Home Cables Difference Between Subwoofer & RCA Cable

Technology is developing at an accelerated pace. New entertaining equipment is being constantly released. Those people who are not tech-savvy and have no time to track the latest innovations find it challenging to choose the most suitable cables to connect their audio and video devices. It is necessary to know the cable classification based on application and the connector type, know the structure and peculiarities of each model.

The difference between subwoofer cable and RCA cable is a particularly confusing topic. This article provides a detailed description of both wires and should help you make a well-informed choice.

What an RCA cable is?

RCA is an acronym for Radio Corporation of America – the name of a company that has invented this cable type. It is used to designate all coaxial cables having RCA push-in connectors. They have been initially used for syncing amplifiers and phonographs, but new applications were emerging along with new equipment. Now, it is possible to connect almost any audio and video devices using RCA cables.
Coaxial wires have the following structure: the main connector with grounding contacts surrounding and protecting it. This structure is suitable for both composite and component connections.
In the first case, the brightness and colors are blended while transmitting images. Two additional wires process the stereo signal for right and left channels.
In the second case, three connectors are used to transmit brightness and colors divided into two streams. This option provides a better quality of the image. At the same time, it is less convenient since three wires should be used.

What a subwoofer cable is?

RCA plugs have long been used for subwoofers. But later, additional features were added to traditional models. If we compare subwoofer cable vs RCA cable, the former should be considered as a more complex and powerful wire manufactured from modern, durable materials.
Such cables are used to connect the devices generating low-frequency sound with speakers reproducing this sound. Depending on the features of audio equipment, you may need one RCA cable or several wires.

How do you connect a subwoofer and a speaker?

Using RCA cable for a subwoofer is quite easy. Our tips should simplify this process even more:

  • Find a subwoofer output (labeled SUB OUT or something like that) on a receiver.
  • Connect either end of the “1RCA – 1RCA” wire to it.
  • The quality of the wire is crucial if it is rather long (≤5 meters). It is worth buying the best subwoofer cable with reliable shielding so that your device does not emit background hum.
  • Sound engineers often assemble subwoofer wires on their own since the distance between a receiver and a subwoofer is different in each individual case, while sagging or tension is harmful to audio equipment.
  • The wire subjected to constant tension gradually fails. Contacts are being torn in weak points, and the sound disappears quite quickly, while the outer braid can remain intact, which makes it difficult to find the problem.
  • The sagging wire catches extraneous noise. If coiled up, it acts as a source of eddy currents and interference. The purest physics (namely, the properties of a coiled conductor) applies here.
  • You can purchase a high-quality instrumental or microphone cable (not necessarily expensive) and two RCA connectors with a metal case and gold-plated contacts.
  • Please note that lead solder cannot be used to connect them. Lead reduces the quality of an audio signal.

We hope that this guide has proven useful, and now you know how to choose and use a cable for a subwoofer.

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