or explaining what’s in their mysterious “network”.
Mechanical stuff I’ll leave to our resident cable physics dude (but I won’t @ him - these posts are long enough :smiley: ).

Me I’m sticking to fat multi stranded copper. Like, oh I don’t know, “lamp cord”!
(And I may really get some of that cotton covered stuff from Amazon, if it is actually copper and not coated aluminium).

I shall be getting some as well and some of their Bakelite switch plates. Redecorating soon and pvc flex is urgh.

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Bakelite switch plates?! I’m there :slight_smile:
(next door neighbour gave me all her old bakelite sockets and switches when she finally had the house rewired - I was about 5 - the switches of course all worked great with batteries and bulbs).

Isn’t Bakelite made out of some bug or other animal, or is that something else?

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Plant cellulose.

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Yes, I looked it up - the first synthetic plastic developed as a replacement for shellac (a bug secretion).

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Bug secretions turn up more often than I would like…


When I grew up we had this:


Probably just as old is this outlet; house was built in early 1930s’

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After a bit of routing in the garage (rooting?), I thought I had a couple of old phones I’d collected :slight_smile: