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Housing wiring instead of audio wiring? Is this ok? 

 

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 Post subject: Housing wiring instead of audio wiring? Is this ok?
Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 7:18 pm 
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My dad is an electrcian and I have done a fair bit of electrical work myself so obviously I have access to a rather large amount of offcuts of housing wiring in various thicknesses. Now I would have thought that wires are wires but my question is, does housing wiring do the same basic job as audio wiring? The only visible difference is that audio wiring uses a lot of very fine strands of the current carrying metal, i.e. copper, whereas housing wiring uses a lot thicker strands of copper to make up the same diameter.
For example, 8g is about the equivilent to 6-8mm housing wiring... Would they both carry the same voltage and current load in DC? As I know that AC works very differently to DC.
For those who don't know, you would typically wire up a standard power point with about 6mm twin earth (the equvilent of 8g)
I really hope that they do do the same job as this will make my life a hell of a lot easier and cheaper :D
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 7:49 pm 
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With car audio wiring the number of strands is much higher which allows more current to flow due to the higher surface area on the conductor. As car audio power is 12v rather than 240v, the current is MUCH higher than home supplies. Most home power points are rated at 240v/10A... Most head units are 12v and have a 10A fuse, so you can imagine how much current car amplifiers could possibly draw.
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:02 pm 
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I see... I kinda already knew the answer to this question but hoped someone would tell me that they would both be the same. Oh well. I guess I will have to spend the money and get some audio wiring. Costwise, it wasn't the amp wiring itself that I was really worried about as I have a second boot mounted battery, but the main battery to battery run. I guess that should really be done with 2g or 0g. I was living in denial as 2g wiring isn't exactly cheap when it come to a run that long.
My main question after that then I guess is... And this may seem stupid but... does 1A in DC = 1A in AC?
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:03 pm 
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Stone wrote:
With car audio wiring the number of strands is much higher which allows more current to flow due to the higher surface area on the conductor. As car audio power is 12v rather than 240v, the current is MUCH higher than home supplies. Most home power points are rated at 240v/10A... Most head units are 12v and have a 10A fuse, so you can imagine how much current car amplifiers could possibly draw.


Beat me too it ya bastard :P ... so yeh i wouldnt be too keen on running in your car what your old man fits day to day .. could he hook u up with trade prices somewhere tho....

 

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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:04 pm 
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I think you should be thinking more along the lines of POWER.

Power = Voltage * Current.

240 V x 10 A = 2400 Watts

12V x 10 A = 120 Watts.
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:11 pm 
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Nah mate...
As an audio engineer I think you would have few issues using building wire. The conductor size is great and Surface area has nothing to do with it. The only reason for heaps of strands is flexibility. Use multistrand house wires and you will be fine.
1A is 1A but not exactly as RMS and peak voltage and current will vary considerably. If you use Big a*** cable. EG 10mm2 100A main bus wire for battery connection you will do well. The temperature and strength of insulation should be much better with the power cables.
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:17 pm 
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You can use welding cable for your main power wire... It's much cheaper than car audio cable and just as flexible.
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 8:25 pm 
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glenneaux wrote:
I think you should be thinking more along the lines of POWER.

Power = Voltage * Current.

240 V x 10 A = 2400 Watts

12V x 10 A = 120 Watts.

Yeah, my mistake.


Original poster... See the link below and put your cable in and see if it will be suitable. Solid core stuff is down the bottom.
http://www.bcae1.com/wire.htm
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 9:05 pm 
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Stone wrote:
glenneaux wrote:
I think you should be thinking more along the lines of POWER.

Power = Voltage * Current.

240 V x 10 A = 2400 Watts

12V x 10 A = 120 Watts.

Yeah, my mistake.


Original poster... See the link below and put your cable in and see if it will be suitable. Solid core stuff is down the bottom.
http://www.bcae1.com/wire.htm


Thanks man...

They were my thoughts exactly glenneaux. Basic Yr 8 physics.... Only we only really learn about and deal with DC in school so I wasn't 110% sure if the same rules applied to AC.

Thanks for the help guys. Looks like I will be able to save myself a bit of dosh and use some of that 12mm welding cable in the shed :D I'll still use 4g from my boot mounted battery to each amp though... Just to be sure :D
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 9:08 pm 
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richard williams wrote:
Nah mate...
As an audio engineer I think you would have few issues using building wire. The conductor size is great and Surface area has nothing to do with it. The only reason for heaps of strands is flexibility. Use multistrand house wires and you will be fine.
1A is 1A but not exactly as RMS and peak voltage and current will vary considerably. If you use Big a*** cable. EG 10mm2 100A main bus wire for battery connection you will do well. The temperature and strength of insulation should be much better with the power cables.


Just what I wanted to hear... I thought that the only reason for the multi strands was flexibility. Just wasn't sure. I figured that as the electrons travel on the very outer edges of a current carrying wire and as a wire is usually pressed together in an insulated case, that the multi strands would not affect the current. Guess I was right after all :D
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Posted: Thu May 03, 2007 9:15 pm 
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Also... Fine stranded pure copper wire, i.e. AWG wire, is going to oxidise much faster and much greater than household grade wire as it has a greater surface area to be exposed to air :D And as well all know... oxidised copper wire doesn't conduct very well. Just something else I thought I'd throw in :D
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Posted: Fri May 04, 2007 1:15 am 
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MoNGooSE wrote:
Also... Fine stranded pure copper wire, i.e. AWG wire, is going to oxidise much faster and much greater than household grade wire as it has a greater surface area to be exposed to air :D And as well all know... oxidised copper wire doesn't conduct very well. Just something else I thought I'd throw in :D


that too is dependant tho of the extremeties of the sorrounding environment along woth the quality and size/thickness of shielding, insulation etc also ... if properly done in a car you shouldnt have to worry bout this for yonks..normally well after youd do the next wiring upgrade anyways

 

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Posted: Fri May 04, 2007 4:11 am 
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richard williams wrote:
Nah mate...
As an audio engineer I think you would have few issues using building wire. The conductor size is great and Surface area has nothing to do with it. The only reason for heaps of strands is flexibility. Use multistrand house wires and you will be fine.
1A is 1A but not exactly as RMS and peak voltage and current will vary considerably. If you use Big a*** cable. EG 10mm2 100A main bus wire for battery connection you will do well. The temperature and strength of insulation should be much better with the power cables.


This is something i've always been skeptical about. Are you sayin that if i have a 0gauge cable made of a single strand wire it will make no difference to a 0gauge cable made up 200 strands of copper in regards to conductivity and resistance?
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Posted: Fri May 04, 2007 4:26 am 
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And on that i would have thought that if you had a single strand of wire with an impurity or defect in the strand it would have more chances of having a high resistance (impedance) compared to a cable of 200 or more strands. I'm not an audio or electrical engineer so i cant say for sure but isnt it common df?
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Posted: Fri May 04, 2007 6:52 am 
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the only reason stranded is used is for flexibilty. no other reason.

think of it this way. if stranded was better for high current and amperage applications, why dont they use stranded in the high voltage wiring on power poles and the like.

A copper conductor in solid core is going to do the same job as one in stranded given they are both the same gauge. Copper is copper. the only difference is that the stranded will be easier to install because the cable will be more flexible.
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