Can you use electrical wire for car speakers?
Yes, you can use a regular electric wire in place of a speaker cable if it boasts the same construction configuration and gauge measurements. If done right, an electric wire can offer you the same or even better audio results than your standard car speaker wires.
If you are regular on online audio forums crammed with stereo geeks and audiophiles, you might have stumbled across the debate that electric wires can offer better results than regular car speaker wires.
If you can’t pick a side in this debate and looking for answers, continue reading this post. Here, we will investigate this topic in detail and try to answer the question: can you use electric wire for car speakers.
Table of Contents
Electric Wires Vs Speaker Wires: Full Explanation
First, one should know the difference between electric wires and car speakers. Interestingly, the difference between electric wires and car speakers is like Schrödinger’s Cat, i.e., they might be similar and different simultaneously. Let us further explain this contradiction.
Primarily, both electric and car speaker wires are primarily used to conduct signals (electric or mechanic signals). Moreover, both of them are made of metal, use insulation and connect inputs to outputs. With all these attributes, there is no apparent difference between electric wires and car speaker wires. Hence, many audiophiles use electric wires as car speaker cables without fail.
However, an electric wire for a certain application can be completely different from a certain car speaker’s wire. This difference can be due to dissimilar gauge, different voltage ratings, or the conducting material. For instance, an electric wire used in USB cables doesn’t have a thick enough gauge to carry the car audio system’s electric signals.
Car speaker wires and regular electric wires can also be different from each other due to how they are bundled. For instance, car speaker wires primarily have a stranded configuration. Meanwhile, most electric wires have solid construction.
Why Do You Need to Use Electric Wires as Car Speaker Wires in the First Place?
Why do you need to use electric wires instead of the regular, preinstalled speaker wires in the first place? It is a legitimate question. We think that people use electric wires in place of car speaker wires for these two reasons.
- They want to replace the low-quality stock car speaker wires with something that offers better sound – like the Big 3 upgrade of the wires.
- They just like to experiment and strive to achieve audio excellence with their DIY tricks.
Electric Wires as Car Speakers: What to Look For?
Consider these factors if you want to use an electric wire that’s not rated as a speaker wire with your car’s sound system.
- Always pick copper wires because they are affordable and offer good conductivity of the amp’s sound signal to the speaker. You can preserve the sound’s integrity by using electric wires made of pure copper with your speakers. However, if the budget is not an issue, go with silver wires because they are better conductors than copper wires with low resistance.
- Go for 12-14 gauge electric wires (thicker) for speaker systems with low impedance and extended length. For speakers with shorter wire runs and high impedance, you can pick thinner wires (gauge 16 or 18).