Question for Mark Grant


Prominent Member
Dec 30, 2003
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Hello Mark,

I am in no doubt as to the quality of the cable that you are selling, however I am extremely new to the whole AV area and so have a few queries that need clearing up. I don't want to make an expensive mistake!

Can the digital co-axial cable be used as regular left and right analogue audio interconnects?
Do you make your own optical cables as this is the only input I have on my system?
How can I pay for anything that I order?
What is BNC and RCA!!??
And the most stupid question of all, but can the co-axial cable be used to connect from an aerial socket to a tv or freeview box??
What other sockets can your cables connect to and be used for?

Also, this question is thrown open to anyone who may be able to answer:

I have a DAB cambridge 300 and it has analogue outputs as well as digital outputs. Would I receive better sound quality if I connected it to my system using the optical input or the analogue inputs? I guess it would depend on the quality of the radio's internal DAC.

I apologise for my stupidity but I have just got a new home cinema system and I am planning on purchasing some high quality cable, and yours seems to fit the bill!

Thanks for all your help,

James :)
mobily let me try and answer a couple of them questions.
digital co-axial is used to transfer dogital to your amp. Usually Dolby Digital or DTS raw sound for processing by your amp. Best to stay with analogue audio interconnects for the analogue outputs. Mark is going to make some analogue inputs soon, they were supposed to be only sale yesterday, but we can forgive him as he keeps geeting lots of orders.
Co-axial to aerial No

Your cambridge DAB 300 would be best connected using the analogue outputs to the amp. The dac's in the DAB unit are bound to be better than the amps unless you pay loads of money. BNC is a push and twist type connector usually on Plasma units for component inputs.
RCA is the analogue output on your Cambridge DAB 300.

Hope this helps a little.
Thanks for your reply Contar,

I have been reading the threads where orders for the cables are placed and I am still a little mystified. Why would someone want a coax digital rca>rca? Also what is phono to phono?

Thanks for your help,

James :)
Originally posted by mobily
Why would someone want a coax digital rca>rca? Also what is phono to phono?

The digital co-axial cable is for connecting a digital source (typically a DVD player) to an AV amp.

RCA plug is the American term for a phono plug

I will transfer this thread to the more appropriate cable forum.
isn't phono leads what is used to connect a cd player to an amp?

I'm after:

digital optical cable
two sets of analogue left and right connections for a vcr and digi radio
an aerial lead
component video lead

The thing that is confusing me is that when people are ordering from Mark Grant they say 2m rca>rca. Isn't this for sources with an onboard DAC?
There are two types of digital connection. One is optical and the other is co-axial. The "2m rca>rca" cable that you refer to is a digital co-axial cable.

Mark doesn't make optical cables.

Such fun - all these three letter acronyms are there to make entry into the Golden Circle that much harder. Being non techy myself I hope this may help:

RCA or Phono plug; these were originally used for Audio connectors and more recently for Video connectors too; though they are not really ideal for video due to the impedance of the connector being a miss match with most video cable.

BNC plug - is a twist on chinch type connector most commonly used on pro video equipment and the odd bit of high end AV kit.

Video cable - looks much like an audio cable on the outside but internally is shielded and constructed to best transmit video signals; typically a 75 ohm cable is used for AV and Home Cinema kit.

Audio - looks much like a video cable on the outside but internally its shielded and constructed to best carry audio signals.

Video over an Audio cable - I'd guess that in about 90% of the AV systems in the world the same type of cable is supplied for both video and audio signals; so it can be done you just dont get the best out of your system.

Co-axial Digital Audio - these are typically a single length of 75 ohm Video cable fitted with an RCA plug on each end as the characterises of the video cable best meets the requirements of the Digital Audio signal.

Optical Digital Audio - uses fibre optics and not too many 'hand made' options around; these cables are usually fitted with TOSLINK connectors.

TOSLINK - the majority of AV kit that has an Optical output will be fitted with TOSLINK sockets.

Co-axial vs. Optical Digital Audio - try both; there's no guarantee which one is best within your system.

Cable naming conventions - once you've identified what cable type you require Video, Audio, Digital Co-axial (same as video) or Digital Optical you then generally identify what connectors you want on each end of the cable (RCA, BNC and there are others) and how long a bit of cable you want between the connectors.

Best regards


PS And of course you also have loudspeaker cables.

PPS Some folk say fancy cables are Snake Oil! Other folk say they make a huge difference to there listening and viewing pleasure!!!

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