Speaker wire upgrade??

I am running a McIntosh MC 402 to Dali Euphonia MS5 Speakers. I am using the speaker wire the dealer included when I bought the Amp - they are Ultralink Excelsior 2.4. Based on a web search these retail for around $170 or so depending on the store. They are also 12 feet and I only need 8.

I read lots about the importance of speaker wire on this site and am wondering if I could do better and spend not more than $500. Any thoughts from follow "goners"?
If you like to experiment try this on for size. Go to Lowe's or Home Depot get some 12Ga solid core wire (around $25) run the lengths that you need strip the ends and see what you hear. This wire is a little pain to work with but yields some fantastic results. If you like the sound then you terminate it with you favorite connector and add some wire loom for aesthetics. Then use the other suggestions you get here, buy the cable used from Audiogon, make a performance comparison and go from there. The good news with the used cable if you don't like it you can always resale it here for what you paid without much lose. Plus its an very eye opening experiment.
Gregg Straley Reality Cable speaker wire is an amazingly good cable at a silly low price ($275/8 ft pair).

Gregg offers a home trial period.
The Home Depot wire suggestion is an excellent one although the one recommended by Absolute Sound is the exterior extension cable (multi strand) about 12 gauge (the orange stuff).
For commercial products the Analysis Plus Oval 9 is a superb cable as is the JPS Labs Ultraconductor and Superconductor
Here's a second for Straley's Reality SC's. In my system they do everything well - top to bottom. After months of auditioning several brands - Signal, Audio Art, Speltz, and Morrow Audio - finally settled on the Straley's. Bottom line ... I don't think about my SC's anymore.
Clear Day solid core silver shotgun is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!

BUT, he now has Double Shotgun. MSRP $500/8ft pr. I just got a pair and will be trading in my 2 regular silver shotgun pairs
This wire:

vhaudio.com/images/tunami_nigo.jpg ($80/meter)

or the "Across 2000" wire at $50/meter

These connectors:

www.diycable.com/main/product_info.php?cPath=26_136&products_id=544 (about $5/pair)

A small electronics flathead screwdriver

I currently use the "Across 2000" and just received 2 meters of the "Nigo" wire. They are both fairly inflexible, something that may not suit. A real bargain for little work invested.
Thanks for the suggestions guys. I will try a couple of these and see how it works out.
I've not found a more hard to predict outcome than speaker wire changes. Price and performance are not easily predicted ratios in my experience (admittedly, not vast.) Over the last few years, I've used Analysis Plus Oval 9, Kimber 4tc & 8tc, Sonoran Plateau Desert, cheap Monster $1 a foot 14 gauge, & Furutech FS-502 in a DIY cable. FWIW, I sure don't have the most resolving system, but it's no slouch either. None have been overtly deficient and all have their strengths. The Furutech is a stone winner in price/performance ratio if you have a system more slanted to the warm and inviting side of things. I wouldn't want to use it in an analytical, edgy system. I've been so impressed with the inexpensive Furutech, I'd like to try their FS-Alpha speaker cable next ($100 a meter, DIY.)
My system is on the revealing side. Which of the many would you recommend in this case? Thanks for the input.
Azmoon, you've got some very fine speakers. Quite nice. I looked over the reviews of the MS5s and checked over the owners manual pdf. Dali strongly advises bi-wiring these speakers, it's probably a safe bet that's good advice. You've gotten several safe, wise recommendations for single wires, but the bi-wire angle complicates things a little. Straley's reality cables have gotten lot's of good buzz from guys whose opinion I respect, but his website doesn't mention a biwire option. You could always shotgun two runs for $550 though. If someone (like Straley) offers a 30 day money back guarantee, it's a safe trial. Among the wires I've used, the Kimber 8tc is easily adapted to biwire configuration. Kimber wire is excellent in my and many others experience. It's been around seemingly forever, so it doesn't get any "flavor of the month" buzz, but it's a solid, consistent performer. If you are inclined to DIY projects, Furutech makes a very nice 4 conductor, bi-wire friendly speaker cable (u-4T.1) that you can buy from www.partsconnexion.com for the bargain price of $22.00 a meter. While your Dalis are described as revealing and open, I've not seen any reference to them as edgy or harsh, so I wouldn't be afraid of using Furutech wire with them. The Neotech NES-3004 that VenHaus Audio sells for DIY ($50 meter) is also easily configured as a biwire. You can put together an eight foot pair under your $500 budget with this cable also. While I've not heard it, other Neotech wire has impressed me. I'm sure Chris Venhaus would be happy to offer his opinion as to the suitability of this wire with your Dali speakers.

Thanks very much for the input. I appreciate your knowledge.
Straley does bi-wire. In fact, he'll do a version where the amp end has two leads and the speaker end has four leads, or he'll do four separate runs for each channel. I can never remember which is considered shotgun and which is considered true bi-wire...but he does them both.

When I was auditioning his wire, I tried four separate leads, and also a single run with jumpers. Much to my surprise, I preferred the single run with jumpers.

My speaker manufacturer recommends bi-wiring, and my amps have separate outputs for bi-wiring. Nevertheless, I preferred the sound of the single run.