How to choose cables for car audio? Get our advice

How to choose cables for car audio? Get our advice

It takes approx. 5 minutes to read this article

Car audio is a speaker, an amplifier or a subwoofer. Few people think about the fact that all this has to be connected somehow. This is where cabling plays a major role. Find out what kind of cables you should choose!

Car audio cables are an important, if not the most important element of the whole system. Nothing will change a powerful subwoofer or speakers of a well-known brand if you do not have cables. Not many people know how to choose them. If you want to hook up all your car audio components on your own and connect them properly, check out some rules you should follow when choosing the cables themselves. It really is not as simple as it may seem. First of all, there are several wires, each playing a different role. So we will describe all of them and tell you what to look for when choosing them

Speaker cables – an important part of the whole car audio

This type of cable connects the transducer to the amplifier end, sometimes also the cube, which is located at the player. These cables are distinguished by two types, they are thinner and slightly thicker. The former, i.e. the thinner ones with a cross-section of 1.5 square millimeters, feed the woofer, midrange or tweeter. All because these speakers are characterized by relatively low current consumption. There is one important condition here. In order for the treble, midrange and bass to play cleanly and without the slightest murmur, it is best to use oxygen-free copper (OFC) cables. Compared to cables contaminated with oxygen, they offer better conductivity.

If the current is high, and so is the power source, the woofers should be powered with a slightly thicker speaker cable. In this case, cables with a minimum cross-section of 2.5 square millimeters will work best. But that is not all, the thickness of the cable itself is determined by its length. It is known, that the longer the cable, the thicker it should be, only then you can count on clear sound!

What is the situation with signal and remote cables?

The signal cable is largely responsible for the sound quality. It connects the player with the amplifier. Here, its thickness or cross-section is not as important as the quality and durability of the cable. The main thing, however, is the resistance of the cable to possible interference, which come out, among others, from the electrical system of the vehicle. They can also appear from other elements of the car audio system, but this situation is somewhat less common. So how to choose a good quality signal cable? It should be a cable with multiple shields, which will translate into clear sound, instead of specific noises, especially during loud music playback.

So what about the remote cable? For the uninitiated; this is the control wire that is often routed with the signal cable itself. However, there is no need for much elaboration. The remote cable does not have much influence on the sound quality, or the safety of the power supply itself. Of course, it is better to choose the one from a slightly higher shelf than the cheapest!

The power cable, as well as the ground cable – what about them?

Conducting power from the plus of the battery terminal to the amplifier – this is what the power cable will do in your new car audio system. In this case, too, it’s mostly about the cross-section. You need to choose it, paying attention to the length required and the amplifier’s current draw. If the amplifier draws about 20A, the cross section should be about 8 square millimeters. If the consumption is 40A then the cross-section must be at least 16 square millimeters. There are also four-channel amplifiers with the same power consumption as its predecessor, which is 40A. They often amplify the subwoofer itself. Such an amplifier should be equipped with a power cable with a cross-section greater than 20 mm square.

The ground cable, in turn, connects the amplifier to the hood of the car or the negative terminal of the battery. What should be kept in mind when choosing this cable? The only thing to remember is that its cross-section should be the same as the cross-section of the power cable. If you match this mass to the power supply, you will not have any problem with power loss, or any short circuit!

As you can see, the choice of car audio system cables matters. If you are still not sure what to choose, you have a lot of doubts or concerns – bet on dedicated cable sets. These are sets containing all necessary cables and mounting elements. You cannot economize on such cables. Bet on something from medium or high shelf. Then you will be sure that you bought something that will meet your expectations, will be safe and will last for years of use!


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