Coaxial Cable – The Guide to Choosing The Right Type

Have you ever nurtured the thoughts that all cables perform the same function? Well, that is not true! Coaxial cables are an integral part of electrical connections. They are used for connection in the homes, outdoors and even telecommunication industries. They help in transmitting audio and video signals for major players in the world.

This article will discuss the relevance of coaxial cables and their unique features that set them apart from the rest of the cables. More so, it reveals a lot of these cables uses and its applications in various capacities and industries.

Coaxial Cable

Chapter One:What Is Coaxaial Cable?

What are coaxial cables?

Coaxial cables are electrical cables. These cable types are a combination of the centre conductor and an outer conductor with an insulating spacer that comes in between the two conductors.

How do coaxial cables work

Coaxial cable helps in transmitting radio frequency. It connects radio transmitters and receivers to their antennas and an available computer network. Coaxial cables protect signals from electromagnetic interference.

Also, these cables produce accurate signals even when the frequencies are high.

An image of coaxial cables

Chapter Two:Types Of Coaxial Cables

There are seven types of coaxial cables. They are:

Hardline Coaxial Cables 

What are hardline coaxial cables?

These are coaxial cable type that uses copper, silver, gold tubing or a combination of both as a shield.

Application

Coaxial cables are compatible with high strength applications. These cables help to regulate internal high frequencies. They are also used to transmit radio and television broadcast.

Advantages and disadvantages

They are thick cables. There are also various brands of hardline cables with different capacities. But, some hardline cables make use of poor quality like aluminium oxide and this result into poor conductivity level.

Radiating Coaxial Cables 

What are the radiating coaxial cables?

These cables are quite similar to hardline cables. The major difference is the structure. Radiating coaxial cables makes use of tuned slots that acts as part of its shield.

Application

These cables are compatible with elevator shafts, US Navy ships as well as underground transportation tunnels.

Advantages and disadvantages

It is bi-directional. That is, this cable provides an appropriate leakage effect between the transmitter and receiver. However, the slots are tuned to serve only one preferred radio frequency band.

RG- 6 Coaxial Cable

What is RG-6 coaxial cable?

RG is an acronym for Radio Guide. It is a familiar type of coaxial cable. It comes in different varieties. RG- 6 coaxial cable eliminates the hazard associated with plastic- like insulation.

Applications

It conveys cable TV signals and high definition signals. These cables are important in various homes and commercial entertainment centres.

Advantages and disadvantages

Some varieties of RG- 6 cables are waterproof. It works well for indoor and outdoor house wiring. Sometimes, the cable rating is not a basis for determining the quality of the cable or its materials.

An image of RG-6 cable line satellite signalAn image of RG-6 cable line satellite signal

Semi-rigid Coaxial Cable

What is the semi-rigid coaxial cable?

These cable types make use of a copper outer sheath and operate even at higher frequencies.

Application

They are important for constructing test equipment, aerospace and medical facilities.

Advantages and disadvantages

It is important for certain cases where cables do not need to curve around obstacles, and its shield is hard, which makes it not a flexible coaxial cable type.

Triaxial Coaxial Cable

What is Tri- axial coaxial cable?

Another name for triaxial coaxial cable is Triax. This cable makeup is a combination of an extra layer of insulation and a second conducting sheath.

Application

This cable is functional in the television industry. It acts as a link between the camera and its CCU. With the triaxial coaxial cable in place, the camera transmits audio and video signals while the CCU transmits information such as intercom, exposure settings and so on to the camera.

Advantages and disadvantages

The additional layer of the cable discourages electromagnetic interference. It is also helpful in situations where the electromagnetic force is high. But, this cable type is expensive.

Twin-axial Coaxial Cable

What is a twin-axial coaxial cable?

It is a paired cable type. It is notable for two conductors instead of just one conductor.

Application

It is compatible with linking computer hardware through its SFP+ interfaces. Additionally, this cable functions well on IBM. It also works on Display port.
Advantages and disadvantages

It is a very active coaxial cable type. However, when connecting to some devices, it specifies the need for certain requirements like proprietary Twinax cabling with bulky connectors.

Rigid Line

What is a rigid line?

A rigid line is a form of coaxial cable with two copper tubes using PTFE supports.

Application

It is suitable for indoors for connection between high power transmitters and RF-connectors. It is also compatible with outdoor connections.

Advantages and disadvantages

Some varieties of the rigid line coaxial cables are weatherproof. Rigid lines are easily prone to corrosion and cannot be bent.

Chapter Three:Coaxial Cable Connector Types

There are seven types of the coaxial cable connector. These are:

BNC connector: 

BNC stands for Bayonet Neill–Concelman. It consists of two bayonet lugs. Its uses include quickly connecting or disconnecting RF equipment, test instruments, radio and television. It aids military operations.

TNC connector: 

This is an acronym for Threaded Neill–Concelman. It is a superior version of BNC that performs higher frequencies operation. These connectors are waterproof and resolve issues of stability in cellular phones.

An image of TNC adapter on a white background

SMB connectors: 

SMB means subminiature version B. It is a lesser version of SMA connectors. But, it provides superior electrical performance. Its use is significant for industrial and telecommunications equipment.

7/16 DIN connector: 

The name refers to the 7mm inner diameter of the female inner contact. It is the shortened form of 7/16 Deutsches Institute fur Normung. It is suitable for high wattage transmission in cellular network and defence application.
QMA: They are suitable for industrial and telecommunications needs. These connectors also help to enable cable wiring and assembly. These cables are a variation of SMA connectors.

MCX: 

This is an abbreviated form of Micro coaxial connectors. These connectors are ideal for space and size restrictions.

RCA COAXIAL CABLE CONNECTOR: 

It is another name for cinch connector or A/V jacks. Its origin is suitable for audio signal transmission and videos as well. The colour of the wires is red, yellow and white, usually inserted on the back of the TV.
These connectors are suitable for different equipment. Furthermore, they also work in different capacity and frequencies.

Chapter Four:Coaxial Cable Application Field

There are five different uses of coaxial cables. Coaxial cables perform different functions in the following capacities:

Coaxial cable for home entertainment: 

Coaxial cables like RG-6 are used to transmit audio and video signals. They are used to connect a lot of home appliances like TVs, DVRs and satellite receivers. Some connectors essential for this connection are BNC and RCA.

Coaxial cable for GPS:

 GPS represents Global Positioning System. These GPS makes use of coaxial cables for receiving a connection from antennas and other related devices.

Coaxial cable for the internet: 

BNC connectors are the right fit for internet connections. WAN and LAN utilise 50-ohm coaxial cable for equipment connection.
Coaxial cable for telecommunication: Intercommunication equipment relies on coaxial cables to a great deal. The TNC and BNC connectors are most significant for this type of connection.

Coaxial for video: 

Coaxial cables make it easy for information to display on security videos. The transmission of information from a security camera to a display monitor is usually the work of a coaxial cable. The BNC connector comes in very handy for this type of functions.

Chapter Five:Extending Knowledge Of Coaxial Cables

Coaxial cables perform a whole lot of functions. Nonetheless, of the various types of coaxial cables, the best is the RG-6 coaxial cables.

The reason is not far- fetched. RG-6 cables help in transmitting internet signals. These cables are not easily affected by external interference. Furthermore, they are suitable for homes and commercial institutions too.

Standard coaxial cables

What is a standard coaxial cable?

It is a cable type that helps the transmission of signals while preventing any form of unpleasant interference.

Applications

It is compatible with the military equipment, satellites, telecommunication services, video, television and radio services.

Advantages

The advantages of this cable type are restriction of outside interference, minimal losses, reduced cable noise, save weight and space and also resists high temperature.

An image of Standard coaxial cable connector

Mini-coaxial cable

What is a mini coaxial cable?

It is an alternative cable type to standard coaxial cable. It is a more flexible wire system. It transmits a large number of signals without any interference of any kind.
Application

They are suitable for antennas, videos, medical imaging and handheld GPS. Also, manufacturers of medical equipment find this cable compatible with equipment like ultrasound or endoscopy.

Advantage

These cables are small, flexible and possess good electrical characteristics that aid its use.

Lightweight coaxial cables

What is a lightweight coaxial cable?

Lightweight coaxial cables are important for electrical and mechanical purposes. It is a cable with a small diameter. It boasts of good attenuation values.

Application

It is suitable for aircrafts and helicopters.

Advantages

It is small and not a heavy cable type. The temperature is excellent alongside its attenuation values.

Hand formable coaxial cable

What is hand formable coaxial cable?

It is a replacement for semi-rigid cables and is hand- friendly. It is also compatible with SMA connectors.

Application

These cables are suitable with antennas, base stations and satellites.

Advantage

It is easy to bend and install. Its electrical efficiency is the same as the semi-rigid cables. Additionally, it boasts of good memory abilities.

Micro coaxial cable assemblies

What is a micro coaxial cable assembly?

These cable assemblies are easy to use and operate at minimal losses.

Application

They are suitable for measurement, surveillance, the military system, radars, test equipment, and so much more.

Advantage

It makes use of a considerable temperature range, and its shielding efficiency is impressive.

A batch of miniature multipin lemon connectors

Chapter Six:Coaxial Cable Advantages And Disadvantages

Coaxial cables are one of the most common cable types. Additionally, these cables come with a lot of benefits and are possess certain shortcomings as well.

Advantages of coaxial cable

• Coaxial cables are affordable. These cables are not as expensive as others.

• Its outer conductor improves shield efficiency.

• It permits a high degree of bandwidth signal transmission

• The flexibility of coaxial cables is effective as it makes it easy for wiring

• The transfer of rates with coaxial cables is high as a result of its shielding materials.

• The shield of coaxial cables makes it less vulnerable to noise and external interference.

Disadvantages of coaxial cables

• It is not easily carried about due to its bulky nature

• The cost of installation for longer distances is usually expensive. It is so because of its thickness.

• Coaxial cables make use of cable for signal transmission for the network. If there is an issue of failure in the cable, it affects the entire network

• The security level is discouraging. It is easy to tamper with coaxial cables.

• If the cables are not grounded, there is room for external interference.

Conclusion

Coaxial cables are necessary for day to day activities. They are important in virtually all sectors of activities.

But, to get the best out of these cables, it is essential to understand the various types and their compatible installation patterns. Knowledge of this makes it easier to get the desired audio and video transmission.

We do not just manufacture cables; we back it up with exceptional services. If you are desirous of achieving good results with coaxial cables, feel free to contact us.
The processes are easier and safer with us!

Hey, I am John, General manager of Cloom and OurPCB.

I am a responsible, intelligent and experienced business professional with an extensive background in the electronics industry.

Reach me at sales@wiringo.com to get a quote for your projects.

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