Bananas rule, spades drool. End of discussion.

I just checked my speaker connections. All using bananas, all nice and tight.

The number of times I’ve had spades get loose instead though.....

Point is, and it really is kind of a tongue in cheek thing, bananas beat spades for long term reliability in almost all setups.  If you have to use a Cardas or Mundorf speaker terminal to ensure your spades stay tight it kind of proves my point.



It’s okay to vent. Just let it all out - we’re here for you...


OP, I could have sworn a couple years ago or so you asked AG members for a good clamp/no solder spade recommendation.  Change of heart or bad experience?

Hello erik_squires!  Just think about how much contact area there is betwen a banana plug and sleeve it goes in compared to a spade lug tightened down on a quality terminas that sandwhiches it in btween two metal surfaces. The idea is to get the signal from the amp into the speaker, right? With the minimum resistance to the flow of current, right? If you experiment a lot, bananas are quick and easy. You can "stack" them and hook up bunches of speakers in a jiffy. These days, I use locking bananas for my serious setups; no ferrous metals in the signal path. But, if I didn't experiment a lot, I'd use spades. No question. Enjoy the music!

FWIW...I use spades on both ends of my Venom-X cables. With a good "snugging" by hand I never had them come loose.

@tomic601  Brings up a good point, and that is that a lot of spades and the speaker connectors are not given a lot of thought. 

Focal for instance used nickel plated binding posts, which is a very hard material.  Using it with hard spades results in a situation where they will never grip for long. This is why we assemble machine screws with split ring washers, so the spring keeps the screw tight.  No give, no reliability.

WBT makes what I think are the most reliable spade connectors, which use a type of spring to ensure the spade and post stay tight. 

Yes, it's true we want maximum contact area, but have you ever taken apart a female IEC (power) connector, or wall outlet?  The actual contact area at the plug is very small, comparable to the contact area of a good banana.

Lastly, solder is never used in high current installations like power transmission for a reason.  It's brittle and doesn't conduct all that well.  Cold well and tight crimps are the way to go.