One Cable to Power Them All: Everything You Need to Know About HDMI

Published on
October 30, 2021 1:50:03 PM PDT October 30, 2021 1:50:03 PM PDTth, October 30, 2021 1:50:03 PM PDT

The latest HDMI cables can deliver up to 10k video between TVs, computer monitors, and other devices, by using eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel).


You can also have 2 way broadcast quality audio signal that supports up to the latest Dolby Atmos 8.1 and TrueHD surround sound, ensuring you can connect in confidence and style no matter where – or what – you’re connecting.


What is HDMI?


Standing for High-Definition Multimedia Interface, HDMI cables power home theatre equipment and connect TVs, monitors and projectors to devices such as laptops, Blu-ray players, gaming consoles, set top boxes and mobile phones. Transmitting both audio and video signals, HDMI cables replace a system where different cables were needed for each task.


How do they work?


HDMI cables plug into ports typically found on the back or side of devices, which are often labelled with words such as, “HDMI 1” or “Input 2”.


Many devices such as TV’s will have a number of HDMI ports, but don’t worry if your device only has one as you can purchase HDMI switches to connect more devices.




Male vs Female


The majority of HDMI cables have “male” connectors indicating that this would be the end that you connect into your device. All devices have “female” receptors to accept these connectors to complete the connection.


Cables with a female connector are typically used as extensions, to make the existing cable longer.


The 4 types of HDMI cables





Choosing the right HDMI for you


Finding the right HDMI cable depends on the devices you have. If your cable does not support the features of your connected devices, then some of the features will be unavailable.


If you want 4K or 3D video resolution, both your TV and source device (such as set top box) need to be capable of 4K or 3D. These features are common on many new devices and would require a cable that is at least HDMI 1.4.


Check the capabilities of your devices with the capabilities of your HDMI cable to ensure they are all going to work together to deliver the best possible audio and visual experiences for you.


Small and mighty: Mini and Micro HDMI cables


HDMI cables also come in mini and micro varieties. These do the same job – transferring audio and visual data – but are made for smaller devices such as cameras, tablets and mobile phones.


Mini HDMI cords have a smaller connector and are often found on DSLR cameras, high-definition camcorders, and tablets.


Micro HDMI cables are typically found on mobile phones, cameras, and some e-readers. You can also get a Micro to regular HDMI connector which will make it possible to use the device straight to your HD TV or other HDMI compatible device.


HDMI vs DisplayPort, DVI, and VGA?


As long as there have been digital devices we have wanted to send those pictures to bigger and better displays.


VGA (Video Graphics Array) has an analogue signal and was one of the first and most successful ways to connect your PC to a CRT or flat screen monitor.


DVI (Digital Visual Interface) took this one stage further and introduced a distinctly higher resolution image which resulted in a sharper image on the screen.


HDMI took both technologies into the industry standard cable it is today with a capability to carry both video, audio and now data signals through one useful cable with a universal connection.


DisplayPort


Originally developed to connect computers to monitors, this connector which was popularized by Apple in their range of iMacs and MacBooks is now available on many laptops, tablets and digital TVs.


It’s a newer standard than HDMI, capable of a very high refresh rates (which creates smooth pictures in fast moving scenes) and digital surround sound audio. DisplayPort is not as ubiquitous as HDMI, but it’s features often make it the choice for those users with the most demanding of high-speed graphics capabilities such as gamers and video editors.


DVI


Digital Visual Interface (DVI) cables are becoming less popular because they only carry video signals only, not audio, unless it’s connected with a DVI to HDMI cable or adapter.

DVI is not capable of 4K resolution.


VGA


Visual Graphics Array is a video-only connection used in older laptops, projectors and displays. Again, these are becoming less popular and are hardly seen on newer model TVs. However, if you have legacy systems or equipment VGAs are still useful and adapters are available to connect them to HDMI screens or devices.


HDMI is your gateway to the digital revolution. A Standard connection that is compatible with all your digital audio and visual devices.

This is the one cable to power them all.