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Using component video cables for analog audio signals?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have a number of good component video cables that I no longer use because I'm connecting everything via HDMI now. Question...can I use the component video cables as analog audio cables? I went to the manufacturer's website, and the specs sure seemed close if not exact. So, I don't see any problem using them for audio. What do you think?
post #2 of 11
they are fine to use
post #3 of 11
Yes that's fine. You can use video cable for audio absolutely fine.

The converse, however, is not necessarily the case unless you know the audio cables are 75ohm coax which would be appropriate for video or digital coax use. Audio cables need not be 75ohm, and some are not.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys. I appreciate the info!
post #5 of 11
I know that there's a lot of pseudo science out there, so let me first say that I use video cables for audio, but not vice versa. Just like another poster.

But when I was ordering cables recently from BlueJeans, I was reading some of their theory. I might remember it wrong, but I think they said that although the video cables can be used for both, the need to strictly adhere to 75 ohm requires sacrifices which affect inductance. So inductance is not optimal.

I have 3 different multichannel audio sources, so I have to go through a switcher. I used component video cause I had them. But when I ordered new cable, I trusted BlueJeans cable recommendation for a different cable because they seem to be more conservative in their use of science.
post #6 of 11
Quote:
the need to strictly adhere to 75 ohm requires sacrifices which affect inductance. So inductance is not optimal

The inductance, capacitance, and resistance, ARE the components of characteristic impedance.
post #7 of 11
Undertstanding the science (common sense) should contradict slick marketing every time.

I find it ironic that everyone complains about the BS from BestBuy, CircuitCity, cable/satellite CSR's.... but they "trust" the word of CSR's from a cable manufacturer.
post #8 of 11
I don't know about using the science in sales, but here is what BJ says about digital audio coax and analog coax. Emphasis added

Can analog cables be used in digital applications? Yes, up to a point; but the looser tolerances of older analog cable designs will limit their run lengths, at least when used in high-bandwidth applications like SDI video.

Can digital cables be used in analog applications? Yes, absolutely; the same tight tolerances which make digital cables appropriate for digital applications make them superb for analog applications. One may not "need" the improvement, but it will never hurt, and can help

Run length is ambiguous and and the last sentence is marketing hyperbole, but other than that there seemed nothing untoward in the article. Would that more retailers were this restrained!
post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by trekguy View Post

I don't know about using the science in sales, but here is what BJ says about digital audio coax and analog coax. Emphasis added

Can analog cables be used in digital applications? Yes, up to a point; but the looser tolerances of older analog cable designs will limit their run lengths, at least when used in high-bandwidth applications like SDI video.

Can digital cables be used in analog applications? Yes, absolutely; the same tight tolerances which make digital cables appropriate for digital applications make them superb for analog applications. One may not "need" the improvement, but it will never hurt, and can help

Run length is ambiguous and and the last sentence is marketing hyperbole, but other than that there seemed nothing untoward in the article. Would that more retailers were this restrained!

There is no such thing as an "analog" or a "digital" cable. A cable is a cable, it is a passive way to transmit signals. There is nothing "digital" or "analog" about it at all. The SIGNALS that you transmit over the cable may be analog/digital, but there is no such thing as an "analog" cable or a "digital" cable. These things only exist as arbitrary labels which denote certain aspects of the cable design which make it appropriate for certain kinds of uses.

What makes a "digital audio cable" is not the fact that it has this label printed on the package, but that it is a 75ohm coaxial cable. What makes an "analog video cable" is not the fact that it has this label printed on teh package, but that it is a 75ohm coaxial cable. Note that if you have a 75ohm coaxial cable, you could use it for video (analog) or audio (digital) or audio (analog). It is neither a "digital" cable nor an "analog cable" since these terms are really meaningless.
post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratman View Post

I find it ironic that everyone complains about the BS from BestBuy, CircuitCity, cable/satellite CSR's.... but they "trust" the word of CSR's from a cable manufacturer.

Well consider that you can get different theories from different Best Buy salesman. With BJ you have 1 theory reduced to writing. And you have a forum like AVS which is there to attack any pseudo-science therein. There is no shortage of people looking to attack someone. Yet people in the forum often espouse BJ. Ideal? No. But at least better than Best Buy. And much cheaper, even if the science does not ring true.

Oh and I had it wrong. It was capacitance and not inductance which BJ referred to. Here's the link.

http://bluejeanscable.com/store/6cha...sign-notes.htm

Supposedly, by not having to adhere to strict 75 ohm in audio, they can get a lower capacitance, which is apparently a good thing.
post #11 of 11
I do not use Ram products nor do I shill for them (end of disclaimer).

We do not disagree Chris. Neither I thought did BJ when some of the hype was cleared out. I should have included more of the articl, inlcuding this,"Electrons don't know whether they're "digital" or "analog."

I have several times posted that digital audio coax should be 75 ohm coax, and that it works fine for line level signals such as to powered subwoofers and for video. I have also said that line level audio cables not made of 75 ohm coax will often work for digital audio signals, although 75 ohm coax is so cheap there is no reason not to use it for SPDIF. Hell a twisted pair will work if the run is short and the signal good.

However, the Bluejeans article is an infomercial of sorts and a bit misleading, because it trys to extend the requirements for digital video to analog signals of far less bandwidth.

But how much harm is done. Is Blue Jeans adding some excessive premium for digital cable? For 6 feet--

Digital audio-- 15 to 25 dollars
Stereo audio-- 30 to 38 dollars
Component vid-- 45 to 73 dollars
Subwoofer-- 19 to 25 dollars.
It would seem not, inspite of the misnomers of analog and digital.

Digital as a market catch phrase came in years ago. Remember speakers, pre-amps and amps that were "digital ready"? My personal favorite on a Telarc CD was "Digital Cannons". We are moving closer to an all digital signal path: when that happens the problem goes away.

Right now for every one who pays more for a digital subwoofer cable, there is one who will pay more for the cable with the red stripes and the enhances feng shui. The difference is that the digital cable actually works.

That aside I hope that you and others will continue to tell people that they need not buy because of the word digital on the package.
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