Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
Best aux cords 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated May 1, 2019
Best aux cords of 2018
Customers need to be careful on how they spend their money on these products. There is a wide range of products available on the market today, and below I have reviewed 3 of the very best options.
Check them out and decide which one suits you the best to splurge upon. Now, let’s get to the gist of the matter: which are the best aux cords for the money?
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this aux cords win the first place?
The rear part fits perfectly! It is mounted really tight and reliable. I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
Why did this aux cords come in second place?
This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office. I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money. Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture. I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price.
Why did this aux cords take third place?
I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. It is inconvenient to use due to the size. I am going to get something different next time. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. The material is incredibly nice to the touch. It has a great color, which will suit any wallpapers.
aux cords Buyer’s Guide
Every time you buy an iPad or an iPhone you get another Apple charger and charge cable. One of each; that’s all. I have yet to meet the iPad owner who can get along with just a single cable or charger. It’s especially heavy users who need a place to charge at home, the office, and in the car. While you’re there you may also want to, I don’t know, listen to the massive iTunes library you’ve put together over the years. But what’s this? Your car doesn’t have Bluetooth? Then it’s time to kick it old-school with an AUX cable.
Luckily there is a boatload of after-market cables and chargers available. Unfortunately, there is an absolute boatload of cables and chargers available. The market giveth and it taketh away.
I’ve picked a few examples of the more popular examples here. My favorites are at the top with the rest to follow in no order.
Scosche reVIVE II Dual USB Car Charger for iPad
As a married person I know that one of the biggest sources of tension a couple can experience is the need to charge two devices when only one charger is available. This is especially true on long roadtrips where a smartphone or tablet may be the only thing keeping your passenger sane.
That’s why I like the idea of a dual socket charger. It goes into the lighter socket as usual (because who actually still smokes, right?), but provides a amp and a 2.amp socket at the same time. This means your passenger can charge their smartphone on the lower powered socket while you charge your iPad on the more powerful juice supply.
This charger is also very well-priced; I have paid twice as much for a unit with only one socket, so yes, I have experienced some buyer’s remorse in that regard.
The bad news is that this particular one is not that great. Apparently the ports don’t quite conform to USB specifications and can cause all sorts of not-so-great thing to happen – the least of which is simply refusing to charge an iPad, which sort of defeats the point. That’s a hard pass on this one people.
ARCTIC Charger Pro 4
It supports fast (i.e. “smart”) charging and gives 2.5A of total output. That last bit is actually a bit of a problem, since 2.5A divided over four ports promises a rather low-speed charging experience. You therefore only get fast charging if you use a single port. This is not a deal breaker, you should just be aware that four devices will have to be left overnight, if not longer, to fully charge.
ARCTIC also offers a cable holder and optional travel adapters for the charger, all of which are sold separately. There is also the right sort of protection circuitry, so you don’t have to worry about burning down your hotel room.
Given the price I can’t be too hard on this charger, but if you need to fast-charge four devices simultaneously you’ll be out of luck here.
Important Aux Cable Considerations
Aux cables are also used for home theater speaker systems, amps, and studio monitors. Professionals depend on the best aux cable for clear, reliable sound quality. Thankfully, the same aux cables used by professionals are affordable and accessible enough on any budget.
Smaller devices require a step-down design in order to fit securely into the female aux port. Without the step-down design, a portion of the connector is left out, and can result in damage or poor audio transmission.
Although many of our devices can transmit audio through a Bluetooth receiver or WiFi, the best aux cable should provide a more accurate transfer with less data loss. The vast majority of devices accept 3.5mm aux cables, but check for size compatibility before purchase.
Take headphones for example.
Years ago, the only option was traditional wired on- or over-ear cans. But as technology improved, earbuds hit the market and soon the biggest names in audio weaved wireless Bluetooth tech into their most popular products.
These days Bluetooth wireless technology has improved to allow audio to be transmitted in Hi-Res, and batteries have improved to allow you to get several days of use out of a pair of headphones without needing to charge them.
We’ve entered the golden era of wireless technology.
Remote weighs cable down
NuForce knocked it out of the park with the BE Sportheadphones. They’re an incredible value for a pair of wireless headphones that sound good, last all day, have a bulletproof build and incredible noise isolation. While they’re not the most dynamic or resolving headphones, NuForce shows us that the future of wireless headphones is a bright one.
Not only do they provide awesome noise-cancellation, but they have three neat tricks that few other wireless headphones have: One is an ambient noise mode that only lets in mid-to-high frequency tones (announcements over a loudspeaker, for instance) and another being Quick Attention mode that allows you to let in all outside noise without taking off the headphones. (The latter is perfect when giving a drink order on a plane or speaking to a coworker for a brief moment before diving back into your work.) The last trick Sony has up its sleeve is the LDAC codec. Alongside the widely adopted aptX HD standard, LDAC enables Hi-Res Audio playback using the 1000XM2.
Great-sounding and feature-packed, the Sony WH-1000XMare great travel companions and all-around excellent wireless headphones.
The reason we haven’t put them further up the list comes down to their controls. Although controlling the headphones with a series of swipes on the outside of the earcup feels futuristic, it’s not much help when you want to quickly skip through multiple tracks, or set the volume at a specific level.
If you’re driving an older car and want to be able to jam out to your tunes and make calls over your car’s speakers without installing a new head unit, you have a few options. Over the past four years, we’ve spent more than 50 hours testing dozens of units across the three main styles, including five new models this year. We recommend the Anker SoundSync Drive as the best overall solution for most people—as long as you have an aux-in port, it’s the way to go. But we also have picks for other setups.
If you share a car and need to be able to pair multiple devices—say, two phones—with your Bluetooth car kit, iClever’s Himbox HB0is the best option. (Note the lack of a “+” at the end—the HB01+ is a newer model we don’t like as much.) Our previous top pick, the Himbox HB0pairs with two devices, includes a charger, and can be removed when not in use thanks to a magnetic connection. However, it’s voice quality isn’t as good as the SoundSync Drive’s and it costs more.
How we picked and tested
FM transmitters were easier to narrow down because not many companies make them, and among the ones that do, GoGroove and Mpow are the only brands that have garnered user reviews good enough to warrant checking out.
Bluetooth speakerphones used to be far more plentiful, but their popularity has waned dramatically over the past few years as the speakerphone features in smartphones have improved. We’ve always looked for speakerphones with built-in FM transmitters, auto-reconnect features, and native voice commands. After a research sweep this year, we found no new models that warranted testing.
We conducted all testing for this update and the previous one in a 201Toyota Prius C with an auxiliary-audio input. To avoid possible interference and crossed signals, we didn’t pair our test phone—the Moto X Pure (2015)—with the car’s Bluetooth.
Identify your Audio Plug
The diagram above shows a regular pair of earbuds plugged into an iPhone TRRS socket. This is perfectly safe and acceptable – you won’t be able to make ‘hands-free’ voice calls, but you won’t damage anything either. This also works for Android phones and many other devices.
Problems can emerge when mixing cables where the ground contact is not on the first ring. Nokia phones, Panasonic camcorders and portable/in-car DVD players have had their ground and video pinouts moved around in the past, so care must be taken to avoid damage when working with special equipment or trying to connect different types of product together. This is difficult when the cables look identical, but are wired differently. You don’t want to send a lot of power over a shorted circuit.
Unfortunately there is no universal one-shot product which can work with all devices, and it’s impossible to see inside the female socket to know where the wires go.
Longest in Length
The RCA cable is also used for connecting audio or stereo devices to transmit sound signals. In this case, the cable only transmits audio signals. It is usually of very high quality and should be like that for the signal to be of high quality. It can be combined with video RCA like component to achieve both HD video and audio transfer.
One of the most important considerations when buying an RCA is the connectors at the end. The connectors are virtually the same in terms of shape and size. However, it is the material that varies and determines the quality and life of the cable. It is important to note that the conducting capabilities vary from one material to another and that can affect the signal greatly. The materials used in connectors on these cables are gold, silver, copper and nickel.
In terms of conductivity, silver has the highest rate and gold has the lowest. However, the latter is commonly used for plating the connector. This is because it is strongly immune to corrosion and rusting. It does not oxidize and therefore is best to protect even the other two materials. So when buying RCA you will see a lot of wires plated with gold which is a good indicator of their longevity. If such plating is absent, the connector becomes vulnerable to oxidization which causes problems in the signal. Silver although great at conducting can still get oxidized over time. So it is a good idea to choose a connector with gold plating.
Other materials used for plating include nickel and zinc which do outperform silver but are less strong against oxidization as compared with gold. These tend to be a lot cheaper than gold plated ones and are very commonly used therefore.
Note: It is important to take into consideration the other end of the connection i.e. the port on the device. Some material combinations can be a bit problematic for the signals. The connections should not be of materials that are prone to cause an electrolytic reaction for example tin and gold.
The lengths of the cables vary and you can easily find one that suits your needs. The lengths usually range from feet to 1feet. The latter is more than enough for most setup whether you are using it in your house or a studio. For instance, iXCC dual RCA Audio Y Cable is one of the longest cables you can find online. However, there is a little effect of the length of the signal. Generally, it is considered that the longer the cable the less quality there is in the signal. So if you have the choice to use a shorter length, you should. Nonetheless, the manufacturers are producing high-quality wires with great insulation. You should measure the length using a measuring tape from the devices you need to connect. Make sure to add some extra length to it.
Most wires would have enough layers of shielding to ensure that no interference occurs. However, the high-end cables usually have even stronger insulation that shields against all types of interference. This is particularly important in the case of a lengthy wire as it is susceptible to drop in quality and be affected by interference.
While it’s easy to get caught up in the other features, the first thing you should look at when shopping for a Bluetooth speaker is the physical dimensions of the speaker.
There’s no faster way to be disappointed in your purchase than to spend a bunch of money buying a new Bluetooth speaker only to find that it’s way bigger (or smaller) than you anticipated leaving you with a speaker that’s really inconvenient to bring the places you want to bring it (or so small it lacks the space for the physical speakers to deliver the sound you crave).
Bluetooth speakers generally fall into two primary size categories. On the one side you have the ultra-portables that aren’t exactly pocket size but could easily be stuffed in a coat pocket, small bag, or purse. The Braven BRV-falls soundly into that category with a volume roughly that of can of soda (albeit a bit boxier). You won’t be sticking it in the back pocket of your jeans but at such a small size and weighing only 1ounces, it’s easy enough to toss it in a bag and take it with you.
The NYNE Bass, on the other hand, represents the semi-portable/table-top end of the Bluetooth speaker market. It is most certainly not coat pocket friendly nor even suitable for a small bag or purse. It’s roughly the size of a breadbox, large enough to merit a carry handle molded into the upper portion of the unit, and weighs 6.pounds (nearly times heavier than the Braven).
Now, before you fall under the spell of miniaturization and small form-factor consumer electronics let’s take a look at the other features to see where the trade-offs arise when opting for one speaker weight class over another.
If you’re looking for a big speaker to place out on the patio, ruggedized construction might not be a high priority. If you’re looking for a speaker to take to the beach, however, a speaker that can survive a splash or two becomes more important.
There’s not specific definition of “ruggedized” as far as the Bluetooth speaker market is concerned, so you’ll need to read the fine print for each speaker you consider.
The Nyne, for example, is a very sturdily constructed unit (the edges of the unit are rubberized, and we’re fairly confident it could survive a tumble to the patio surface just fine), but the manufacturer makes no claim that it is a ruggedized unit.
The Braven, on the other hand, is specifically advertised as a waterproof ruggedized Bluetooth speaker that can withstand full submersion for up to 30 minutes in one meter of water. We’ve dunked it in buckets, stuck it in the corner of a shower (and, by the way, it sounds absolutely fantastic when combined with the acoustics of a tiled bathroom), and kicked it around (metaphorically that is) at the beach. The speaker is designed for the moderate abuse that a beach goer/camper would throw at it and includes features such as sealed speaker membranes, a waterproof case, and a rubber-sealed cap that fits over the ports when they aren’t in use.
Bringing It All Together
If you need a unit that doesn’t need a duffle bag of its own, focus on small form factor. If you need a speaker that can cut through the noise of the beach and provide tunes all afternoon, focus on large form factors with hefty batteries. If you need something can survive rain storms and your camping buddies dropping it, start with ruggedized models and narrow it down from there.
TaoTronics is a fantastic electronics company that is present in many places around the world. They specialize in small electronic devices and accessories. Their continuous growth left its mark in the Bluetooth receiver department too and as such we will look over their portable wireless audio adapter which has some interesting capabilities.
Like most other receivers in this list, this one permits a connection with pretty much any home or vehicle audio systems. TaoTronics implemented Bluetooth 4.0 technology that makes some decent energy savings and offers quick data transfer rates. The listening experience can be controlled at your leisure with the integrated buttons for changing the tracks, turning up or down the volume and pause the music. As an extra benefit, Apple users can activate Siri by simply pressing a button.
An aspect worth mentioning about this receiver is that it’s very helpful for drivers as it enables hands-free calling with the aid of its built-in microphone which makes talking to your friends and family a breeze. The battery life is not extraordinary as the gadget exhausts its reserves after 7-hours of play time or talking. Despite that, I think it’s still enough for regular use and even for road trips and considering the fact that it does have a built-in battery (which can be recharged) as opposed to requiring disposable ones I’d say the issue balances out nicely.
A handy option is the ability to have two connected devices as this Bluetooth receiver basically gives you the freedom to multitask more efficiently. The design of the device is quite pleasant, it fits well in your hand, is well-rounded and looks very elegant when connected to your home audio system. The price is low considering what you get so this a strong contender in the list of the best Bluetooth receivers.
A performant receiver all-around, TaoTronics proved you can still maintain an affordable product without compromising on quality. Loaded with functions, this Bluetooth receiver has rightfully obtained a spot in this list and is recommended for anyone who needs the best gadget for their home or vehicle audio systems.
Audio cables can seem like a simple thing in concept, until you set out to buy one and realize you didn’t know how much you didn’t know. Although they may be the least exciting components in your stage rig or studio setup, they are some of the most important.
So here is what you need to know, in plain English, to make sure you’re getting the best cable for your gear and your purpose.
An instrument cable connects a guitar, bass, keyboard, or other electronic instrument to an amplifier or preamp that’s intended for direct connection of an instrument. Instrument cables are designed to carry low-voltage instrument signals, and most often have 1/4″ phone plug connectors. Depending on the location of the output jack on your instrument, you may want a male jack with a straight or right-angle connector. In deciding how long a cable to buy, keep in mind that longer cable runs are more prone to picking up interference.
This Livewire Advantage Series instrument cable has straight 1/4″ phone connectors, quality soldering for low noise, and comes with a lifetime guarantee.
Browse the complete selection of instrument cables at Musician’s Friend.
The term “patch cable” generically describes any cable that links various components together. They often are quite short in length and may be used in a PA or recording setups to interconnect gear, or to link effects pedals to each other in a signal chain. They may have balanced or unbalanced conductors (discussed above) depending on their purpose, and can have various kinds of connectors including XLR, 1/4″ phone, TRS, or RCA.
The right-angle 1/4″ connectors on these Six-inch Livewire patch cables makes them perfect for connecting effects pedals in a signal chain.
Mic cables are shielded and balanced and typically have an XLR male connector on one end and an XLR female connector on the other. Some microphone cables have a TRS, mini plug,or USB connector on the delivery end for plugging directly into a computer sound card, DAW, or digital recording device. In addition to connecting a microphone to a sound system, mic cables are often used as longer, balanced patch cables—for example connecting a mixing board to powered speakers. They can also be used for D.I. connections between an instrument and a mixing console as well as for lighting effects with DMX control capabilities.
Top pro studios rate Mogami Gold Neglex Quad Mic Cables highly for accuracy, quietness and tough construction.
Browse the entire Musician’s Friend assortment of microphone cables.
A speaker cable is an unbalanced cable, and usually has a much heavier gauge conductor than a patch, instrument, or mic cable. Speaker cables need bigger wires because they carry much higher voltage signals. They can have 1/4″ phone, banana clip (also called MDP connectors), binding post (as commonly found on consumer stereo amplifiers), or Speakon connectors.
This Livewire Elite 12-Gauge Speaker Cable has a 1/4″ phone connector on one end and a Speakon connector at the other, for securely connecting a head amp to a speaker cabinet.
Browse the entire Musician’s Friend selection of speaker cables.
The Livewire Elite Speakon Cable offers a secure connection, twist- and tangle-resistant design, and high-quality conductors that keep your signal noise-free.
XLR connectors have three pins for the positive, negative, and ground. They are most commonly used on microphone cables, but you will also see them used on balanced patch cables and with DMX-enabled lighting equipment.
The Monster Cable Studio Pro 2000 XLR Microphone cable uses Time Correct technology for the ultimate in detail and soundstage imaging.
Digital Audio Connectors
Below are some of the most common digital audio cables and connectors required for linking digital mixers, recorders, preamps, and DAWs (digital audio workstations).
A word of caution: In many cases, digital gear uses cables that resemble their analog XLR or RCA counterparts. While these connectors may look the same, the cables are often designed for different resistances, and are not interchangeable with their analog look-alikes.
Browse Musician’s Friend’s entire selection of digital cables and connectors.
MIDI cables can also communicate control functions to software and synthesizers, so you can control sound and tones with a remote control surface.
The Rocktron RMM900 Cable carries MIDI commands from a footcontroller to any MIDI-compatible gear via a 7-pin MIDI jack.
USB (Universal Serial Bus) cables have become standard for connecting everything from printers to digital audio gear. USB cables have Type A, Type B, Mini-A, Micro-A, Mini-B, Micro-B, or Type C connectors at one end, and a device-specific connector at the other. USB cables can also be used as a power source for some devices. The latest version, USB 3.0, is significantly faster than USB 2.0 and can make a difference in minimizing lag during performances and studio playback of complex material.
For critical audio applications such as recording and DJ work, a premium-quality connector like the Oyaide Neo d+ Series Class B USB Cable ensures stable performance.
There are three types of FireWire connectors: 4-pin, 6-pin and 9-pin. The 4-pin connector, or FW400, transfers data at 400 Mbps (megabytes per second). The slightly larger 6-pin connector has the same transfer rate, but also supplies DC power. The 9-pin connector, or FW800, transfers data twice as fast and also supplies power.
The METRIC HALO Firewire Cable has a standard 6-pin connector on each end, so it can transfer data and also supply power.
Optical Cables and Connectors
Optical cables transmit digital audio as pulses of light, which make them almost completely immune to interference. They are surround-sound capable, but can’t handle higher-resolution formats such as those on Blu-Ray discs.
ADAT (Alesis Digital Audio Tape) Optical Interface, more commonly known as ADAT Lightpipe, is the widely accepted standard for digital audio transfer on optical cables. It transfers eight channels of digital audio on a special cable with an Alesis-specific ADAT connector.
Livewire Elite Optical Data Cable feature premium, heavy-duty fiber-optic cable with Toslink connectors for ADAT “light pipe” optical connections, audio interfaces and recording equipment.
The Sony/Philips Digital Interface Format (S/PDIF) outputs audio over shorter distances. These connectors use either optical or coaxial cables. Coaxial cables are similar in quality to optical cables, but less common. They use RCA connectors, but these cables are not interchangeable with analog RCA cables.
Bayonet Neill-Concelman connectors were originally designed for military use, but are now commonly used on video and audio testing equipment. The bayonet-style connector is used with miniature and subminiature coaxial cables in radio-frequency equipment and video gear.
This Hosa RG 5Cable has a male BNC connector on each end for video or Ethernet connections.
The Tascam Digital Interconnect Format is an unbalanced proprietary format connector that sends and/or receives up to eight channels of digital audio. The bidirectional connection means that only one cable is required to connect the eight ins and outs of one compatible device to another.
The most common is the braided shield. Small wire strands are braided to form a sheath around the insulation of the signal-conducting wire. This type of shielding is flexible and durable. Onstage mic and instrument cables are constantly being bent, pulled, and stepped on, and braided shielding holds up best under these conditions.
Serve or Spiral-Wrapped Shield
Another type of shielding is the spiral-wrapped or serve shield. This sheath is formed by wrapping a flat strip of wire strands around the center wires in a spiral. The serve shield, while it lacks the tensile strength of a braided shield, is more flexible than a braided shield because it stretches when the cable is bent. It is less resistant to radio frequency (RF) interference, because it is actually a coil and has inductance. It is also easier to manufacture so cables using serve shielding are usually less expensive.
The foil shield is a Mylar-backed aluminum tube that terminates at a copper drain wire. It provides 100% coverage, but since aluminum is a poor conductor of electricity, it also interferes with signal transfer. Foil shielding is inexpensive and easy to make, but it is also fragile and breaks down easily with repeated flexing. It is best used in small patch cables and stereo cables that don’t move much once they are connected.
Even the best cable will eventually fail, and the more you use your sound equipment, the faster you will go through them – especially if you’re taking it on the road. A cable tester is a simple tool that verifies intended signals are working, and no unintended signals are being carried. If you have a problem with your system, a cable tester can quickly help you determine what and where the problem is.
The Galaxy Audio Cable Tester quickly and easily tests XLR, 1/4″, 1/8″, Speakon, stereo RCA, and DIN (MIDI) cables, making it an essential tool for musicians and sound engineers.
Browse the Musician’s Friend selection of cable testers and other audio test equipment.
Snakes are essentially bundled sets of cables. Stage snakes may contain microphone, patch, or speaker cables and are used for two-way connection between the stage and mixers and other PA equipment. They have a fan of connectors on one end, and a box on the stage end that houses a panel of connectors. In shopping for a snake, the length and the type of connections are the main considerations. There are also audio snakes for studios that bundle various cables needed for connecting studio components.
Very ruggedly built with Neutrik D connectors and serious strain relief on all cables, the Pro Co StageMASTER 12-Channel Snake has 1sends and returns.
Explore the complete selection of audio cable snakes at Musician’s Friend.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your aux cords wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of aux cords
- №1 — AUX Cable iVanky [2-Pack
- №2 — AUX Cable Syncwire Audio Cord – 3.5mm Nylon Braided Auxiliary Audio Cable for Headphones
- №3 — Anker 3.5mm Premium Auxiliary Audio Cable