Your Questions: Are RCA Or TRS Cables Best For Connecting My DJ Controller?

Last updated 3 August, 2017

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Balanced TRS cables are perfect for connecting your controller to speakers, but how necessary are they?
Balanced TRS cables are perfect for connecting your controller to speakers, but how necessary are they?

Digital DJ Tips forum reader Jahitty writes: “I was wondering how best to connect my M-Audio AV-40 Powered Speakers monitors to my set-up. I have a Reloop Digital Jockey 3 with a high quality sound card. What I’m curious about is whether I should connect using the balanced TRS or RCA connections. Which is better?”

Digital DJ Tips says:

Really, it doesn’t make any difference. Balanced is better over longer distances (say 20ft or more) but for the short distance between your DJ controller and your desktop speakers, the RCA connections should be fine. One thing to note is that unless you specifically buy balanced TRS cables, you wouldn’t get the advantage of balanced audio anyway using the balanced TRS outs. Non-balanced cables (TS, mono) look similar but confer none of the benefits.

You can tell if a cable is definitely not balanced, because when you look at the shiny metal part of it, it only has one black ring near the tip, and not two. (Such cables will still usually work, though.)

How do you connect your DJ controller to your amp or speakers? Ever had issues with TRs or RCA cables? Please share your experiences in the comments.