Audio cable design and fabrication part 1

Between 1974 and 1981, I specialized in manufacturing and selling loudspeakers. However, my focus shifted in 1981 towards developing an AI system, engaging in the creation of digital recording and playback equipment. This endeavor aimed at analyzing engineering data within the audio frequency range, although it was distinct from traditional audio equipment. My work primarily revolved around aerospace, Department of Defense (DOD), and medical research and development, centered in calibrated systems within an engineering lab. Precision and reliability were crucial in handling data. My expertise in digital recording and analysis using calibrated systems became invaluable, especially when dealing with both analog and digital audio cabling.

By 2010, I ventured into designing cabling specifically for the music industry’s performance and recording aspects. Subsequently, in 2012, my employer introduced these cable designs into the consumer audio market. My preferred copper material for audio cables is Cardas top-of-the-line bare copper strand. For more information on their products, here is a link to Cardas copper page. The surface and purity of copper play pivotal roles; bare copper or silver-plated variants exhibit superior performance compared to tin-plated copper, the latter having higher resistance. In audio cables, polyethylene surpasses Teflon as an insulation material. When using Teflon, plating the copper is necessary to prevent corrosion, usually accomplished with tin. My research indicated that optimal performance lies in cables utilizing a conductor inserted into an insulator tube, creating an air gap. However, achieving outstanding performance from such cables demands specialized knowledge not widely disseminated in the industry. Consequently, with the right expertise and education, a DIYer could craft cables rivaling top-tier products from various manufacturers. Additionally, these designs can be elevated by using silver conductors, enhancing their performance to the highest level.

Furutech makes it easy for the average DIYer to make great cables using their products. Furutech has introduced fumed polyethylene insulation material which should give similar performance to conductor in tube designs. How to videos are on the Furutech video’s page on this web site. Furutech also cryo treats and demagnetizes their products. For more information on Furutech’s technology visit their webpage.

The significance of shielding and conductor technology is paramount in comprehensive signal and power transmission high performance systems. Basic shielding often focuses solely on RF, failing to adequately address the audio range. Magnetically shielded cables represent a higher level of broadband signal protection, extending defense to extremely low frequencies, EMI (H field), and RFI (E field). Magnetic shielding primarily operates within the near field, employing H field calculations to gauge its effectiveness. While not commonly utilized in the audio industry, magnetic shielding becomes crucial for achieving high shield effectiveness at low audio frequencies. RFI shielding is prevalent but exhibits limitations, with many cables in the market inadequately covering the entire audio frequency range. Nonetheless, shielding RF signals from audio equipment remains crucial for optimal equipment performance.

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