EDITORS NOTE: We have used all of the below cables in our systems at one point. These are all solid products but we also understand that many disagree with spending more than double digits on cable. There are choices on here that we believe even they won't argue with. There are also others who will drop much more on cable. We have some more expensive options on here that some may say is way too expensive. - J.Atkinson Editor.


RCA (Radio Corporation of America) interconnect cables are used to connect two devices for audio and or video signal transmission. A good example can be of connecting a DVD player to a TV, or connecting a music player to a speaker system.

Although most devices have HDMI ports nowadays and the HDMI cables transmit both video and audio signals over a single wire, RCA cables haven’t lost their significance due to the high-quality output that they offer over a separate, dedicated channel.

RCA cables can be broadly divided into two categories namely:

Composite Video RCA Cables
These cables support the analog signal transmission with the help of Red and White/Black connectors for Right and Left audio channels, and a Yellow connector for composite video signals. Composite Video RCA cables offer comparatively reduced video quality as only one channel is available for the visuals. These types of RCA cables are not meant to transmit HD video signals.

Component Video RCA Cables
These are more advanced in nature as they have three dedicated lines colored in Red, Green, and Blue for video signals, and two audio lines colored in Red and White/Black for Right and Left audio channels respectively. Unlike Composite Video cables, these RCA cables can be and are used for High-Definition (HD) signal transmissions on compatible TVs.

The Quality

The quality of an RCA cable depends on a couple of factors including:
  • Length
The lengthier the cable is the higher resistance it will have, and the lower quality of sound it will produce. Therefore, it is imperative to avoid going for an oversized RCA cable, and get the one that is long enough to serve the purpose well.
  • Shielding and Insulation
A cable that is fully shielded and has a multi-layered insulation system offers better and clearer sound quality because of the least interferences, be it RFI (Radio Frequency Interference) or EMI (Electromagnetic Interference).
  • Conductors
Silver or copper wires are the best conductors of signals. While the silver conductors are not quite common due to the higher price range, the copper ones, although not as efficient as silver, are easily available and can be used in both commercial studios and homes.
  • Connectors
Gold-plated connectors that disappear into the sockets of the gears are considered the best. However, it is important to see the compatibility between the material used in the conductors and connectors of a cable to get the maximum out of the product.

The Best RCA Cables

Depending on the requirements and the types of devices the RCA cables are to be plugged in, the definition of ‘the best’ may vary. Nevertheless, some of the reputed vendors that produce decent quality interconnect cables and ensure safe trading practices are listed below:

Cardas Clear Interconnect

Exploiting the efficiency of Cardas’ patented Matched Propagation Solution for speed synchronization, Clear Interconnect uses triple 25.5 AWG Clear conductors that are shielded with Teflon dielectric insulation type. This ensures distortion-free signal transmissions with almost nil RFI and EMI (Radio Frequency Interference and Electromagnetic Interference). These Clear Interconnect RCA cables are terminated in either GC XLR Balanced premium or SRCA RCA classic connectors.

Electric blue Cable Font Electrical wiring Wire



Matched Propagation Conductor was invented by George Cardas in 2010, and the conductors based on this technology synchronize the velocity of the signals with the transmission rate the copper wires can propagate. This results in a clearer and more neutral audio output when connected to the gears.

SVS SoundPath

With the 5-layer dielectric insulation with the 7.0mm PVC at the outer core, SVS SoundPath RCA cables remain immune to the electromagnetic and RF interferences, thus ensuring flawless signal transmission over multi-strand copper conductors between a preamplifier/receiver and subwoofer or any other component they are connected to. The connectors with 24K gold plated brass center pin and outer ring make these cables last long without any deterioration in the output quality throughout their lifespan. SVS SoundPath RCA cables are available in 1 meter, 2 meters, 3 meters, 5 meters, 8 meters, 12 meters, and 15 meters of length.


Body jewelry Tire Creative arts Font Bangle


SVS SoundPath RCA interconnect cables have a 56-strand shield that is further covered by an aluminum shell made with aircraft-grade material. All this is again protected by a cotton-braided outermost jacket. With that kind of insulation, the purest form of a signal with almost no deterioration is transmitted, thus giving a high-end listening experience when connected to the sending and receiving gears.

CHECK PRICE

Monoprice Onix

Onix series by Monoprice are digital coaxial RCA cables designed for audio/video signal transmission. The gold-plated RCA male connectors at either end, and up to 97% oxygen-free pure copper conductors that are shielded by dual-layered copper braiding ensure unparalleled quality, and protection from physical damages with almost nil radio frequency and electromagnetic interferences respectively. Monoprice Onix RCA cables are available in 3 ft, 6 ft, 12 ft, 15 ft, 25 ft, 35 ft, 50 ft, and 75 ft lengths.


Office supplies Cosmetics Font Tints and shades Technology



Monoprice Onix cables have a nylon-braided outermost jacket that offers optimum flexibility without giving any cuts or damaging the mission-critical elements that are responsible for delivering high-quality audio output. Furthermore, the jacket also has a CL2 rating that ensures that the cables remain compliant with the globally recognized fire-safety policies.

CHECK PRICE

Blue Dragon Interconnect

Highly inspired by the Black Dragon Interconnect design, Blue Dragon Interconnect cables use 24awg-sized UP-OCC copper conductors that are double-shielded with foil and 100% multi-directional braiding. These RCA cables use eutectic Brass, non-magnetic gold-plated Cardas GRMO RCA connectors, and are designed to disappear behind your gears almost completely when connected.
Data transfer cable Cable Eyewear Font Bicycle part
With the signature quality of Blue Dragon, these interconnect cables offer a much smoother and balanced tone, even at high volumes. The gold-plated connectors form a firm connection with the sockets, thus maintaining neutral and calm output, and eliminating any scope of musical impurities or deterioration.

AudioQuest Evergreen

Unlike other, regular RCA cables that have OFHC copper conduction, the solid Long Grain Copper conductors are used in AudioQuest Evergreen. Furthermore, to ensure low-loss, these conductors are insulated by air-filled foamed polyethylene. The Evergreen series also have cold-welded gold-plated RCA connectors for distortion-free sound output, which is not the case with most cables available in the market.

Product Liquid Medical equipment Office supplies Font



These Analog-Audio Interconnect cables possess rare, but still a natural blend of Dielectric-Bias and Noise-Dissipation System, and Air-Tube insulation. The Evergreen series offers a dynamic listening experience because of the lower impedance that is a result of Asymmetrical Double-Balanced Geometry. In addition, the Double-Balanced architecture uses separate paths for shielding and grounding to produce purer and clearer output quality.

CHECK PRICE

AudioQuest Golden Gate

Using the metal-processing technology (a proprietary of AudioQuest) for Perfect-Surface Copper or PSC, the Golden Gate RCA cables offer an extremely pure and smooth surface for wires to produce low-distorted output. The solid conductors are protected with an air-filled foamed polyethylene insulation system that rejects almost all electromagnetic and radio frequency interferences. This results in minimizing signal loss and giving the cleanliest sound quality.

Liquid Automotive lighting Product Fluid Lipstick



The Golden Gate series uses separate positive and negative high-quality conductors for clearer and quieter audio outputs. Both left and right channels of these analog RCA cables are encased within a single outermost jacket, and include high-quality material for Dielectric-Bias System, Noise-Dissipation System, and Air-Tube insulation. With all these excellent elements, the cables are still available at a reasonable cost.

CHECK PRICE

Monolith RCA Cable

These are dual-shielded (AL Foil and Copper braided) RCA cables with a 4-layer insulation system that offers the clearest form of sound quality with minimized noise distortions. The precision-oriented die-cast 24K gold plated RCA connectors provide firm electrical contact with the highest amount of durability. While the OFC Spiral ribbon conductors ensure the least harshness and maximum level of treble definition, the ones with Flat OFC give optimum Mid-ranged reproduction. Monolith RCA cables are available in 3 ft, 6 ft, 9 ft, and 12 ft lengths.

Font Line Cylinder Tool Auto part


The 3 x OFC and 1 x Litz Wire conductors, along with the Cotton Yarn filler encased within a 5-layer insulation system make Monolith cables highly durable. To ensure consumers’ safe trading, the company, Monoprice, offers a 30-day money-back guarantee, and a lifetime warranty. Upon successful purchase, the cables are shipped in hassle-free and fully recyclable packaging. Furthermore, complete technical support is available for every Monoprice product to confirm simple and unchallenged installation and usage in almost all scenarios.

CHECK PRICE

Conclusion


The selection of the right RCA cable depends on the type of signals they are supposed to transmit. For instance, a Composite Video RCA cable would be good for analog signals. Likewise, if the visuals are of high-definition, going for a Component Video RCA cable would be the best choice.

Similarly, to ensure quality output, it is equally imperative to check whether the material of the conductors in a cable is compatible with that used in the connectors. For example, RCA cables that use a combination of silver and gold should be avoided to make sure that the clarity of the signals does not deteriorate during the transmission.

Lastly, recheck the AWG (American Wire Gauge) size of the conductors used in the cable. A higher diameter means better performance.