In my humble opinion (I will get flack for this), cables are probably the most heavily marketed products in the industry. I would say over 90% of the cables on the market today are over hyped.
Those four cables you mentioned will all perform extremely well and you will not notice a significant difference between each pair. Obviously having the THX certification specifies that they have met the THX standard and are of the highest of quality. However, unless you are performing benchmark tests with sophisticated equipment, you will not (with the naked eye) be able to notice huge differences between the $60 pair of cables and the non-brand name $15 cables.
Honestly, I have dealt with $3 dollar component and optical cables that are thrown in with equipment, as well as the expensive $80+ cables. Very rarely can you tell a big difference between them either visually or audibly.
I would take DVI or HDMI cables over component, composite or S-Video all day long. When it comes to audio, I would take the Optical over any wire cable 100% of the time as it will provide the least resistance and signal degredation of all the cables. However, when it comes to the Optical cable, maker sure it has plenty of insulation around the cable to protect the delicate fiberglass or plastic cable in the middle of the cable.
Hope this helps,
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I am looking to purchase some component video cables, and I need some advice on which ones to buy. They will be linking a Toshiba RS-TX20 Tivo/DVD player to a Pioneer PDP-4340HD television. Would I be able to tell a difference in picture quality between the Monster Standard THX and the Monster Ultra 1000 THX component cables? It looks like I'd be able to purchase the Standard cables for about $25 and the Ultra cables for about $60.
Also, I have the same question for fiber optic audio cables (Standard THX vs. Ultra 1000 THX). I'll be using an Onkyo TX-SR502 receiver and Athena Micra 6 speakers.
Thanks a lot for your help!