I am an A/V integrator and am engineering an outdoor theater for one of my clients. One issues I am concerned with is the reliability of HDMI transmission in a long-distance, outdoor environment with possible marine-line conditions. The most recent thread about HDMI in 'Harsh environments' is from 2010 and doesn't mention the current HDBaseT standard.
Near the ocean, but not right on the water. I know how salt air seems to corrode literally anything it comes in contact with. I don't know how prevalent this will be where this house is located, but I am assuming the worst. The environment is mostly warm 75-100f degrees during the occupied season. It is somewhat humid, although it is elevated from the ocean so the humidity is less. Movies will only be watched at night.EQUIPMENT LOCATIONSThis is set in stone and cannot be changed
Located inside building - climate/humidity controlled space
Projector permanently installed in specialized outdoor enclosure. Wire run in conduit to this location. Sealed connection. Not sure if humidity controlled.
OUTDOOR COFFEE TABLEThis is the most concerning location.
It is a semi-perminant table with a conduit run to underneath. It needs to be able to be disconnected and moved most likely (Although maybe not). We will have 2 HDMI sources located here. (1) A "cheapo" bluray player (2) HDMI Aux input for diverse array of local sources: Game systems, laptops, whatever. We are building the table, and don't know what it will be just yet. I can presume we will have some dead space to hide widgets, etc.MY OBSERVATIONS / CONCERNS
DISTANCE OF THE JOB SITE FROM ME
It is not within our service area and I need a robust a solution as possible. I cannot make multiple trips testing and reinstalling. Money is no object to make this work perfect the first time.
USING NATIVE HDMI WIRES
- Teeny tiny HDMI pins inside the connector corroding in the humidity and sea salt. Thus breaking the termination and making the wire useless.
- No outdoor rated hdmi wire available? Outdoor conduit filling with water and saturating the HDMI wire, breaking it.
- HDMI cable length restrictions. I AM DOUBTFUL I CAN KEEP THE DISTANCE LESS THAN 45ft. As a rule I keep all HDMI runs <45ft. I could potentially install a repeater mid way on the hdmi cable run if needed, however I am not thrilled about adding in additional equipment like this which add a failure point potential and make it difficult to troubleshoot.
- Requires that no sensitive balun widgets be placed outside
- equipment baking in the summer heat and failing.
- Corroding internals with humidity.
- Corrosion of external RG or CAT terminals.
- No issues with EMI, surge
- Uncertain with corrosion issues, seems much less likely than metal
- Tough to terminate
- Fragile wire
- Requires sensitive baluns be placed outside
- No standard for fibre HDMI transmission, concerned having once tried a rainbowfish pre made fibre solution with mixed compatibility results.
Basically there is no perfect solution, however I am interested in hearing what others have to say.OTHER INFO
SOME IDEAS I HAVE TOSSED AROUND
Installing a climate enclosure inside the table and placing sensitive HDBaseT or RG-6 Baluns inside. RG-6 seems ideal for transmission wire because the wire and terminations are durable, it is easy to re-terminate, and *seems* less prone to corrosion, however I am not sure of the quality and reliability of this HDMI transmission method--I like that HDBaseT is a standard.
SIDE NOTE: LIGHTNING PROTECTION
This is a lower priority .Has anyone ever added some sort of signal surge suppression for outdoor HDMI locations? I prefer that all outdoor wiring have some sort of surge suppression to avoid serious damage to other connected components. Will an ethernet surge suppressor work with HDBaseT? How about a coax with HDMI over coax? I am guessing that HDMI does not have a surge suppressor.
At this point we are still in the wiring phase and I should be able to pull whatever I want within reason. Nevertheless, equipment affects the wiring.
Any input would be greatly appreciated.