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Author Topic: COAX DIGITAL VS OPTICAL WHATS THE DIFFERENCE?  (Read 1863 times)
Blacks Devil Dogs
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« on: May 31, 2012, 08:06:35 pm »

What's the difference between coax digital and optical.  I realize optical is fiber optic and coax digital (orange plug)  is more like an RCA jack (red/white)  which has better sound?  Can u get dolby digital with the coax digital plug?  I have optical on my home theater but last yrs. model Sony blu-ray S-580 on my BYT dosen't have the optical option.  The 570 and this yrs. model  590 does.  Why Sony didn't include on last yrs model i have no idea.  I am not wanting to change out my blu-ray player if I don't have to.  My Receiver is not Hdmi.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2012, 08:09:43 pm by Blacks Devil Dogs » Logged

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rich72
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« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2012, 08:38:57 pm »

Both the fiber optic (toslink) and the RCA connector will pass Dolby Digital and DTS audio.  I've always leaned towards the toslink, but I'm using the RCA connector on the outdoor setup this year.

This article:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S/PDIF

..mentions "Signals transmitted over consumer-grade TOSLINK connections are identical in content to those transmitted over coaxial S/PDIF connectors, though they commonly exhibit higher jitter."

..so it seems the RCA connector is actually the better option, although I've never experienced jitter in years of using toslink.
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cdepaola
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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2012, 08:58:11 pm »

"Jitter" is inherent in digital audio, is rather complicated, and is always present.   Most people will never notice it, though audiophiles claim they notice it.  S/PDIF is generally considered to be the superior connection, though again the difference will be beyond subtle.
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Blacks Devil Dogs
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« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2012, 07:49:50 am »

Thanks  for the info.  Do I need to use a special coax plug for coax digital or will a any RCA plug work?
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KingPin
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« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2012, 08:15:16 am »

I've always used a "healthy" video RCA cable without any issues
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Blacks Devil Dogs
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« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2012, 08:26:37 am »

So I can use a RCA Red/ White or yellow cable? 
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cdepaola
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« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2012, 09:14:15 am »

So I can use a RCA Red/ White or yellow cable? 

Can you?  Yes

Should you?  Yes, No, Maybe so

There is a big difference between the cable being used in your regular analog stereo or composit video cable and the digital cable... However in the outdoor setting will you notice the sound quality difference? No...  If this was indoor on quality equipment I would say you should absolutly not use the standard red/white/yellow RCA cable.
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Blacks Devil Dogs
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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2012, 09:21:06 am »

So a Coax digital cable  ( Orange) is made different than  a RCA Yellow video cable? 
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cdepaola
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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2012, 09:27:10 am »

So a Coax digital cable  ( Orange) is made different than  a RCA Yellow video cable? 

They are made the same, the type of cable utilized is different or should be as I'm sure some less then reputable manufactures just use cheap cable.
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everette
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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2012, 10:31:56 am »

If you don't want to buy an "orange" RCA coax cable you can always find an old threaded coax (most people have tons of them lying around) and buy two thread--->RCA adapters. You can usually find them at the hardware store or radio shack for a dollar or so a piece.

I tried using an old RCA component cable once and my receiver didn't pick up the signal and it was a fairly "healthy" cable.
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Sparge
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2012, 05:28:15 pm »

One should always try to use a coaxial cable specifically designed for S/PDIF to avoid audio jitter that can manifest itself as clicks, pops and drop outs.  It's quite audible when it happens.  It can also damage speakers at high volume levels.  Coaxial cable with its improved shielding is better suited to carry the higher data rate digital S/PDIF single.  In a pinch, one could use a standard RCA audio cable for short runs with mixed results but S/PDIF cables are so cheap it really doesn't make sense not to buy one.

Here's a "basic" 6-ft S/PDIF cable for under $1.50...

  http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10236&cs_id=1023601&p_id=619&seq=1&format=2

Here's a bit fancier one that still comes in under $4.00...

  http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10236&cs_id=1023603&p_id=2680&seq=1&format=2

Longer lengths can be had cheaply as well...

  http://www.monoprice.com/products/search.asp?keyword=rca+digital+coaxial

-Sparge-

« Last Edit: June 01, 2012, 05:30:04 pm by Sparge » Logged
nivek
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« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2012, 11:09:01 pm »

I love monoprice.com, you can get almost any type of cable cheap, and their shipping is cheap too.
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