An audio multicore cable (often colloquially referred to in the US and Canada as a snake cable or just a snake) is a thick cable which contains from four to 64 individual audio cables inside a common, sturdy outer jacket. Audio multicore cables are widely used whenever multiple audio signals, for example from a number of microphones, need to be conveyed between common locations. Typical professional audio applications include audio recording, sound reinforcement, PA systems and broadcasting. The “snake” is typically used to make it easier to route many signals from the microphones or other input transducers, to the audio console or sound equipment.
Without a snake, a rock band performing onstage, for example, would have to have 20 or more individual mic cables running from the stage to the mixing console, which is typically located at the rear of a venue. It would be easy for the cables to become tangled, and it would be very hard for the audio engineers connecting the mic cables to the mixing board to determine which cable is for which mic (or other input).