Banana Plugs Vs Bare Wire Vs Spade. Which Is Better To Use?

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Bringing the best speakers to the home theater is an easy task. But connecting and calibrating them is a task that will confuse you more. Like this debate. Banana plugs, bare wire, or spade, which is better to use?

At A Glance: As a general rule of them, if you want purity in connectivity then go with bar wires, if you want less oxidation then go for a spade but if you want less resistance then go for banana plugs.

Keep reading because I will rate them and compare them in a few of the categories. Don’t forget to check the results of the poll that I have conducted in a Facebook group. You will know what others are using in their theater room. I will also be answering the most frequently asked questions about these connectivity types.

Banana Plugs Vs Bare Wire Vs Spade. (Head-on Comparison)

Let’s discuss the three main reasons that we use each one for connectivity. Wait for the final verdict where I will rate the best option along with the reasons why it is better.

Connection Purity

Each metal has its separate composition. Each composition affects the electric signals. The signals entering from one metal to another experience some amount of change in it.

Using two metals for connectivity can contribute to this impurity. This impurity probability in the bare wire connectivity will be zero.

That’s why if you want purity in connectivity, then the bare wires are the best for you. But bare wire has its negatives. We will discuss those in the final verdict.

Here in this section, the winner is the bar wire connectivity.

Know why using preamp will improve the sound quality. I have presented the facts from my real-life experience in this guide.

Oxidation dangers

The oxidation occurs when the wire is exposed to the air for a very long time. This oxidation can damage the wire too if the exposure time is prolonged.

However, we are concerned about less oxidation here. The oxidation in the connectivity contributes to unexplainable faults in the sound. After oxidation, the bass will not sound as deep as you want.

The bass will be thin. I don’t like the bass thin. I want to enjoy the movies and music with their realistic touch.

Gaming with realistic graphics and realistic sound will be more fun. The realism of the sound comes due to the deep and tight bass in it. That’s why the thin bass is worrisome for me.

To prevent oxidation, the spade is the best connectivity option. The spade has more surface area and less oxidation probability. 

Here the winner is spade connectivity, but it has its negatives. Read the next section to know the negatives.

Know which gauge wire to use for home theater. I have provided you with the best length and width of the wire in this guide.

Resistance prevention

Any connection that is loosely attached to the posts will have comparatively high resistance. The resistance impacts the sound more than anything we have discussed above.

The loose connection probability is very high in spades. If you have attached them tightly then you are good to go, but mainly they are attached loose. 

This loose connectivity will have high resistance and that will affect the sound directly. The audiophiles are like a spade but when I use them no matter what type they are. They are loosely attached to the posts.

A few times I have had success attaching them tightly and the sound was good. But if you are a newbie and want a tight connection without hustle, then go for banana plugs.

Banana plugs have lesser resistance and provide a refined sound experience. Here the winner is the banana plug.

How to increase speakers’ clarity? I have provided the proven tips in this guide.

Read the final verdict to know the winner that is the best in every situation.

Final Verdict. Which one is worth it?

Connection TypeRatingStatus
Banana Plugs10/10Winner
Bare Wire 9/10Runner Up

The banana plugs are the best connection method to do. It has almost zero probability of connecting to the posts loosely. Hence, it ensures the least possible resistance. 

The bare wire has fire hazards or blows your amplifier. The bare wire has a group of small copper wires in it. When they are used a lot. Few of the wires will separate from the rest of the group. These separated wires can touch other wires and a short circuit will happen. This will damage the amplifier or maybe the speaker too.

These separated wires are called whiskers by some folks. These whiskers come in contact with the amplifier. It will transfer electric shocks to the amplifier and can give you small electric shocks when touching the body of the amplifier or receiver to which they are connected.

You can use the banana plugs on both sides. Mean at the amplifier side and also at the speaker side. But if you care about purity, then you can connect the speakers with bare wires and connect the wires to the amplifier with banana plugs. This will be the best possible connection type if you care about purity.

The spades are not good for you if you are a newbie because they can be loosely attached to the posts. The audiophiles like it, but I have never found any difference in the sound when they are attached to spades and banana plugs. The sound was the same.

That’s why the winner is the banana plugs. They are the best and make sure you are using the banana plugs with the compression. This will ensure firm and tight connectivity.

Read the FAQs and you will learn something new. All the best with the speakers’ connectivity.

Know how to optime the home theater audio in 5 steps. I have added simple steps.

Which Connection Type Will You Use? (Fb Poll)

Poll OptionsStats
Banana Plugs79%
Bare Wire21%
There were 54 participants in this poll. This group of users completely rejected the spades.

This poll was conducted in a Facebook group. You can observe the results to choose the best for you.


Are expensive banana plugs worth it?

The expensive banana plugs are not worth the money, they are just marketing gimmicks. A $2 per pair will work fine, and you don’t need to worry about the connectivity.

The high compressions and rhodium coating are the marketing gimmicks. You need simple banana plugs with compression and if they are gold-plated then they are the best. Don’t worry, you can get gold-plated banana plugs in this $2 price range.

Do banana plugs reduce quality?

The banana plugs don’t reduce the sound quality because it has zero probability of higher resistance and the resistance effect of the sound is greater than the impurity between two metals: the metal of the wire and the banana plug.

The two metals used will contribute to impurity, but this impurity doesn’t have a big impact on the sound as the resistance does. The banana plugs have zero probability of resistance. You can happily adopt this connectivity option.

Do you need to solder banana plugs?

Soldering is not required for the banana plugs, however, if you solder the bar wires with the terminals will be a great idea. It will ensure the sturdiness of the connectivity.

The banana plugs don’t require soldering because they can be attached tightly to the posts.

Helpful Resources For The FAQs To Read More

  1. This was my opinion, read more about it from this Reddit discussion. (Resource for the second answer)

Watch To Learn More

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Ayaan Khan
Ayaan Khan

I'm Ayaan khan, a freelancer and a Computer Science degree holder from P.E.S. College. After my degree, I started an internship with my father in his home theater showroom. After working for a month I realized that this is the best job in the world for me and it could be turned into a passion. Fast forward to when my internship ended, I joined my father as a full-time home theater equipment tester. I test new equipment and approve it before it can be installed in the customer's house. I love to test equipment and sometimes love to install it by myself in the customer's theater room. I have the right experience and knowledge to learn from my articles. In my Free time I write & answer questions here on AVSFORUM. Every Article on Homelytainment is curated according to Homelytainment's Editorial Policy and Sponsorship Policy. If you have any questions for me. Reach out to my email (Support(AT)

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