Can I use 24 gauge speaker cable?

I’ve been trying to google this but I only get vague answers.
I want to know if I can use 24 gauge cable as speaker cable. And if not: why not?
Usual answers are “no, you should use xx gauge”, but I’m looking for why is that? Will the speakers of the amp go off in flames if the resistance is too high? I don’t even get that because the resistance isn’t even that much of a difference between speaker cable sizes, compared to the speakers resistance.

I’m talking about ca 16ft / 5m distance between amp and speaker. By the way should that measure 16 ft or double (32ft because one cable is plus and the other minus)?

Showing 5 responses by sjeesjie

@gndrbob I know cables can make a difference, that’s why I started this investigation in the first place:-) I was a non believer first until I heard it for myself. What I’m still sceptical about is what causes the difference.

I’m pretty sure most of it has to do with the impedance i.e. the length of the cable, the metal that’s used and the thickness. Then there’s biwiring that I’m pretty interested in also, as you can play with highs and lows, getting some control over that.

@roberjerman so you would actually use 24 gauge wire?

The reason I ask is, 24 gauge is used for telephone connections. It’s a really thin cable that moves nicely out of sight. It’s cheap and available everywhere. It has a solid core that’s supposed to be better. 
Thank @erik_squires now that’s a constructive answer.
I’m playing around with the calculator but I don’t really understand it. If I fill in 0,577 Ampere as listed in the table, and 0,082 as the resistance (10 x (8,282/1000)) years get something completely different different out of the voltage... namely 0,0003
Look folks, when I started this post I knew I’d get all these weird reactions, like why would you want to use telephone wire?

I just want to know the what and how of these things allright? My gut feeling tells me I’d better use some thicker cable. But I wanted to know why that would be a good idea. Don’t need to laugh about it. And if you’re so dumb as to think my 10.000 dollar system would sound like a telephone because I want to use thin wire then that’s your problem.

I even think I’m the last one to laugh, as there are seriously people who believe their system will sound like a Grand Opera House because they spent literally tens of thousands of dollars on a couple of feet of cable, putting them on tiny wooden elevations costing just as much...
Totally agreed @tbakin63. Of course it looks kind of awesome to have these cables worth 1000’s of dollars but it’s nothing more than jewelry. If Mr Klipsch (and other highly regarded people in the industry too by the way!) says it’s not worth it to spend a lot the I believe them.

My current cables are quite nice looking Dynavox cables, 4 x 10AWG wires inside. But they’re also quite huge. That’s why I’d love to see some smaller cables in my house. So why not go with the smallest cables I could find at the Home Depot, i.e. 24 AWG? :-)

Next week I’ll have the chance to play around with a 3Watts/channel tube amp. I’ll be testing the telephone cables for sure! I just wanted to make sure I won’t melt anything or set stuff on fire :’)