NDS Digital Out - Cable Length?

I’m thinking of hooking up my digital out to a headphone/DAC in another room…the run will probably be about 10metres…I’m assuming that won’t be a problem with correctly terminated 75ohm cable/connectors? Anyone tried/know of any particular distance limitations from the NDS?


Good question! Someone will kill me for saying its just noughts and ones but i can’t think why 100m wouldn’t be ok? I guess it depends on the driver protocol in the NDS, if its 100% standard or “Naimised” in some way.

I believe that with the basic S/PDIF specification there is a theoretical limit of about 10m - which means that data integrity is only guaranteed up to that length, risk of loss of data integrity increasing with length. Doubtless the limit in practice will depend on the individual cable construction, and both the sender and receiver. With good quality cable (meaning with good shielding and true 75 ohm connectors with well-made joints), and with a low resistance core, I wouldn’t be surprised at quite a lot longer being possible without problem - after all the specifications for this type of thing are often banded in decades: up to 10, 100, 1000 m or MHz etc, and clearly there won’t be a hard cutoff.

Aside from that, the longer the cable the greater the potential for RF pickup, then in turn the more susceptible the DAC is to RF the greater the potential effect on sound quality - some are far more susceptible than others. (It can cause audible differences in the analogue sound, presumably through modulation effects in the DAC). Whether audible will depend on the degree of pickup and the DAC. Putting a ferrite around the cable at the DAC end may be a simple solution.

Thanks both…I think it should be fine and what you say makes sense. I’ll go ahead an order myself something and give it a try.

10m optical SPDIF is perfectly fine from my Sony TV to my nDAC but 8m HDMI from an Oppo 203 (one shelf below the nDAC) to the Sony TV is critical.

Not all cables 8K managed to carry a clean 4K HDR signal from the Oppo to the TV.

I have no experience with long electrical SPDIF cables but, if the devices support it, I would use optical SPDIF rather than electrical SPDIF for 10m.

Thanks, yeah, unfortunately no optical SPDIF output on NDS

1 Like

Just a quick update to say 10m cable in place and all working well.

I suspect I’ll be in the market for a new DAC/headphone amp soon though!

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.