Article ID : 00025128 / Last Modified : 08/16/2015

What is the difference between a digital optical and digital coaxial connection for audio?

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Digital optical and digital coaxial connections are used to transfer audio signals from a DVD player to an Audio/Video (A/V) receiver or digital recording device. The audio signal stays in a digital format using either of these cables. The differences between the two connections are as follows:

  • A Digital Optical connection uses a fiber optic cable. The digital audio bit stream is transmitted using pulses of light through this optical cable.
  • A Digital Coaxial connection uses a cable that has RCA-type connectors. This digital coaxial cable is different from the standard RCA cable in that it is designed to handle the wider frequency bandwidth of the digital audio bit stream.