opinion of dayton audio cable from parts express

Discussion in 'Accessories, Cables, and Remotes' started by TedLee, Nov 22, 2003.

  1. TedLee

    TedLee Agent

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    i think its the parts express brand.

    anyone have any experience with these cables are they any good? better than standard cables?

    how about compared to AR regular series and ARIIPro?

    thanks a bunch!
     
  2. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    I think the Dayton is the budget brand. I have used and recommend the AR Pro2 series. Others really like the higher-end AR video cables (the Master series).

    We are talking video cables here, yes?

    Remember that the cable should be kept in perspective with the sensitivity of the equipment. A 19" TV with SVideo is one thing, a 80" Front Projector with a HDTV pushing 720p video is another. The first system is fairly INSENSITIVE to the cable, the second one is much-more sensitive.

    Look at the 2 pieces of equipment you are hooking up and take 10% of the cost as a budget for the connecting cables. Strike that - use 10% as the maximum you should spend on the connecting cables.
     
  3. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    Well there are exterior differences in construction, Ted. As far as the inner workings of the Dayton brand, I submit to you the following:
     
  4. TedLee

    TedLee Agent

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    Stats for ARII Pro
    *99.97% oxygen free copper, *Three layers of shielding: one 100% overlapped Mylar™ foil for RFI isolation and two 95% copper braid for EMI isolation,

    Stats for ARPRO
    Double shielded individual conductors protect against interference. 100% overlapped aluminized mylar plus tinned copper braid provides maximum isolation.

    so im thinking that the dayton brand should be comparable to the AR Pro series?
     
  5. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    You have to be a little careful here.

    Chu does a excellent job of looking at the specs and raising awareness that you should look at the construction materials.

    But there are other factors. Just looking at the material specs is like selecting ice-cream/beer by reading the ingredents label. It does not tell you things like:
    • Is the coax used RG6 or RG59? I happen to know that the AR Pro2 series uses RG6 which means a 18 ga center conductor. The Dayton cable says "22 ga" which means it is likely RG59. Not really an issue for Audio, but could be for Video.
    • Quality of the RCA plug.
    • - Does it grip firmly and maintain it's grip over years of use/strain?
    • - Does it have a large surface area on the connecting surface?
    • - Does the body have a large grip-surface to make it easy to grab when connecting/disconnecting?
    • - Does the impedence of the plug come close to the impedence of the coax? (not a huge issue for audio, but an issue for video.)
    • - Is the plug metal aluminum or copper with a anti-corrosion coating?
    • Over all build-quality
    • How stiff/workable is the cable. The Dayton cable is covered with PVC (the same stuff your sprinkler pipes are made from.) It's likely stiff, shiney and hard to work with. The AR cables are coated with a softer, rubbery sheath that routes better behind your rack.
    • What is the frequency response of the cable? This is a tough one because neither company provides frequency response charts.

    In general, a lot of people here like the AR cables. They are inexpensive and likely available in your town at Best Buy, Sears, Good Guys, etc. These places all have a good return policy in case you are not satisfied.

    If you are really counting pennies, I'd do this:

    - Use the less-expensive cables for audio and audio/video from low-quality sources (VCR, CATV Box)

    - Use the more-expensive cables for the video feeds from higher-quality sources (DVD, DSS, HD box's).

    Good Luck.
     
  6. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    I've nothing in particular against Bob's good words for the AR cables. It's one of hundreds out there that are up to the task of faithfully transmitting a signal with no visual degradation...However, being the curmudgeon that I can be and playing a bit of devil's advocate, to his bulleted list I offer in order...

    only an issue for very long lengths. for a couple of meters who cares. AVCable sells 100 foot lengths of RG59 component video cable.

    valid comment. I'd suspect that Partsexpress sells an adequate plug. doubtful it's the equal of a canare but if it's gold plated, given the source, I'd hazzard to say it's adequate.

    i hope so as long as you don't abuse it. as 'standard' as RCA plugs are, some are a tad off both males and females.

    valid comment however so long as you use a twisting motion you generally won't screw them up

    irrelvant issue for video. The length of the plug is many times less than 1/4 of the wavelength of the signal you're passing. besides the component you're hooking up generally have impedance matching resistors.

    i dont worry too much about the plug so long as it's gold plated

    well sprite says image is everything

    well hold on here! lots of the high end cables have an exterior PVC sheeth and flexibility is determined by thickness and the nature and amount of the plasticizers. so long as it's thin, it's fairly flexible and durable. one could jokingly look at the rubber comment (maybe they're using polyurethane) and state maybe it's like the rubber that Jenna Jameson uses.

    it can be fairly closely estimated from an earlier post I made. for a few meters, it's way past what you need at 3x or better in terms of bandwidth.


    buying a cable that's overspecified for the job doesn't give you a cable that results in a better picture, it simply gives you an overspecified cable. so long as we know that, i think we can make more informed shopping decisions.
     
  7. TedLee

    TedLee Agent

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    heres the deal, i need a optical cable to hook up the iriver hp-120 hd mp3 player that im getting.

    and i also need an optical to connect my playstation 2

    and then i need 6 audio cables to hook up my dvd player to my reciver for my dvd audio...

    speaking of dvd audio....do all dvd players play dvd audio?

    i have a panasonic one that i got like 2 years ago.

    currently my computer is hooked up to my system using spdif digital coax, via a 12'ft AR digtal coax cable.

    so under these circumstances is AR better than DAYTON audio.

    if neither is adequate then i guess i can get the ARIIPRO cables....
     
  8. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    Ted, it gets complicated because all choices are equally good from either a visual or audible point of view.

    Get anybody's optical that you think looks good and whose price you feel comfortable with. Unless it's broken, they're all the same. So whether you get it from Radio Shack, Target, PartsExpress and wind up spending around $10 or whether you spend hundreds, it's a wash.

    I mean, you can do all your shopping starting from this page: http://www.partsexpress.com/webpage....&WebPage_ID=59

    The top of the line AR has a technical edge on the Dayton's. However if I were to set up two identical systems with the cables being the difference, you would not be able to tell which had the technically better cable.
     
  9. TedLee

    TedLee Agent

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    Awesome. then im just going to get a bunch of this dayton brand stuff, it looks pretty good and its at a cheap price.

    unless somehow i feel it is inadequate i can always just get more [​IMG]
     
  10. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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  11. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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  12. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    Well Lee would say SACD rules...[​IMG]

    It's not about keeping you honest Bob and I would not have any problems about someone stating they'd bought a technically superior cable. I just like to throw it all out and let people make up their minds as to what works for them. As food for thought though, what kind of wire do you think is in that cable that feeds your monitor that you're driving at 32 bit color at 1280x1024 and maybe a 70 Hz refresh rate? Think it's more taxing than the video coming out of a DVD?
     
  13. ClintS

    ClintS Stunt Coordinator

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    I have bought and used the Parts Express Optical cable, the digital cable, and an s video cable. They seem thick and well made and work flawlessly. I still like Monster cables better but man are they pricey. I recently started buying bluejean cables, they are very nice for a resonable price, VERY thick wires and nice canare ends. They all seem to work.

    On the DVD-audio note, you need to check the specs for your specific model. Not all of them will do DVD-audio, and yes Super Audio CD is superior. IMO

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Not all DVD players will do DVD-A (if they do, it will be pretty prominent in the players specs), but even if they do not, most DVD-A discs have a DD and/or DTS track, which can sound quite good.

    BGL
     

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