• Are your speaker wire rated for outdoors?
    At the moment all our speaker wire is currently rated for indoor use only. Use of our speaker wire cable outdoors is not recommended and will void your Monoprice lifetime warranty.

  • Are your Toslink Digital Optical cables plastic or glass? Is one better than the other?
    All our Toslink cables are POF (Plastic Optical Fiber). For most audio systems, you should not hear any difference between a plastic optical cable and a glass quartz optical cable unless you are at lengths exceeding 100 feet and transmitting at extreme bandwidth levels. In fact, the performance with plastic has been improving because the Optoelectrical Components (used in Audio Equipment) are designed to interface with POF fibers.

  • Can 4 conductor speaker wire be used to connect a pair of speakers?
    Yes, you can use 4 conductor speaker wire to connect a pair of speakers that each only have 1 pair of connections. The problem with that is unless the two speakers are right next to each other (thus collapsing any hope of achieving stereo sound separation), you're going to need to cut away the outer jacket for the distance between the two speakers, which will make the setup process very inconvenient.

  • How many strands of fiber are in the optical cable?
    There are not multiple strands in optical cables, it is one solid strand.

  • If a cable says in-wall; do I have to use the cable in-wall?
    No, CL2 rated cables come with slow burning outer jackets to meet building safety codes. This feature has no impact on the performance of the cable and the cables can be used both in-wall and out of wall.

  • What are the fire safety ratings that your cables are available in?
    Fire safety ratings are grades given to cables based on the material they are made of and the material that covers them.  It is important to know what fire safety rating your cables have before running them in certain areas or through certain spaces.  It can be considered hazardous to run cables without a certain fire rating in some places and the repercussions for ignoring these can be as severe as damage to property or life and failing an inspection because of a cable without the proper rating can result in loss of insurance and a fine.  Check with your local code inspection department to find out which fire safety ratings you need to use for the area you are planning on installing your cables.

    VW-1
    VW-1 is a flame test commonly used in the United States to determine the cable's resistance to fire.  Cables that have a VW-1 rating have passed this test and are considered fire resistant.  However, a VW-1 rating does not necessarily mean that the cable is safe to run in wall.  We strongly recommend contacting your local code enforcement, or your insurance company.  They will be able to better advise on whether or not a VW-1 rating is safe for in wall usage.

    CL2
    A CL2 rating meaning that a cable has passed the required NEC test for a high rating of fire resistance.  The cable's materials are not going to burn during a sudden surge of electricity up to 150 watts and the cable itself will not carry a flame.  CL2 is what we most often recommend for in wall usage, we still recommend contacting your local code enforcement for confirmation, as this rating may be unnecessary or possibly even insufficient.  This rating is most commonly found on our copper cables such as our HDMI cables, Bare Copper Wire, VGA, DVI and Coaxial cables.

    CL3
    A CL3 rating is very similar to CL2 in the respects that they are both usable in wall, and are both resistant to holding and carrying flames.  The main difference between the two is the wattage that a CL3 rated cable can carry.  While CL2 cables can carry a surge of up to 150 watts, and CL3 can carry twice that at 300 watts.  A CL3 rated cable can take the place of any CL3, however, a CL2 cannot take the place of a CL3.  We only have a very limited selection of CL3 rated cables with only the Luxe Series of HDMI cables carrying this rating.

    Plenum
    Plenum rated cables are meant to be used in areas with a lot of air flow, typically air ventilation systems.  These cables have a special type of insulation and jacketing that cause them to smoke and burn far less than other cables.  It is because of these characteristics that they are considered safe to run through areas that will give or take air from populated areas as they will not release toxic chemicals into the air for people attempting to evacuate to breathe in.  A Plenum rated cable should be able to take the place of any CL2 or CL3 cable, though, as always, we recommend contacting your code enforcement office as these cables to tend to be more expensive and would serve no real purpose if a CL2 or CL3 cable is all that is needed.  We offer Plenum rated cables for HDMI, VGA, and Bare Copper Wire.

    CM, CMR and CMP
    CM, CMR and CMP are ratings given to our Network cables.  These ratings are very similar to the previously discussed CL2, CL3 and Plenum, but are given specifically to network cables due to their lower wattage.  CM cables share the same values as CL2 and CL3 cables, in that they are most often accepted for simple in wall installation.  CMR, sometimes called Riser rating, is usually required for network cables that will span one or more floors.  CMR cables are treated and tested to prevent a fire from travelling along the cable itself, insuring that the cable will not allow a fire to quickly span several floors quickly.  CMP is the equivalent of a plenum rated cable.  These cables are much thicker and more ridged than CM and CMR due to their thicker jacketing.  As always, we advise contacting your local code enforcement for specifics on which of these cables you are able to use in whatever installation you plan on using them with.  We offer all three of these cables types with various Cat5e, Cat6 and Cat6a cables.

    Non-Copper Cables
    All of the fire safety ratings we have mentioned so far are for copper based cables.  We are often asked if our optical cables are able to be run in wall.  The brief answer is, yes they are.  Our fiber optic cables are OFNR rated, Optical fiber nonconductive riser.  This means that the cables have been tested to resist a fire should they come in contact with fire.  As these cables to not carry any electricity, they themselves could not become the cause of a fire in the event of an electrical surge.

  • What are the oxygen free speaker cables made of?
    Each strand is "high purity" copper, which is closer to 99.9% copper, but definitely not "copper clad" steel or aluminum or any other metal.

  • What are the specifications of our 12AWG Speaker Wire?
    Cable Type: Loud Speaker cable Conduit: High Purity, Oxygen-free Copper Gauge: 12 AWG Strand Count: 87 wires Strand Size: 0.2mm OD Twist Type: Multi-twist, rope lay Cross Sectional Area: 3.0mm Sq. Outer dimensions of PVC Jacket: 5.40 x 10.80mm.

  • What are the various names for the headphone jack so I can search for the various items in regards to headphones and its accessories?
    The headphone audio jacked can be referred to as 3.5mm, 1/8inch, Stereo plug, Mini plug, Aux(auxiliary port). They can also be converted two 2 RCA via cables conversions. Please keep this in mind when searching for items as well as audio accessories and converting connections.

  • What gauge of speaker wire should I get?
    Different people will have their own opinions about what gauge is proper for what length. The quality of the equipment can also play a factor. The following is a general guide for picking gauges for certain lengths.

    0-25ft - 18AWG
    25-50ft - 16AWG
    50-75ft - 14AWG
    75 & up - 12AWG

  • What if the Toslink Cable connector will not fit into the toslink port?
    Look at the tip of the connector.  It should be a shiny, metal gold tip.  If it has a plastic tip, pinch it and pull it off the expose the gold tip.  Make sure the connector is aligned properly and insert it into the port.  It should snap in.
     
     

  • What is the bend radius of your cables?
    The bend radius on a cable is dependent on its thickness (gauge), length, and cable material. Monoprice’s cables carry a certain amount of tolerance and leeway for bending a cable, but we also carry various port savers, right angle adapters as well as couple or extenders to help relieve the stress on your cables. Please refer to technical support if you need advice or help in regards to choosing a cable that is best suited for your situation.

  • What is the difference between 2 Conductor Vs. 4 Conductor Speaker Wire?
    The 4 conductor wire is for biwiring and biamping speakers. The Standard speaker has two connections for accepting wire, while these have 4, one for positive and negative like regular speakers, and two others for the highs and lows, or for certain ranges of frequencies. Biamping is more functional then biwiring. The basic idea being more wires is that the more conductors, the less signals traveling on a single wire, which means less cross talk.

  • What is the difference between TS, TRS and TRRS?
    What is the difference between TS, TRS and TRRS?

    TS, TRS and TRRS are abbreviations for Tip/Sleeve, Tip/Ring/Sleeve, and Tip/Ring/Ring/Sleeve.  These often refer to the amount of contacts on the end of an Auxiliary cable or Quarter Inch cable.  A TS cable is often thought of as mono, as it only has one contact and is only going to give one solid sound signal.  A TRS is often though of as stereo, as the addition of the ring gives us two contacts allowing us a left and right audio channel.  Finally, a TRRS cable is usually going to include both a left and right channel as well as a microphone channel.  These TRRS cable are often found at the end of headset or earbud sets that include an inline controller and allow you to speak using a small built-in microphone.  The easiest way to identify the three of these is to count the number of black rings on the head of the cable.  One ring for TS, two for TRS and three for TRRS.
     
    Note: The TS cable here is a 1/4-inch cable while the TRS and TRRS are 3.5mm auxiliary cables.