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Whirlwind Cables?

Discussion in 'Sound, Music, and Intercom' started by Anonymous067, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. Anonymous067

    Anonymous067 BANNED USER

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    Hi all.

    I'm wondering, I know that whirlwind makes different lines of cables.
    I'm budgeting about 35k for a personal portable sound system (32 channel board, 10 sys of wireless, 3 stereo amps (just for size comparison)).

    I was PLANNING for all my XLR to XLR to just use Whirlwinds Economy series cables, 5 bucks for a ten footer.
    Bad deal? Poor cable? Stop being a cheapo?

    I've used worse cables at my church, these things have #$%^& connectors, the kind where you can see the screws, they always come loose, yeah, those type.

    Are these cables bad for set up and tear down 3-5 times a week?

    No, I'm not going to pay over a dollar a foot, so don't even suggest that.
    Making cables isn't in the time picture, so also don't mention that.
     
  2. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    You might look at some whips, which can be found pre-made, but might suit your needs. I'll bet whirlwind makes whips that are less expensive and less time-consuming than running individual cables. Whirlwind / Insert Snakes Also, if you're investing in multiple wireless, you might look into a system where all the receivers are in a rack, and you only use one antenna system for them. Don't know what they're called, but I know Shure makes something.

    I'm sure Bill sells all of it, as well as other vendors.
     
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  3. BillESC

    BillESC Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    In the under a buck a foot catagory, Audio Technica's ecomony mic cables are better than Whirlwind's Chinese imports. We sell a lot of both, about 200,000 feet per year. While I'll use the AT cables in our rental rigs, I won't use the Whirlwinds.

    Mic antenna distribution systems are what you're thinking of Len. They are usually a one rack space 4 to 1 unit.
     
  4. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

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    What kind of wireless did you spec out?
     
  5. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    You're going to be spending $35,000 and you're gonna cheap out on XLR Cables?!?!?! I mean...I'd understand if you were spending maybe $2,000 or even $3,500, but $35k man? You couldn't devote $100 or even $200 to get some good Switchcraft or Neutrik cables? Christ man...you're getting a 32 channel board, 10 wireless mics and 3 amps yet you want cheap cables? Well...you get what you pay for man...just seems a bit ridiculous with that much money you are going to cheap out on the most basic supplies. Especially when you say they are going to be getting abused 3-5 times a week...don't expect them to last very long.

    If you're really gonna cheap out on XLR's then I second BillESC, at least go for the Audio Technica cables.
     
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  6. avkid

    avkid Not a New User Fight Leukemia

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    The words cheap and quality can go together.
    SLMN
     
  7. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    I avoid Whirlwind cable when I can. Every time you coil their cables wrong, or kink them, they remember. They never remember the countless times you coiled them right.

    I prefer to build my own. Good cable and Neutrik or Switchcraft connectors (Switchcraft connectors, by the way, are the ones you greatly dislike with the setscrews; they're actually more expensive than the Neutriks and more rugged). I try to go with black Neutriks when I can. 8412 cable is nice. Prebuilt, my preference is to Rapco or Proco right now.

    Hmm, we are talking about cable that's to be used between a microphone and a stage box, right? It just occurred to me that you might be talking about the cables tying things together at FOH, in which case I use squids when I can, especially in a portable situation; in an install, 8451 or 9451 is good.
     
  8. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    waynehoskins, did you perhaps forget to add the word "Belden" before those model numbers?
     
  9. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    I sure did. I didn't remember not typing it. Yes, those are Belden model numbers, and most everybody else has a close cross.

    But of course, it's unimportant since the original poster needs to have premade cables, though we really don't know quite what for yet, and it's quite possible he really needs a short fan-to-fan snake.
     
  10. avare

    avare Active Member

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    What are you basing your pricing on? I have found a rule of budgeting to have 5% for cables MINIMUM.

    Andre
     
  11. mixmaster

    mixmaster Active Member

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    +1 for buying good cables. You can have the best hardware in the world and it doesn't mean anything if the signal can't get from point A to point B. Cables are the most abused item in any rig (unless you count the monitor tech) and yet it's the first place people go to cut corners. I'll bet your going to put your amps in cases right? Your console? Why, for protection of course. Cheap cables don't offer any protection for the signals they are carrying. Your investment in good cables is more than the original cost too. You also have to figure if the trouble and embarrassment of a cable dying in mid show is worth it. I guarantee it's never the back up guitar mic cable that dies, it's always the lead singers mic cable, three bars into their most favorite tune. Too much of that stuff can lead to a bad reputation. And then you have to figure in the cost of your time to troubleshoot and repair the cable back at the shop. And if it's broken in the middle then you get to buy a new one, or just cut it in half and get two short cords. Speaking of short cords, 10 foot really isn't long enough. Think about this. If your singer is 6 foot tall, his mouth (and therefore a microphone) is about 5 feet off the ground. That means, with a 10 foot cord, you only have 5 feet left to get to your closest stage box. Usually the band isn't all clustered within 5 feet of a stage box or even a subsnake. I would recomend 25 foot or so with a couple of 50 foot runs for the few times you need to get just one mic clear across the stage.
    As far as brands..... My 25 foot cables are Whirlwind Accusonic. I've got 30 or 40 of them, store them in a drawer in the drawer case and I can remember repairing 3 in the last 2 and a half years. That's reliable in my book.
    My 50 and 100 foot cables are Cancare Star Quad. The don't get used as much but they haven't given me any problems-ever. (having said that, they will probably all be dead next time I need them:rolleyes:)Both brands lay flat for show and coil well at the end of the night.
    Matt
     
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  12. tech2000

    tech2000 Active Member

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    In some rare occasions (I've definitely bought cheap just because it is cheap before, as I work for a school and some work pretty well.)
    However, I would always try to buy cables that are NOT the cheapest find out there. Especially if I was budgeting 35k for the entire system. You could get a very decent system with decent cables for that price.
     
  13. TimMiller

    TimMiller Well-Known Member

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    Check out CBI also, they have some really good deals on cables. They are quality hand made here in the USA. I get my cables from them and have not had any problems. (do not buy the bottom line, i have heard some stories).
     
  14. Chris15

    Chris15 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Knowing the price of genuine XX connectors, I don't see how SLMN are making any money... That photo on the website it old, they are the XX v1.

    Personally I dislike black connectors under most circumstances... they are WAY too easy to scratch etc and then they don't stay black for very long...

    I wholeheartly agree with everyone else; if you can afford 10 systems of RF, why o why would you skimp on the cable. My employer, whom I choose not to publicly name, builds mic cable out of Canare star quad, Neutrik connectors. Nothing else will be willing used. There has been occasion that owing to Neutrik managing to blow up the machine that makes male XLRs, that we have used Amphenol, but they feel cheap and nasty and I dislike the strain relief... For patch cable, we still use Neutrik, but prefer Eurocable Bantam Patch cable - it is so flexible and so nice to work with... In the back of a rack, much of the time Starquad is actually a little stiff...

    What's more fun is if the piece of copper that fails is one in the chain from console output to amplifiers. Then you not only lose the lead vocal, you lose everything... Good luck getting hired by that act again...

    If you are looking at a system that tos and fros 5 times a week, then I'd be definitely looming as much as I could and looking to multipin it all as soon as I could afford to... The time savings pay off multipins fairly quickly.
     
  15. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    Putting cheap cables on a $35k system is like saying you're going to put Regular Unleaded gasoline in your brand new Ferrari or Porsche. Yea, it will work...but it wont be performing to it's full potential and you're most likely going to have problems down the road because of it. It's like you don't even care...
     
  16. Anonymous067

    Anonymous067 BANNED USER

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    Sorry people. I forgot I posted this thread.

    A few clarifications. I know not to use 10 ft cables on stage. Ever. Things get moved, repositioned (without the techs knowledge), blah blah blah. ten footers are for rack to rack connections ONLY. Point taken, I shouldn't use these cheap cables. What is a a good quality cable that isn't the most expensive thing out there?

    Model of my wireless isn't relevant, I know how to use antenna distribution, I don't need help with that.
     
  17. mixmaster

    mixmaster Active Member

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    If your rack to rack cables always patch the same, I would suggest building multipins. I recently made the conversion to multipin on my fx, dynamics, and drive racks and I'm glad I did. Patching the house is simpler, the end result is neater, and it's easier to pick up a couple of multipin cables than to untangle the mess of 10 foot mic cords that I used before. It also means that you can cover the back of the racks so no one can go messing with the patches inside.

    I used Whirlwind 12 pair because I got a good deal on it, and got Amp CPC connectors (series 1) from Mouser. If I had it to do over again, I might find a different cable manufacture, because Whirlwind doesn't individually jacketed pairs. Otherwise, I saved a lot of time using multipins and saved a fair amount of money by building the cables myself.
    Matt
     
  18. Anonymous067

    Anonymous067 BANNED USER

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    I don't feel comfortable making my own cables.

    Multipin patches might be difficult as sometimes I have to switch wireless channels from channel to channel on a 32 channel board.
     
  19. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    Could've said that from the start, you know, rather than that you don't have the time to build your own. Those have two entirely different implications.

    I don't understand how a squid with a mult will make that hard.

    On the ten-footer thing, I'd never say that you must never use a ten-footer on stage. I use them all the time at the church, but the things they're plugged into (like lead vocal into the subsnake right in front of him) don't move. But for most applications, especially festival, the smallest thing to use, especially on frontline, is 25 feet.
     
  20. Anonymous067

    Anonymous067 BANNED USER

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    Okay, I don't have time to make my own cables, nor do I have the skills, materials, or feel comfortable doing it. Did I cover all the basis?

    When you have a small breakout on the end, and you need to move something from channel 2 all the way to 30, thats a 3-4 foot jump.
    Usually if you pull two cables in the breakout opposite directions, I can spread 2 feet, max.
     

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