Uses of Coaxial Cable

By Brenda Priddy

Coaxial cable has many uses in today's media environment. Due to its solid structure and design, coaxial cable has been used for many years and is still a viable option for media transfer. Coaxial cable can be made out of several different materials depending on the impedance and frequency of the device with which it is being used.


Coaxial cable has many variations and grades. Coaxial cable makes use of a solid inner wire that is surrounded by a mesh shield. The inner wire is usually made from copper or a copper alloy. The mesh shield is typically made from either copper or aluminum. The inner wire and the shield work in conjunction with each other to create concentric cylinders that share a common axis. This electric pattern reduces electrostatic interference with the transferred signal and reduces data loss. Coaxial cable can be used with an extremely large range of devices with varying frequencies and impedances. The most common types of cable impedance are: 50 ohms, 60 ohms, 75 ohms and 93 ohms.


Coaxial cable has been used for transferring video signals for many years in the cable industry. The majority of homes in the United States have coaxial cable connections for their cable TV. Nearly all modern day TVs have coaxial connectors. Coaxial cable was often used to connect video peripherals before media cables evolved to make it possible to use standard video and audio jacks. Using these cable jacks is more affordable and flexible than coaxial.


Radio signals are often transferred from antennas to a signal relays using coaxial cable. The lack of interference in coaxial cable makes it one the most desired choices for radio signal transfer. Coaxial cable is used to relay both consumer radio signals and communication signals for CB radios and ham radios. Vehicles also make use of some form of coaxial cable to relay the vehicles antenna signal to its radio.


Coaxial cable is used for high-speed internet connections as well. Internet providers are bringing high-speed data connection into the home using both new and existing coaxial connections. Many high-speed fiber internet connections are also using coaxial. The coaxial cable is hooked up to a converter terminal that converts the signal from light signals to electrical signals. The coaxial cable is then run to a converter box that converts the signal to a readable format for home PCs and routers. These cables are just as effective at sending signals from the user through the internet.