Can interconnect cables be too short?
Mar 13, 2006 at 4:09 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 20

Denim

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Seems like everyone is asking how long is safe. I'm wondering if too short is a problem. I'm thinking about making custom length cables for the CD, DVD & VCR to the reciever. The shortest cable would only be a few inches long. Dressing up "off the shelf" cables means bunding them up and tie-wrapping them. I suspect that isn't the best thing to do.

Can a cable be made too short? That is, will it create a problem for the signal to pass from one componect to the next? I'm concerned mainly with RCA to RCA connections. I'm not considering any digital cables at this time. Consider a 3 inch cable with RCA's on each end. Good idea or bad?

For what it's worth - did a search on the forums for something similar and the search for cable length yielded hundreds of results. Went back a few months and gave up.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 5:09 AM Post #3 of 20

radrd

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Analog will be fine. However, with digital cable, you need to make sure you have some slack in your cables because the signal is made up of 1s and 0s. The 0s are no problem with any cables, but with severe cable bends, some of the 1s can get slowed down, which causes significant artifacts.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 6:01 AM Post #4 of 20

fewtch

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Denim
Can a cable be made too short?


Really only with turntable cables, because impedance matching between (Moving Magnet) cartridge and phono stage can become an issue -- too-short = too bright. Otherwise no, unless it's so short there's no flex left and you can't route the cable.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 11:09 AM Post #5 of 20

Ticky

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Just be aware that some IC cable coatings are rather stiff. So be sure to choose one that is soft enough to bend in short lengths.

Plus, if you are thinking of using expensive cables, an overtly short cable (say a few inches) will have very low resale value.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 11:53 AM Post #6 of 20

JaZZ

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According to my experience shorter is better.
.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 12:53 PM Post #9 of 20

Denim

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Thanks for the input, so to speak
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I know the rules for digital lengths from network gurus but had to ask about the analog side. The shunt connectors confirms the fact that short cables will not induce any problems. And yes, I'll be sure to provide a little bit of slack.

So the artifacts are 1's getting broken down to fractions? I'll use that on someone at work and leave them scrathing their head for a minute. LOL

Thanks again for the answers.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 3:25 PM Post #10 of 20

radrd

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For anyone who may have missed it, I was kidding about the 1s and 0s thing. Cables are cables and as long as they aren't so tight that you are causing damage to cable/connector/jack, you are good to go.
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Mar 13, 2006 at 6:17 PM Post #11 of 20

Thaddy

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Quote:

Originally Posted by labrat
You mean, the 1's are heavier/bigger than the 0's?

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No no, it has nothing to do with weight, it's just that the 1's are longer and might get stuck going around tight bends. Plus, I've heard the 0's always leave their turn signals on, which screws up the 1's even more.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 6:26 PM Post #12 of 20

jbloudg20

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Thaddy
No no, it has nothing to do with weight, it's just that the 1's are longer and might get stuck going around tight bends. Plus, I've heard the 0's always leave their turn signals on, which screws up the 1's even more.


icon10.gif
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 7:14 PM Post #13 of 20

BrianS

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so the 1's are essentially trailer trucks with a big turning radius and refuse to drive safely and the 0's are porsches with their left turn signal constantly on driving on the autobahn. i get it now thanks
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 7:38 PM Post #14 of 20

Denim

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Quote:

Originally Posted by BrianS
so the 1's are essentially trailer trucks with a big turning radius and refuse to drive safely and the 0's are porsches with their left turn signal constantly on driving on the autobahn. i get it now thanks


I think the 0's are 80+ year old drivers in Florida who have had their turn signals on for the last 10 years.
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So how long before someone thinks all of this nonsense has a glimmer of fact? The digital nonsense, of course. Now I want to think up some other hairbrain question just to see the response
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radrd, nice delivery on the joke. Someone would believe it.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 11:52 PM Post #15 of 20

Pibborando

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Thaddy
No no, it has nothing to do with weight, it's just that the 1's are longer and might get stuck going around tight bends. Plus, I've heard the 0's always leave their turn signals on, which screws up the 1's even more.


No, don't believe this man.

Ok, look at a 1. See those sharp serif edges? That little hook thing at the top? That's why they get stuck. Scientific fact.

The most important thing is to make sure to lube the insides of your cables with teflon, so the 1's are less likely to get stuck.
 

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