Jump to content



Sign up for a free account to remove the pop-up ads

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and remove the pop-up ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.

Photo
- - - - -

Coaxial or Optical ??


This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
58 replies to this topic

#1 of 59 OFFLINE   Mark C Wagner

Mark C Wagner

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2003

Posted June 23 2003 - 12:38 PM

Was wondering if I could get help in maybe what might be a stupid question. I am experienced only in the yesteryear stereo stuff.

Have an Onkyo TX-SR700 receiver and want to hook up my DVD and VHS to the receiver.

Which is the better to use for hooking up my DVD to the receiver? Coaxial or optical ?

Do I still need to hook up all the RCA connections for the 5:1 thing?

To be honest, I am confused with all the multiple ways of hooking this thing up in the instruction manual.

I just want to hook up my DVD and VCR to the receiver and nothing else. I have all the speakers and sub and ready to go, but am confused to the hook-up.

Any help will definitely be greatly appreciated !!!
Mark

#2 of 59 OFFLINE   JamesHl

JamesHl

    Supporting Actor



  • 813 posts
  • Join Date: May 08 2003

Posted June 23 2003 - 12:49 PM

You don't have to hook up the analog multichannel 5.1 for dvd if you use digital unless you also use SACD and DVD-A. The FAQ has your answers about coax vs optical, short answer no difference. Whatever is more convenient.

#3 of 59 OFFLINE   Steve Owen

Steve Owen

    Second Unit



  • 419 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 07 1999

Posted June 23 2003 - 12:51 PM

Quote:
Which is the better to use for hooking up my DVD to the receiver? Coaxial or optical ?
Most high-end audiophiles seem to like coaxial. I can't tell the difference on my system. Use whatever you have a cable for. And you shouldn't need to get a special coaxial cable. Any RCA cable will do.
Quote:
Do I still need to hook up all the RCA connections for the 5:1 thing?
Short answer: No, you don't need the RCA connections. I think we need a bit more info on your DVD player to answer this fully. It sounds like it has a buit-in dolby-digital and/or dts decoder. Does it have 6 RCA audio outputs, or just 2?

-Steve
"He says the sun came out last night. He says it sang to him."

#4 of 59 OFFLINE   Mark C Wagner

Mark C Wagner

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2003

Posted June 23 2003 - 12:58 PM

A big hats off to the lot of you and a gracious handshake !!

My DVD player has 6 of the RCA type connectors.

Has a coaxial type connector next to an opitical connector.

(and of course the typical 2 stero RCA connections)

Thanks again !!
Mark

#5 of 59 OFFLINE   JamesHl

JamesHl

    Supporting Actor



  • 813 posts
  • Join Date: May 08 2003

Posted June 23 2003 - 12:58 PM

"And you shouldn't need to get a special coaxial cable. Any RCA cable will do."

Not so, according to spec anyway. An rca video cable would work. Coax digital cables should be 75 ohm.

#6 of 59 OFFLINE   Neil Joseph

Neil Joseph

    Lead Actor



  • 8,341 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 16 1998
  • Real Name:Neil Joseph

Posted June 24 2003 - 04:37 AM

Posted Image

Digital Audio: Optical Connection vs. Coax connection
Click and enter " T H E . H O L O D E C K "
---------------------------------------------------------
My Home Theatre "The Holodeck"

 


#7 of 59 OFFLINE   BrianEK

BrianEK

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 95 posts
  • Join Date: May 06 2003

Posted June 25 2003 - 07:57 PM

if you decided to go with coaxial you would have to purchase a coaxial cable itself. any RCA cable will not do because the cable is different. only the connector on the end of the cable is the same(my pc has coax out and tried to use it with my Onkyo TXDS797 and i just got static). Just like component video cables have RCA connectors on the end of them but if you tried to use normal RCA cables instead you wouldn't get any picture on your TV.(i work at circuit city and actually had a big argument with a guy about the expensive component cables being different, he didn't believe me, then came back the next day to buy them cause his RCA's didn't work) Both cables may be 75 ohm but that is just a rating. 75 ohm refers to the distance between the actual signal path(center) and the outside edge of cable. But you will need an actual coaxial cable, RCA's won't work. but to address the difference between coaxial and optical, they both technically do the same. A lot of audiophiles like optical because it uses puslating light to transfer the signal and light cannot be distrupted or degraded by eletrical interference. You can get a degraded signal technically with coaxial because of the interference that can occur with having lots of electronics plugged in close to each other. (read the link above from Neil and it is explained) I currently have my sony dvd hooked up with coaxial, but i am switching to optical because i upgraded to some really nice Infinity speakers, but whether or not there is a big difference in sound quality will more depend on your equipment. if it's nothng too special, you won't notice it and it won't matter which you buy. But there is a reason optical cables generally cost more than coaxial, they technically are better. But then again everyone's ear is differnt, some notice the difference and some don't.

#8 of 59 OFFLINE   Mark C Wagner

Mark C Wagner

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2003

Posted June 25 2003 - 10:44 PM

I have learned a lot and am very grateful for the input. I am continuing to do more and more reading and am very excited about putting this thing all together.

Thanks to Neil and Brian for taking the time to shed light on the subject !!
Mark

#9 of 59 OFFLINE   Neil Joseph

Neil Joseph

    Lead Actor



  • 8,341 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 16 1998
  • Real Name:Neil Joseph

Posted June 26 2003 - 01:39 AM

As far as using any old cable for the coaxial interconnect, personally, I have seen audio dropouts result from using a cheap cable that disappeared altogether after changing the interconnect. Just an FYI.
Click and enter " T H E . H O L O D E C K "
---------------------------------------------------------
My Home Theatre "The Holodeck"

 


#10 of 59 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

Scott Merryfield

    Executive Producer



  • 10,662 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 16 1998
  • LocationMichigan

Posted June 26 2003 - 01:57 AM

Quote:
Both cables may be 75 ohm but that is just a rating. 75 ohm refers to the distance between the actual signal path(center) and the outside edge of cable.

Ohm is an electrical measurement of resistance, not a distance measurement. Resistance is anything that causes an opposition to the flow of electricity in a circuit. It is used to control the amount of voltage and/or amperage in a circuit. Everything in the circuit causes a resistance (even wire). It is measured in Ohms.

Quote:
Just like component video cables have RCA connectors on the end of them but if you tried to use normal RCA cables instead you wouldn't get any picture on your TV

As long as the cables are rated for 75 Ohms, it does not matter whether the packaging states "component video cables" or simply "audio/video cables". You will get a picture on your monitor. I have successfully used standard $15 Radio Shack Gold Series a/v cables as component video cables -- in fact, the video quality was very close to that of the $100 Bettercables component video cables I upgraded to.

Standard composite video cables should also be rated at 75 Ohms and can be used as a digital coaxial cable (I've done it). Whether the audio quality is identical or not can be a huge debate, and I will not open that can of worms. Someone on this site a few years ago even constructed a "digital coaxial" cable from a coat hanger to prove a point, and there was no signal loss with this unusual homemade cable.

#11 of 59 OFFLINE   John Garcia

John Garcia

    Executive Producer



  • 11,550 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 24 1999
  • Real Name:John
  • LocationNorCal

Posted June 26 2003 - 04:25 AM

Quote:
A lot of audiophiles like optical because it uses puslating light to transfer the signal and light cannot be distrupted or degraded by eletrical interference.

What is your definition of Audiophile???? I have never hear of a serious audiophile who prefers optical, or even digital for that matter. True audiophiles like analog. I've never talked to an Audiophile who shops at Circuit City.

Quote:
You can get a degraded signal technically with coaxial because of the interference that can occur with having lots of electronics plugged in close to each other.


Quote:
...light cannot be distrupted or degraded by eletrical interference.

Light CAN be disrupted, it is simply not susceptible to the same types of interference as electrons passing through wire. There is just as much potential for sound degredation with optical vs coaxial, and it is also just as much affected by cable quality. (I worked in the fiber optic industry).

Quote:
75 ohm refers to the distance between the actual signal path(center) and the outside edge of cable

WTF? Read this Not to be too harsh, but if you work selling audio gear, and you intend to continue to do so, I suggest you do a bit more research and restrain from commenting on something you are not completely familiar with. No information is better than wrong information.
HT: Emotiva UMC-200, Emotiva XPA-3, Carnegie Acoustics CSB-1s + CSC-1, GR Research A/V-1s, Epik Empire, Oppo BDP-105, PS4, PS3,URC R-50, APC-H10, Panamax 5100 Bluejeans Cable
System Two: Marantz PM7200, Pioneer FS52s, Panasonic BD79
(stolen) : Marantz SR-8300, GR Research A/V-2s, Sony SCD-222ES SACD, Panasonic BD-65, PS3 60G (250G)

Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

 


#12 of 59 OFFLINE   BruceD

BruceD

    Screenwriter



  • 1,223 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 12 1999

Posted June 26 2003 - 04:29 AM

Some misinformation here!!

TO CLARIFY

Any cable with RCA connectors rated as a 75 Ohm AV cable will work for video, digital audio or analog audio.

For component video, distance can be a critical issue, especially when you get past 25 feet or 10 meters.

My recommendation is to buy 75 Ohm AV cables for all interconnects, that way ensuring you don't have a problem.

By the way, standard audio RCA interconnects are usually rated at 50 Ohms and thus not suitable for video or digital audio.

#13 of 59 OFFLINE   JeremyFr

JeremyFr

    Supporting Actor



  • 794 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 28 2003

Posted June 26 2003 - 10:58 AM

Quote:
What is your definition of Audiophile???? I have never hear of a serious audiophile who prefers optical, or even digital for that matter. True audiophiles like analog. I've never talked to an Audiophile who shops at Circuit City.


hehe Amen to that!

At any rate Optical and Coaxial both have advantages and disadvantages and quite frankly whatever works for you works its gonna be the same digital signal in the end, having one over the other doesn't magically change the 1's and 0's adding some mystical improvement in sound.

A few things you'll find is that Coaxial will be a more robust connection in as you dont have to worry bout bending the cable wrong and breaking the small glass strand inside hence cutting your connection and screwing you out of a $15-$150 dollar optical cable. So alot comes down to how you're going to run cables etc. Optical can not be bent in sharp angles it has to have gentle curves due to the glass inside where as Coax is quite a bit more robust in this aspect.
For those of you who know your job is to teach.
For those of you who dont know your job is to learn.

#14 of 59 OFFLINE   Vincent_S

Vincent_S

    Second Unit



  • 450 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 29 2002

Posted June 26 2003 - 01:55 PM

If it makes any difference, I just replaced my fiber optic cable with a coax about 3 weeks ago. I couldn't tell any difference in sound but a cheaper optical is about $20-$25. My coax from www.heartlandcables.com was $15 and the build quality is excellent!

#15 of 59 OFFLINE   BrianEK

BrianEK

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 95 posts
  • Join Date: May 06 2003

Posted June 26 2003 - 07:20 PM

John Garcia: audiophiles aren't necessarily the people who only like analog sound. Those are refered to as audio "purists".

#16 of 59 OFFLINE   Mark C Wagner

Mark C Wagner

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2003

Posted June 26 2003 - 10:50 PM

I will have to say I had no idea the thread would become so involved. I have to thank everyone for their input, advice, and comments.

However, in reality, I am a little disappointed that we have such negative opinions on where someone shops. You a nobody if you buy from "Circut City".

I paid less than $600.00 for an Onkyo TX-SR700 at Circut City. I would like to think that is a pretty good deal for a middle of the line receiver. I did quite a bit of research and just about everywhere, the price is higher.

Thanks to everyone who help shed some light on this subject, I am more informed, more educated, and definitely feel I am ready to assemble this week-end.

Thanks again to everyone !!
Mark

#17 of 59 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

Scott Merryfield

    Executive Producer



  • 10,662 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 16 1998
  • LocationMichigan

Posted June 27 2003 - 12:52 AM

Quote:
Optical can not be bent in sharp angles it has to have gentle curves due to the glass inside where as Coax is quite a bit more robust in this aspect.

FYI, the less expensive Toslink optical cables are made of plastic, not glass.

#18 of 59 OFFLINE   John Garcia

John Garcia

    Executive Producer



  • 11,550 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 24 1999
  • Real Name:John
  • LocationNorCal

Posted June 27 2003 - 06:43 AM

I was not trying to give Circuit City a bad rap, but they are not in the realm of what I consider "high end" equipment, and certainly (by my definition) "audiophile" and Circuit City are not mentioned in the same sentence. I shop there occasionally for deals/specials, but in general, they do not carry any speakers that I am interested in. Some receviers and DVD players, new release DVDs and CDs, possibly a home phone, but not much else.

Everything is relative. An audiophile to me is someone who will spend $4000-5000+ on one pair of speakers. A "purist" is someone who spends $2000 on a cartridge for their turntable.

I am not a "purist", but I guarantee you that good DACs with good analog interconnects will sound better than digital every time. Except for my DVD transport, all my connections are analog. So SACD and DVD-A are for "purists"? These formats are both analog only.

sorry for going off topic.
HT: Emotiva UMC-200, Emotiva XPA-3, Carnegie Acoustics CSB-1s + CSC-1, GR Research A/V-1s, Epik Empire, Oppo BDP-105, PS4, PS3,URC R-50, APC-H10, Panamax 5100 Bluejeans Cable
System Two: Marantz PM7200, Pioneer FS52s, Panasonic BD79
(stolen) : Marantz SR-8300, GR Research A/V-2s, Sony SCD-222ES SACD, Panasonic BD-65, PS3 60G (250G)

Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

 


#19 of 59 OFFLINE   JeremyFr

JeremyFr

    Supporting Actor



  • 794 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 28 2003

Posted June 27 2003 - 08:23 AM

Quote:
FYI, the less expensive Toslink optical cables are made of plastic, not glass.


I understand this but they are still just as easy to break and even more problem prone due to being plastic than glass toslink cables.
For those of you who know your job is to teach.
For those of you who dont know your job is to learn.

#20 of 59 OFFLINE   Jay Yo

Jay Yo

    Auditioning



  • 4 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 16 2003

Posted June 29 2003 - 09:41 PM

WOW Somebody just got flamed!!:b You guys should not be so rough on the poor guy hes trying. I have been pulling wires for ten years since HT was only at my house.Posted Image We need be incouraging him not flaming him. Now with that said. Maybe Radioshack would be better suited for now and leave circuit city too the 2nd year people. Posted Image J/K


Back to Beginners, General Questions & HTiB (Home Theater in a Box)



Forum Nav Content I Follow