Oxygen Free Copper - The Facts
With over 30 years experience in the professional audio visual industry, we understand the importance of having the best equipment to get the best sound quality. One of the most overlooked aspects of a sound system is the speaker cable. Many people may not realize that the type of copper used in the speaker cable can have a significant impact on the quality of sound that is produced. In this article, we will explain why oxygen free copper is the best choice for your speaker cable.
Introduction to Oxygen Free Copper (OFC)
Oxygen free copper (OFC) is a type of copper that has been refined to reduce the amount of oxygen in the metal. This is done to improve the conductivity of the copper. Oxygen is a common impurity found in copper, and it can reduce the conductivity and increase the resistance of the metal. OFC has a conductivity rating of 101% IACS (International Annealed Copper Standard), which is higher than the 100% IACS rating of standard copper.
Oxygen free copper is produced by melting and casting copper in a controlled atmosphere that is low in oxygen. This process removes any oxygen that is present in the copper, resulting in a purer form of copper. OFC is also known as oxygen-free high thermal conductivity (OFHC) copper.
The primary benefit of using oxygen free copper is that it has a higher conductivity than standard copper. This means that it can transmit electrical signals more efficiently, resulting in better sound quality. OFC is also more durable than standard copper, as it is less prone to corrosion. Additionally, OFC is more flexible than standard copper, making it easier to work with when installing speaker cables.
How OFC Affects Speaker Cable Quality
The purity of the copper used in a speaker cable can have a significant impact on the quality of sound that is produced. OFC speaker cables have a lower resistance than cables made from standard copper. This means that they can transmit electrical signals more efficiently, resulting in better sound quality. OFC cables also have a more consistent impedance, which helps to reduce distortion and noise.
Comparing OFC with Other Types of Copper
There are several types of copper that are used in speaker cables, including standard copper, silver-plated copper, and OCC (Ohno Continuous Cast) copper. While each of these types of copper has its own benefits, oxygen free copper is the best choice for speaker cables due to its high conductivity and low resistance.
Best Practices for Using OFC Speaker Cables
When using oxygen free copper speaker cables, it is important to ensure that they are properly installed and maintained. Cables should be properly terminated and should not be pulled or twisted excessively. Additionally, it is important to keep the cables clean and free from dust and debris.
Where to Buy OFC Speaker Cables
While Oxygen free copper speaker cables can be purchased from a variety of retailers, it is important to ensure that they are made from high-quality materials and are properly constructed. At Clark Wire & Cable, OFC speaker cables are built with large gage (105 strand) oxygen-free copper conductors. Furthermore, the CW series minimizes power loss and attenuation through the cable. For reduced capacitance, the conductors are insulated with high-density polyethylene.
In conclusion, oxygen free copper is the best choice for your speaker cable due to its high conductivity and low resistance. OFC cables offer better sound quality and a longer lifespan than cables made from standard copper. When purchasing speaker cables, it is important to ensure that they are made from high-quality materials and are properly constructed. By following these best practices, you can ensure that your sound system produces the best possible sound quality.