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  1. #1

    Bananas / Spades

    Hello! Cody from TARA Labs here again.

    Over the years, we receive many emails asking about termination for speaker cables. What we have found is that in the USA, the preferred termination is spades. But in Europe, it seems that bananas are the preferred terminations. I personally like spades, but would love to hear which termination you prefer?

    Hope you're all having a wonderful holiday!
    Disclaimer: I am an employee of TARA Labs. I am not here to promote TARA Labs products.

  2. #2

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Spades here but it is nice to have the option of spades & banana as in threaded.

  3. #3
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I think the geographic difference in preferences is the European equipment uses Eurotrash binding posts. I hate that plastic covered .....(sorry, I can't think of a polite noun).

    I prefer bananas on lightweight cables because they work on anything except the Cardas Patented Binding Posts (single knob). For heavier and stiff cables I prefer spades because I feel that cables connected from perpendicular to the post have less leverage and therefore less strain on the equipment and cable.

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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by bzr View Post
    Spades here but it is nice to have the option of spades & banana as in threaded.
    Another vote for threaded and easy to swap.

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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Bananas for auditioning cables and spades for permanent fixture. How's that for customer sentiment?

    I'd be curious to learn what Tara's research shows which connection is best.
    Le Roy

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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I prefer spades myself. That's what my Tara Labs speaker cables have.
    George
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I prefer banana's. I believe you also get more 'surface contact' with banana's. Never had a banana connection become lose. Where years ago when I had spades I would have to tighten them at the speaker end every few months. I do have Nordost Frey's which are quite light so I see no problem of them becoming lose. I demoed some JPS S3's a couple of years ago that had WBT locking banana's. Seemed very secure for the 2 weeks I had them.
    I'd be curious to learn what Tara's research shows which connection is best.
    Me too
    George

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  8. #8
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I really would prefer that ALL speakers used the same size Spades so I did not have to adapt Bananas to my Synergistic Spades in order to use them with my Dynaudio speakers. My Clearfield use the lesser width spades, which is what is on the Synergistic cables. Speaker and cable MFGs would serve the customers better if they could adopt a universal dimension for both posts and spades.
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  9. #9

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by octadyndude View Post
    I prefer banana's. I believe you also get more 'surface contact' with banana's. Never had a banana connection become lose. Where years ago when I had spades I would have to tighten them at the speaker end every few months. I do have Nordost Frey's which are quite light so I see no problem of them becoming lose. I demoed some JPS S3's a couple of years ago that had WBT locking banana's. Seemed very secure for the 2 weeks I had them.

    Me too

    Totally agree here. I'm a locking banana man. Furutech Fux CF202R is my favourite choice. I also like the WBT.

    The solid silver interchangeable system is OK on the WireWorld but they are too soft and the potential for tarnish worries me.
    Steve

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  10. #10

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post

    The solid silver interchangeable system is OK on the WireWorld but they are too soft and the potential for tarnish worries me.
    Valid concern but the silver terminals from Wireworld can be polished periodically and silver oxide is still more conductive than copper, and certainly more conductive than gold, rhodium, etc.

  11. #11

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Hiker View Post
    Valid concern but the silver terminals from Wireworld can be polished periodically and silver oxide is still more conductive than copper, and certainly more conductive than gold, rhodium, etc.
    Noted. The Wireworld silver connectors can be replaced easily too. Burn-in is quick.

    Downside to rhodium is the long burn-in or break-in period.
    Steve

    Furutech Passive Power Filtering


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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    Totally agree here. I'm a locking banana man. Furutech Fux CF202R is my favourite choice. I also like the WBT.

    The solid silver interchangeable system is OK on the WireWorld but they are too soft and the potential for tarnish worries me.
    Another vote for locking bananas where the wires enter at an angle to reduce leverage on the binding posts and connecter.

  13. #13

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    +1 for bananas, as long as they're quality. I've seen some that fall apart quite easily...
    They're much more convenient than spades, with more surface contact, and, it's my impression, they put less burden on the binding posts.


    alexandre

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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Spades for me please.
    _______________

    Mike

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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Spades for me. I read somewhere (so it must be true ), that spades have less signal loss than bananas.
    Regards,
    Steve


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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Cody@TARA View Post
    Hello! Cody from TARA Labs here again.

    Over the years, we receive many emails asking about termination for speaker cables. What we have found is that in the USA, the preferred termination is spades. But in Europe, it seems that bananas are the preferred terminations. I personally like spades, but would love to hear which termination you prefer?

    Hope you're all having a wonderful holiday!
    I have 2 questions after reading some of the posts.
    1-Which termination has the most surface contact?
    2-Which has less signal loss and why?
    George

    Aavik U300 - Borresen 03 with optional Supreme D-TC feet - Naim unitiserve 2tb - Ansuz DTC digital cable with power box - Ansuz Mainz8 D-TC with 1 Ansuz Supreme D-TC and 1 Ceramic V2 power cords - Ansuz Ceramic V2 speaker cables - Ansus X Ethernet - pARTicular Novus full suspension rack.

  17. #17
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I think there is more to say about this than just banana's or spades. Let's first of all differentiate between plugs or spades. Because the plugs come in different versions:

    1 The typical plugs with springs type contacts:


    2 The hollow Bananas


    3 The plug type with a spreading mechanism for better contact (also prevents accidental unplugging)


    Then, next to the question of which type of plug or spades we need to answer the following questions:
    - soldering or screwing (there is different types for this),
    - which material: generally we can choose silver, gold or rhodium where the latter has the better conductive properties
    Hans

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  18. #18
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Welcome Cody!

    I've always held on to the convention that spades provide a "better" physical (thus electrical?) connection as you can tighten them beyond how you can tighten (most) bananas. Of course, locking bananas changed that a bit.

    However, all my stuff is (conventional) bananas - go figure.
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    One addition. If you use the screw type of spades/bananas the use of wire ferrules might be recommendable.


    Hans

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  20. #20

    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I've never seen ferrules being used in a loudspeaker wire application. Do they make solid silver and solid copper ferrules? Or are they nickel and tin blends?

    My my experience with the Furutech Flux bananas and spades is that the compression grub does not split stranded wire when it clamps down. Sealing it off with a bit of silicon before screwing on the barrel makes it nice and air tight.
    Steve

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  21. #21
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve View Post
    I've never seen ferrules being used in a loudspeaker wire application. Do they make solid silver and solid copper ferrules? Or are they nickel and tin blends?

    My my experience with the Furutech Flux bananas and spades is that the compression grub does not split stranded wire when it clamps down. Sealing it off with a bit of silicon before screwing on the barrel makes it nice and air tight.
    That's why I wrote 'might'. It depends on the cable and the connector. Sometimes it is just better to screw directly on the strands as you described.
    Hans

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  22. #22
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    If you're looking for something other than spades or nanners, check out Neutrik Speakon connectors.


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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Face View Post
    If you're looking for something other than spades or nanners, check out Neutrik Speakon connectors.
    Very nice but do you know a single high-end loudspeaker using this?
    Hans

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  24. #24
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    I like spades but I do not understand how terminating the wire with WBT ferrules and connecting ferrules to speaker and amp would be any worse.
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  25. #25
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    The idea of using high quality sleeves/ferrules like those from ViaBlue or WBT has two advantages:

    1. When using finely stranded conductors, the sleeve is placed and crimped onto the stranded wire using a high pressure crimp tool (WBT 0403). It effectively smashes the individual strands into a solid conductor and acts to protect against oxidation. This "solid conductor" can be seen after the crimp if you shear the sleeve/ferrule in half and look at the cross section.

    2. After the crimp sleeve is in place, there is a little "crescent" depression produced along the length of the sleeve that the set-screws (grubs) on a given banana or spade connector (like the WBT or ViaBlue types) will grip instead of tightening into the bare strands which can break due to how fragile they are.
    .

  26. #26
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    Quote Originally Posted by Glareskin View Post
    Very nice but do you know a single high-end loudspeaker using this?
    Unfortunately, only a few active setups or those with outboard crossovers. I really wish they would catch on. No worries about connecting out of phase, falling out because your cat stepped on a cable, large chunks a cheap metal in the signal path, etc...


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  27. #27
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    Re: Bananas / Spades

    This is my understanding. My amp and speaker have a "wire hole" so ferrule into hole makes sense.
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Bananas / Spades

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