I was thinking about this earlier today and I think that we should all be on the same page about this. I remember strolling the halls of a big record company about 4 weeks ago and discovering to my dismay that many of the stereo set-ups in the offices had the speakers wired out of phase. I spent some time fixing the problem but I was a little freaked out. I mean, this was a record company after all, heh. So, I thought I'd pose the question to you: ARE YOUR SPEAKERS CORRECTLY IN PHASE? I don't mean absolute polarity ("wood effect") issues I mean phasing issues. For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about (and not everyone will) here goes: The + and - terminals on the back of your receiver of amps must match the + and - on your speaker terminals. I mean the wire that is hooked up to the + on speaker one (left channel) must go to the + on the amp's left channel. THE SAME MUST HAPPEN FOR SPEAKER TWO. If not, your system will be wired out of phase. You will lose bass, focus and most importantly, your system won't image correctly and EVERYTHING will sound like a FAKE ELECTRONIC STEREO recording from 1966. How to tell if you are in phase or out of phase? Glad you asked. It's very easy. The best way is to find something on a CD in MONO. Before you say "I HATE MONO, I DON'T HAVE ANYTHING IN MONO" let me assure you that you do. Try a BEATLES Past Masters CD or a earlier STONES CD. Make sure you aren't using a fake stereo source! Play "Thank You Girl" back from Past Masters. Stand directly in front of your two speakers, placing them at equal distances apart from you and on the exact level (not one on the floor and one on a chair). Stand in front and hit PLAY. The music should sound like it is coming at you right down the middle of the two speakers in a defined space. IF IT DOESN'T, YOU ARE PROBABLY WIRED OUT OF PHASE. This is "Stereo Set-up 101" but I bet some of you will find you are out of phase. Not to worry. It's easy to fix if you are: Just reverse one set of speaker leads, either the right or left channel and you are in. Now, double check something for me. Most speaker wire other than the real bottom of the line stuff will have a mark on either end for + and -. It could be that one end is in RED and one end is in BLACK. If so, the RED goes to the + both at the speaker and amp end and the BLACK goes to the - lead. Make sure this is happening for BOTH speakers. If you are lined up that way, you are in phase. If you speaker wire does NOT have the ends finished in red and black look for the writing on the wire itself. Traditionally the markings (manufacturer's name, etc.) on speaker wire is on the + side of the wire or the RED side. Just make sure that the side of your wire with the writing on it is connected to the + or red terminals of both the receiver/amp side and the speaker side. Usually the DIRECTION OF THE WRITING should be followed and it translates to the direction that the sound is going as well. In other words, if on your wire you read" Monster Cable...." the direction the writing goes should be the direction that the sound goes as well. The end of the word "CABLE" should be aimed at the speaker and the "MONSTER" should be at the amp end. Follow? Remember that the side of the wire with the writing on it goes to the POSITIVE + RED connection and the side of the wire that is blank goes to the NEG - connector. If you do this for both channels, you will be in business. If some of you are using really old speaker wire, you might have a copper looking side and a silver looking side. The copper goes to the +/Red connection and the silver side goes to the -/Black connection ON BOTH THE SPEAKER AND THE RECEIVER/AMP for both channels! Some of you might be using REALLY cheap wire that is unmarked at either end, has no writing on the wire cover and both sections are silver or copper looking. IN THAT CASE: take a piece of masking tape or scotch tape and MARK ONE LEAD, FOLLOW IT BACK TO THE OTHER END AND MARK THAT SIDE AS WELL. Do the same for the wire to the other channel. The lead you marked will be POSITIVE or + from now on. Just make sure that the taped lead goes to the + on both the speaker and the amp. Everyone give a listen to your system (playing something in mono) and report back to me. No shame is involved in not knowing this information. Someone told me about it a long time ago and it really upgraded the sound of my system.... POLARITY ISSUES (a different subject, but slightly related to the above): Folks, if you have an "audiophile" type line stage or premap, and know for sure or have read in the manual that your line stage or preamp inverts phase (absolute phase, not the phase that I'm talking about in post number one) you must do the following: You must compensate by inverting phase at the speaker terminals. Be sure to reverse the polarity on BOTH speaker terminals. In other words connect the amplifier positive (+ or red) connector to your speakers negative ("-" or black) connector for both sets of speaker wires. People (and this is above the basic lesson in post number one): Each active voltage gain stage in a circuit inverts phase once. Some audiophile preamplifiers have been designed for the absolute minimum number of gain stages – one. One stage, one inversion, hence these components invert phase. By the nature of this design, a certain line stage or preamp which also has a single voltage gain stage, is phase inverting. Most transistor consumer gear is fine and this absolute phase thing is irreverent.. ANY QUESTIONS? Feel free to ask here. I'd be happy to help you as would many others here I trust.. Your system will sound much better!!