speaker gauge question...

Discussion in 'Beginners and Audiophytes' started by RhapsodyInBlack, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. RhapsodyInBlack Junior Audioholic

    Jul 13, 2005
    Likes Received:
    wondering aloud here...

    is it advisable or recommended to run different gauge of speaker cable for home theater usage ?

    smaller gauge for center and surrounds as opposed to fronts ?

    keep it all the same using the heaviest gauge out there ? just curious...thanks !
  2. Takeereasy Audioholic General

    Oct 27, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Ontario, Canada
    There is no reason to run different gauges of speaker wire based on the type of speaker. The main consideration is the distance to the speakers from the receiver or amp. The further the distance the lower the gauge of cable you should use. Please note a lower gauge of cable is thicker, for example 12 ga. is thicker than 14 ga. The thicker the cable the less resistance the signal has. Over short runs this isn't a big deal, but once you start moving speakers away from their power source you should get them some bigger cables. It is my opinion that 14 gauge speaker wire is more than sufficient for most home theatre set ups. If you are running speakers over 25 or 30 feet away from the amp though I'd suggest 12 ga. Buckeye has a good chart for what gauge is necessary for what distance.

    I myself have used different gauge speaker wires just to see if I could hear a difference in the sound quality. 16 ga. cable sounds identical to 12 ga. cable when used to power my center or front channels IMO, but those are pretty short runs.
  3. jaxvon Audioholic Ninja

    Feb 17, 2004
    Likes Received:
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
    It really shouldn't matter, as long as you're using a thick enough wire. Anything below 16ga isn't advisable. Since speaker wire can attenuate your sound when you run too much of a smaller gage, then I would advise you to just use thick 12ga or 10ga cable all around. That way you don't have to worry about resistance issues, even if you have 100ft cable runs. It doesn't matter if you have different size wires to surrounds and mains, as it won't make a difference. But since using big wire won't hurt the sound, why not just by a bunch of the thick stuff and put it on every speaker?

Share This Page

  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis