Do a little research before purchasing a HDMI Cable
Purchasing an HDMI cable would seem to be a simple enough task, however there are always a few factors you should check out before jumping in and buying one. If you intend to opt for the high end HDMI cables, it is more important than ever that you do a little research before purchasing so that you avoid costly mistakes and troublesome returns. This article will look at a few of the important things you need to consider so that you are in a position to buy the the best HDMI cable without pulling your hair out.
Buying the Best Cable for your Home Theater
Buying HDMI cables is not rocket science, in reality it is a rather simple task to find the best HDMI cable for your home theater. There are a few simple things you need to know, most importantly – price usually has no bearing on how well the cable will function. Still, there is a significant range of prices for HDMI cables. You will find both extremely economical cables for less than $1.00 and super costly cables for $50, $100 or even more.
This refers to how the cable has been manufactured and is related to the materials used and how the wires within the cable are shielded, coated and protected. There is a tremendous amount of audio and visual data that is transferred via an HDMI cable and the cable needs to be made from quality materials as well as protected from all possible electromagnetic interference.
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Link to Review
Bluerigger High Speed W/ Ethernet
Series High Speed
9 to 5
Speed Rating and Bit Depth
These refer to the performance of the data transfer. The HDMI cable will be rated for speed as well as its ability to process a variety of audio and visual frequencies. 4K, 1440p, 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 480p, and 480i are industry standard resolutions for video data with a transfer rate between 340Mhz - 18 Gbps. The specification for the particular cable you are purchasing should be available for you online or on the packaging for you to check.
These are worth being fussy about because their quality is often the difference between having good picture and sound, or not, as the case may be. The connectors should be gold plated for best performance and 24K is the industry standard. The connectors should also fit snugly when you connect them to your video devices.
This is an important consideration if you are planning on running your HDMI cable through a wall into an adjoining room, or up a wall to hide the cables. Some cables are rated for in-wall use and others are not, so if you run an unrated cable through a wall, the audio and visual experience might not be of the quality you were expecting. Also, it could be a fire hazard. If you need an in-wall HDMI cable, you should always check the cable meets specifications (CL3) for in-wall and through wall installation, and if in doubt, asking the question is always a better option than buying the wrong cable.
If you are purchasing your cable online, you can do a search for CL3 rated HDMI Cables.
Don't Buy the Least Expensive HDMI Cable
If all HDMI cables are equal – should you go out and buy the least expensive HDMI cable? No.
Do not purchase the super cheap cables, because:
- The build quality of cheap HDMI Cables is substandard; the connectors, twists in cables, electromagnetic interference protection, wiring, etc. are of the lowest quality.
- Poor quality control by the cable manufacturer; too commonly inexpensive cables do not work at all.
- Higher possibility of not meeting the standards set by the HDMI organization and not being an official HDMI adopter.
Forget about looking for a particular HDMI version, choose a HDMI High Speed cable
For some reason people still think that HDMI versions such as HDMI 1.3 and HDMI 1.4a, 2.1 etc. are appropriate criteria for purchasing HDMI cables. In fact, the HDMI versions really only apply to the manufacturers of the cables. Consumers want to look for the following criteria when selecting cables:
- HDMI Standard – 1080i and 720p
- HDMI Standard with Ethernet – 1080i and 720p plus Ethernet
- HDMI High Speed – 1080p, 3D and 4k
- HDMI High Speed with Ethernet – 1080p, 3D, 4K plus Ethernet
The following are the features of HDMI cables that matter to consumers:
- If you are connecting a 3D BluRay player to a 3D HDTV, then you should choose a High-Speed HDMI Cable.
- If you want to use the new 4K
high-resolutionstandard, then be sure the cable supports 4K video and it is an HDMIHigh Speed version.
- If you are connecting a standard DVD player to an HDTV with a resolution less than 1080p, then a HDMI standard cable will work just fine.
A High-Speed HDMI cable is the very best cable you can purchase and will work with all the latest technology.
Buy Authentic HDMI Products
The vast bulk of HDMI products are certified by the HDMI Licensing Company and tested for the finest performance. To make sure that you are purchasing an accredited and 100% certified item we recommend:
Look for the official HDMI Logo and the HDMI High Speed Logo.
Purchase from trusted sellers, like Amazon.
Note: There is no explicit maximum length of HDMI cables. The HDMI Company makes it clear that HDMI signals can be transferred over a distance of 300 ft with the right technique.
Other Things to Consider When Purchasing
Price is always something to consider, however if you do some reading on cheap versus costly HDMI cables, you can save yourself some money. Connected to brand is price and while it can be a consideration, some consumers have their favorite brands when it comes to cables in the same way they might approach a brand for other consumer items, such as cars, for example.