From HwB

AES = Audio Engineering Society
EBU = European Broadcasting Union

A digital audio interface for professional use. Similar to the consumer version S/PDIF. The first version (now known as AES3) uses a balanced cable to transmit the audio in digital form using time division multiplex for data.

AES-3id describes how to use an unbalanced coaxial cable to transmit the data.

AES3 AES-3id
Connector XLR-3 BNC
Interface Balanced Unbalanced
Cabling 110 Ω shielded TP 75 Ω coaxial
Max length 1000 m 100 m
Output level 2-7 Vpp 1.0 Vpp
Max output 7 Vpp 1.2 Vpp
Max current 64 mA 1.6 mA
Min input 0.2 Vpp 0.32 Vpp
Modulation biphase-mark-code
Subcode information ASCII ID text
Max. Resolution 24 bits

The electrical characteristics of AES/EBU are based on on RS-422, so basically any differential RS-422 chip will do as the receiver and transmitter chips. S/PDIF coaxial interface is not specifically based on any other standard I know of (but is quite similar in signal levels and bandwidth requirements to some video signals).


See also

  • S/PDIF (some AES/EBU information there as well)


  • IEC 60958-3:2006 (old name: IEC 958-3:1989)
  • JEITA CPR-1205 (former EIAJ CP-340 1987-9 & EIAJ CP-1201)
  • (CP-1201 Japanese equivalent of IEC 60958)
  • (CP-340 Japanese equivalent of AES/EBU)
  • EBU tech 3250-E 2004
  • AES3-1992
  • AES-3id-2001
  • ANSI S4.40-1992 (American equivalent of AES3-1992)
  • AES3-1992 AES Recommended Practice for Digital Audio Engineering - Serial transmission format for two-channel linearly represented digital audio data.