How Do You Connect a Coaxial Cable?

Connect coaxial cables using connectors commonly referred to as male and female. Male adapters have an exterior rotating sleeve or nut that is used to thread the male connector to the female adapter or device. Some varieties are considered sexless, where both adapters look identical and have interlocking connectors.

  1. Identify the cable and connectors

    For television and audio use, the most common type of cable is RG-59 or RG-6, using Type-N connectors. These cables use a male sleeve, which connects by twisting and attaching the male cable adapter to the desired female connector. The male connector has a copper pin in the center of the connector that protrudes from the rest of the wiring. If the cable does not have a sleeve attached that provides threads to connect the cable in this manner, a crimping tool and connector sleeve is necessary. Soldering may also be required to connect the connector to the cable.

  2. Identify the destination for the cable

    Connecting coaxial cable requires a female connector, or another connector for the types of coaxial cable that are considered sexless. If the cable is being plugged into a device, make sure that the male connector is applied to the correct input or output female connector before the cables are secured.

  3. Tighten the cable securely

    Turn the sleeve or nut to the right to tighten the threads of the male adapter to the threads of the receiving connector. Some types of coaxial connectors may require pressure on the outer sleeve to connect special clamps. Alternately, it requires use of a wrench to properly tighten the outer nut.

  4. Label the cable

    When working with several different coaxial cables at once, save time by marking different cables with color codes or adhesive labels. Identifying input and output cables for television, audio and Internet connectivity provides quick answers when needing to disconnect and reconnect systems from the cable setup.