However, a Tim Krul error almost handed Cardiff the lead. The Dutch goalkeeper saw his weak punch fall at the feet of Frazier Campbell, but the forward's effort from 18 yards drifted harmlessly wide of the post.
David Marshall then denied Mathieu Debuchy twice in two minutes. First, the goalkeeper tipped the Frenchman's strong effort wide before getting his fingertips onto his header from the resulting corner to divert it onto the bar.
© Getty Images
Marshall was helpless to prevent the opener though, as an unmarked Shola Ameobi nodded home at the far post in the 18th minute.
Just four minutes later, Moussa Sissoko crashed a long-range shot against the foot of the post as Cardiff struggled with Newcastle's pace and power in attack.
Wilfried Zaha took matters into his own hands and tested Krul twice in a matter of minutes, but Newcastle reminded the visitors of their attacking prowess when Sissoko hit the post once again with a deflected cross.