We get asked about HDMI cables quite frequently…and the most common question is “aren’t they all the same”. The truth is no! While many of the really high end cables provide debatable performance increases, the cheap cables from some of the more popular online websites are simply garbage. Keep in mind, many people are excited about their purchases, including and more specifically, the price they paid and will encourage others to purchase and do the same, however that is not always giving a complete picture.
We spend a tremendous amount of time on client systems, that were pre-installed by other vendors and now have issues. Recently I arrived a client’s home with the task of fixing a video issue because some friends had moved the equipment, and disconnect some cabling trying to figure out how to make everything work. What we found, was an HDMI cable with the connector torn out completely. Upon further inspection, the previous installer had run the cabling physically in the wall without using a conduit, which, rendered repair/replacement an unattractive option. The HDMI’s connector was held into the molded plastic end, by two 1/8 inch wide by 1/16th inch tall L tabs…Well folks, a baby could have pulled that connector apart.
Another issue relates to the quality of the actual cabling and it’s rating in respect to in-wall applications. Just because a cable is long enough, it does not mean it is suited for in-wall applications, nor does it imply that it will adequately reject interference, all of which can affect the reliability and quality of the image presented.
If you do not have the time to do your due diligence, consult or hire a professional whom can specify the correct cable type for your given application. You can save your self both time and money buying the correct cable the first time!