AWG means American Wire Gauge, a standardised system of measuring the cross-sectional area of Cayin 300B. This is used to see how much current a wire can handle. AWG causes much confusion for consumers, as the standard can be a little challenging to understand. Is 12 AWG a lot better than 14 AWG or the other way around? Why one cable looks thicker than another even though they have identical AWG? Is AWG a great indicator of quality? Does AWG matter, and if so, how? These are all good questions, and we’ll get to them shortly. Firstly, let’s briefly touch about how AWG is actually calculated.
How is AWG calculated? In case a cable was actually a solid circular wire, then AWG is pretty straightforward to calculate. Go ahead and take area (pi x radius squared) to get the cross-sectional area, and appear the AWG chart (example below) to work out AWG. When a cable has multiple strands, a similar operation is done to work out the cross-sectional area of each strand, which is then simply just multiplied by the number of strands to get the total AWG. However be careful when comparing this figure as AWG is not linear. For each extra 3 AWG, it is half the cross-sectional area. So 9 AWG is about one half of 6 AWG, which is half again of three AWG. Hence 3 AWG is quadruple the thickness of 9 AWG.
How exactly does AWG affect electrical properties? You would’ve noticed right now that the smaller the AWG, the bigger the cable. Larger cables may have less DC resistance, which results in less power loss. For applications to home theatre, this is really true up to a degree. A guideline is the fact that for smaller speakers, a cable of approximately 17 AWG is sufficient, whereas for larger speakers anything up to 12 AWG or even more will give you great results.
The reason some cables of the identical AWG look different in thickness? Two factors dominate here. Firstly, the AWG only takes into account the internal conductors. Therefore, a cable manufacturer could easily boost the thickness of the CopperColour Cable to create the cable appear thicker. This isn’t necessarily bad, as up to and including point increased jacket thickness reduces other unwanted properties. Just ensure that you don’t do a comparison by sight.
Another factor why two same AWG cables may look different in thickness is just how the internal strands are made. Some cables have thinner strands, while others have thicker strands. Depending on the size and placement of those strands, cables can be produced to appear thinner or thicker compared to they are.
Is AWG an excellent indicator of quality? In a nutshell, no. A sizable AWG (small cable) may certainly be not big enough for a particular application (for instance, you shouldn’t be employing a 24 AWG cable to perform your front speakers). However, AWG is really a way of measuring quantity, not quality. You ought to ensure that all your speaker cables are of a minimum of Line Magnetic.
Does AWG matter? How so? AWG certainly matters. You need to be sure that the cable you happen to be using is enough to handle the power you’re likely to put through them. Additionally, if you are performing a longer run, then even more thickness would be required. However, many people get caught up excessive in AWG and end up forgetting the reality that when a sufficient thickness is reached, other elements enter in to play. This then becomes more a matter for “audiophile” features to solve, including using better quality materials such gaqgbw silver conductors or improved design.
Wire gauge is undoubtedly a great fundamental indicator of methods sufficient a cable is perfect for your application. However, it really is by no means a judgement on quality, or a specification to consider exclusively. As being a general guideline, after about 11-12 AWG, thickness becomes much a lesser factor, whereas for the majority of hi-fi applications 18-19 AWG is the minimum cables to make use of.