A guide to audio & video connections – RCA phono,Scart,amp,HDMI

DVD players, surround sound systems and other audio video equipment have a plethora of connections and available connection types. You need to ensure when buying a piece of audio video equipment that the new unit has the correct connections to be able to connect to your current equipment and vice versa that your current equipment has the correct connection types for the new equipment.

Below is a very brief summary of the standard AV connection types that you will find on many of the DVD players & audio systems that we here at 3wisemonkeys supply:

RCA phono connection:

RCA phono connection type - image of socket and plugs for audio and video

The RCA phono connection is used on audio devices such as surround sound audio systems as well as audio / video devices such as DVD players. The red and white plugs / sockets are for audio left & right, the yellow for video. When using this type of plug & socket you will find they are always colour coded. Always plug the yellow plug in to the yellow socket etc. If the sockets aren’t colour coded these are most likely not RCA phono sockets and you should not try to connect to them.



Scart plug & socketThe Scart plug and socket are extremely common on DVD players, set top boxes etc and the Scart cable carries audio & video so it is a one plug solution for audio / video unit connections. There are 2 types of Scart… one being RGB and one being composite. Composite Scart isn’t as good quality picture as RGB Scart. You can tell the difference as Composite Scart plugs won’t have all the pins as pictured in this Scart plug.


Component video:

Component video plugs and socket imagesComponent video sockets are purely for video and split the video in to 3 separate feeds for the best quality analogue signal. This plug / socket type is always colour coded red, green and blue. If it’s not colour coded with these colours then it isn’t component video sockets and / or plugs. This connection type usually then use RCA phono audio left & right plugs (as above – red and white plug / sockets) for the complimentary audio feed. Component video plugs frequently used for DVD players & set top boxes.


HDMI plug and socket exampleThe HDMI connection is the most current connection type and gives the very best quality video so is best for your DVD player or set top box. Because it is a digital connection type less adjustment of the signal is required so less degradation of the signal occurs leaving the cleanest, sharpest picture. HDMI carries both audio and video signals and is the audio / video connection of choice. Out of all the connection types thus far in this article if your TV has this type of connection then we would always suggest using this over any of the other connections for connecting a DVD player or set top box to your TV.

Do get in touch and let the 3wisemonkeys know if you need any more information or tips!

The 3wisemonkeys team

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