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What’s the Difference Between a $5 and $100 HDMI Cable?

“You’ve probably experienced this when shopping for a new HDTV: A store clerk sidles up and offers to help. He then points you toward the necessary HDMI cables to go with your new television. And they’re expensive. Maybe $60 or $70, sometimes even more than $100 (You could buy a cheap Blu-ray player or a handful of Blu-ray discs for that price!). The clerk then claims that these are special cables. Superior cables. Cables you absolutely need if you want the best possible home theater experience. And the claims are, for the vast majority of home theater users, utter rubbish.”

When I saw the source article on PC Magazine’s website it immediately had my attention. Simply put, I’m in the market for some HDMI cables, and this could potentially save me some money. The “sales” scenario that the author, Will Greenwald, describes has played out many times as I’ve bought electronic items (particularly audio-based). What’s nice about this article is that they have backed up (with tests) their contention that in most cases the cheaper cable will do just fine. Of course, there are a few cases where a more expensive cable will be better (e.g. for long connections between a video source and the display it is connecting to), but for the vast majority of people with a typical TV setup in their home, the cheaper cables should work every bit as good. The article does explain what the current HDMI specification (1.4a) supports, and how that may or may not be important to your situation. This article is a good reference piece to keep handy, and to comfort you the next time you buy a “cheaper” HDMI cable.

Source: digitalhomethoughts.com

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