As an electronics and electrical expert, I can’t tell you that many consumers think speaker wires are all the same. And because of this, many never go deep to research which is right. In fact, recently my brother wondered why my sound system, which is exactly the same as his, seemed clearer and had no distortion. Well, after a closer inspection, I realized that he was still using stock wires which weren’t so good. I had upgraded mine to a thicker gauge to handle a higher current and reduce the resistance. It’s also quite common for people to use good wires but use the wrong connectors and plugs which affect the sound delivery and performance. In this review, I will tell you the importance of picking the right wires, walk you through the best speaker wires in 2018, and finish off by giving you tips for choosing the perfect wire.
- 7 AmazonBasics 50-feet, 16-Gauge Speaker Wire
- 6 RCA AH100R 24-Gauges Speaker Wire, 100feet
- 5 AmazonBasics 16-Gauge Speaker Wire, 100 Feet
- 4 50ft 12 Gauge Copper Speaker Wire
- 3 GearIT Pro Series 200 Feet / 60.96 Speaker Wire 16AWG, White
- 2 installer 14 Gauge AWG Copper Speaker Wire, 100 ft
- 1 Mediabridge 2-Conductor 14AWG Speaker Wire
7 AmazonBasics 50-feet, 16-Gauge Speaker Wire
Why buy it
- Good conductivity
- Easy installation
- High performance
- Low resistance
Delivering quality sound should no longer be a problem. With this copper wire by Amazon Basics, you will be able to connect your speaker to the amplifier, home theatre, audio receiver and other equipment. It is 50 feet long and should work in many applications and has a nice gauge of 16 for decent connectivity. The top grade copper has good conductivity and minimal resistance which ensures that the quality of sound isn’t undermined. It has a high-quality plastic jacket to prevent interference from other signals or frequencies. One side is marked for easy identification and to ensure you don’t mix up the two pieces. It’s wrapped around a plastic spool for easy carrying.
6 RCA AH100R 24-Gauges Speaker Wire, 100feet
Why buy it
- Good performance
- Resistant to interference
- Good connectivity
- Resistant to rust and corrosion
This 24 gauge speaker wire is what stands between you and high-quality sound. It is 100 ft /33 meters long and can be used with speakers, amplifier, audio receiver and other components. The highly flexible wire is very easy to work with and is also resistant to breakage. Like other good wires, it comes with a copper core for minimal resistance and maximum performance. It has an insulated jacket to prevent distortion and also protect the copper internal. Identifying polarity is easy and this improves connectivity. I like the lightweight which improves handling as well as the nice packaging that makes carrying easy.
5 AmazonBasics 16-Gauge Speaker Wire, 100 Feet
Why buy it
- Very flexible
- Easy to identify polarity
- Looks good
- Excellent quality
The AmazonBasics brand is no stranger when it comes to speaker wires. In fact, it has the most entrants on this review list. This particular one is among my favorite from the firm. It is 100feet/ 33 meters long and consists of high-grade copper wire strands and is covered by a sturdy plastic material. The 16-Gauge is among the most flexible and easily goes around objects. Nevertheless, it is resistant to breakage, chipping, pitting and should last for a long time. To prevent signal distortion and it has a plastic jacket wire while the white line marking makes identifying a wire easier. The unit comes with a hard plastic spool for convenient carrying.
4 50ft 12 Gauge Copper Speaker Wire
Why buy it
- Strips/ cuts easily
- Good length and flexibility
- Good electrical flow
- Undistorted signal
Measuring 50ft long, this speaker wire from Pyle will make a perfect addition to your entertainment or public address system. You can use it on a newly installed system or as a replacement for an aging or faulty wiring system. It’s made from high-quality copper wire for good sound conductivity and is also affected by minimal resistance. The 12 gauge wire is fairly strong and handles everyday needs pretty well. It’s covered with a protective plastic jacket and cutting or stripping it is easy. The practical hard plastic spool provides a convenient holding and carrying point. It doesn’t rust or corrode and is also resistant to distortion or interference.
3 GearIT Pro Series 200 Feet / 60.96 Speaker Wire 16AWG, White
Why buy it
- Very conductive
- Easy to use
- Good length
Looking for a wire to connect speakers to other speakers, amplifiers, home theater, AV receivers and other sound systems? How about you pick the GearIT speaker wire? It is the longest on this review and measures 200 feet (60 meters). The white wire contains copper clad aluminum which is better than the ordinary copper in terms of conductivity and is also much lighter. The highly conductive wire delivers superb sound while the good plastic covering prevents interference that may distort the sound. The 16 gauge wire is sturdy and will tolerate tugging or breakage. It’s marked for easy identification and to prevent confusing the two or making a mistake.
2 installer 14 Gauge AWG Copper Speaker Wire, 100 ft
Why buy it
- High quality stranded wire
- Jacket strips easily
- Quick Installation
- High quality
The InstallGear speaker wire is another quality wire that will improve speaker performance. It measures 100 feet/33 meters and is suitable for most sound and speaker systems. The 14 gauge wire has good conductivity for a seamless flow of sound and is well insulated from interference and distortion. It also has good terminals for maximum performance and is very flexible. Fitting the wire on terminals or ports is easy thanks to its stranded design while the rust/corrosion proof copper wire ensures the good performance doesn’t dip. It strips very easily for easy fitting but won’t crack or breaks easily. While it is very high quality, both the wire and sheathing, the price is very pocket-friendly.
1 Mediabridge 2-Conductor 14AWG Speaker Wire
Why buy it
- Good looking
- Very flexible
- High quality
- Easy to install
You’ll definitely notice a big difference in the audio quality once you use this wire. It is made from 99.9% oxygen free wire meaning it has very good conductivity and chances of corrosion, rust or pitting are unlikely. It measures 100 feet/33 meters long and should serve you well. The 14 gauge wire has very little resistance and this ensures the audio quality is very good. It has a nice covering to protect the copper core from moisture, dust, dirt, grease oil and other things. I love the good flexibility that makes coiling or passing it through tight spots easy. And since Its white in color, it blends very well with most interiors, electronics, music systems, furniture, and décor.
What differentiates good wires from average ones?
Truth is that it can be hard to tell the difference between two pairs of speaker wires. They will have the same length, similar thickness, same color, and are from the same manufacturer. But they will have different results. So, what causes the dissimilarities?
- Quality: The materials of constrictions influence the sound quality. Copper is one of the common materials and it comes in different forms. Oxygen-free copper is more effective than the normal copper while pure copper is better than an alloy. It’s therefore essential to make certain the copper is high quality.
- Gauge: Look closely at the wires and you shield see inscriptions like 16AWG, 18AWG, and related ones. This basically shows the wire’s thickness. To bring the point home, think about a water pipe. The wider the diameter the more water that will flow through. The same case applies to the wires meaning more current and better sound quality.
- Resistance: Normally, the speaker wires comprise many strands. When they are too thin they create more resistance which also affects performance. The best types have little resistance and this improves the transfer speed and reduces distortion.
- Flexibility: Quality wires are generally more flexible than their cheaper counterparts. They can be used in tight spaces easily, and they won’t break or crack even when exposed to extreme conditions. To achieve this, manufacturers use higher grade, materials and also rely on superior technology.
- Interference: The wires are covered by a material (sheathing) that is meant to prevent interference from frequencies and signals. Unfortunately, cheaper products will either have a thin covering or the sheathing will be poor quality. This makes the speaker more prone to interference and distortion that lowers the sound quality.
NB: It’s essential to always go for the best wires if you want to enjoy quality sound. And as you can see from this article (https://www.cnet.com/news/why-decent-speaker-wire-is-vitally-important ) poor wires will make an expensive sound system sound like a very cheap one.
What you need to consider
Finding a wire for the speaker is usually not an issue but finding the best is. You don’t want to lose sound quality because of a low-quality product or keep replacing a wire that delivers amazing sound because it breaks easily or isn’t very flexible. You can avoid such issues by focusing on the following:
- Length: The wires come in varied lengths to cater for varied needs. It’s essential you measure the distance before you buy a product. You shouldn’t waste money on a very long wire which you’ll only use part of or a short one that forces you to use connectors to join two pieces together. You need to measure accurately, add a small margin, and then pick a product.
- Resistance: Pick wires that have minimal resistance to enjoy good sound. This is usually defined in ohms and the higher the number the more resistance. Too much resistance affects the flow of current which affects the quality of audio. It also helps to go through reviews to get firsthand information from consumers about the reliability and performance. NB: Resistance increases with the length.
- Thickness: The wires will be exposed to the elements, human touch, dust, moisture, dirt, heat, and other things. And if the covering is too thin then it may integrate allowing the above compounds to penetrate through and damage the wire. You should go for thicker wires since they provide better protection, are more durable, and have lower resistance.
- Conductivity: Sound equality can be lost from the connection points. This happens when the material isn’t very conductive or you use substandard connectors. Copper has excellent conductivity and more reason you need to make certain its 100% copper. The connectors or plugs should also have good conductivity. The terminals can either be soldered or attached to clips. Whichever the method, always ensure they are tightly attached.
- Flexibility: it’s important to use flexible wires since they won’t break easily when coiled or folded. This makes it easier to pass them through tight spots. Stranded types have better flexibility than solid types and the thinner the wires the more flexibility. Nonetheless, too thin and the resistance increases.
- Tip: The “nominal impedance” of the speakers is a good guide to selecting wires with the right resistance. Resources such as this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6kB3kZE3Qh0 ) give more insights on picking the best wires for your speakers or sound system.
Choosing the right speaker worse isn’t as hard as you may believe. In fact, you only need to understand the basics which include the length, gauge, proper installation, and type of wire. However, learning the important tips may be a challenge especially for a novice. Fortunately, I have identified the top wires that will deliver good performance. To rank them, I focused on their reliability, durability, efficiency, simplicity, and affordability. You no longer need to tolerate awful sound from your sound speakers. You also should keep changing the wires because they still don’t deliver the audio you want. Simply pick any of the above speaker wires and enjoy the amazing sound.