Re: RCA connectors and audio cable use in QRP devices

Charlie Vest

I am not going to get too involved in this discussion because there is a HUGE amount of latitude, theories, thoughts, myths, and positions.

However RCA type plugs and cables have not been limited to just the QRP arena. Heathkit, Drake, even Collins, and others used them in QRO and interface applications.

Charlie, W5COV

On 9/2/2014 6:12 PM, jdcompton@... [4sqrp] wrote:

Many of the QRP kits and home brew transmitters (and receivers?) use RCA jacks and  plugs for various connections, including power, keys, and antennas, I suppose because they are compact , cheap and usually can be found in the junk drawer.. 

 When connecting an antenna to an RCA jack in a QRP  transmitter,  is it necessary to use an adapter to immediately transition to coax cable or can an audio cable be used for very short connections, for instance to connect to a power meter, dummy load, antenna tuner, etc.?

Audio cables are shielded, but I don't know if they are satisfactory for short patch cables for RF in the HF spectrum for ham components. And I have no idea what the impedance of these cables might be. Since so many designers, especially home brewers, use them, what are the pros and cons?

Jim Compton, K4JDC

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