Free DIY Speaker Cables Plans!

Making the Best DIY speaker cables is Easy:

All you need are some good plans and a few materials.

The necessary parts for DIY speaker cables are readily available and the technology is more common than you may think.best-diy-speaker-cables

Cable manufacturers are in the business of delivering their product into the marketplace as unobtainium.

Meaning, they want you to believe that the only way to get a cable as good as their own is to buy them.

The markup for speaker cables and interconnect cables in the retail marketplace is to the tune of 200 to 800 percent. No joke!

Saving Money is Good! It doesn’t mean Your Cables need to be junk!

With the recent recession these margin percentages are just not acceptable for any self respecting do-it-yourself audio enthusiast.

The best DIY speaker cables are definitely the cables that you make yourself- Free DIY cable recipes here! If there are any real performance gains to be made with a specific retail cable brand -the increase in performance is simply too small to measure accurately.

After you build your own DIY speaker cables I would encourage you to upgrade other areas of your playback system.

For example: the highest area of distortion on any home stereo system or home theater system is within the speaker itself.

This is a known fact.

It can be easily measured and proven.

The loud speaker IS the weakest link in the home theater system and stereo speakers set up. Work on improving home audio system performance in these areas.

There are plenty of things you can improve on such as installing higher quality speaker drivers, crossovers, etc.

Save money on Home Speaker Cables; Build DIY speaker cables

A Free Cable Recipe to try:

WBT banana Plugs for speaker wires

Interconnect cables:

These can be built as balanced or as single ended line level or interconnect cables. The same idea can be applied for use in speaker cables too.

Things you will need:

1. soldering gun (thermostat control is a nice extra touch on these) to get this -go to Tools & Tech Aids – Installation tools, test equipment, speaker repair and replacement tools

2. silver solder (click on Tools and Tech Aids from number 1. to see selections of solder)

3. RCA or XLR cable ends (male and female XLR) Connectors – One of the largest selections of connectors online for home, car and professional audio

4. 24 to 32 gauge copper solid core wire

a. These small gauge wires will give you better bass response with line level cables. Bass will be tighter and more defined. Bass energy is higher too. Larger gauges like 18 gauge will roll off the bass noticeably.

5. Poly ethylene tube (clear milky white colored tubing) (Lowes regular stock item.)

6. Shrink tubing with adhesive. To get this -go to Tools & Tech Aids – Installation tools, test equipment, speaker repair and replacement tools

7. Protective over braid sheath. To get this see Tools & Tech Aids – Installation tools, test equipment, speaker repair and replacement tools

8. colored shrink tubing (optional: for marking positive and negative cables)

9. silicon caulk

10. some alligator clips to hold your work while you solder

11. Heat gun to shrink the tubing.

How to build your DIY speaker Cables or DIY interconnect cables:

1. cut the poly ethylene tube to your desired length (Lowe’s regular stock item)

2. use a helper to stretch the poly tube straight while you thread the wire into it

a.  Stretching the Poly tube straight makes inserting the copper conductor much easier.

b. Use cotton gloves when touching the copper wire. If you touch the wire with your bare hands run fine steel wool over the wire and polish the conductors until shiny.

Using gloves, install wire into the Poly tubes per instructions in next step.

c. With long cable runs over 6 ft it may be necessary to first install a rigid wire such as an aluminum cable or steel wire. Then hook it to the copper wire and pull the copper into the cable and the steel wire out.

3. leave about 2 inches extra copper wire sticking out each poly tube end

4. For XLR cable you will need 3 complete tubes for each cable. (3 tubes necessary for braiding method with RCA as well.)

5. When soldering your cable ends, make sure that the positive from the negative conductors can not touch.

a.  You may need to pump the tube end full of silicon caulk. Fill the last inch of each end with caulk and let it dry. This will seal the air inside the tube and limit corrosion. Then remove any caulk residue from the wire after it dries.

b. Cut the positive wire of your DIY speaker cables so that the poly tube covers all but the last 1/8 inch of copper cable.

I do this by allowing the poly tube to nearly cover the entire terminal of the connector’s positive conductor. This may mean that you cut the copper wire so that you can just barely reach with the soldering iron.

Be careful not to melt the poly tubing too badly. Sometimes it will melt so bad the wire sticks out the other side other side of the tube. It can melt clear through. (It could then contact one of the other wires.)

c. If you plan to apply before or after you have attached the cable ends. When you install it will depend on if you can slide the shielding over the RCA or XLR cable ends. I usually use a shield that will slip over the RCA end so I can install it after and cover more of the assembly.

d. Use a continuity tester to check for correct positive and negative polarity. Put one tester on the positive and one on negative to be sure it is not cross feeding from one wire to the other. Do these tests before you start to install over braid and shrink tubes because you will have to rip it all off if a problem persist.

e. Install the protective over braiding: put it on once, make a mark, take it off and cut at the mark, then reinstall. Tape the over braid in place with a small amount of over braid.

f. Cut a piece of adhesive shrink tube to about 1.5 inches in length.

g. Use the heat gun to shrink the tube over the cable end and the over braid. Make sure it completely covers the tape and touches the over braiding. It should also cover at least half and inch of the cable end for a secure hold.

h. Install the color coded shrink tube to mark which cable is the positive. I usually use red for this.

i. Double check the polarity with a continuity tester again before installing into your system.

That’s it! Not hard was it?

This cable uses a very simple conductor set running parallel to one another.

You may also complete the project by braiding the conductor’s tubes together to help control inductance.

My suggestion is to make a set of each of these DIY speaker cables and see which works better on your home audio system.

Then make the rest of the cables that you will need according to your results with the better set of cables.

There is no right answer here: your system may respond very differently than my own home stereo speakers system. To see my patented speaker cables and interconnect cables go to the Purchase Direct page..

Cable building not for you? Go to Wire & Cable – We carry a large selection of bulk reels to completed cables in every style and length.

Related DIY Speaker Cables Articles:

Used Audio Cables
12 Guage Speaker Wire
14 Guage Speaker Wire
DIY Speaker Wire
For other best speaker wire and DIY speaker cables recipes click here.

Return to Home Speaker from Best DIY speaker cables.

Parts Express – WBT Audio Connectors