Video Connector Guide

This guide contains an at a glance list of which connector Argosy recommends for a given usage. Any further assistance needed can be found by calling our sales team.

Keywords: Broadcast, Video, Connector

1U BNC Termination panel with gree image 360 tails

Connector roulette

Not too long ago there used to be only one problem an engineer had to consider when thinking about connectors for a rack installation job, that was where I should get my BNCs from? Today the world is a more complex place with engineers and installers having much more to think about.

Advancing technology has meant that, for instance, more router crosspoints can be squeezed into a smaller space. Broadcasters have seized on this as a real benefit, because they have more signals they need to route today. The problem with high-density routers and other products is that it means the engineer has to find space for more connectors on the already crowded back panel. Vendors have come up with solutions to this challenge, with new types of connector, which perform well but are physically smaller. The bad news is that, whereas there is just one traditional BNC format, there are a number of new types of connector, and thus the potential for confusion.

Back in 2008 NVision introduce the DIN 1.0/2.3 connector to the broadcast industry as the video interface on their enterprise routers. NVision was then acquired by Miranda, and you will find the Din 1.0/2.3 interface on their current large routers.

The Din 1.0/2.3 is a small 3-piece crimp connector with push-pull latching. It uses internal springs to grip the mating half, in a mechanical design which very similar to some triax connectors. It is commonly referred to as the “mini BNC” and although this terminology was not correct it was not a problem as it was the only small footprint connector being used on routers and other kit, so the installer knew what the customer wanted. But… in 2011 Amphenol introduced an alternative connector, again an industry standard 3 piece crimp. But unlike the Din 1.0/2.3 which is a push pull, the new Amphenol connector is fundamentally a miniature BNC in look and feel, by using the familiar bayonet locking ring to secure to the mating half pips. This product can currently be found on Harris Broadcast and Utah Scientific routers. However, to add to the complexity, this product was marketed as the HD BNC, but HD as in high density not HD as in high definition.

So to recap, there is a Din 1.0/2.3 being referred to as a miniature BNC, a miniature BNC referred to as an HD BNC, and the “common” BNC, which is an HD BNC because it comfortably carries high definition signals. This is where the potential for engineers to end up with the wrong connector lays.

Both “new” connectors are well suited to their intended applications and are widely available. My advice is to use the correct terminology from your router manufacturer’s literature when talking with your component supplier – maybe tell them what you want the connector for – and you will have one less thing to trouble you at the end of the day!

BNC, HD-BNC, and mini DIN connector size comparison


The BNC connector was designed for the military as a coaxial cable connector with a quick, easy and uncomplicated connection/disconnection for use in harsh environments. The BNC connector has bayonet style pins on the female connector and two slots on the male of the same size, making a sturdy locked connection in only half a turn of the nut. The standard BNC comes in 50 ohm and 75 ohm varieties and is ideally suited for frequencies below 4GHz, the plastic dielectric begins to leak signal above this threshold and causes increasingly severe degradation as the frequency increases, below 10 MHz however the impedance mismatch between a 50 ohm connectors and 75 ohm ones are insignificant.

High Density BNC connectors are smaller and are used for higher density patching, Argosy tries to refer to these connectors as high density in its publications to avoid confusion, as a rule of thumb we have listed as HD it is suitable for high definition signals, but not necessarily high density in design. If you are ever in any doubt our sale or technical support teams are only an email or phone call away.

The Mini DIN (1.0/2.3) has a push/pull lock and release feature, they are available in 50 O and 75 O impedance and are compatible with the most widely used cable sizes.

Author: Josh Simons - Technical Director at Argosy

Contributor: Neil Burman - Technical Support Supervisor at Argosy

Editor: DanielSaunders - Website and Catalogue Administrator at Argosy

Version: 1.0

Date Added: 2013-05-14

Genre: Non-Fiction, Broadcast Engineering

Expected Reader Proficiency: Beginner

Language: en-GB

What to Use Where

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