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RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible Grounding Issues?)

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  • Matthew Mikolay
    Recently I went to RadioShack to purchase an RCA to F-Jack converter to hook up some older video game systems. After having to debate with the salesperson, who
    Message 1 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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      Recently I went to RadioShack to purchase an RCA to F-Jack converter
      to hook up some older video game systems. After having to debate with
      the salesperson, who claimed that what I wanted to do was not
      possible, I managed to purchase one.

      The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm using an
      RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to connect
      the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable, maybe
      a Monster one?

      Thanks!
      ~Matt
    • Evan Koblentz
      ... No!! Those are a monster waste of money. Ordinary RCA cables work fine. The adapters usually give you a BETTER image. Although, a couple of weeks ago at
      Message 2 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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        >>> Should I be using a higher-quality cable, maybe a Monster one?

        No!! Those are a monster waste of money.

        Ordinary RCA cables work fine. The adapters usually give you a BETTER image.

        Although, a couple of weeks ago at InfoAge, I accidentally bumped into something and suddenly our 2600 image got fuzzy. So I guess you have to make sure the connectors are in nice and solid.
      • Sridhar Ayengar
        ... Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure that the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side. Peace... Sridhar
        Message 3 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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          Matthew Mikolay wrote:
          > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm using an
          > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to connect
          > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable, maybe
          > a Monster one?

          Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure that
          the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.

          Peace... Sridhar
        • Matthew Mikolay
          Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a little. ... From: Sridhar Ayengar Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro]
          Message 4 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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            Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a little.

            --- On Tue, 2/24/09, Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@...> wrote:
            From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@...>
            Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible Grounding Issues?)
            To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
            Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2009, 10:02 PM

            Matthew Mikolay wrote:
            > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm using an
            > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to connect
            > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable, maybe
            > a Monster one?

            Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure that
            the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.

            Peace... Sridhar


          • Bryan Pope
            ... You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using the coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game system or a real
            Message 5 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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              Matthew Mikolay wrote:
              > Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a
              > little.
              >
              You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using the
              coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game system or a
              real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)

              Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.

              Cheers,

              Bryan

              >
              > --- On *Tue, 2/24/09, Sridhar Ayengar /<ploopster@...>/* wrote:
              >
              > From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@...>
              > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
              > Grounding Issues?)
              > To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
              > Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2009, 10:02 PM
              >
              > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
              > > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm
              > using an
              > > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to
              > connect
              > > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable,
              > maybe
              > > a Monster one?
              >
              > Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure
              > that
              > the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.
              >
              > Peace... Sridhar
              >
            • Bill Degnan
              Something is not right. It should be a sharp picture. bd ... Issues?)
              Message 6 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                Something is not right. It should be a sharp picture.
                bd

                -------- Original Message --------
                > From: "Matthew Mikolay" <mikolaym@...>
                > Sent: Tuesday, February 24, 2009 4:44 PM
                > To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                > Subject: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible Grounding
                Issues?)
                >
                > Recently I went to RadioShack to purchase an RCA to F-Jack converter
                > to hook up some older video game systems. After having to debate with
                > the salesperson, who claimed that what I wanted to do was not
                > possible, I managed to purchase one.
                >
                > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm using an
                > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to connect
                > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable, maybe
                > a Monster one?
                >
                > Thanks!
                > ~Matt
                >
                >
                >
                > ------------------------------------
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
              • Sridhar Ayengar
                ... Oy! Terminology again! Coaxial cable is simply cable where all conductors share the same axis. Each outer conductor is wrapped around an insulator which
                Message 7 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                  Bryan Pope wrote:
                  > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                  >> Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a
                  >> little.
                  >>
                  > You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using the
                  > coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game system or a
                  > real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)
                  >
                  > Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.

                  Oy! Terminology again!

                  Coaxial cable is simply cable where all conductors share the same axis.
                  Each outer conductor is wrapped around an insulator which is wrapped
                  around an inner conductor.

                  Both RG58/RG59/RG6 Cable TV wire and decent RCA-terminated audio cable
                  are coaxial. BOTH ARE COAXIAL.

                  Peace... Sridhar
                • Matthew Mikolay
                  Oops. I think I bought the wrong converter then. My converter goes from a female RCA to a male F-Plug. If I m correct, it should have been male RCA to female
                  Message 8 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                    Oops. I think I bought the wrong converter then. My converter goes from a female RCA to a male F-Plug. If I'm correct, it should have been male RCA to female F-Jack.

                    --- On Wed, 2/25/09, Bryan Pope <bryan.pope@...> wrote:
                    From: Bryan Pope <bryan.pope@...>
                    Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible Grounding Issues?)
                    To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                    Date: Wednesday, February 25, 2009, 12:25 AM

                    Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                    > Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a
                    > little.
                    >
                    You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using the
                    coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game system or a
                    real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)

                    Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.

                    Cheers,

                    Bryan

                    >
                    > --- On *Tue, 2/24/09, Sridhar Ayengar /<ploopster@gmail. com>/* wrote:
                    >
                    > From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@gmail. com>
                    > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
                    > Grounding Issues?)
                    > To: midatlanticretro@ yahoogroups. com
                    > Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2009, 10:02 PM
                    >
                    > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                    > > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm
                    > using an
                    > > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to
                    > connect
                    > > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable,
                    > maybe
                    > > a Monster one?
                    >
                    > Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure
                    > that
                    > the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.
                    >
                    > Peace... Sridhar
                    >


                  • Matthew Mikolay
                    I just remembered I bought my RCA cable from a dollar store, does that account for anything? ... From: Sridhar Ayengar Subject: Re:
                    Message 9 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                      I just remembered I bought my RCA cable from a dollar store, does that account for anything?

                      --- On Wed, 2/25/09, Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@...> wrote:
                      From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@...>
                      Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible Grounding Issues?)
                      To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                      Date: Wednesday, February 25, 2009, 1:01 AM

                      Bryan Pope wrote:
                      > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                      >> Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the problem a
                      >> little.
                      >>
                      > You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using the
                      > coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game system or a
                      > real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)
                      >
                      > Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.

                      Oy! Terminology again!

                      Coaxial cable is simply cable where all conductors share the same axis.
                      Each outer conductor is wrapped around an insulator which is wrapped
                      around an inner conductor.

                      Both RG58/RG59/RG6 Cable TV wire and decent RCA-terminated audio cable
                      are coaxial. BOTH ARE COAXIAL.

                      Peace... Sridhar


                    • B Degnan
                      ... Try a different TV, sometimes that s the problem. I have a box of the RF converters from misc systems. They are not all the same quality. bd
                      Message 10 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                        Matthew Mikolay wrote:
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                        > Oops. I think I bought the wrong converter then. My converter goes
                        > from a female RCA to a male F-Plug. If I'm correct, it should have
                        > been male RCA to female F-Jack.
                        >
                        >
                        Try a different TV, sometimes that's the problem. I have a box of the
                        RF converters from misc systems. They are not all the same quality.
                        bd
                      • Bryan Pope
                        ... You can use that connector with vintage video games systems where the RCA coaxial is not removable. Cheers, Bryan
                        Message 11 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                          Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                          > Oops. I think I bought the wrong converter then. My converter goes
                          > from a female RCA to a male F-Plug. If I'm correct, it should have
                          > been male RCA to female F-Jack.
                          >
                          You can use that connector with vintage video games systems where the
                          RCA coaxial is not removable.

                          Cheers,

                          Bryan


                          >
                          > --- On *Wed, 2/25/09, Bryan Pope /<bryan.pope@...>/* wrote:
                          >
                          > From: Bryan Pope <bryan.pope@...>
                          > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
                          > Grounding Issues?)
                          > To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                          > Date: Wednesday, February 25, 2009, 12:25 AM
                          >
                          > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                          > > Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the
                          > problem a
                          > > little.
                          > >
                          > You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using
                          > the
                          > coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game
                          > system or a
                          > real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)
                          >
                          > Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.
                          >
                          > Cheers,
                          >
                          > Bryan
                          >
                          > >
                          > > --- On *Tue, 2/24/09, Sridhar Ayengar /<ploopster@gmail. com
                          > <mailto:ploopster%40gmail.com>>/* wrote:
                          > >
                          > > From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@gmail. com
                          > <mailto:ploopster%40gmail.com>>
                          > > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
                          > > Grounding Issues?)
                          > > To: midatlanticretro@ yahoogroups. com
                          > <mailto:midatlanticretro%40yahoogroups.com>
                          > > Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2009, 10:02 PM
                          > >
                          > > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                          > > > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm
                          > > using an
                          > > > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to
                          > > connect
                          > > > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality cable,
                          > > maybe
                          > > > a Monster one?
                          > >
                          > > Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make sure
                          > > that
                          > > the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.
                          > >
                          > > Peace... Sridhar
                          > >
                          >
                        • Ray Sills
                          ... I brought up a point of wording to Matt. And I ll bring it up here, too. I think what Bill is referring to here is an adapter ... as opposed to a
                          Message 12 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                            On Feb 24, 2009, at 8:21 PM, B Degnan wrote:
                            >> <snip>

                            > Try a different TV, sometimes that's the problem. I have a box of the
                            > RF converters from misc systems. They are not all the same quality.
                            > bd
                            >
                            >

                            I brought up a point of "wording" to Matt. And I'll bring it up
                            here, too. I think what Bill is referring to here is an
                            "adapter"... as opposed to a converter. The adapter simply passes
                            the signal through, without altering it's characteristics and
                            provides the proper connection points to mate the devices being used.

                            A converter, for example, an RF converter, changes the
                            characteristics of the signal coming through, i.e. making a TV
                            broadcast type RF signal from a video signal. It "converts" the
                            baseband video to an RF passband (TV channel) to display it on a TV set.

                            73 de Ray
                          • Sridhar Ayengar
                            ... Oh God, yes! Get a decent length of coaxial audio cable terminated in RCA. Peace... Sridhar
                            Message 13 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                              Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                              > I just remembered I bought my RCA cable from a dollar store, does that
                              > account for anything?

                              Oh God, yes! Get a decent length of coaxial audio cable terminated in RCA.

                              Peace... Sridhar
                            • B Degnan
                              ... sorry, yes.
                              Message 14 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                                >
                                > I brought up a point of "wording" to Matt. And I'll bring it up
                                > here, too. I think what Bill is referring to here is an
                                > "adapter"... as opposed to a converter. The adapter simply passes
                                > the signal through, without altering it's characteristics and
                                > provides the proper connection points to mate the devices being used.
                                >
                                > A converter, for example, an RF converter, changes the
                                > characteristics of the signal coming through, i.e. making a TV
                                > broadcast type RF signal from a video signal. It "converts" the
                                > baseband video to an RF passband (TV channel) to display it on a TV set.
                                >
                                > 73 de Ray
                                >
                                sorry, yes.
                              • Dan Roganti
                                Sridhar Ayengar wrote: Matthew Mikolay wrote: I just remembered I bought my RCA cable from a dollar store, does that account for anything? Oh God, yes! Get a
                                Message 15 of 17 , Feb 24, 2009
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                                  Sridhar Ayengar wrote:
                                  Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                                    
                                  I just remembered I bought my RCA cable from a dollar store, does that 
                                  account for anything?
                                      
                                  Oh God, yes!  Get a decent length of coaxial audio cable terminated in RCA.
                                    

                                  FYI,

                                  Although a shielded audio cable is coaxial in construction, it's not a true representation. As it doesn't contain the dielectric material between the signal wire and the braided shield which provide it's RF characteristics. Whereas any of the traditional RF coaxial cables that do have this construction exhibit the proper impedance to couple a RF signal--such as that from your vintage machine(Ch.3,4, etc)--to your TV set and provide a clean picture. Later on, when vintage machines provided a composite signal--a signal without a RF carrier frequency--less stringent requirements are needed. You can use the common RCA cable sets that you find everywhere which include the video/audio wires using ordinary shielded cable.

                                  So for 'pre-composite' signal vintage machines, I highly recommend the RF video cable(75ohm impedance), such as the types Sridhar mentioned, and of course with right appropriate RF mating adapter (not audio)

                                  As for the Made in China Dollar Store variety--stay away--they're not worth the headache.

                                  =Dan
                                  -- 
                                  [ = http://www2.applegate.org/~ragooman/   ]


                                • Matthew Mikolay
                                  Thanks for all the responses! So I should buy a higher quality cable? A coaxial RCA Cable? How about this one?
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Feb 25, 2009
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                                    Thanks for all the responses! So I should buy a higher quality cable?
                                    A coaxial RCA Cable? How about this one?

                                    http://www.amazon.com/Digital-Audio-Coaxial-AV23324-AV-23324/dp/B0000D89M6

                                    --- In midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com, Bryan Pope <bryan.pope@...>
                                    wrote:
                                    >
                                    > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                                    > > Oops. I think I bought the wrong converter then. My converter goes
                                    > > from a female RCA to a male F-Plug. If I'm correct, it should have
                                    > > been male RCA to female F-Jack.
                                    > >
                                    > You can use that connector with vintage video games systems where the
                                    > RCA coaxial is not removable.
                                    >
                                    > Cheers,
                                    >
                                    > Bryan
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > >
                                    > > --- On *Wed, 2/25/09, Bryan Pope /<bryan.pope@...>/* wrote:
                                    > >
                                    > > From: Bryan Pope <bryan.pope@...>
                                    > > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
                                    > > Grounding Issues?)
                                    > > To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                                    > > Date: Wednesday, February 25, 2009, 12:25 AM
                                    > >
                                    > > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                                    > > > Running the wire through a NES RF adapter seemed to help the
                                    > > problem a
                                    > > > little.
                                    > > >
                                    > > You should not have to use a NES RF adapter. You should have using
                                    > > the
                                    > > coax cable with RCA end(s) that came with vintage video game
                                    > > system or a
                                    > > real coaxial cable (possibly with other adapters)
                                    > >
                                    > > Coaxial cable and audio cable are two different things.
                                    > >
                                    > > Cheers,
                                    > >
                                    > > Bryan
                                    > >
                                    > > >
                                    > > > --- On *Tue, 2/24/09, Sridhar Ayengar /<ploopster@gmail. com
                                    > > <mailto:ploopster%40gmail.com>>/* wrote:
                                    > > >
                                    > > > From: Sridhar Ayengar <ploopster@gmail. com
                                    > > <mailto:ploopster%40gmail.com>>
                                    > > > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] RCA to F-Jack Problems (Possible
                                    > > > Grounding Issues?)
                                    > > > To: midatlanticretro@ yahoogroups. com
                                    > > <mailto:midatlanticretro%40yahoogroups.com>
                                    > > > Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2009, 10:02 PM
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                                    > > > > The converter works, but the picture is extremely fuzzy. I'm
                                    > > > using an
                                    > > > > RCA audio cable (two red/black wires, but only one is used) to
                                    > > > connect
                                    > > > > the console to the TV. Should I be using a higher-quality
                                    cable,
                                    > > > maybe
                                    > > > > a Monster one?
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Monster is overpriced garbage. All you have to do is to make
                                    sure
                                    > > > that
                                    > > > the wire is coaxial in nature and not side-by-side.
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Peace... Sridhar
                                    > > >
                                    > >
                                    >
                                  • Sridhar Ayengar
                                    ... That would do. Probably overkill, but the price isn t exorbitant. Peace... Sridhar
                                    Message 17 of 17 , Feb 25, 2009
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                                      Matthew Mikolay wrote:
                                      > Thanks for all the responses! So I should buy a higher quality cable?
                                      > A coaxial RCA Cable? How about this one?
                                      >
                                      > http://www.amazon.com/Digital-Audio-Coaxial-AV23324-AV-23324/dp/B0000D89M6

                                      That would do. Probably overkill, but the price isn't exorbitant.

                                      Peace... Sridhar
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