Are WBT banana plugs worth the price?

Discussion in 'A/V Interconnects, Cables & Power Conditioning' started by riceaterslc, Jan 20, 2006.

  1. riceaterslc Audioholic

    riceaterslc
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    i have just read the DIY speaker cable thread and decided to put all this extra CAT-5 i have to use. i priced WBT plugs on parts express and it would run $150 to get plugs for just one pair of speakers. i don't know if i can justify this cost when there are other plugs out there as cheap as $2.50/each.

    are there plugs somewhere in the middle ground where i wouldn't notice a significant drop is build quality without using up my whole paycheck? i am more concerned about build quality since i don't even know if i am capable of hearing a sound quality difference between what i am running now and DIY cables. thanks in advance
  2. Buckeyefan 1 Audioholic Ninja

    Buckeyefan 1
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    Did you say you're using CAT 5 for speaker wire?
    Not unless you are using 22ga cable over a long run. 12ga is plenty up to 50' runs. Terminating the ends won't do anything for sound quality other than keep the wire from oxidizing in humid or salty climates (and even then, screw on type terminals aren't as good IMO as a soldered type for oxidation protection). Banana terminals are great for ease of hookup, and protection form overlapping wire strands.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2006
  3. Sheep Audioholic Warlord

    Sheep
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    Just make sure the banana's make a solid connection with the speaker. I had to take mine off cause they would rattle. But, now all my speakers have banana connections on the amp end(from just my front 3), so its easy to take out and switch.

    SheepStar
  4. Rik Audioholic

    Rik
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    I terminated all my wires with the WBT's. Make sure you get the sleeves too.
    Rik,
  5. mtrycrafts Audioholic Slumlord

    mtrycrafts
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    What do you want that connector to do for you at $150, the less expensive one will not???

    Let me tell you though that $2.50 will serve you just as well.
  6. MDS Audioholic Spartan

    MDS
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    There are subtle differences between banana plugs and it isn't the 'sound quality' they produce. It's the ease with which they can be attached to the speaker wire.

    The ones Radio Shack sells for $1.50 apiece are cheap...and worthless. The sleeve part is a half barrell and doesn't hold the wire well. It is impossible to crimp around the wire tightly without destroying the banana plug.

    The Monster locking banana plugs where you insert the wire and fan out the strands around the tip and then screw on the top to hold them is the best design, but being Monster they are way overpriced at $20 per pair.

    A similar design to the Monster that doesn't cost a fortune would be ideal. I haven't been looking for new ones lately, but the WBT look like they may be good and a bit more reasonably priced.
    MDS,
  7. Mudcat Senior Audioholic

    Mudcat
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  8. Sheep Audioholic Warlord

    Sheep
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    I have those same monster ones. They don't make a good, solid connection with the speaker, and they sometimes vibrate. I only use them on the amp end.

    SheepStar
  9. MDS Audioholic Spartan

    MDS
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    Interesting. I might have to re-evaluate my thoughts on them. I thought the design looked good. I haven't ever used them. I know the cheap radio shack versions suck, because I have used them.

    When I finally get around to upgrading everything and need new bananas, maybe I'll start another thread on 'best banana plugs' so we can re-hash this topic. :)
    MDS,
  10. Buckle-meister Audioholic Field Marshall

    Buckle-meister
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    Please do, as I'd be interested in seeing what folk come up with. I'd like to splash out in the future for a matching set of bananna plugs. Just for flashyness' sake you understand. :eek:
  11. j_garcia Audioholic Jedi

    j_garcia
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    I've tried a lot of them out, and the ones I like are the PN# 091-330 at Parts Expre$$. Very cheap when you buy in the typical quantities needed to wire up a system. They can handle a larger AWG than most people will ever need, they are side exit, and they don't use a set screw to attach.
  12. riceaterslc Audioholic

    riceaterslc
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    thanks for the replies everyone, good information.

    buckeye: yes, i'm going to use cat-5 cable for speaker wires ;)

    garcia: those were the exact plugs i was looking to get, glad someone has tested them out.
  13. mtrycrafts Audioholic Slumlord

    mtrycrafts
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    I like to solder things in place:D

    I have some experience with those Monster bananas;) They never seem to vibrate loose on my boombox, the bigger one:D But then, I tend not to play with them after it is in place.
  14. claudermilk Full Audioholic

    claudermilk
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  15. riceaterslc Audioholic

    riceaterslc
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    those look really nice as well. other than less rear space required and plug doubling, are there any other advantages of using side entry plugs as opposed to rear entry?
  16. Sheep Audioholic Warlord

    Sheep
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    They were vibrating in the binding post. This happened on 2 speakers. 1 with a pair of regular gold plated posts, one with WBT posts. Once my discount kicks in at bestbuy, I will get some of the quick lock spade plugs.

    SheepStar

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