By now almost everyone who has a high definition Television or a Home Theater System is familiar with an HDMI cable. If not, you should get acquainted with it immediately! To guide you through this process I have outlined some basic information about HDMI Cables which you should know.

For starters, HDMI stands for High-Definition Multimedia Interface and the name is basically a description of what the cable does. It transmits high definition audio and video through one single cable. The cable is used with Audio and Video equipment such as Blu-ray DVD Players and HDTVs. The cable itself looks very similar to a USB cable, but you have 19 individual wires wrapped inside a single HDMI cable. What makes the HDMI so unique and valuable is it’s capable of transmitting a bandwidth of 10.2 Gbps (gigabits per second). This is remarkable considering this is twice as much bandwidth that is needed to transmit multi-channel audio and video, which more or less reassures us that the HDMI cable will be around for the foreseeable future.

You should be able to see why this “future proofing” aspect of the HDMI cable makes it a superior choice over its predecessors: the component video, S-Video and the composite video. But it is not the only reason it is superior. HDMI is a pure, uncompressed digital source while the others are all analog. The difference is simple, analog cables take a digital signal and converts it to a less clear analog signal which is then transmitted to your TV. This signal is then converted back to a digital signal to be displayed on the screen. With all this converting of the original signal, it starts to break down and loses clarity, resulting in a poorer picture and HDMI Cable in Australia audio quality. A HDMI cable keeps the original digital signal, eliminating any need for conversion, thus giving you the clearest, sharpest images and audio possible.

The next thing you need to know about the HDMI cable is that it comes in different versions. Through its technical evolution different versions of the HDMI cable have appeared. They are as follows: HDMI 1.0, HDMI 1.1, HDMI 1.2, HDMI 1.2a and HDMI 1.3. Each incarnation of the HDMI cable are physical the same and use the same connectors, and remember, all newer versions are backward compatible to their predecessor, therefore eliminating the worry of getting the right HDMI version. Any older audio/video equipment you have will work together with any newer equipment regardless of which HDMI cable version you use.

Because of this backward compatibility, the main version you should focus your attention on is the newest version, HDMI 1.3. It has a bandwidth of 340MHz and a maximum bitrate of 10.2 Gbps (As well as the ability to increase this bandwidth in the future). It has incorporated the ‘Deep Color’ feature, which handles 10-bit, 12-bit, and 16-bit color for over one billion possible colors. (Please note – Information on color is based on the primary colors, red, green and blue. So you may see color depth as 30-bit,36-bit or 48-bit). There is also support for ‘x.v.Color’. Both ‘Deep Color’ and ‘x.v.Color’ are becoming more prevalent in all the newer Blu-ray Players. As for audio, the HDMI 1.3 version has the ability to output lossless compressed audio signals with digital audio formats such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio. Basically, all you should concern yourself with is that the HDMI version 1.3 will fit all your needs in both your older and newer equipment.

The last thing you need to know, but certainly not the least, is what HDMI cable to purchase. When you go to a store you will see HDMI cables ranging in price from $10 up to $100. Does the difference in price reflect the quality in the HDMI cable? Will you get a clearer picture or faster signals with a more expensive HMDI cable? The answer is NO. Regardless of what information you are given, most experts agree there is no difference in performance quality between the differently priced cables. So buying a cheap $10 cable will more than meet all your High Definition needs, and by going with the cheaper cable you can save yourself $50 or $60 in the process.