Digital coaxial cable use

jgstudios

jgstudios

Audioholic Intern
Hello folks, I recently ordered a new Polk 12" sub which should be arriving tomorrow. I also have a storage bin full of cables all still in the packages that a friend gave me. I have a Monster Standard subwoofer cable with RCA connectors, and a Belkin Pure AV Digital Coax audio cable with what looks exactly like the RCA connectors on the RCA cable.. Can the Coax be used interchangeably with the other sub cable to connect to a subwoofer? What are the specific applications for a digital coax audio cable? What's the benefit to using coax vs a good quality RCA cable? My AVR does have some coax ports, perhaps I should be using that instead.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Warlord
I have a Monster Standard subwoofer cable with RCA connectors, and a Belkin Pure AV Digital Coax audio cable with what looks exactly like the RCA connectors on the RCA cable.. Can the Coax be used interchangeably with the other sub cable to connect to a subwoofer?
Yes. You can use the Coax digital cable for a subwoofer connection without problem.

However, things may not be entirely interchangeable. Digital coax cables and all video cables have a standard impedance of 75 ohms. They're fully interchangeable. Other cables with RCA connectors meant for audio, including that subwoofer cable, may or may not have 75 ohms impedance. There is no standard impedance for cables meant for audio. In the past, audio interconnect cables often had lower impedance, in the range of 50 ohms. But 75 ohms impedance works well for audio. It is possible that many interconnect manufacturers now use only 75 ohm cable for all their RCA interconnects. Why stock two kinds of coaxial cable?

I hope that answers your questions.
 
S

Speedskater

Audioholic Chief
Many quality RCA cables have a 75 Ohm impedance. Because making a cable to another impedance adds extra manufacturing costs with no gains for an RCA cable. However for a 1 or 2 meter digital cable, 50 Ohms is close enough to 75 Ohms to work just fine.
 
Sef_Makaro

Sef_Makaro

Audioholic
Since buying a couple “subwoofer cables” and seeing they were just copper shield RG6 coax with very cheap fittings soldered onto the ends I’ve made my own coax jumpers when I need a longer sub cable. Haven’t noticed any problems yet.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Warlord
I’ve used RG-6 with rca ends for subwoofer duty as well. I needed a 50’ section once, and my local shop made it with rca ends for about 15 bucks. Anything on amazon in that length was about 50-75 bucks. You should have no problems. Won’t have any advantage either though.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic Ninja
Since RG-59 and RG-6 coaxial cables were primarily designed for TV and other video transmission, they feature low resistance and can handle any audio signal that regular RCA cable is required to conduct.

Most Monoprice AV cables feature RG-6 coaxial wire. It's somewhat stiff but if it is not required to be moved around, it does the job.
 
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ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Spartan
I second Verdinut on this: Monoprice High Quality Subwoofer/dig.Coax works great, not expensive, Double shielded, copper core conductor.
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
The Blue Jeans subwoofer cables are well made and not too expensive.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Spartan
I have nothing against BJC...
Blue Jeans' 4 subwoofer cable options range from $18.xx to $23.xx. For a 3' length
Monoprice 'High-Quality' is less than $5 for 3'. $10.39 for 25' length.
25' lengths of subwoofer cable from BJC start at 52.50 for the least expensive of the four, up to $84.25 for the most expensive option.
:)
 
S

Speedskater

Audioholic Chief
For short RCA interconnects, many, many coax cables will be just fine.
But for long RCA cables (lets say 25 feet) the BJC LC-1 is a great choice.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Spartan
For short RCA interconnects, many, many coax cables will be just fine.
But for long RCA cables (lets say 25 feet) the BJC LC-1 is a great choice.
I run a 25' length Monoprice HQ Sub cable right past five Amp power cords and the power strip they plug into, a wall outlet, and have zero interference. At 1/5th the price.
This doesn't need to be a constant point of contention. Nor should it be.
There is nothing wrong with either brand. The only real differences is conductor gauge and price. They both use copper... Monoprice is 18AWG vs BJC being 25AWG. They both conduct electricity.
:)
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
I have nothing against BJC...
Blue Jeans' 4 subwoofer cable options range from $18.xx to $23.xx. For a 3' length
Monoprice 'High-Quality' is less than $5 for 3'. $10.39 for 25' length.
25' lengths of subwoofer cable from BJC start at 52.50 for the least expensive of the four, up to $84.25 for the most expensive option.
:)
I love the Monoprice HDMI cables, but the quality of the fit and finish of the Blue Jeans sub cables is worth a little more to me. Maybe I’m spoiling my subs? :)
 
S

Speedskater

Audioholic Chief
We seem to be discussing both digital RCA cables and long (or subwoofer) analog RCA cables at the same time.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Spartan
I did some research months ago because I thought they had to be different product... but they don’t. Digital coax, sub, and rca interconnects can co-exist as a single product.

Regardless of gauge, I would still always recommend copper conductor over anything else. Then CCA for short runs is ok. I would never recommend or use Copper Clad Steel conductors for anything (amazon basics/media bridge, iirc). That’s just my preference.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic Ninja
I did some research months ago because I thought they had to be different product... but they don’t. Digital coax, sub, and rca interconnects can co-exist as a single product.

Regardless of gauge, I would still always recommend copper conductor over anything else. Then CCA for short runs is ok. I would never recommend or use Copper Clad Steel conductors for anything (amazon basics/media bridge, iirc). That’s just my preference.
I guess you meant Copper Clad Aluminum.:)
 
S

Speedskater

Audioholic Chief
There are both:
CCA Copper Clad Aluminum and CCS Copper Clad Steel.
CCA for very low cost speaker cable.
CCS for cable TV company's when running coax from pole to pole. It's much stronger.
 
Sef_Makaro

Sef_Makaro

Audioholic
There are both:
CCA Copper Clad Aluminum and CCS Copper Clad Steel.
CCA for very low cost speaker cable.
CCS for cable TV company's when running coax from pole to pole. It's much stronger.
In a HFC network they’re using pretty much all CCA. Because it’s cheap. Strength isn’t much of an issue, distribution cable is normally lashed to a steel strand to carry the weight. There is some integrated messanger style distribution lines. Aerial service drops are all integrated messanger.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Spartan
In a HFC network they’re using pretty much all CCA. Because it’s cheap. Strength isn’t much of an issue, distribution cable is normally lashed to a steel strand to carry the weight. There is some integrated messanger style distribution lines. Aerial service drops are all integrated messanger.
Indeed... the plain copper clad steel is not for strength. There is a different coax with steel for strength, that they use. The stuff being sold by amazon is probably fine. Just don’t know why you would want a steel conductor. ;)
 

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