Can I use different gauge speaker wire at the same time?

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So I recently bought some new speaker wire so I can accommodate a longer distance for the rear speakers (5.1 setup).  I didn't realize it at the time, but wire I bought is 14awg while the speaker wire that I am using now is 12awg.  I don't need to replace the wires for the front channels.

Will there be a problem if the front speakers are using 12awg wire while the rear speakers use 14awg?


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From a safety perspective, the wire AWG is supposed to be sized to carry electrical current effectively without risk of failure due to heat.

Going by my NEC book, 14AWG can carry up to 20 Amps (if copper conductors) and 12AWG can carry up to 25 Amps.

There's a slight correction factor for ambient temperature, but this is close enough.

There's also a factor of voltage drop at long wire lengths since resistance of wire is proportional to length, but if you're around 10 ft of less, you don't need to worry about it.


So with that said, the difference between the two gauges is small enough that you probably don't have anything to worry about.  12 and 14AWG wire is pretty typical for higher power audio systems, so you picked the right stuff.

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