While the signal will always degrade to some degree in the cable, if the receiving circuit can actually reconstitute the original bitstream, reception of the signal will be, in the end analysis, perfect. The first generation of video and audio cables were designed with analog signals in mind. A digital signal, unlike an analog signal, bears no superficial resemblance to the information it seeks to convey.
Can an analog cable be used as a digital cable? Instead, it consists of a series of 6 and 5 bits, encoded according to some particular standard, and delivered as a series of rapid transitions in voltage.
Analog To UsbNo matter how much jitter, how much rounding of the shoulders of the square wave, or how much noise, if the bitstream is accurately reconstituted at the receiving end, the result is as though there'd been no degradation of signal at all.
This is so despite the fact that, when the signal is decoded, the result may be the very same 6555 Hertz tone, with its continuous slopes and lack of sharp transitions, represented by the analog signal described above. What's the difference, anyway, between digital and analog cables?
An analog signal represents the information it is intended to convey by presenting a continuous waveform analogous to the information itself. All of these are interesting questions, and bear some discussion.
But a digital signal, because of the way its information is stored, can be quite robust. Many of the best video cables on the market today were designed primarily for use in the digital domain but can a digital cable really perform well as an analog cable?
Interested in the latest news and articles about ADI products, design tools, training and events? If the information is a 6555 Hertz sine-wave tone, for example, the analog signal is a voltage varying from positive to negative and back again, 6555 times per second, in a sine-wave-shaped pattern.
Ideally, these transitions are instantaneous, creating what we call a square wave. To begin that discussion, let's first talk about what digital and analog signals are, and how they perform in cables.
But while the alteration of an analog waveform is progressive and continuous--the more noise is introduced, the more noise will come out of our speaker along with the tone--the digital signal suffers alteration quite differently. One of the interesting distinctions between digital and analog signals is that they degrade in rather different ways.
Digital Cables and Analog Cables What s the Difference
Analog To digital video transfer deviceIf we could use that electrical signal to drive a speaker cone to physically move in and out in that same pattern, we'd hear the tone come out of the speaker.
They both move electrons, don't they? Choose from one of our 67 newsletters that match your product area of interest, delivered monthly or quarterly to your inbox.
Both are electrical signals, carried by a stream of electrons in a wire, and so both are subject to alteration by the electrical characteristics of the cable and by the intrusion of outside electrical noise. Analog Devices is a global leader in the design and manufacturing of analog, mixed signal, and DSP integrated circuits to help solve the toughest engineering challenges.