There many different types of signals which have to be transmitted from one to the other audio component. Depending on the type of signal, you will need an appropriate connector. I’m going to look at some standard connectors and advice what to look out for when choosing audio cables.
Audio systems are often still structured into several modules. You might have several sources of audio such as a Blu-ray player, a CD player or a satellite receiver. All of these components still a audio. In order to manage these sources, you will need another component which can switch between different sources. Obviously, each of these sources has to be connected to that device. Such a device could be a power amplifier with multiple audio inputs. There I amplifiers on the market which can connect to several sources.
One of the standard connectors is called RCA. However, this type of connector does not necessarily mean that the equipment is made by RCA. It simply refers to a commonly used audio connector. This type of connector usually consists of two or three round jacks which are color-coded. These jacks carry the left and right audio signal and possibly a video signal. The color codes for those are white, red and yellow. To connect the source to an audio amplifier, you will need to purchase an RCA audio cable. When choosing a cable, I recommend purchasing a high-quality cable. There’s nothing worse than the signal degrading because of a loose connection.
Good audio cables usually are gold or nickel plated. The plating guarantees that there will be no oxidation occurring on the Jack over time. That is important for the contact to remain strong after several years. Some devices such as MP3 players don’t offer RCA outputs. However, they often have a headphone jack. This jack is also called 3.5 mm jack. In order to connect this audio source to an audio amplifier, you will need to purchase an adapter cable. This cables also called Y adapter. A Y adapter has a headphone plug on one end and two RCA jacks on the other. Again, make sure that you pick a good-quality cable.
Some sources deliver digital audio. Digital audio is either provided as optical or electrical audio. The electrical audio is also called coaxial output. In order to connect an optical audio source to an amplifier, you will need an optical cable. Make sure that the cable fits properly and doesn’t easily slide out. If you audio amplifier does not have any optical audio inputs, you will need a signal converter. There converters on the market which can except an optical signal and converted to an RCA analog signal. You will need to connect this converter between the optical audio source and your power amplifier.