Problems with Speaker Connections

Hi guys, don’t know if anyone will have any tips on this, but I’ve been having a bunch of problems with the connection to my slave speaker. It’s a nice set of aktimate hi fi speakers for a computer, first year or more they worked fine. But then the slave speaker cut out, so I fiddled around and reconnected it a couple of times, put banana plugs on, and it worked again. Then I had to reconnect it again as it cut out again. Finally today after a few weeks working fine the slave speaker was crackling a bit and volume was going in and out. So once again I stripped a bit more off the cable and reconnected it. And now it’s fine again. I fix the cable in place so it doesn’t have weight pulling on it.

Any ideas on what the issue might be? Is it a crappy connector cable? Am I doing something wrong? :slight_smile: Feel free to share if you have any ideas. I’m pretty clueless about hardware. :slight_smile:

Have you opened the slave speaker cabinet up to have a look? Sometimes cables on the speaker elements become loose due to poor soldering. The problem could also be anywhere on the cable (bending cheap cables can make them weak or break), or the other, active, speaker. Open it up and check for loose or corroded connections. As long as the active speaker works the amp is probably fine, just go through all cable and connectors one by one using a meter or a light bulb.

Oh, and one more thing, check your signal cable as well. Maybe it’s just the left or right channel that’s out of whack. Try switching red and black and see what you get.

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Thanks, I’ll keep in mind internal connections if there are more problems. Not sure if the cable is cheap, but I can buy another one if it continues to have problems.

What exactly do you mean, connecting the cable but swapping the red and black connections? What should happen if you do that?

I just mean it may not be anything wrong with the speaker or the cabling from the active to the slave, since the slave only plays L or R there is always the possibility that your left or right channel is faulty earlier on in the chain. By swapping inputs to the active monitor you can see if either (1) the slave is still dead and the active is still playing - meaning your signals to the active are fine - or (2) the active is now silent, which means the signal going to the active is faulty - this could be anything from software, sound card, connectors from sound card, cable from sound card etc.

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OK, got it. Cheers, now I’m less clueless about these hardware issues. :slight_smile:

As stockwaves noted, it is usually bad wiring but at times, it could be an electrical wire nearby, usually not a problem with XLR plugs.

OK, so electrical wires near the speakers or speaker cable can interfere with the signal? That would case some kind of noise rather than cutting them out wouldn’t it?

Electrical wires often cause humming or buzzing, technically, they can cut a signal out if they’re powerful enough. But as mentioned in the last comment, it is usually bad wiring. It does not hurt to check for electrical wires nearby but again as mentioned, this is not a problem when using XLR or or other balanced wires. Try what stockwaves said first.

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OK thanks, I’ll keep that in mind.

Hi @ToivoMedia . I don´t know if it will help, but in the past I had 5.1 speakers connected to computer and had the same issue. The problem was in the volume and bass controller. I had to open it, clean it (used WD40) and after that no problem.