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RCA / S-Video / Coaxial - WHICH IS THE BEST?

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by Lanham, Jun 30, 2003.

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  1. Lanham

    Lanham Guest

    Just wondering if anyone knows which cord/plug gives the best quality

  2. Russ

    Russ Guest

    An S-Video will beat one RCA, but will lose against 3 RCAs. Not sure what
    you mean by coaxial, kind of the same thing as RCA.

  3. By Coaxial I assume you mean RGB, one coax for each colour?

    RGB = best
    S-Video = better
    RCA = worst

    Supposedly there is a "big" difference when you step from RCA to
    s-video, and then not as much difference when you go from s-video to

    But I'm blowed if I can notice the difference between RCA and s-video
    on my system. Guess I need the $30 gold plated oxygen free copper
    s-video lead instead of the $3 lead I got from Jaycar? - yeah right.
    Your mileage will vary with the system components you have.

    I posted on this some time back.

    Dave :)
  4. But I'm blowed if I can notice the difference between RCA and s-video
    I would like to know if there is any REAL advantange to using the,
    so-called, 'oxygen free copper' cable for AV interconnection. I ask this
    because a large proportion of us watch DVD & videos & listen to music in a
    less than perfect enviroment. There's usually too much ambient light to
    watch movies or whatever & urban noises of either subliminal or obvious
    levels to cloud the 'perfect' listening experience we are hoping for. If
    this is the average scenario for most of us is it worth the money spent on
    the cables? Let's face it, some of the prices the stores are asking for
    these cables is quite high. I can't help thinking it's all a bit of a con.
    If we were to be in a recording studio control room, where the room is
    purpose built for the task of recording and listening to sound & music, then
    I suppose the quality cabling would be important. Similarly in a video
    duplication facility - cables are all important.
    Has anyone done comparisons or have an objective view as to the advantages
    of the so- called 'oxygen free copper' cables?
    Do the AV professionals use such cables or simply make sure they keep their
    cables well maintained?

    Angelo Sartore


  5. Phil Allison

    Phil Allison Guest

    ** No.

    ............. Phil
  6. Russ

    Russ Guest

    All the pro installations I've seen and done use standard audio and video
    cable from Canare, Belden or Klotz. No-one wonders or cares whether they are
    OFC or not (I'm pretty sure the standard cables are not OFC). A lot of the
    key interconnections these days are digital over copper or optical, but
    there is still plenty of analogue cabling - the most common audio cable used
    in studios is thin, grey "install" cable, and bog standard RG59 for video.

    The difference is that the connections tend to be a lot more robust (read:
    heatshrink and cable ties), and for video at least, one does tech checks for
    attenuation, response and reflections (due to impedance mismatches).
    Furthermore, any video cabling issues are usually quite visible to trained
    eyes, and are a lot less subjective than audio.

  7. As I detailed in a previous post some time ago, I saw no real
    difference between s-video and RCA using a fairly new and expensive LG
    TV and LG DVD player.
    I tried really hard to notice differences in both still shots and
    moving video in a range of lighting conditions. I think that perhaps I
    perceived a minor difference (no better, no worse, just "slightly
    different"), but I don't know if that was just wishful thinking. There
    was certainly no "wow, look at that" difference, or anything remotely
    like it.

    I suspect that the quality of RCA and s-video circuits vary widely
    between different brand and models of TV's and DVD players. I can
    imagine cases where a combination of high quality composite RCA
    circuits would give a better quality signal than s-video, and

    Dave :)
  8. Russ

    Russ Guest

    Hang on, when you say "RCA" do you mean the single-RCA composite output, or
    the 3-RCA component output? RCA is just the name of the connector, it
    doesn't define the video format, so it's unclear what you are comparing.

    Between composite (single socket) and S-Video you should see a big
    difference. If you're not I'd suggest there is something wrong somewhere in
    the signal chain.

  9. I mean composite.
    Was trying to keep it simple as that is what the orginal poster called
    As stated, I did not see any difference between s-video and composite
    on my system.
    Guess I must either have good composite circuitry, crap s-video
    circuitry, or I need my eyes checked. I tried really hard to see the
    difference and I could not find any. You get that.
    Looks like not everyone can expect the dramatic improvement which
    seems to be the general consensus.

    Dave :)
  10. Phil Allison

    Phil Allison Guest

    ** That is weird - what DVD discs were you using ??

    S- video has a major improvement in colour resolution over

    ............ Phil
  11. Same here. I don't notice any improvement at all. I use
    gold-plated s-vid and RCA, I connect it to Video1 and
    Video2 of my TV. I switch back and forth and notice no

    Perhaps my eyes should be checked as well. Sigh!
  12. Russ

    Russ Guest

    OK, I'm probably a bit more sensitive to the differences as I've worked as a
    broadcast designer and video tech, so I know what to look for. Firstly, you
    will never see any difference on analogue broadcast television as it is
    inherently composite. You will only see a difference if your source is DVD
    and possibly a Digital TV set top box, although that's not guaranteed.
    Secondly, you will see the most obvious differences at high-frequency edges,
    such as the edge of text. Composite has a lot more colour smearing between
    edges, and often has problems with broad areas of colour.

    This page has an example:

    This one has more words and another example:

    But I admit, the majority of technical issues I see in a picture tend to be
    more or less irrelevant to the average viewer. But there is a definite
    difference, S-Video giving you a sharper, cleaner and more colourful picture
    from your DVDs.

  13. One of the DVD's was part of the Back to the Future trilogy, a highly
    regarded DVD in terms on video quality I am led to believe.
    Don't remeber what the other dics were, but they were new release

    Dave :)
  14. Yep, I read that exact page before I tried my test. Still couldn't see
    that problem, or a difference.
    I use my s-video lead anyway, and am happy with the warm fuzzy feeling
    knowing that it should be much better. Gotta get my 3 bucks worth
    anyway :->

    Dave :)
  15. conbo

    conbo Guest

    Use oxygen-free copper to prevent corrosion and maximize conductivity.
    taken from the Monster cable web site.
  16. Phil Allison

    Phil Allison Guest

    ** Tin plating does that best.

    and maximize conductivity.

    ** Not even an issue.

    ............. Phil
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