Lamp Wire vs Speaker Wire | Differences and Comparison

Lamp Wire vs Speaker Wire

Wires are wires, no matter if it is used in a lamp or a speaker. Both of them are electrical equipment, so the wires must be the same, right?

While this fact is right from every aspect, there are some things that differentiate a lamp wire from a speaker wire.

A speaker works in a low frequency and low gauge electrical current than a lamp. On the other hand, a lamp needs a high-frequency current, that requires a high gauge of wiring. 

But still, there are a lot of similarities between the two wiring systems. We are going to take a dive into our lamp wire vs speaker wire article and debunk all the myths about them

Lamp Wire vs Speaker Wire | Are They Interchangeable?

The build is the most common thing that is similar between a lamp wire and a speaker wire. Both of them use copper wires that have a plastic coating.

You might think they are the same, but they are not on the inside. Speaker wires are usually threaded, just like your headphones and earphones. This is done so for higher sound quality and lower resistance.

On the other hand, a lamp wire would be not threaded but are in straight strands. Sometimes they even come in single threads. As the lamp needs high voltage electrical flow, the wire should be able to hold that much current without heating up. 

But you can interchange them if the lamp is in the same gauge level. It won’t have any trouble working. Household objects like alarm systems, small hanging lights, and other small accessories use the same type of wire.

On the other hand, house wiring is very much different and a thicker wire is used in them. This is due to the high electrical current flow that needs no interruption. So if you replace it with a speaker wire, it will heat up due to its threads and burn the whole house down. 

Speaker Wire vs Lamp Wire | Detailed Comparison

When using speaker wire for wiring or lamp wire in your speakers, you have to keep a few things in mind. Here are the things you should put close attention to ensure your device’s perfect function and keep them away from damage.

Gauge Rating

A higher gauge rating means that the wire will be thinner and a lower gauge rating will be thin. This is due to the low gauge wire being the better conductor and the higher ones a better flower than the other one. 

The thickness allows a large current to flow easily while the thinner gauge blocks it from flowing and acting as a conductor. This is why thinner wires are used in speakers and thicker ones in lamps. 

Voltage Carrying Ability

Speaker wires being thinner and not in contact with direct electricity from the power socket, don’t need high voltage capacity. It is connected through the amplifier that reflects the electrical energy to sound energy. Hence they are perfect for speakers.

On the other hand lamp wires are directly connected to the power outlet and are bombarded with the higher voltage of the electrical output. So they need to be thick in order to handle the high voltage. 

Safety and Regulations

As speaker wires don’t carry much electricity, they have fewer protective layers than a lamp wire. Lamp wires on the other hand have a lot of layers of protection and sometimes come even with heat-treated facilities in them. So if you change your lamp wire with a speaker wire, you are basically putting a fire starter beside you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a lamp wire the same as a speaker wire?

No. Although they look alike and serve almost the same function, they are different in thickness and usability. Lamp wires have a lower gauge rating than speaker wires making them better for electrical flow. Speaker wires on the other hand have a higher gauge rating making them a better conductor of sound energy.

Will the lamp wire work for speakers?

If you don’t have a big speaker setup and don’t have a sound studio, then lamp wires will work. But you will notice some altercation in sound as the lamp wires have a lower gauge rate than a speaker wire. This will end up with poor sound quality.

Can I use any wire as speaker wire?

If the wire has a higher wire gauge rate and is threaded, you can use them as your speaker wire. The wire needs to be thin in order to give the best sound output. There is no high electrical charge involved when we are talking about speakers. The electrical energy is transformed into sound energy. So it needs to be thinner than thicker. 


Depending on the type of lamp you have and the wire, you can interchange it with a speaker anytime. Make sure the wire is not thick like house wiring and you will be fine. But if you are thinking of using a speaker wire as your house wire alternative, it won’t be a good idea. As they lack in thickness and gauge rating, the protection will also be an issue. And they will heat up rather faster than house wires and cause a fire. 

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