Coaxial speaker cable technology has been around for a while.
Several high-end applications where quality counts and technology are important have been introduced, replaced, or still utilize them.
Before we examine the outstanding audio quality that coaxial speaker cables may provide (which we know is crucial for audiophiles like jazz enthusiasts!) Let’s examine how this technology functions.
A Coaxial Cable: What Is It?
If you want to get right down to it, a coaxial cable is just an insulated, shielded electric conducting cable.
These cables transmit radio frequencies ranging from 20 kHz to 300 GHz in both analog and digital electric signal transmission.
Commonly referred to as just ‘coax’, these cables exist in a wide variety of varieties with numerous connectors. Unknowingly, you have undoubtedly utilized a variety of coaxial cables.
Coaxial cables are frequently referred to by the type of connection they use, such as “RCA” or “XLR.”
The cable itself between the connectors is the “coaxial” component. In this instance, “RCA” is not the same as “XLR,” but both terms make use of a coaxial cable.
What Is the Purpose of a Coax Cable?
Between a transmitter and a receiver, coaxial cables offer a physical link for transmitting radio signals.
Telecom businesses employed a coaxial cable to carry telegraphs over large distances, which is an example of a coaxial cable early adopter.
Technology such as HAM radio, video equipment, cable television, and audio systems allowed coaxial wires to enter the house.
Coaxial cables were frequently used by TVs before HDMI to receive audio and video signals from equipment such as VCRs, DVD players, cable boxes, and gaming consoles using composite and component connections.
Your service provider uses a coaxial cable to transmit your cable TV and internet.
The uses of coaxial cable that are exclusive to audio are numerous:
- stereos in homes (including connecting to speakers).
- recording audio with a microphone.
- connecting amplifiers to electric musical instruments.
How is a coaxial cable made?
Even though there are several varieties of coaxial cables with distinctive design modifications for certain functions, all coaxial cables contain the same four primary parts. These elements are, in order, from outside to inside:
A plastic jacket for protection
Instead of shielding the internal components of the cable, which are responsible for signal transmission and interference protection, the cable’s outside helps to shield the signal from outside interference.
a metallic copper weave shield
This component, as its name suggests, shields the transmission from radio wave interference. There are probably dozens, if not hundreds, of radio-transmitting devices close by unless you live in a remote area.
Your gadget is transmitting and receiving radio waves unless you are viewing this on printed paper.
The inner dielectric insulator
The entire objective of this portion of the cable is that it does nothing. To keep the metallic shield and core wire apart, there is an insulator.
The actual work is done by this component, which also serves as the cable’s electrical grounding. While often constructed of copper, these components can also be built of steel with a copper wire covering.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Coaxial Cables
An honest sales pitch should always contain a list of the advantages and disadvantages of any technology.
Reduced signal loss advantages of coaxial cable
high caliber over short distances
cables that last
Coiled Cable Negative:
loss of signal over a large distance
loss of signal at the link
Coaxial Speaker Cable Utilization
It’s time to focus on what makes coaxial cables a superior option for speaker cables now that we’ve established what they are, what they’re used for, and what benefits they provide.
A reliable choice for transmitting high-quality audio signals from an amplifier or receiver to speakers is a coax speaker wire.
Coaxial Speaker Cables: Advantages and Drawbacks
Coaxial cables are a great choice since they transmit high-frequency signals with less interference from your receiver/amplifier to your speakers.
The benefits of using a coaxial speaker cable include high-speed data transfer and professional-level audio quality.
At the lengths required for residential audio systems, signal degradation is not a problem.
Cables are remarkably resilient.
Good shielding against signal interference or noise
Simple to install
Disadvantages of Coaxial Speaker Cable:
You might be able to get by with “out-of-the-box” speaker cable options now available.
With very lengthy cables, signal loss is a problem.
Cables are large, making them more difficult to conceal.
less flexible and heavier than alternative solutions
Using coaxial speaker wires requires careful consideration of the idea of impedance. The audio quality will significantly degrade if you have either too little or too much.
For speaker connections, use coaxial cables with a 75 Ohm impedance rating.
Impedance gauges the cable’s overall electrical resistance. Better sound quality results from the higher impedance.
Since analog will more or less pass through, despite the quality occasionally degrading, impedance is a bigger problem with digital than analog. Digital requires all or nothing.
You’re in luck if your speakers have RCA or XLR connectors because there are already-made coaxial cable connections that you can use to connect to them.
If not, connecting the coaxial connection to the speakers will require some do-it-yourself work.
Many internet video tutorials that lead you through the procedure are available. These are the fundamental steps:
The speaker’s distance from the amplifier/receiver should be measured. Just to be safe, take two measurements. You can use the length of the old cable as a reference if you’re replacing it.
The coaxial cable should be cut to the desired length.
Using a utility knife or razor blade, cut away the plastic protective layer, leaving space to attach the connector. This could be as little as 0.5 inches or as much as 1.5 inches. To establish the connection, try to occupy as little space as possible because the more exposed you are, the greater the chance of signal loss.
Release the cable’s braided shield, then twist it into its own wire-like end. Hence, the “black” connector is produced.
Just above where you removed the plastic screen and protective layer, cut and remove the insulator from the cable. Don’t risk damaging the core. As a result, the “red” connector is made.
Follow steps 3, 4, and 5 again on the opposite side.
The red connector on the speaker and the red connector on the receiver should each receive the exposed core speaker wire.
Attach the twisted braided shield to the corresponding black connectors on the speaker and receiver.
Types of Cable
Coaxial speaker cables can be used with either flexible coaxial or semirigid coaxial cable constructions. Because flexible coaxial bends far more easily than rigid coaxial, as their names suggest, you can tell the two apart with ease.
Semirigid coaxial, however, offers improved shielding for reduced interference.
Although flexible coax is more readily bendable to make the connection, semirigid coax is still the preferable option for the best audio quality.
The Triax, dual coax, and twin axial cable types also function, but their extra characteristics might make things more difficult without offering useful solutions.