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Word Clock Cables...?

Discussion in 'Accessories & Connections' started by sunflute, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. sunflute

    sunflute Guest

    Is there any justification in buying expensive word clock cables?

    Thank you
  2. ghellquist

    ghellquist Guest

    No. But quality (not expensive) is generally worth it. Standard quality 75 Ohm coaxial, standard quality BNC connectors. And never forget to terminate the last in the chain (most often a T connector and a ready made termination resistor).

  3. sunflute

    sunflute Guest

    which brands of word clock cables?

    Are there any specific brands that you would recommend?

    For example, are Canare or Hosa brands OK? and is the termination part of the cable or a separate device?
  4. ghellquist

    ghellquist Guest

    The termination is a small separate thing. It looks like a very short but shiny piece of cable (all metal) and has 75Ohm stamped on it.

    Both Canare and Hose are OK, as are just about any brand. The requirements on the cable are pretty standard, what matters is if it takes a small bit of physical abuse without breaking.

  5. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    all that hosa makes is utter crap!!
  6. tomtom

    tomtom Guest


    Saying that xxx brand is utter crap is not very constructive.

    Could you at least tell us why, so that we can decide if we want to have it a try or not? Or if you had a really really bad experience, we know what to be careful at...

    Thank you,

  7. itchy

    itchy Guest

    ghellquist, i've was about to purchase a canare cable myself, and haven't seen this termination cable you're talking about. if i'm only connecting two devices with w.c., do i still need the cable? which device gets it? the master clocking device, or the slave device?

    thanks for the help in advance!

  8. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    75 ohm terminator

    looks just like a BNC to RDC adapter BUT instead of the RCA bit ... it is a close block with a 75 ohm resistor inside.

    Hope that makes a little sense.
  9. ghellquist

    ghellquist Guest

    I have difficulty finding pictures of this on the net (had a few links before, lost them). I´ll point you to my electronics supplier for pictures. Sorry for the Swedish, hope the pictures talk for themselves.

    In the right corner there is a white square where you can enter a search term, in this case they are part numbers in their catalog.

    1) Anyway, connect the cable to the master. Use the "Out" connector.

    2) Now set one T-connector at each slave, at the "In" connector. Looks like partnumber
    It is picture number 4 (click on the picture and it expands), sort of like a T (two times male, one times female connector) .
    Warning - most of these things comes in both 50 and 75 Ohm variations. You want the 75 Ohm.

    3) Daisy chain the cable, from the T-connectors, slave to slave. On the "In" connector of the slaves. (Never, ever, connect the chain "through" a slave, using the in/out connectors) .

    4) The termination finally goes on the last open T, on the last slave. See part number
    for this.

    Now, before going ahead buying the termination and T, check if your slave might have a built-in termination. Generally, you see this because there is a switch or whatever where you can disconnect it. Only the last slave in the chain should have the termination connected.

    For a short word-clock cable, perhaps a meter or a bit more, the termination might not strictly be needed (there are ways to calculate this, but that takes math I´ve mostly forgotten), it might be a bit belts and suspenders. I still recommend it and do it. The reason is that an unterminated line is more susceptible to noise and component drifts and that kind of things, and the whole idea of running the word-clock cable from the beginning is to get more precision in the timing.

    Hope this clears things up. And I recently visited a largish seller of professional audio equipment where it took a few salesmen before anyone understood what I was talking about when asking for the word-clock termination.

  10. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    ... and some strange shapes ... can be good for awkward back panel layouts.
  11. itchy

    itchy Guest

    cool, thanks for the help with this.

    one more question though - i'm only connecting one master and one slave. do i really need the t-connector, or just the termination on the one slave?

    thanks in advance for clearing this up.

  12. ghellquist

    ghellquist Guest

    You will need both the T and the termination. If they are hard to find, you may run for a while without them, nothing will break, but you are gaming on the quality of the word-clock signal.

  13. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    ok.... the quality of the copper is bad.... the quality of the plugs are bad.... some of them even to short or defective.. and they sound positively awful..... you need more reasons?

    all in all.... they suck!!! stay away from them.... mogami is the starting point for cables... do not go for anything less.... and something better is..... well.... better

    eg. apogee/vandenhul/audionote
  14. tomtom

    tomtom Guest

    Thanks, Iznogood

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