Speaker Wire Basics

Speaker wire consists of two or more electrical conductors, insulated by plastic (typically PVC, PE, or Teflon.) Electrically, the 2 wires are identical, but they are marked differently to ensure the correct polarity in installation. The wires are often marked by a ridge on the insulation of one wire, or the color of the wires (usually black and red). For added protection, some speaker wire features a 2nd plastic jacket to more thoroughly protect against kinks and cuts; it also makes it easier to pull wire behind walls and ceilings.

Selecting Speaker Wire

The quality of speaker wire varies greatly from brand to brand; from the purity of the metal wire (typically copper) to the quality of the jacketing. The more pure the copper wire the more consistent the conductive properties through the length of the wire it will be. Some jackets are less reactive to the interior conductor, easier to pull through walls and ceilings in industrial applications, and may feature multiple jackets for better protection against kinks and cuts.

Above all other features of speaker wire, the most important specification to look at is the wire’s resistance. If the resistance of a wire is too high, it can have an audible effect on the audio being transferred. To ensure a lower resistance, look for thicker wire gauge.

speaker wireSpeaker Wire

Wire Gauge

Wire gauge is measured by a unit called AWG (American Wire Gauge) where the lower the number the thicker the wire. Speaker wire typically is available in even increments between 22 AWG and 10 AWG; where 22 AWG is the smallest and 10 AWG is the biggest. With thicker wires, the resistance of the cable is reduced, allowing you to run cable in longer lengths than you would be able to with thinner wire.

Sewell Brand Speaker Wire

After doing all the research we’ve developed speaker wire that will work best for almost every application, at a lower price. Sewell speaker wire is made with 12 AWG copper-the 2nd thickest wire available, for the best value among low resistance cable. The 2 layers of insulation is great for both industrial and home use, protecting the copper conductors from kinks and cuts. We’re confident that Sewell speaker wire is the best value around.