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Monitor S-Video Cables

Hook up your TV and computer monitors to a wide range of video sources. The standard 4-pin S-Video connector provides a snug connection that preserves signal strength and delivers better image quality than composite. These cables are available in various lengths and are a preferred alternative to composite, RCA, and even VGA in many scenarios.

What is S-Video?

Separate video, which is also known as Y/C and sometimes called Super Video, is a standard for transmitting standard definition video without sound. The standard accounts for inputs, outputs, and the cables to join them and is often used to link TVs and computer displays to video sources.

What are S-Video cables for monitors?

These cables carry an analog feed from a video source to an input, and are often used in surveillance and other CCTV scenarios. Such lines are also used with entertainment equipment where standard-definition is suitable. This can include both retro gaming and retro VCR viewing.

Do all monitors have S-Video ports?

No. CCTV displays usually do. However, as HD has become more prevalent than SD, many TV and computer screen manufacturers have eliminated S-Video, RCA, and composite in favor of HDMI, DVI, and so on. Nevertheless, VGA remains prevalent, and if a VGA input or VGA output exists, then it may be possible to use an adapter or converter.

What’s the difference between an adapter and a converter?

The terms are sometimes used interchangeably, but there is a technical difference. An adapter facilitates a physical connection, such as VGA to S-Video or vice versa. A converter facilitates the physical connection as well but also transforms the signal, such as transforming RCA to S-Video.

Do converters degrade or upgrade sources?

Neither converters nor adapters fundamentally affect source strength. If a converter or adapter includes or is connected to a splitter, then that will degrade strength for each split in use. Additionally, amplifiers can be used to boost strength, so devices that feature or are connected to amplifiers will improve strength. Amplification can be used to overcome degradation from splits and other sources.

Which adapters and converters are available?

There are many connection and conversion options on the market, and more become available as new transmission standards are supported by TV and monitor manufacturers. The options you can choose from range from basic to complex, such as featuring splitters, boosters, and standalone power sources, and these include the following:

  • DVI-to-S-Video
  • HDMI-to-S-Video
  • VGA-to-S-Video
  • RCA-to-S-Video
  • Composite-to-S-Video
Does cable length matter?

Yes. S-Video carries an analog signal. Any cable that carries this source type, including composite, RCA, and VGA, will experience signal degradation over distance. Ideally, you should choose the shortest video cable needed for a particular job. However, S-Video can support cable distances up to 150 feet in most cases, and amplifiers can be used to improve strength in scenarios where distance is affecting it.

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