There have been countless audio and video cables for connecting components over the years, but none have become as prolific and prevalent as the aux cable. The aux cable has become the one cable to rule them all in past years serving as a means to connect practically any gadget you need to a speaker output. It’s become so useful that many people keep multiple copies around for their multiple devices.
But not every aux cable is necessarily built equally, and investing in a higher quality model is well worth your time so you don’t have to keep swapping them out regularly. Our guide includes a review for each of 10 of the contenders for best aux cable, and we also share some smart shopping advice for the savvy customer.
- 10 Best Aux Cables
- 1. iXCC Aux Audio Stereo Cable
- 2. FosPower Audio Cable Male to Male Aux Cable
- 3. AmazonBasics 3.5 mm Male to Male Stereo Audio Aux Cable
- 4. ivanky AUX Cable
- 5. Anker AUX Cable
- 6. Oldboytech AUX Cable
- 7. AINOPE Aux Cables
- 8. KabelDirekt Pro Series 20 feet 3.5mm Audio Aux Cord
- 9. CableCreation 6 Feet 3.5mm Auxiliary Audio Cable
- 10. Belkin MiXiT Tangle-Free Aux / Auxiliary Cable
- Aux Cable Buyer’s Guide
- What Distinguishes an Auxiliary Cable From Other Audio Cables?
- What’s the Difference Between a Source and a Destination?
- What if a Source or Destination Doesn’t Support an Aux Cable?
- What’s the Best Length For an Auxiliary Cable?
- Do The Materials Matter For a 3.5mm Cable?
- Do Aux Cords Affect Sound Quality?
- What is an Aux Cable Used For?
- Which Sounds Better, Bluetooth or Aux?
- Do Aux Cables Work With Headphones?
10 Best Aux Cables
1. iXCC Aux Audio Stereo Cable
If you need an aux cable that's long and flexible enough to connect practically anything in your home, this iXCC model certainly fits the bill. Available with a max length of 10 feet, it's a sturdy choice with the range of movement that power users demand. And the fact that it employs a no tangle design means that you don't have to worry about it creating a nest of cords around your entertainment center or run the risk of fraying over time. Equally durable are the gold plated and polished metal connectors designed to last into perpetuity. These are easily some of the best aux cables available for your home entertainment center.
2. FosPower Audio Cable Male to Male Aux Cable
FosPower gives you a wide variety of different lengths to choose from with their aux cables with a max length of 25 feet, but they hold all of their cables to the same high levels of craftsmanship. The connectors are plated in 24K gold, but they also use a beveled step down design to offer a firmer and tighter connection even when the case is on. The PVC jacket, meanwhile, makes use of both aluminum foil and copper braided shielding to ensure a greater level of flexibility and less risk of interference than what you'd find in a comparable aux cord. This is a tough cord with a great lifespan.
3. AmazonBasics 3.5 mm Male to Male Stereo Audio Aux Cable
AmazonBasics is, naturally, all about the basics. These products generally offer the bare minimum of features but a decent level of quality for a low price, and that's an especially valuable approach in the aux cord market: where the distinction between average and the best models isn't all that great. These cords are one of the best deals on the market, but they're highly reliable too. That's reflected in both the beveled design of the cords themselves and the gold plating that's built to minimize corrosion and rusting. The flexible jacket and uncoiled design further reduces the risk of unnecessary wear and tear.
4. ivanky AUX Cable
This aux cord from iVanky is one of the shortest models we feature here, but that makes this one of the best choices if you're looking for an aux cable for car use. And iVanky has also made some smart decisions that improve its value. The iVanky aux cable is one of the most durable cords on the market, and it makes use of ultra slim connectors so it can fit in tighter spaces and connect more easily to a wider range of devices. Whether you're looking to connect it to your car's stereo or line it up through your phone case, you don't have to worry about compatibility with your iVanky.
5. Anker AUX Cable
Are you looking for an aux cord for car, MP3 player, and phone use that will provide you with a seamless transition? These Anker aux cables could be the best option for you. Their ultra slim design means they can fit easily even around the tightest corner and into the narrowest phone case, and their meticulous design results in an incredibly durable aux cable. This 3.5mm audio cable sports one of the longest lives in the business, and it uses polished metal connectors wrapped in gold to reduce interference and minimize the risk of corrosion or rusting for one of the most perfect models for cars.
6. Oldboytech AUX Cable
Oldboy offers one of the best deals in town for an aux cable with this two pack. Right around 6 bucks gets you two 4 foot cords, and these aren't cheaply produced cables either. The aux cord itself is nylon braided for a more durable and tangle free experience, and the connectors themselves make use of both a pure silver core and a gold plated tip to provide a reliable experience. The quality of the cable itself combined with the length of the cable makes this one of the best choices you'll find if you're looking for a cable that can work seamlessly in cars.
7. AINOPE Aux Cables
Whether you're looking for a cable for a speaker, headphone, or any other audio accessories in your life, Ainope has you covered. Their cables fold at a 90 degree angle from the back of the connector to provide a more convenient and flexible way to connect the cable to a variety of different devices, and each pack comes with two cables for the price many manufacturers charge for a single cable.
Despite that, Ainope plates the connector for each cable in 24K gold for higher quality sound. The cable itself utilizes a unique helical design that improves on the advantages that come from a traditional braided cord.
8. KabelDirekt Pro Series 20 feet 3.5mm Audio Aux Cord
Customers looking for a long reaching 3.5mm cord that isn't going to bend or fray should check out what KabelDirekt has to offer. Their Pro series cords are seriously high-quality, and the longest ones are 25 feet, making them one of the best choices you'll find if you're looking to connect a more complicated home theater system. These are also some of the toughest cables you'll find anywhere. The polished gold connectors will grip strong to both the source and destination accessories regardless of how worn out thee ports may be, and these cables are put through rigorous testing to make sure they all meet the standards customers expect.
9. CableCreation 6 Feet 3.5mm Auxiliary Audio Cable
The 3.5mm cables by CableCreation share a lot of the best qualities you'll find in other cables on our review list without deprecating quality, and they manage to keep their prices surprisingly low as well. You can get a pack of two 6 foot cords for less than $7, and each cord is fully braided and employs a 90 degree elbow right behind the connector to let you connect at awkward angles and not have to worry about the cord becoming threadbare. The cotton braided enclosure serves multiple purposes: increasing durability, doubling the shielding, and significantly reducing the risk of signal loss.
10. Belkin MiXiT Tangle-Free Aux / Auxiliary Cable
This is auxiliary cable by Belkin may be simplistic in design, but that's an asset in its own right. Not only is it one of the cheapest cables you'll find, but it also sports a short length and a narrow connector that makes it an ideal choice as an aux cable car choice. It's not the best option in terms of raw quality, but if you just want a simple cord that will get the job done, it's certainly up to the task. Its most notable feature is its flat design, a great choice for minimizing the risk of tangles.
Aux Cable Buyer’s Guide
If you’re looking for the best aux cables on the market, here’s the best place to start. While each review can provide you with detailed information on a specific model of aux cable, In the following guide, we share more general information on the features and components to pay attention to when shopping for an aux cable.
What Distinguishes an Auxiliary Cable From Other Audio Cables?
There was a time when the connectivity types between various audio devices were far more varied – and thus far more complicated – than they are today. But as the prevalence of MP3 players and other devices that need to connect to an external speaker system became more and more varied, more and more manufacturers began to see their need for a system of connectivity with universal compatibility. That’s where the notion of 3.5mm premium auxiliary audio came from.
These auxiliary jacks were predicated on the notion that if almost any potential source and destination device used the same jacks, you could greatly improve compatibility and thus improve the value of your audio products. Thus the 3.5mm aux cable became the standard. This type of auxiliary cable proved itself cheap to produce without sacrificing the quality of sound performance, and today it serves as a standard in practically any source or destination audio device you’d hope to find.
What’s the Difference Between a Source and a Destination?
To put things in their most practical terms, the source is the device you plug your cable into that produces the music, while the destination serves as the speaker that actually amplifies and plays the music. A source can cover any number of smaller devices. It could be a MP3 players, a handheld CD player, a turntable, computer, a TV or even your phone. In essence, it’s any device that plays music that you seek to play louder or in a more enhanced capacity.
The destination is the device you plug your cable into that delivers that sound. It could be something that directs a louder noise into a more compact sound (say if you want to listen to your stereo’s music over a headphone) or one that transforms lower volume sound into a more impressive soundscape (say playing a movie from your TV through a dedicated sound bar). A destination could be a headphone, a speaker system, or any number of other devices. Most cars also have cable jacks that allow you to magnify music from a small device through the internal speaker system.
What if a Source or Destination Doesn’t Support an Aux Cable?
In some older or more highly specialized sound equipment, you may not find an auxiliary cable. Older record players and TVs, for instance, use an RCA cable, and there’s a variety of other cable shapes that were prominent with other types of equipment. Fortunately, you can still use a 3.5mm aux cable with these older devices.
When we talk about an aux cable on this list, what we’re really discussing is a cable with a 3.5mm male connector on both ends of the cable, but this type of cable is designed to be as universal as possible. You can find cable accessories to these that will transfer the signal from the cable into essentially any format you want to. Simply seek out a cable that includes a female counterpart to a 3.5mm male cable on one and and whatever other format you need to convert to on the other. Just keep in mind that an aux cable can only transmit sound, and it won’t offer the same level of fidelity you’d receive from the best cable alternatives on the market.
What’s the Best Length For an Auxiliary Cable?
The best length for a cable is the length you need to connect from your source device to your destination device without running the risk of yanking it free and potentially damaging either the cable or the ports. While it’s true that even the best cables degrade over long distances, it will only have a noticeable effect on cords that have a length far longer than the 25′ you’ll find on one of the cables we’ve reviewed, so you don’t need to worry about a cord being so long that it jeopardizes audio fidelity.
Do The Materials Matter For a 3.5mm Cable?
The materials that go into the construction of an aux cable aren’t going to affect sound quality for the most part, but there are two purposes they serve: reducing the risk of signal interference and increasing durability. That means that finding the cable with the best materials should actually be a top priority. Here are some of the features you should look for as a customer.
- Look for connectors that are gold-plated. The connector is important because it’s where the cord comes in contact with the connections, and you should pay attention to the quality of both ends. The best cords share the common trait of plating their connectors in gold (with 24 karat gold being the peak of quality), and polished metal connectors can reduce interference with the source and destination.
- Many cords are rated by a factor that’s known s “bend lifespan”. This tells you how many times a cord can be bent before exposing the wiring underneath and losing its value, and it’s one of the best factors for determining the quality of a cable.
- Any cable you find is going to be either braided or wrapped in solid plastic casing. Each option has its advantages. Braided cable is well shielded and tends to be more durable, but plastic cable is more flexible and bends more easily.
- Consider the warranty. Many companies offer a lifetime warranty or lifetime customer service support.
Do Aux Cords Affect Sound Quality?
While most manufacturers will try to indicate that their auxiliary cable can deliver better sound than the competition, the difference in terms of raw audio quality is going to be negligible between a 99 cent cable and a $20 cable. Focus on other factors like size and durability when shopping for a 3.5mm cable, and don’t get sold on promises of top shelf audio performance.
What is an Aux Cable Used For?
This type of cable is used to connect a source device to a speaker. Auxiliary cable jacks are easily the most common format used to play audio from a phone or other music player directly through the speakers of cars.
Which Sounds Better, Bluetooth or Aux?
While the wireless connectivity of Bluetooth makes it a convenient way to play music, a cable connection is almost always better than a wireless connection in terms of audio quality. An auxiliary cable provides consistently better sound quality and doesn’t run the risk of audio loss because of a disconnection with the wireless device.
Do Aux Cables Work With Headphones?
Almost every headphone on the market today should work with an auxiliary cable. Older headphones and more professional models are the one exception, but if your headphones don’t support a 3.5mm cable, you can always use a connecting cable to convert it to the appropriate format.
The main advantage of an aux cable is its universal compatibility, and while most models are pretty similar, there are some distinctions between them. We hope that our guide has helped you find the ideal model for your needs.