How to Select Suitable Audio Cables

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Audio cables are crucial element of every home theater set up. They also important for almost every other type of audio component you can think of. The fact is that most people have a modular approach when installing their sound system. That means there isn’t any single component which includes every required feature. However, if you have multiple audio components, they have to be interconnected. There different ways to do this because many types of audio components support different ways of establishing connections. Let me look at some of the most common standards and also offer some recommendations for choosing appropriate audio cables.

The most common standard in the consumer audio field is the line-level audio norm. In fact, only the physical shape of the cable connector is standardized. Everything else differs depending on the manufacturer. Even the audio level is not standardized at all. In order to connect to types pieces of equipment which offer RCA jacks, you would use an RCA cable. Typically such cable would be color-coded white and red. You should observe the right polarity when making the connection. My main advice when choosing an RCA cable is to pick a cable which has a fairly thick gauge because thin cables can easily break and also have cable losses. In addition, make sure that the connectors are plated either gold or another non-corrosive material. Many manufacturers will cut corners and bundled some very cheap audio cables with the equipment. In that case I would just spend some extra money and purchase some decent connectors.

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There are audio components which do not have RCA outputs. As an example, an MP3 player typically only has a headphone jack. However, the level of such a jack typically well works with a line-level audio input. In order to make the connection, you will need a Y adapter. This sort of adapter has a headphone cable on one end and two RCA jacks on the other end. Again, pay attention to the right gauge and also make sure that jacks are high-quality.

There are also many kinds of audio equipment which have digital audio outputs and inputs. These outputs are either optical or coaxial. If both of you components have an optical jack then obviously the logical choice is to use a toss link cable to make the connection. If one piece of equipment has a contractual output and the other an optical input then you will need a coaxial-to-optical converter. This converter sits in between the two pieces of equipment. Then you connect the converter to the first piece of equipment by using a regular RCA cable. Then make the connection between the converter and the second piece of equipment by using an optical audio cable.

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