We usually use gadgets for listening to music and watching videos. For vehicles and a few sources, we can’t get music directly. For uninterrupted music, we use some external devices like Aux Cord to connect our smartphones to the vehicle or any other device. It is one of the top-notch external devices to connect easily. Let’s know about these Aux Cables, their types, how to connect, what are its pros and cons etc.
Anatomy of Aux Cords
In 1874, C.E. Scribner patented a headphone jack with a rounded tip of 6.35mm. Later it was altered to a pointed tip. Till the stereo audio came into usage, the rounded tip jacks were widely used and had more compatibility. But, the stereo system needs a different model to fit into it. Hence the rounded tip was replaced by a pointed tip.
The circuits of audio jacks or plugs have some contact points that are known as conductors. Regardless of their size, every audio jack has 2 to 5 different conductors. Based on the number of conductors, the jack will get a name. For illustration, if the audio plug has three conductors, then it is termed as a 3 pole plug or 3 conductor plug. Also, these three conductors have unique names. They are –
- Tip (T)
- Ring (R)
- Sleeve (S)
If the audio jack has 2 conductors, then the sleeve part is missing. If the audio jack has more than 3 conductors, then the rings will increase accordingly. Let’s have a glance at the nomenclature:
2 Conductor (or) 2 Pole Aux Cord, TS
It has only ground and signal functions. These are widely used for guitars and other musical instruments.
3 Conductor (or) 3 Pole Aux Cord, TRS
It performs ground and signals at hot, and cold. Otherwise the left hand and right signals along with the ground. These are the most common connectors for all types of headphone cables.
4 Conductor (or) 4 Pole Aux Cord, TRRS
Microphone, Ground, Right, and Left Audio Channels are the functions carried out by these 4 pole jacks. It fulfils the standards of the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA). Advanced smartphones and gaming gadgets can make the best use of these connectors.
5 Conductor (or) 5 Pole Aux Cord, TRRRS
It performs all the above functions and yes, it is designed for car stereo systems to balance stereo signals. Balanced headphones are their other name.
Types of Aux Cords
There are two types of Auxiliary Cables. Each of them has its pros and cons. Let’s look into them.
3.5mm Aux Cord:-
3.5 mm Auxiliary Cable are quite less expensive and commonly used for mobiles, MP3 players, DVD players, tablets, car stereos etc. It usually sends converted analogue signals.
Optical Aux Cord:-
These jacks have high quality and standards. They can send raw digital signals, using fibre optic cables. They require different connectors and cables. Though they are more expensive but less interference.
Fospower, Kabeldirekt, Media bridge, Monster and Anker are the famous brands in the market for Aux Cords.
How to Connect Speakers Using Aux Cord?
Using Aux Cable, and connecting speakers to the audio devices is very easy. Using 3.5mm cords are more comfortable than others to connect our smartphones or tablets to the speakers. It involves a few sequential steps. They are –
- First, find the location of the Aux Cable input at the bottom of the speaker.
- Now, connect one end of the Aux Cord at the bottom of the speaker.
- Similarly, connect the other end of the Aux Cord to the audio device where we can find the Aux output port.
- Finally, turn on the ‘source ‘ knob of the Aux Cord then activate it by pushing it once.
How to Connect Car Stereo Using Aux Cord?
Like the above procedure, it is also quite simple. Here are the steps involved in connecting the aux cord to various external audio devices:
- First, we need to locate the Aux Cable input port on the car stereo. If not it is advisable to check on the dashboard.
- Then connect one end of the aux cord to the located aux cable input of the car stereo as shown in figure a.
Fig a: Connecting Aux Cord to an Input Port.
- Now plug the other end of the aux cord into the gadget. For instance, the headphone socket for the smartphone is shown in fig b.
Fig b: Connecting the Aux Cord to the Smartphone.
- Now click on the source button to play desired audio files. We can adjust the volume by putting it up to get more clarity in the car.
How to Make an Aux Cable or Cord at Home?
Just with two components, we can make our own Aux cord at home. Following each step carefully can result in the best output. It is always suggestible to be cautious. Let’s start the procedure. The components required to make an Aux Cord are –
- Two 3-pin audio jacks.
Steps in Making our Own Aux Cord at Home
- First, take the 3-pin audio jack and make it pinout. We use these three pins for a ground pin, and right and left speakers respectively.
- Now take the wires and remove their outer cover at their ends to place them in audio jacks.
- The part of wires without cover are termed solder wires. Insert these solder wires into audio jacks.
- Be careful in placing each solder wire in each pin.
- Repeat the same process with another audio jack to the other ends of the wires.
- The solder ground pin of jack-1 is connected to the ground (GND) pin of jack-2,
- The left pin of jack-1 needs to be in the Left pin of jack-2 and
- The right pin of jack-1 should connect to the Right pin of jack-2 as shown in fig c.
Fig c: connecting jacks to wires.
6. Apply glue to the wires to get them fixed properly. Let it dry.
7. Finally, our audio jacks or aux cords are ready to use.
Advantages of Aux Cord
The Aux cord or cable is very useful for us with its fabulous features. Some of its advantages are listed below –
- The Aux Cord ports are available on most smartphones, tablets, head units, portable speakers, mixers, CD players, and some musical instruments.
- Aux Cables help us to enjoy our favourite playlists while travelling in our vehicles.
- It is quite simple to connect and use the Aux Cords for any external device or vehicle.
- Another advantage is its portability. It is lightweight and just one to three feet long. It makes us comfortable to carry and use anywhere and everywhere.
- Its compatibility is another additional benefit. We can use smartphones, tablets, speakers etc and many more.
Disadvantages of Aux Cord
Besides all these benefits, the aux cord is not an exception to face a few limitations. They are –
- When compared to USBs, the Aux Cords may tend to wear out earlier.
- Its hardware mechanism also became a limitation for the Aux Cords.
- It also failed in responding equally to cars and other devices.
- Sudden removal may cause damage to the cable due to its length.
- Clarity was slightly less than others.
- High-frequency electronics may not opt for this.
- The lacking mechanism is missing.
- It is quite expensive than a USB.
Hence the Auxiliary Cable is an audio jack used to connect external audio devices. The connection process is quite simple. Its durability, portability and compatibility were more attractive. It provides uninterrupted music to relieve stress even while travelling in our vehicles. We have also gone through the making process of our own Aux Cord with two simple components. So, let’s not wait to enjoy your favourite playlists.