Learning, Wiring,

How to Hook Up 4 Conductor Speaker Wire to Receiver (5 Steps)

This article will focus on connecting four conductor speaker wires to your receiver.

What do I mean by correct speaker wiring? Well, most speaker wires come with low and high-frequency conductors. Hence, it is essential to identify these different frequencies and wire the speaker to the receiver correctly.

Quick Summary: To hook up a 4-conductor speaker wire to your receiver:

  • Identify the two positive and two negative wires.
  • Twist the positive wires together.
  • Twist the negative wires together.
  • Connect the combined positive wires to the receiver’s positive terminal.
  • Connect the combined negative wires to the receiver’s negative terminal.
  • Test your audio system.

I will go into more detail below.

Best Way to Connect 4 Conductor Speaker Wire to a Receiver

In truth, there are a few different ways to connect a four-conductor speaker wire to a receiver. But most of the time, your receiver might be unable to connect a 4-conductor speaker. This method is the best solution for that kind of situation.

However, I’ll explain two methods after this one for the article’s sake. With that in mind, let’s start with today’s guide on hooking a four-conductor speaker wire to a receiver.

Things You’ll Need

  • Four conductor speaker wire
  • Suitable speakers and receiver
  • Wire stripper

Step 1 – Identify the 4 Conductors

identifying the 4 conductors

First and foremost, you should identify the four conductor speaker wires correctly. As you can see from the above image, there are four different colored wires. Each of these wires represents a positive or negative. Let us identify them properly before jumping into our guide.

Of the four wires, two wires are for the high frequencies. And the other two are for the low frequencies.

Red and black wires represent the low frequencies. The white and green wires represent the high frequencies.

  • Red is positive, and black is negative for low frequencies.
  • White is positive, and green is negative for high frequencies.

After identifying the four conductors correctly, you can move on to step 2.

Step 2 – Twist the Two Positive Wires

As I mentioned earlier, most receivers won’t have the capability to connect four conductors since they only have two terminals. But connecting only two wires won’t give you the best audio performance. 

First, take two positive wires (red and white) and twist them together. Use the wire stripper if needed.

Step 3 – Twist the Two Negative Wires

Then, take the two negative wires (black and green), and twist them together.

Step 4 – Connect the Wires to the Receiver’s Terminals

After that, identify the positive and negative terminals. This shouldn’t be a difficult step since terminals usually have + and – markings.

Next, connect the combined positive wires to the positive terminal of the receiver. And remember to do the same with the combined negative wires.

Step 5 – Test the Sound System

Finally, test your speakers, which should give you much better sound quality since all the high and low-frequency wires are connected to the receiver.

Important: As you can understand, this method is perfect for a receiver with only two terminals. But this won’t be true all the time. You can learn about that in the next section.

Four Terminal Receivers

Some modern receivers come with four terminals. These terminals can be categorized as two high-frequency terminals and two low-frequency terminals. Hence, you don’t have to combine two positive and negative wires. Instead, connect all four wires to the corresponding terminals.

Can I Connect Only Two Conductors?

Yes, you can connect just two conductors. But that means you miss out on two conductors. Right?

Most people connect only two conductors to the receiver since it only has two terminals. This is easy to execute but not the most recommended method out there. For instance, you might connect only the high-frequency conductors to the receiver. But during this process, you leave out the low-frequency conductors. Good sound quality won’t be guaranteed.

Is It Important to Identify the Polarity of the 4 Conductors?

Yes. Without a doubt, identifying the polarity correctly is very important. For instance, you must make a proper wire connection between the speaker and the receiver. Properly identify the two positives and two negative wires. Then, you can carry out the wiring process without any concerns.

Remember, a four-conductor speaker wire hahas better insulation than normal speaker wires. Because of that, these wires are perfect for any application, such as automotive audio or home theater systems.

Video References

Sight and Sound Systems, Inc. Home Automation


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About Alex Robertson

AvatarCertifications: B.M.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Mechanical Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Hi, I’m Alex! I’m a co-founder, content strategist, and writer and a close friend of our co-owner, Sam Orlovsky. I received my Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering (B.M.E.) degree from Denver, where we studied together. My passion for technical and creative writing has led me to help Sam with this project.

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