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3.5mm to dual rca for headphone amp

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I use a 5$ cable, its a 3.5mm to dual rca cord from my soundcard to my schiit magni, do I lose any sound quality by using such a cheap cable from my xonar dx to my amp? my soundcard only has 3.5mm outputs.

post #2 of 20

You lose absolutely nothing with that cable.  

post #3 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by renji1337 View Post

I use a 5$ cable, its a 3.5mm to dual RCA cord from my sound card to my Schiit Magni, do I lose any sound quality by using such a cheap cable from my Xonar DX to my amp? my sound card only has 3.5mm outputs.

Here is a low cost "Premium" 3.5mm to RCA cable, 3FT, sold at Monoprice.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10218&cs_id=1021815&p_id=5597&seq=1&format=2

 

It's great if you order several cables (or other stuff) at a time from Monoprice, as the shipping charge stays the same.

post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Here is a low cost "Premium" 3.5mm to RCA cable, 3FT, sold at Monoprice.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10218&cs_id=1021815&p_id=5597&seq=1&format=2

By the way, have you ever cut into one of those "premium" cables?  The inner conductor is as fine as human hair, and the outer shield wrap can't possibly provide more than 50% coverage.  I'm not sure what's premium about them, except the entire cable is thicker, and the connectors are a bit nicer.  Of course, they will all sound equally fantastic, just like the $5 cable you have.

post #5 of 20

Blue Jeans make the MSA-1 - that should get you 98% of the way to the best sound. I think my 3 ft cable cost around $30 and here's a quick shot of it...

 

post #6 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by jarrett View Post

Blue Jeans make the MSA-1 - that should get you 98% of the way to the best sound. I think my 3 ft cable cost around $30 and here's a quick shot of it...

Wow.  $30 for a 3' cable and you only get to 98%? 

 

How about 100% of the best sound for under $2?

 

Seriously, there's nothing a 3' cable can do to impede 2% of the "best sound" at any price, except for one that's broken and impedes 100% of all sound.  

post #7 of 20

That's funny tongue_smile.gif
 

post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by jarrett View Post

That's funny tongue_smile.gif

 
Not if you just paid $30 for a 3' cable though. You coulda paid less, and bought a decent bottle of wine, which will have far more effect on your music than the wire, but only if taken internally in sufficient quantity.
post #9 of 20

Maybe a few years ago I would have cared, but I'm not going to argue on the Internet. I'm here to make a suggestion for renji

post #10 of 20

Fair enough, and likewise.  It's always nice to have suggestions that span the spectrum.  More to pick from that way.

post #11 of 20
Thread Starter 

If i wont hear a difference between cables i would just get the cheaper one.

post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaddie View Post

Wow.  $30 for a 3' cable and you only get to 98%? 

 

How about 100% of the best sound for under $2?

 

Seriously, there's nothing a 3' cable can do to impede 2% of the "best sound" at any price, except for one that's broken and impedes 100% of all sound.  

 

Hi jaddie, I always enjoy reading your well informed posts and debates. I was previously of the same opinion that audio cables won't affect the audio quality or sig, however after buying some silver coated copper earphone cables to replace the stock copper ones on my TF10 I have completely changed my opinion about this. The perceived clarity (treble) has increased along with a small reduction in bass.

Although the copper ones are now broken I am 100% sure I could tell which is which if I was able to A/B them. I suspect it is to do with the reduced capacitance of the silver coated cable when combined with a low impedance IEM  possibly similar to how a players Headphone jack output impedance can affect the damping factor and the reason for the 1/8 rule, (ie jack should have an output z 1/8 lower the the headphones z)

 

Your thoughts?

post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari33 View Post

 

Hi jaddie, I always enjoy reading your well informed posts and debates. I was previously of the same opinion that audio cables won't affect the audio quality or sig, however after buying some silver coated copper earphone cables to replace the stock copper ones on my TF10 I have completely changed my opinion about this. The perceived clarity (treble) has increased along with a small reduction in bass.

Although the copper ones are now broken I am 100% sure I could tell which is which if I was able to A/B them. 

If the copper ones are now broken, it's possible that prior to failure you may have had a failing connection that would cause the cable to sound different, but the real key to understanding her would be a test involving an A, a B and an X, however because of the forum we're in, I cannot suggest it.  You're on your own!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ari33 View Post

 I suspect it is to do with the reduced capacitance of the silver coated cable when combined with a low impedance IEM  possibly similar to how a players Headphone jack output impedance can affect the damping factor and the reason for the 1/8 rule, (ie jack should have an output z 1/8 lower the the headphones z)

 

Your thoughts?

I'm afraid your suspicions are in disagreement with electrical principles.  If you lower the impedance of the load (IEM), cable C becomes even less important.  If you already have a low Z output, it was unimportant to begin with.  Cable C is a problem when it becomes the capacitor of an RC or RLC high-pass filter created by a high output impedance amp (very high, so high it wouldn't work!) and the C of the cable combined with a high Z load.  You have none of that, so it's not cable C you're hearing.  You're also claiming treble improvement and reduced bass, neither of which is an effect of cable C.  

 

I'm not discounting what you hear, but you'd have a bit of work to do to prove it.  Probably best to just enjoy your new cables, and not try to figure out why.

 

Silver plating doen't change capacitance, but nobody said it did.  Just in case that should become an "idea" at some point.  


Edited by jaddie - 9/1/13 at 6:05am
post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaddie View Post

If the copper ones are now broken, it's possible that prior to failure you may have had a failing connection that would cause the cable to sound different, but the real key to understanding her would be a test involving an A, a B and an X, however because of the forum we're in, I cannot suggest it.  You're on your own!

 

Yeah, I was just very surprised/confused at my findings, perhaps the failure of one side of the cable might explain it but I aint gonna be forking out for another standard UE cable just to A,B,X test... as they are poor quality and don't last long. As you say maybe I shouldn't worry about it and just enjoy them.

 

Thanks for the explanation...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #15 of 20

Cables do make a difference. Years ago (for my speaker cable) I upgraded from an Audioquest (AQ) to Evidence Audio. In the latter, everything about the design and the materials was better, so although the AQ sounds fine enough - and in jaddie's case where he's not comparing it against something better - you just stick with your metrics.

 

I suggested a Blue Jeans cable because they are supplied by Belden who are known as a cable maker for sound applications. That cable should be enough quality and you won't be buying into a "hi-fi" brand.


Edited by jarrett - 9/1/13 at 8:56pm
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