In 2016, HDMI is the gold standard in digital video and audio connection. This high definition multimedia interface is one the first types of cable that allowed transmission of high-resolution uncompressed data with utmost ease. Unlike its predecessors, HDMI is a one connector solution for modern AV interfacing needs. It is used to connect Blu-ray players, media players, DVD players, Gaming Consoles and even laptops/computers to other HD TV’s, displays and AV receivers.
With so many options available, it becomes tricky to buy HDMI cables that perfectly fit your requirement, without breaking the bank. In your search, you would notice that there are plenty of terms and jargons thrown at you. You probably don’t pay much attention to it. These specifications are crucial to know in order to make the right buying decision. Knowing these will help you immensely in your HDMI cable buying adventures.
If you are looking to buy HDMI cables, you should know these. Let’s looks at the key specifications of the HDMI standards and protocols.
Key HDMI Specifications
- HDMI 1.4: Released in 2009, most TVs and displays launched since then support V1.4 easily. Unlike its previous versions, HDMI 1.4 bought in features such as deeper color reproduction, 4K/2K support, 3D support, Audio Return Channel and HDMI Ethernet Channel. In simple words, it can be used to interface with most HD TVs, Blu-ray players, media players and gaming consoles.
- HDMI 2.0: Released in 2013, version 2.0 is the latest HDMI-standard that is used actively in numerous devices especially 4K UHD (Ultra-High-Definition) TVs. Apart from all the features in V1.4, this version brings in increased data transfer speeds, 4K resolution at 60 frames per second (fps), Rec. 2020 colour space for deeper hues, 25 fps 3D formats, 21:9 aspect ratio, and HE-AAC & DRA audio support among others.
- HDMI ARC: HDMI Audio Return Channel (ARC) is a great way to connect high-resolution audio to AV receivers, home theater system and sound bars with minimal fuss. In simple words, it lets you route audio signals between the various connected HDMI devices without interchanging cable physically.
- HDMI CEC: Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) is a great feature that allows you to control multiple and different devices, such as a TV, set-top box, and DVD player, that are connected via HDMI from the same remote control. Needless to say, all your connected AV equipment need to be CEC-enabled for this to work seamlessly.
HDCP: High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) is a digital copy protection protocol. It is aimed at stopping encrypted content from being played on unauthorized devices to minimize piracy and related content stealing. If your HDMI device has mentioned HDCP support, make sure you buy an HDMI cable that supports this to avoid compatibility issues.
It is important to know that all new HDMI versions are backward compatible. You can use the chart above to know the various HDMI versions and the features they support.We hoped this post equipped you with information to buy the right HDMI cable at the best price. Here’s to buying the perfect HDMI cable for your needs.