Essential Factors for Consistent Home Audio Sound Quality

When setting up home audio, consistency of equipment can be one of your most valuable tools.

The perfect audio setup is never a simple thing.  Essentially, it all boils down to maintaining the right combination of aesthetics, equipment (like high-performance speakers) and placement. Consistency is also important, and it sometimes gets the short end of the stick in comparison to those other qualities that are necessary for precision sound.

It's all about cables

Every point of connection in an audio setup is vital, because a problem at any juncture can defuse the entire experience. Cables play a key role in delivering consistently excellent sound. According to Audio Gurus, using an assortment of different cable types can adversely impact sound to a significant degree. It can be almost as detrimental as using poor quality cable.

Specifically, thickness plays a major role: Standard 16-gauge cable works for most home theater situations limited to one room, according to the source, but that number changes with distance. Multi-room setups often require something thicker, like a 12-gauge cable. Moreover, if you're not experienced with wiring, purchase cables with attached connectors instead of dealing with bare wire until you're more comfortable with its intricacies.

Using cables from the same manufacturer for the same purposes (one set for speakers to receiver, another from receiver to amplifier, et. al.) is equally essential. Uniformity is the important takeaway to achieve that consistent sound.

 Consistency throughout the setup

Along similar lines, it's wise to have one brand for your central hi-fi components and one for your speakers, just as you've kept your cables uniform. In a home theater setup, the approach isn't much different - there's just a greater variety of equipment involved - namely, the visual components of the setup.

Remaining consistent also applies to factors like speaker placement: If one speaker is further from the primary hi-fi components than the other, or at a different angle, it'll likely have a negative impact, and any trained listener will hear it. You must also consider the match between cable resistance and the size of the sound's resistive load, because wire adds natural impedance to sound flow. Speakers rated at 8 ohms require cable with a resistance factor of 0.4 ohms or less, for example.

All things considered, it's critical that you keep cohesion and consistency in mind for your home audio system. So, when you set it all up - do so carefully. Casual listeners and audiophiles alike will notice and appreciate your attention to detail.