RCA cables blingbling mode?
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  1. #1
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    Default RCA cables blingbling mode?

    I was wondering if golden plated RCAs actually sound better than "normal" ones when using a soundcard (and an analog mixer). I mean, being all digital shouldn't the difference be very little?

    Cheers!

  2. #2

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    Theoretically it would make no difference if it's all digital but it depends on the signal being sent. I can't really talk from a sound quality stand point because I haven't been in the game for long enough to hear the differences but from a technical standpoint (I'm kind of a nerd so yeah) if it's only carrying a digital signal (some of the new Pioneer CDJs have a digital coaxial out) then you likely won't see any difference between cables except maybe build quality.

    If it's analogue, eg. connecting audio sources to a mixer, mixer to amps, etc, then you may hear a difference.

    Lets just be clear though, just because you're DJing using a laptop using MP3's and a MIDI controller doesn't mean your sound output is still digital. If you are outputting to a mixer using two RCA's then the signal sent across those cables is all analogue unless

    I say that because there is always somewhere in the signal chain where it gets converted from digital to analogue if you're playing from a computer, iPod, CD or whatever that isn't already analogue like a vinyl record would be. Now I'm not sure if you already knew this so I thought I'd say it anyway.

    Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, this is just my understanding.

  3. #3
    Tech Guru deevey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InsertSmartName View Post
    I was wondering if golden plated RCAs actually sound better than "normal" ones when using a soundcard (and an analog mixer). I mean, being all digital shouldn't the difference be very little?

    Cheers!
    Well one area where Gold Plated RCA's really "shine" is that they cannot corrode over time and cause audio dropouts which is enough of a reason to buy them probably - and lots of inexpensive cables have gold plated RCA's.

    Regarding the sound quality though ... well the signal digital or analog still needs to get transferred cleanly between point A >B. "In theory" if the cables themselves are made of pure silver it should sound heaps better than copper cable and the cable should influence the sound more than the Connectors.

    In your setup the signal is analog though not digital though - the digital signal would be between your sound card and USB port.

    Heres some fun reading on (very) expensive speaker cables.
    http://consumerist.com/2008/03/03/do...onster-cables/

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    Tech Mentor dsquareddan's Avatar
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    I think you are confusing RCA with Digital Coax S/PDIF. while they are the same type of connector, RCA carries electric analog signal traveling down the wire with a Left (white) & Right (red) connector. Digital S/PDIF connects with just a single cable (yellow) that is digital that carries combined left & right and is just 0's & 1's (digital)

    You should always strive for the best quality sound reproduction as possible. any sound system is only as good as it's weakest chain. Wether that's playing mp3 quality instead of lossless songs, clipping the DJ mixer channels &/or master output, shitty cables, or poor room tuning of the speakers. While the difference is not anywhere near night & day, it does make a difference, ever so slightly. If the signal has the least path of resistance it does not lose much or any integrity on the way.

    I'd say it depends what you are playing on. At home with your stereo, not a big deal to get regular old RCA's. playing at a major club with a sound system worth more than $10000, do anything you can to keep the music you play at maximum clarity

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    Well... Thanks both of you! I'll go for some good cables

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    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsquareddan View Post
    At home with your stereo, not a big deal to get regular old RCA's. playing at a major club with a sound system worth more than $10000, do anything you can to keep the music you play at maximum clarity
    Cables are a drop in the bucket compared to the other things you mentioned. A 3' RCA run with connectors that work are fine, and the things that would make it reject noise (e.g., balanced cables) don't work with DJ mixers.

    If you're playing CDJs and a digital mixer, it's worth using the digital connection to the mixer. If the mixer is digital and has a sound card (e.g., DJM900, Rane 68) and you're on Traktor/Serato/etc. and can use it, it's wort avoiding 2 conversions and just using that sound card. But in the grand scheme of things that can go wrong, it's not that high on the list.

    Quote Originally Posted by InsertSmartName View Post
    I was wondering if golden plated RCAs actually sound better than "normal" ones when using a soundcard (and an analog mixer). I mean, being all digital shouldn't the difference be very little?
    You're not talking about a digital signal, and no...as long as the cable isn't damaged, it won't sound different.

    I also don't think I've ever had a connector actually fail. If a cable breaks, it's because the connector broke off or the wire broke inside the sheath. It's a marketing gimick. Fortunately, it's a cheap one.

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    Thanks to all of you for this awesome replies!

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