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Best Digital Connection

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by rp71, Mar 7, 2002.

  1. rp71

    rp71
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    Hi,

    Just got my 3802 yesterday, and am wondering what digital connection i should use from my dvd player.

    Call me a dunce, but looking in Currys (all hifi shops are closed when I leave from work) I can see firbre optic digital cable, but wasn't sure about the coax, as there were no cables that said coax on the boxes.

    anyways, which should I get, and what is a box definition of a coax.

    Cheers

    Richard
     
  2. bob007

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    Not any difference between the two over short lengths, coaxial seems to be the prefered here, have a look at the IXOS 105 digital coaxial about £24.99. Wouldn't use main hi-fi shops unless they stock IXOS/QED try mail order, can normally get next day delivery.
     
  3. Jase

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    Hi

    Personally, I prefer Coaxial but do use Optical as well.

    Have a look at www.chord.co.uk & www.qed.co.uk

    for info on their product ranges/what they do etc

    cheers
     
  4. mjn

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    optical does not suffer from interference from other cables, ie mains leads. As light is not affected by stray signals.

    Co-ax is a electrical signal, and thus can suffer from interference.
     
  5. bob007

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    Therefore don't go for a cheap cable, the cheap ones can be poorly shielded.
     
  6. bobones

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    No, do go for a cheap cable. Visit Maplins and buy a 75ohm phono-phono video cable for about £2.50 (actually available much cheaper (50p) elsewhere). It will perform equally well as an expensive "hifi" digital coax under virtually all domestic conditions. In fact, a normal audio phono cable is likely to work perfectly too.

    If a digital cable is susceptable to interference then it will be readily apparent as clicks, pops, or dropouts, not some subtle change in tone or musicality.

    Could it be that people on here touting expensive digital cables are in the cable or hifi industry themselves?
     
  7. Ian J

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    That is as likely as those touting cheap cables actually working for Maplins
     
  8. mjn

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    i only use Co-ax on my HTPC; i use optical on my normal DVD player....and i don't suffer from interference. But i said that co-ax CAN suffer from interference if there is a strong source.
     
  9. bob007

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    And boy are you going to get a load of these for your 50p....

    The answer to that is NO, just HC Enthusiasts that have learnt not to buy 50p leads, and to pass on their own experiences.
     
  10. bobones

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    Actually the 50p video cable works perfectly. Certainly as good as a £40 Chord digital coax I had on loan. How could they sound different anyway?

    BTW I can get a 300m roll of Cat 5 cable for about £20, which is capable of carrying an error free signal at 100mb/s - much faster data rates than AV cables need to carry. What possible scientific justification is there for spending £20+ on a 1 metre digital coax?
    There's none, it's complete folly.
     
  11. bob007

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    You connect a 50p cable on a system thats say £300 then connect a £40 cable, probally not a lot in it.
    Now connect a 50p cable on a system costing £2500 then a £40 cable, Mozart would be able to tell the difference.
    But the time you get your metre of Cat 5 terminated it would be cheaper to buy a £25 cable, plus you wouldn't have 299m of Cat 5 left over.
     
  12. bobones

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    While that may be true for analogue signals, it just doesn't apply to digital. If the signal arrives such that any transmission errors are correctable, then any 2 cables will sound identical as the decoder will 'see' an identical stream of zeros and ones.

    'Jitter' (errors in the timing of 0s and 1s) is often quoted as the reason for sound differences in digital audio equipment. However, as soon as the data is stored, eg in a memory buffer or hard disk, all previous jitter error disappears. Digital data (say DD or DTS) arriving down your cable is buffered and uncompressed, re-clocked then DAC'd, therefore any jitter errors attributable to the cable are completely erradicated in the amp/receiver.

    Any actual bitflipping occuring due to interference in the cable may result in none too subtle clicks, pops, drop-outs and noise, not the changes in tonal quality like "fuller bass, sweeter treble", that some claim to hear.

    In short, if I don't hear any 'discontinuities' in the sound when using a 50p cable then I can conclude that it is working as well as any other digital cable can.

    That's basically the case for my side of the argument. Can you give any reasons, based on logic or science, why different digital coax cables might sound different, even in high-end gear?

    Nonsense. RJ45 termination is cheap and easy. No doubt that when cat5 and rj45 become more prevalent in hifi/av use (and I believe some manufacturers already have rj45 interfaces), we'll see QED, IXOS and their like come out with their own oxygen-free, gold-plated, double insulated cat5/rj45 cables at £50 a throw. They'll advertise in hifi magazines, reviewers will say they're loads better, retailers will stock them, and suckers like us (well not me) will go out and buy them.
     
  13. Stewart C

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    I use Coaxial (Ecosse Reference).

    As far as I am aware Optical can have a tendency for light to fracture within the cable. It's not one continuous bitstream of light.

    Ask me if I can hear a difference.........No not really.

    Regards
     
  14. Guest

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    I bought some CCTV coaxial cable for 50p a meter. Clamped two plugs on. Works great.

    I tried some normal phono cable, but strangely, my tuner was affected... (there seemed to be intereference).

    -TF
     
  15. Darth Vader

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    Most clicks, glitches and farts will probably be due a non clean electrical supply not digital interconnects.

    (a clean electrical supply is located at the main electrical feed to the property or the area where the system is set up. This clean elecrical supply smoothes the electrical current to give a consistant supply without any dips and peaks in the current. Most consumer equipment does smooth out the supply with its own on board power supply, but it is not as effective as a professional out board set up). Dips and peaks in the electical supply can cause glitches in your equipment which is sometimes blamed unfairly on the digital interconnects.
     
  16. dts_boy

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    [/B][/QUOTE]
    Nonsense. RJ45 termination is cheap and easy. No doubt that when cat5 and rj45 become more prevalent in hifi/av use (and I believe some manufacturers already have rj45 interfaces), we'll see QED, IXOS and their like come out with their own oxygen-free, gold-plated, double insulated cat5/rj45 cables at £50 a throw. They'll advertise in hifi magazines, reviewers will say they're loads better, retailers will stock them, and suckers like us (well not me) will go out and buy them. [/B][/QUOTE]

    Liberty do a line of "Hi Fi" cat 5 cable, its much better at Tx than normal Cat 5....NOT!
    i just knew when i saw the title of the post it would lead to petty arguments, i would just say do what you are comfortable with
    :p
     
  17. mjn

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    optical can go for km's without light fracture!! As with a length of over 200m roughly, you have to use a single core of glass, not multiple cores.

    As for 50p interconnects v. £40 interconnects, in the digital domain especially optical cables, the changes if any are small.

    However change to analogue interconnects, and thats a different story.....
     
  18. hermand

    hermand
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    Just to stir this particular pot of controversy, if as bobones says:

    i.e. if we accept this is true, then surely it makes no difference to the sound quality (with DD/DTS) what dvd player you have sending the digital signal to the amp/decoder. Therefore a £4000+ Tag DVD32R will sound the same as a £100 Dansai 852 if they are connected to the same amp/decoder. The only way this is not true is if

    (a) bobones is wrong, and jitter does make a difference to DD/DTS

    or

    (b) The stream of zero and ones is different (aside from jitter) - is this possible from a given disc?

    I'm not claiming this is true, but is this not the logical conclusion?

    Cheers

    Herman
     
  19. bobones

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    Nothing wrong with your logic there. Anyone want to set up a double blind test? :)

    My argument is defeated if:

    Jitter persists because the data is never buffered (stored) or re-clocked.

    That statement may be true in the case of PCM/cd data, but surely not in the case where the data stream has to be decompressed.
     
  20. bob007

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    Coaxial uses voltage in the transfer of data, so can suffer from crosstalk... Crosstalk is the "bleeding" of signals, through the electrical process of induction (wires need not make contact, signals transferred magnetically). This is an unwanted effect, that can cause slow transfer, or completely inhibit the transfer of data signals over the cables length.

    You said it yourself......
    Back to what i said in the beginning, buy a cheap cable (50p) with no shielding or very poor shielding and you will be susceptable to pips, pops and farts. This is going to give an inferior sound quality to a cable fully shielded and of better quality (IXOS 105 £24.99)
    Sound different, with a cleaner transfer and no interference yes.......
    Was not the issue i was refering to.
     
  21. Lowrider

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    Bobones,

    You are right, it only makes any difference with PCM, not much with DTS or DD...

    If one only plays DVDs non PCM, the optical cable is as good as the coaxial...
     
  22. Guest

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    All DVD players do sound exactly the same but you will NEVER hear anyone in the hi-fi industry admit this. It's not in their interest to do so.

    Many home cinema "enthusiasts" (hoho) refuse to believe this despite the fact that it takes only a very basic level of understanding of the technical side of things to see that it must be true.

    This is the wrong forum to discuss this subject really because, as I've learned in the past the idiot ratio is too high.
    uk.media.home-cinema is the best place, lots of people who won't tolerate bull, and actually know what they're talking about!
     
  23. Ian J

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    What a load of rubbish. I frequently look in at the newsgroup which seems to be a private club run by one or two people. If all DVD's sound the same why does one of the principle posters to the newsgroup keep buying a different one every couple of months.
     
  24. Guest

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    Well, duh, maybe because although the audio performance is the same the visual performance is different.
     
  25. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Cream,

    Did you used to post on this forum under the name of chompy ?
     
  26. Stuart Wright

    Stuart Wright
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    Well if you dislike these forums so much, you'd better clear off back to the newsgroups, then hadn't you.
    Where this kind of insult (and worse) is hurled all too easily.
    After insulting every member of the forum including some very expert people in the industry, I think you'd better retract that statement.
     
  27. Guest

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    Hey I didn't insult every member of the forum, just the ones who raise the idiot ratio. :)

    Have you got any CDs with MP3s on? Do you know that if you upgrade the CD-ROM drive on your PC to a more expensive one your MP3s will sound better? It's true. You get a much tighter bass and more mid-range slam. Well, not really. This is a ridiculous thing to say, nobody with the faintest grasp of how a PC works would believe it for a moment. Yet people who say that one DVD player sounds better than another are using exactly the same argument!

    This is what the "very expert" people in the industry are saying.

    And lots of people believe them.

    Think about that.
     
  28. Stuart Wright

    Stuart Wright
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    Ok. I upgraded the sound card in my PC from a £30 to a £150 job. The sound card ouputs optical and coaxial S/PDIF to my AV amplifier.
    So really this compares to changing the audio processing part of a DVD player.
    Now I wouldn't consider myself an audiophile expert of any sort.
    Infact years of playing drums and riding motorbikes means my hearing is pretty lousy.
    But I could tell a distinct improvement in the 5.1 sound.
    I put this down to higher quality components and maybe better drivers (i.e. software).
    Does this mean I'm an idiot?
     
  29. uncle eric

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    Cream,
    Gone off no doubt. Thanks for joining the board and raising the idiot ratio. If you are not Chompy, you've just doubled it.

    By the way. Your little tech post was total rubbish. Why?
    I really dont have the time to educate you right now. Go learn something before you play Mr Expert.

    Eric
    p.s. bye bye
     
  30. Guest

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    Cream,
    Have you not got a cousin you should be marrying rather then wasting your time talking about 50p cable? Get off to the jewellers mate, you've got a £2 ring to buy.

    What a class act
     

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