Development Of Optical Cables Over The Years

Optical cables, also named as TOSLINK, are optical fiber cables designed primarily to carry audio signals between consumer audio equipments nowadays. Gadgets today such as DVD players and home theater systems generally have these digital optical outputs. They enable digital audio to stream from one source to a specific decoder, and then out to speakers. These cables deliver high quality audio every time.

Nowadays, the S/PDIF standard is almost the standard for audio streams. DVD players, gaming consoles and even laptops and computers utilize such sockets. This enables users to stream audio from their digital gadgets to DTS or Dolby Digital decoders. With such, high quality audio streaming can then happen between this gadgets. Over the past years, these cables have evolved mainly with the information and streaming speeds that they can achieve.

When optical cables were introduced in 1983, they were only capable of achieving speeds of 3.1 Mbit per second. However, these days, such cables can now reach bandwidths of up to 125 Mbit per second, obviously showing the fast development of these fiber optics for the past years.

Home theater setups at home generally have these digital optical cables for audio connections. Running from the source to the decoder, they usually need decoders to decode the audio signals to project surround sounds. They were then limited to 48 KHz at 20-bit. Nowadays, they are utilized to carry and support almost all audio formats. DTS and Dolby Digital are some of them.

A lot of manufacturers make these optical cables. Covered with resin and then covered with plastic jackets to make them stronger, these layers are not interferences to the fiber optic cable themselves; they merely protect the signals. Most of the time, glass or plastic fibers are manufactured to be thin and transparent, which then carries light. By decoding this light, audio can then be heard through speakers. Ends of these cables have a square-like connector which goes into these sockets.

Computers today also utilize this interface in audio, as some audio cards today support 5.1 or 7.1 speaker setups. Home theaters are now possible to make, and is quite easy to setup, as well. External audio processors which can be easily hooked up to laptops and desktops can also be used, to easily upgrade your computer’s capability to transmit high fidelity audio.

Good cables are always great investments. With such digital audio cables, you get to enjoy your movies and music in all their glory.

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