How To Choose Speaker Wire Gauge

One of the most important but commonly overlooked components of a home entertainment system is the speaker wire gauge. Some people have very fancy sound systems that fail and are not maximized in the end, because of the use of wrong speaker wire gauges. Here's how you can select the perfect speaker wire for your home entertainment system.

  • Length. The most important factor that you need to consider is the length of wire that you will need. The general rule is that you need thicker wires for longer lengths. The longer the length, the more sound information becomes lost or distorted. To compensate for this, you will need thicker wire gauges that will allow more information to travel. The more information is present, the more leeway the system has for data loss. If you are connecting your entire house to a sound system, for instance, you will need to use relatively thick wire gauges for the speakers. If you are only connecting speakers that are just a couple of feet away, thinner and slimmer speaker wire gauges will suffice.
  • Setting. Next, determine the specific situation. For example, if you are only hooking up speakers inside your car, there is no need for you to buy extra expensive wire gauges since the speakers are just a couple of inches away from the actual sound system. If you are setting up a sound system for a small concert or event, then you will need bigger wire gauges. If you are using very high quality speakers, you also need bigger wire gauges that will supply the sound speakers with better sound information.
  • System quality. Also determine the quality of your sound system. For instance, if you have a very fancy sound component system, then you need wire gauges that will do justice to your music player. If you have a complex speaker system, you will also need larger wire gauges that will be able to provide the speakers with enough audio information to bring out the full powers and capacities of the speakers. Generally, the simpler the set up, the thinner the speaker wire gauge you will need. The more complex the set up, the thicker the speaker wire gauge you will need.
  • System specifications. Finally, also consider the system specifications in your actual component system. Some components will require particular wire gauges, while others will allow you to choose your own. If the wire gauge is predetermined in the sound system's manual, follow this. In fact, some systems will require specific types of wires and ports. Modern sound systems, for instance, require HDMI ports that allow plenty of information to be transmitted from the player to the speaker system.
  • Reading. Finally, acquaint yourself on how to read the gauge measurements. Generally, the lower the gauge rating, the thicker the gauge will be. The higher the gauge rating, the thinner the wire will be. Thicker gauges will allow more electricity to pass, and can overcome more resistance.

Choosing the correct speaker wire gauge will determine just how well your sound system will function. Through these steps, you should be able to determine exactly what type of wire gauge you need.


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