Importance of in-wall speaker wire? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Just wondering, how important is it that I use only in-wall speaker wire to rewire the house we'll be moving in to? It's only in one room, and the lengths are about 60' to the rears, 25' to the fronts and 8' to the center.

Is 'in-wall' speaker wire just a marketing gimmick to charge more for the same thing? I've never felt any speaker wire ever even get remotely warm, so I can't believe that the risk of fire with regular wire can be much, if any.

TIA
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post #2 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 12:18 PM
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I'm under the understanding that the rating is related to it's resistance to fire or lasting longer to not as easily spread the fire.
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 02:55 PM
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Correct. It's about the behavior of the materials during a fire... Monoprice has excellent prices on in-wall-rated speaker cable. I've used it throughout my house. No reason not to use the right wire for the job - may never cause any issues, but if it raises an eyebrow with an inspector or future buyer - you'll regret the nickels saved.

Jeff

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post #4 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 03:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

Correct. It's about the behavior of the materials during a fire... Monoprice has excellent prices on in-wall-rated speaker cable. I've used it throughout my house. No reason not to use the right wire for the job - may never cause any issues, but if it raises an eyebrow with an inspector or future buyer - you'll regret the nickels saved.
Jeff

I suppose you're right. We're changing the front speaker positions from where the current owners have them, and I was hoping to just re-use the wires I have now. It's probably worth it to do it the 'right' way just to avoid future headaches.

For the record, I don't really buy that speaker wire can be that big of a fire-spreader, but oh we'll.
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blakeyj08 View Post

I suppose you're right. We're changing the front speaker positions from where the current owners have them, and I was hoping to just re-use the wires I have now. It's probably worth it to do it the 'right' way just to avoid future headaches.

I don't think I'd go pulling out existing cables if they're already in place or can easily be moved at one end without disturbing the rest of the run...
Quote:
For the record, I don't really buy that speaker wire can be that big of a fire-spreader, but oh we'll.

Not the spread of the fire - the toxic gases produced from non-rated wire insulation when it burns (aka cheap stuff). Which is why you'll see an even more stringent grade on "plenum" cables that are allowed to be in the air-handling/return spaces of commercial buildings... And no, the small amount of material we're talking about in a house may not make any difference, but the code is there for a reason.

ObSimpsonsQuote: "And remember folks, since these are children's toys, the fire will spread quickly"


Jeff

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post #6 of 6 Old 07-05-2012, 05:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jautor View Post

I don't think I'd go pulling out existing cables if they're already in place or can easily be moved at one end without disturbing the rest of the run...

For some reason, they currently have the left front wire popping out of the wall in the corner, while the right front wiring comes out about 2' to the right of the TV and 3' short of the corner. If both speakers were to be placed in the corner it's much more symmetrical (not to mention looks better).

A good friend is a carpenter and said he'd be able to patch and texture the wall in a day, and we were planning on repainting anyway, so I'm planning on 'extending' the wiring on the right front the last 3' to the corner. I figured, hey, while I'm at it, why not just run new wiring for both fronts - then I know I've got matching cables, lengths, and it's one all done right.
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