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Home Audio Systems

How to Choose a Receiver

Does Speaker Cable Matter

The receiver is the heart of your entertainment system, so choosing the right one is essential for getting the most out of it. But where do you start? While we can’t cover every possible scenario, here’s a quick overview of what you want to look for in a receiver.

What to Consider

Type of Room

The first thing to consider is the type of room you’ll be listening in. A home theater generally requires a more powerful receiver than one for a living room or bedroom. Though if you want that “big boom” sound in your living room, you can always opt for more power.

Number of Outputs

You’ll also need to make sure there are enough output connections (called “channels”) for all of the speakers you have. Modern surround sound systems alone can have up to 13 channels. You also may need extra channels to power speakers in other rooms, such as outdoor speakers or speakers in the kitchen or master bedroom.

Number and Type of Inputs

Next, consider how many devices you’ll be connecting. Do you have a Roku or Firestick? A DVD player? A satellite or cable box? Your receiver will need to have enough inputs – and the right kind (HDMI, RCA, etc.) – to support all of your devices.

Special Features: The Fun Part

Lastly, what special features do you want? Receivers can include a wide variety of “extras” that will take your system to the next level. Do you want Apple AirPlay or Spotify built in? Do you want to be able to control your system from an app on your phone? Or by voice command? Do you want to be able to add wireless speakers? Or be able to play different things in different rooms? Special features vary widely from receiver to receiver. Check to make sure you get one with the specific functions that you want.

We Can Help

Choosing the right receiver is crucial for any entertainment system, and there are a lot of factors to consider. If you’d like some guidance on picking the best receiver for your needs, call WAVES at 404-488-3874 or click on the box to the left for a live online chat.

Does Speaker Cable Matter? How To Get the Best Sound Out of Your System

Does Speaker Cable Matter

The speaker cable debate is one of the most contentious in the audio arena. Some claim that speaker cables don’t make any difference, while others say that you should be spending thousands on your audio cables.

The truth lies somewhere in the middle. Here, we’ll give you a deeper look at how much speaker cables affect the sound and whether they’re worth the investment.

The Difference Between Good and Great

Speaker wires are often the difference between good sound and great sound. The bulk of the quality will come from the sound system itself, but the wire that connects the speaker to the source has an important role as well.

The Biggest Factor

There is a lot of sales jargon regarding selling speaker wires. The most expensive on the market use rare materials and convoluted processes that change the quality of the sound incrementally.

An untrained ear probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between a cable worth a few thousand and a cable worth a few hundred. You would, however, be able to tell the difference between a $20 speaker cable and a $500 speaker cable.

The biggest consideration you need to take is resistance. Long cables offer more resistance, which means there isn’t as much room for the electricity to pass through. The ultimate result is a sound that isn’t as pure as it could be.

When you’re searching for speaker cables, make sure to prioritize thickness to reduce resistance. The resistance will make much more difference than the material of the wires.

Spending on a Speaker Cable vs. New System

If you have an old, outdated, or cheap sound system, then high-end speaker cables aren’t going to make much of a difference. Sure, the sound will be crisper and cleaner on high-end sound systems, but this isn’t the case with cheap or old products.

We recommend prioritizing spending on your speakers ahead of spending on your cables. Even the best speaker cable won’t change the sound very much of budget speakers. On top of that, high-end speakers dwarf the cost of speaker cables.

Does speaker wire matter? Yes, but not enough to turn a bad sound system into a good one. A nice impact audio cable will do wonders to improve the sound of an expensive system, but little if the hardware you’re using isn’t up to the task.

We recommend spending some extra money on your cables, but only after you’ve bought a sound system that fits your standards. After that, you can choose the best speaker cable for the money and enjoy the sound you hear.

Working Within Your Budget

Most people don’t have hundreds or thousands of dollars to shell-out on speaker cables. Fortunately, you can find a high-end speaker cable that limits resistance and improves sound for a relatively low price if you know where to look.

Speaker cables affect the sound that comes out of your sound system, but only to a degree. Prioritize getting a good sound system ahead of spending additional money on cables.

Need some more audio tips? Take a look at our blog!