How To Choose Types of Speaker Wire

You may have already bought the top-of-the-line audio system with massive speakers complete with extended treble and subwoofers, as well as audio processors and software that have dedicated memory and a significant computing power to process large and high quality files. One thing that most music lovers and audio buffs frequently forget, however, is the type of speaker wire that they will use. There has been much debate about whether the type of speaker wire will affect the sound output, and the verdict is yes.

Here are some of the different classifications of the types of speaker cables for you to check out.

  • Gold, silver, copper. Most wires are made of copper, but some high end wire manufacturers actually use gold and silver for the primary metal component of the wires. While copper is cheap and very malleable, one should also note that the metals should have certain conductive qualities to be usable for speaker wires. Depending on how well you want the sound bytes to be transmitted from your music player to the speakers, you may want to upgrade to fancier materials. Gold as a semiconductor, for instance, is also used for computer chips in small amounts because of its good conducting capacities.
  • Speaker gauge. The speaker gauge of the wire is the over-all thickness of the wire itself. In general, you should have wires that have a gauge size of at least 12 to 18, since this is the minimum size required to properly transmit audio signals. Keep in mind that the lower the gauge size, the larger and thicker the body of the wire is. The thicker gauges are useful for high quality speakers or for audio systems that need to carry sound information to various parts of the house, instead of just one set of speakers. This is because thicker wires allow for more information transfer at any given period of time.
  • Design. A speaker wire can also be classified according to where you decide to install it. There are underground wires that can conveniently go hiding under your lawn and which can connect itself to the speaker connectors in your yard, if you have a sound system that goes beyond your house. These types of wires are generally used for commercial establishments such as restaurants and hotels for whom outdoor music can be a much needed plus factor to get business sales up. Apart from underground wires, there are also flat wires which are designed to blend in with walls. These wires are also made from materials that can be painted over, which will allow them to blend into the background with much more ease. There are also wires that are designed to be slimmer in order to fit in the interior of a car.
  • Wire connectors. Finally, a speaker wire has various types according to its wire connectors. Among the usual types of connectors are the banana plugs, the pin type, the dual banana plugs, and the spade connectors. Bare wires are sometimes connected by themselves, but this can easily be damaged by environmental factors such as rusting or even pest damage, and are generally avoided.

Get the type of speaker wire that will fit in your budget, your degree of technical expertise, as well as the type of audio output that you need. Once you have figured this out, just sort the stereo wire polarity into the right place and plug it in.


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