I figured some of you might get a kick out of this. (or maybe not!)
This weekend I finally got around to setting up my office music maker. While the components are anything but low quality, everything was purchased used to save money.
I needed some speaker cables and just couldn't stomach dropping $150 on cables again.
When I bought my "main" system the best stuff they had was Monster Cable. Monster Cable doesn't produce a bad product, but it's highly overpriced for what you get, and the company is really awful with it's trademark lawsuit practices. (for example they sued Disney over the movie Monsters Inc). When I pulled back the cover to look at how the cable was made, I was totally unimpressed.
After wasting about $120 on speaker cables there, I decided to think about this. Years ago I used welding cable in car audio and felt the results were outstanding. That cable is much better quality than the crap you get at your local Circuit City, and about 1/10 the price. About the only downside is that it's not a pretty red/blue/pink, whatever.
I eventually decided to go look at some bulk "extension cord" cable. I ended up buying 2 wire 14 gauge (multistrand) cable. It's a twisted pair in cloth and wrapped in vinyl. Your standard "mid quality" extension cord cabling. (they had 12 gauge, but it was orange, couldn't do it
) It cost $.49/foot at my local ACE hardware. I hooked it up and compared to the Monster Cables. I cannot hear a difference.
It's not much solace that the Monster cables "look" better.
So before you go drop $100 (or more) on speaker cables think about trying this stuff.