Trying out some new speaker cables which I ordered with banana plugs instead of spades. I tested the BHK with some banana plugs I had lying around to make sure the amp would except them, no problem. The new speaker cables appear to have the same diameter banana plugs, but are a slightly different design. They are open on the ends and have a tappered shape to them. The ones I tested are closed on the end and bullet shaped. To my disappointment, the BHK doesn’t except the banana plugs on the new speaker cables. Has anyone else run into this problem using banana plugs on the BHK amps?
I used Siltech Banana’s exclusivily with my BHK 300’s. Have you loosened the outer knob of the input? They fit perfectly!
Yes, loosened the knob, no go. For now, in order to audition the cables, I was able to slide the banana plug through the hole in the binding post, then snug up the knob.
These are Synergistic Research cables. Not sure if they make their own banana plugs or not.
I had to open the binding post all the way then put the banana plug in then keep pressure on it while you tighten the binding post. It will only tighten about half way but that is enough.
I had the same difficulty with my Synergistic Research speaker cable with the BFA type banana plugs for BHK 300 amp, had similar difficulty with other brand speaker cable with BFA type banana plugs too. What you need to do is, first loose the knob on the binding post, then try to insert the BFA banana plug, if can’t, rotate the plug a little, try again, keep rotating the plug until you can inset it. Good luck.
Okay guys thanks for the advice, it worked, kinda.
I ordered banana plugs because I was getting tired of dealing with spades. That being said, using banana plugs on the BHK is a real pain, more so than spades. IMO the binding posts on the BHK amps are unacceptable. I had to hold my mouth just right and wiggle my ears before I was able to get the banana plugs to slide into the binding posts, and then the knob won’t tighten down, it just twists the banana plug around. Frustrating as hell.
You’ve got to keep a grip on the banana plug and apply light inward pressure while you tighten with your other had and yes Paul needs to abandon these “special” binding posts and go to Vampire, Cardas or another of the industry standards. I guess if you were handy with a soldering iron you could just swap them out. The only thing worse are those EU mandated “safety” ones.
My rack sits real close to the front wall, making it tough to preform the task, which is why I went with banana plugs. Think I’ll be returning them and going with spades. Thanks for the advice.
I had the same trouble - an awl did the trick for me. I needed to part the internal splines of the amp terminal with it, then use the pushing and tightening technique described above.
Thanks I’ll give that a shot!
Tried using an awl, no luck though. Think I may need a thinner awl to help part the splines. It has gotten easier since I’ve removed the plugs a few times.
For now I’ve disconnected the new cables from the BHK and hooked them up to an old Yamaha receiver to break them in. No problem using the banana plugs in the cheap plastic binding posts on the receiver.
As a side note, I’m a little surprised how good this decades-old Yamaha receiver sounds hooked up to my system. I’m using a thumb drive in the DMP, HDMI out to the DSD, then into the Yamaha receiver. And the only rca ic’s I had on hand were super cheap Radio Shack patch cords.
I was expecting the sound to be completely wretched, but it’s actually quite musical, although nowhere near as transparent. If you have a good source and speakers, you can still get decent sound with a Mid Fi receiver.
It’s become clear to me now that one of the major contributing factors to the very musical sound I was getting from my old Yamaha receiver, besides the fact it was being fed a signal from the DMP/DSD DAC combo, was the new Synergistic Research power cord on the DMP, and the SR speaker cables. After 80 plus hours of burn in on the speaker cables, using the Yamaha receiver, I hooked the BHK pre and amp back up, and was rewarded with a noticable improvement in SQ compared to my previous speaker cables and power cord on my DMP. The presentation is more resolving, relaxed, and less electronic sounding.
I’ll continue to allow the new cables to break in, then do some A B comparisons. But for now, this latest upgrade is pushing all the right buttons, and serving the music well.
I am experiencing a similar issue with a brand new BHK 250. The banana plugs go in very smoothly into the red (+) binding posts but they won’t fit at all on the black(-) binding post. The holes are way smaller on those.
I have trouble with both the positive and negative binding posts. I have to unscrew them all the way, and then as I push the banana plug into the binding post, I tighten them, as I pray to the audiophile gods and hold my mouth just right.
The connectors on our BHK amps are locking 5-way binding posts. Do make sure they are unscrewed the whole way before inserting a banana.
I have also had problems with bananas on my new AE speaker cables into the BHK 250. A great effort to get them seated properly. So much so that I will have them reterminated to spades to make swapping out not such a chore.
I have plenty of room behind my rack and plenty of light, and really took my time, but it seemed more luck than anything else to get the bananas proper seated.
Locking banana posts offer a superior connection compared to non-blocking posts.
Because the BHK binding posts are also a collet (radial clamp) type connection for a rigid banana plug what works good is to loosen the nut on the binding post while pushing the banana plug into the binding post. As soon as the collet is open enough the banana will slip right into place. Then tighten the collet nut to grip the banana plug. Locking bananas are a little trickier as they also expand. It takes a bit of fussing to get them both adjusted for easy connection. Make sure the locking banana is completely loosened before trying to plug it in. And yes spades are much easier to securely connect.
If the binding post has been fully tightened without clamping anything the collet will be forced too small for anything to fit and will need to be expanded for a banana plug to fit easily again.
As an odd bit of info I was able to clamp a set of Iconoclast spades to the binding posts and also connect a set of Iconoclast locking bananas at the same time. I needed to find out if two sets of cables (TPC and SPTPC) connected at the same time would sound any different. Short answer is it seemed like the silver plated cable was still not connected.
Thanks for the tips
The whole thing was frustrating, the banana plugs slide in without effort in the red bindings post and not at all in the black ones. Could this be due to a bad batch of black binding post? all four black ones have the same issue in my brand new BHK 250.
I ended up ordering an Iconoclast cable with spades for the amp side and bananas on the other end. I wanted to give the Iconoclast a try anyway.
Odd. All the binding posts are identical. There are small colored plastic thin donuts of red or black which designate which post is which. These are also the same, but for color.
Even with the black binding posts unscrewed all the way you cannot insert a banana?
Are your black and red bananas the same?