12gauge wire really worth it?



Junior Audioholic
<font color='#000000'>I currently have all my speakers wired with 16-gauge wires, would moving to 12-gauge make a difference in sound quality?</font>


Audioholic General
<font color='#0000FF'>http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Hall/8701/Audio_BS.htm

Check this out, it is funny yet true in most cases.
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Junior Audioholic
<font color='#000000'>I remember seeing something a while ago that copared internal resistances of various gauges of wire and the relationships were that 12 &lt; 14 &lt; 16 etc meaning that 12 gauge had a lower internal resistance per foot.

Would that justify better sound quality?</font>


<font color='#000000'>Hi Dis,

I am sure to open a can of worms with these comments but...

In lieu of your resistance question, when it comes to resistance and speaker wire, the less resistance, the more power your amplifier can deliver to your speakers making it much more efficient.

The more power your speakers receive (especially during loud transient peaks such as explosions, gunshots, etc.) the closer they come to delivering their specifications.

One of the best (and easiest) upgrades anyone can do to an existing system is interconnectivity. Meaning... better speaker wire, RCA Cables, digital cables, etc.

To answer your question, I believe that if you have lived with you system for awhile and know how it sounds with standard speaker wire, you will notice a definate improvement by upgrading to bigger wire manufactured specifically for speakers. It will improve the manners of your system not only in the above mentioned loud transients, but also in the quiet passages that accompany many film soundtracks.

In this case.... SIZE MATTERS!

The best option is for you to purchase pre-made wire with the proper connections pre-built on both ends that fits the length specs you need.

A big mistake that I see alot is when people take their new speaker wire that they purchased from a bulk roll at their favorite audio store and connect the bare wire that they stripped the insulation from directly to their speakers screw posts or to bannana plugs.

Remember, virgin processed copper will tarnish over time and therefore reduce the flow of signal to your speakers. Much like what happens to your car when the positive side of you battery becomes corroded with acid oxidation, the starter receives less and less amperage until finally... it won't start! This act of tarnishing will defeat the purpose for upgrading.
If you have already purchased wire in this manner, do your homework and purchase a &quot;Better&quot; quality solder and perform a simple task we do in the pro industry called: Tinning.

Here are the basics to tin a wire:

Purchase a basic soldering iron (not a soldering gun!) and a basic soldering iron holder and a better quality solder. Just ask your salesperson.
You will also need a small piece of sponge, 3 inch square is plenty. Wet the sponge with water and squeeze out the major excess but leave it very moist.

After you get all that together, fire up your soldering iron. When it reaches operating temp, place your solder on the tip to cover half of the tip with hot solder. Then, tap the tip of the soldering iron on the base of the holder, and then brush the tip on the wet sponge. Strip the ends of the wire to your desired length and immediately take the iron and hold the tip to the bare wire and place solder near the tip to completely cover the exposed wire.

This is tinning.....and it will keep your wire from tarnishing.
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