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RCA Audio/Video Cable Pin-Out

While working on my "Video Transfer from Digital Camera to Camcorder" article, I seriously wondered about the pin-out for these new audio/video cables that are being supplied with the recent camcorders and digital cameras. Originally, life have been simple, an audio/video cable had one audio channel and one video channel. On one side are two RCA connectors for each channel, and on the other side is a standard 3.5mm stereo jack. Both RCA and stereo jack connectors can be easily found from Radio Shack or other electronics stores.

However, the new audio/video cables have stereo audio channels (two) and one video channel. It is still simple on one side of the cable; the RCA connectors side, where one additional RCA connector is added. However, the 3.5mm stereo jack is no longer standard. I don't think we can even call it a 3.5mm stereo jack anymore, because it now provides 3 channels on a 3.5mm jack. The jack is still the same physical size, but the number of contacts has increased. If you know the right name for this jack or where to source it, let us know.

G - ground
Y - video
L - left audio channel
R - right audio channel

I believe the pin-out for this cable is standard among camcorders and, quite possibly, digital cameras. I have verified this pin-out against my Sony DCR-TRV350 Handycam and a Panasonic PV-GS50S Palmcorder.

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Copyright © 2004 by Chieh Cheng. All Rights Reserved.