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 hard to understand. Is 12 AWG better than 14 AWG or vice versa? Why one cable looks thicker than another even though they have identical AWG? Is AWG an excellent 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 regarding how AWG is actually calculated.
How is AWG calculated? If a cable had been a solid circular wire, then AWG is pretty straightforward to calculate. Go ahead and take area (pi x radius squared) to have the cross-sectional area, and search in the AWG chart (example below) to work out AWG. When a cable has multiple strands, a comparable operation is carried out to work out the cross-sectional section of each strand, that is then simply multiplied by the number of strands to obtain the total AWG. However be mindful when you compare this figure as AWG is not linear. For every extra 3 AWG, it is actually half the cross-sectional area. So 9 AWG is approximately 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 by now that this smaller the AWG, the larger the cable. Larger cables could have less DC resistance, which results in less power loss. For applications to home theatre, this is certainly true as much as a level. A rule of thumb is the fact that for smaller speakers, a cable of approximately 17 AWG is enough, whereas for larger speakers anything as much as 12 AWG or more will give you great outcomes.
The reason some cables the exact same AWG look different in thickness? Two factors dominate here. Firstly, the AWG only takes under consideration the interior conductors. Therefore, a cable manufacturer could easily increase the thickness from the XLR Cable to help make the cable appear thicker. This isn’t necessarily bad, as up to and including point increased jacket thickness reduces other unwanted properties. Just make certain you don’t compare them by sight.
Another factor why two same AWG cables may look different in thickness is the way the internal strands are created. Some cables have thinner strands, and some have thicker strands. Depending on the size and placement of those strands, cables can be produced to check thinner or thicker compared to what they are.
Is AWG a great indicator of quality? In a nutshell, no. A sizable AWG (small cable) may certainly be not big enough for the application (for instance, you shouldn’t be using a 24 AWG cable to run your front speakers). However, AWG is a way of measuring quantity, not quality. You need to make certain that all your speaker cables are of at least Line Magnetic 508ia.
Does AWG matter? How so? AWG certainly matters. You should ensure that the cable you might be using is sufficient to handle the ability you’re going to put through them. Additionally, should you be performing a longer run, then even more thickness will be required. However, some individuals get trapped too much in AWG and forget the fact that after a sufficient thickness is reached, additional factors enter into play. This then becomes more a matter for “audiophile” features to settle, like using higher quality materials such gaqgbw silver conductors or improved design.
Wire gauge is unquestionably a good fundamental indicator of how sufficient a cable is made for your application. However, it is actually by no means a judgement on quality, or a specification to check out exclusively. As being a general principle, after about 11-12 AWG, thickness becomes much a smaller factor, whereas for the majority of hi-fi applications 18-19 AWG would be the minimum cables to use.