Can You Convert An RCA Cable To Speaker Wire?

It is possible to use an RCA cable as speaker wires by simply cutting off the ends that have metal plugs. However, this requires some expertise in the area since you will have to connect a new cable to the ends of these now cut-off RCA cables to connect it to the audio system.

In all stereo systems, you will come across two types of cables- an RCA cable and speaker wire. If you are setting up your home stereo, you will likely encounter two kinds of wires, so you must understand the differences between these two cables.

How To Convert An RCA Cable To Speaker Wire

  1. In a standard RCA cable connection, there are two contacts that the ends of the wire make. Hence it is relatively easy to set up a system with just RCA wires. You only need to make sure that you connect the correct polarity by following the color-coded terminals and wires.
  2. While RCA cables have more girth than speaker wires, they are also prone to wear and tear. Usually, people start splicing their RCA cables when it stops transferring current through the wire. The way to do this is to cut off the wire in areas where it is still working and join them together by twisting the ends of the wires and securing them with tape.
  3. Since there are no negative or positive ends on RCA cables, there isn’t much confusion if you try to splice your cables.
  4. You can solder the ends together as well for a longer-lasting wire. However, unless you’re already experienced in soldering tiny pieces of wire, this process can be tiresome for you.
  5. You need to cut through the covering of the RCA cable and pull out a part of the sleeve so that the wires inside are exposed.
  6. Take one of the wires, connect it to the pin connector at the center, and heat the place of connection with your soldering rod to melt them together. Repeat the same process with your other wire. After this, if possible, you can put the sleeve back on or use tape to protect the soldered part of the wire.

What Are RCA Cables?

This type of cable is shielded. RCA cables are generally used to transmit signals which are line level.  These signals get passed from different Audio input devices such as TVs and music players, and they are also generally very weak and not amplified.

On all RCA cables, you will find that they have metal tips like plugs that connect to the device.  Most audio systems you find in the market will see that it comes with two different RCA cables, which are meant to connect to each part of the audio component. Companies also manufacture them in different colors so that you don’t get confused between the two similar cables.

What Is A Speaker Wire?

A much simpler version of the RCA cable is the speaker wire that serves only one purpose: connecting the receiver to the speaker. You can also use this to connect an amplifier to the speaker if you’re doing.

The signals on a speaker wire, unlike RCA cables, are amplified. The ends of the wire have different charges, namely, negative and positive leads.  You’ll find many different versions of speaker wires on the market, so you can research and find out which one suits your project the most.

How Are RCA cables Used?

Typically, RCA cables are limited to connecting the output Audio system to the input devices, which can be a CD or DVD player, a television, or an MP3 player.  You can also use this cable to connect a subwoofer output to the subwoofer itself or a Low-Frequency Effects (LFE).

How Are Speaker Cables Used?

The primary purpose of speaker wire, as the name suggests, is to connect speakers. Most people don’t know that you can use a speaker wire to connect an output to a subwoofer if the device cannot amplify the signal that the line is receiving through an RCA cable.


So yes, it is possible to use an RCA cable as speaker wire but the process is quite complicated and tedious, not to mention the safety hazards that come with using live wires. Plus, RCA cables are more expensive than speaker cables, so it is recommended that you buy a new speaker wire rather than cut up a perfect RCA cable.

However, even if you successfully splice the RCA cables, the components of the wires are not made to transfer amplified sounds, so you may not get the desired result. Plus, it becomes a fire hazard if you experience a fire hazard.

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