Heavy HDMI cables. How do we support them, to avoid damage of the jacks? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 06-22-2008, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
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This is probably a theoretical question, but I believe it has afflicted the end users since Day One.

With today's Home Theater set-ups, quite often the use of one or more long HDMI cables is inevitable. This means that the cables are thick and heavy and that the HDMI jacks of the devices suffer from a strech or an angular force, depending how the cable runs from one device to another.

I have seen an advertisement of a cable-making company that has integrated a computer-like screw, which provides some decent stabilisation of the plug, but this design is out of specs and certainly it has not been adopted by the consumer electronic device makers.

The question goes to the HDMI Organization:

How do you think that this problem can be solved?

Moreover, I have - the same - question for the AVSforum members, but from a practical point of view:

How do you solve this problem with your gear?

From my side, I have tried several patents, but what I find more handy is the use of the well known plasticised wire (which we frequently use to tire-up the loose cables inside a computer box). I use a piece of a suitable length and I try to find a steady pair of points on both sides of the jack, preferably a little higher, and I am trying to support the extra weight of the cable, by hanging it from the wire, which then is firmly attached and tightened on the pair of the above mentioned points.

But this is neither always possible nor easy to be done.

Therefore the question remains: How do you solve this problem?

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post #2 of 22 Old 06-22-2008, 09:23 AM
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I have used the Monoprice "Port Savers" with heavy cables and they have solved the problem with very Heavy cables. They have several different types and they are inexpensive.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
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post #3 of 22 Old 06-22-2008, 09:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwestley View Post

I have used the Monoprice "Port Savers" with heavy cables and they have solved the problem with very Heavy cables. They have several different types and they are inexpensive.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

This is a good idea, but it does not deal with the problem directly. This is why I stated at the beginning that "this is probably a theoretical question", which goes directly to the HDMI Org.

By my opinion, the HDMI organization should have established a more ridgit way of securing of the plug to the jack. Even today, it can be adopted, but it will certainly make the older devices kind-of obsolete.

But the community has to go ahead, even if this is painful.

As of myself, I am hardly thinking to modify my existing devices with a custom made method. I need only to find out the best. It is not going to take long, though.

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post #4 of 22 Old 06-23-2008, 04:26 AM
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I can't agree more with you. The HDMI organization specs for securing plugs is a joke. It has caused countless issues for many of us. I have spent hours troubleshooting HDMI issues due to loose connections. There are 19 wires in a HDMI cable and any vibration can cause things to loosen up.

This is another attempt to make the connections more secure.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
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post #5 of 22 Old 06-23-2008, 05:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwestley View Post

I can't agree more with you. The HDMI organization specs for securing plugs is a joke. It has caused countless issues for many of us. I have spent hours troubleshooting HDMI issues due to loose connections. There are 19 wires in a HDMI cable and any vibration can cause things to loosen up.

This is another attempt to make the connections more secure.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

Another nice idea, indeed.

P.S.:
I opened this thread, after discovering that the HDMI organization is a member here and that it supposely reads the posts. I was expecting an answer, or a comment from them, but nothing so far. I have not also seen a comment for this issue, as it was discussed in the recent Home Theater Cruise, when one of the panelists brought it up. This discusion has been published in WideScreen Review magazine and it is very-very interesting.

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post #6 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 03:42 AM
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The solutions offered so far actually degrade the HDMI RF signals integrity (which is why you went with thick heavy cables to begin with).

My inelegant but effective solution was to set the 4*2 HDMI switcher on the carpet and use the short lighter guage cables to connect to the local gear.

The HDMI organization chooses not to response solely out of pure fear of being torn to pieces.
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post #7 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 04:16 AM
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Reincarnate, How do the angle port savers degrade the signal? I would think that providing a better connection would actually help. Regarding going from heavy to lighter cables I can see your point. I have actually used them with no problems on
a 25' run. I do find that they make a better connection and put less stress on the internal ports. I agree the HDMI org will never respond since their orignal design has cause all these problems. They deserve to be torn to pieces.
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post #8 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwestley View Post

Reincarnate, How do the angle port savers degrade the signal? I would think that providing a better connection would actually help. Regarding going from heavy to lighter cables I can see your point. I have actually used them with no problems on
a 25' run. I do find that they make a better connection and put less stress on the internal ports. I agree the HDMI org will never respond since their orignal design has cause all these problems. They deserve to be torn to pieces.

Electronic radio frequency signals behave very differently than audio frequencies.

For RF cables the physical (and thus electrical) electrical characteristics of the cable or traces should stay constant. Its called characteristic impedance. It is not maintained in the HDMI connector. Abrupt 90 degree turns are bad too.

The HDMI designers lacked in many areas. Now as an excuse some get to start selling snake-oil too. SFB I say.
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post #9 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reincarnate View Post

Electrical signal behave very differently than they do a audio frequencies.

For RF cables the physical (and thus) electrical characteristics of the cable or traces should stay constant. Its called characteristic impedance. It is not maintained in the HDMI connector. Abrupt 90 degree turns are bad too.

The HDMI designers lacked in many areas. Now as an excuse some get to start selling snake-oil too. SFB I say.

would you please clarify/explain?

thank you!

i can see where the port savers would increase the # of connection points which can lead to connectivity problems.

10' from 84" screen.


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post #10 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 05:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westgate View Post

would you please clarify/explain?

thank you!

i can see where the port savers would increase the # of connection points which can lead to connectivity problems.

Here is an excellent cable reference from a Belden Cable engineer. But no HDMI
http://www.amazon.com/Audio-Installe.../dp/0071386211
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post #11 of 22 Old 06-25-2008, 07:48 PM
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Here is a link to a thread I started about a year ago, when the HDMI org responded. It is similar. I had a DVI to HDMI adapter from NXG, that broke at the HDMI connector. On my main rig, I am now using the dongles from Monoprice, but am also using a zip tie, with a zip tie holder and double sided tape, to the back of my rack, so there is minimal stress to the back of my preamp. My LCD in the bedroom is using the thinner more flexible cables from Monoprice, and does not seem to have any issues yet.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=787532
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post #12 of 22 Old 06-26-2008, 01:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbacksfan51 View Post

Here is a link to a thread I started about a year ago, when the HDMI org responded. It is similar. I had a DVI to HDMI adapter from NXG, that broke at the HDMI connector. On my main rig, I am now using the dongles from Monoprice, but am also using a zip tie, with a zip tie holder and double sided tape, to the back of my rack, so there is minimal stress to the back of my preamp. My LCD in the bedroom is using the thinner more flexible cables from Monoprice, and does not seem to have any issues yet.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=787532

dbacksfan51,

I went through that thread. Very informative and very right, indeed.

The HDMI explanations and excuses are a joke. If they would really care about the "health" of the "female connectors" (i.e. the jacks) of the various components, they should have come out with a different design. It is this design that may destroy the jack, not the opposite.

As I said at the beginning, this is why I am going to make my own "custom made" modification, which is going to support the HDMI plug securely in the jack. It may take a while, but I'll do it anyway.

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post #13 of 22 Old 06-26-2008, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwestley View Post

I have used the Monoprice "Port Savers" with heavy cables and they have solved the problem with very Heavy cables. They have several different types and they are inexpensive.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

Quote:
Originally Posted by rwestley View Post

..........This is another attempt to make the connections more secure.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

I emailed Monoprice yesterday, asking them if these products meet the 1.3v standards.

This is their reply:

Hey Panagiotis,
The adapter/port savers you are regarding about are not 1.3a rated. They are 1.2 spec adapters. I do apologize for the inconvenience.

Best Regards,
Tech Support Associate
Joseph Kim

Monoprice, Inc.
9477 London Way
Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730
Telephone : (909)989-6887
Fax : (909)989-0078
http://www.monoprice.com


After this, I am not so keen to order them. Have you any experience regarding their use on a 1.3 set-up

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post #14 of 22 Old 06-26-2008, 11:12 PM
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HDMI was designed for cheap home AV. It is not meant to be decent quality.

In the future as bandwidth requirements increase i expect to see a cross between DVI and BNC. HDMI style connectors just won't work, they are at their limit now.
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post #15 of 22 Old 06-29-2008, 06:33 PM
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On the back of my TV, the hdmi slots are facing outwards, vertical (if you get me), and the worst thing i ever did was plug a flat hdmi cable in, they have no flex at all, are very heavy, and ended up making one of my ports break
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post #16 of 22 Old 06-29-2008, 09:06 PM
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Well it looks like someone finally came out with what looks to be the best solution so far for locking HDMI cables in place. This is the first one I have seen that does not require some sort of add-on clips or screws in order for it to lock in place. You just plug it in and it latches to a slot that is already in the female HDMI socket of whatever it is you plug it into, and they say it can withstand 7lbs of pull-out force when it's locked in place. And the price is not so bad on them either.

http://lockinghdmi.com/
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post #17 of 22 Old 06-30-2008, 12:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnla View Post

Well it looks like someone finally came out with what looks to be the best solution so far for locking HDMI cables in place. This is the first one I have seen that does not require some sort of add-on clips or screws in order for it to lock in place. You just plug it in and it latches to a slot that is already in the female HDMI socket of whatever it is you plug it into, and they say it can withstand 7lbs of pull-out force when it's locked in place. And the price is not so bad on them either.

http://lockinghdmi.com/

Very nice patent, indeed. But, does it not require a relevant jack, to be pre-installed on the device? Otherwise, even if somebody gets this proprietatry cable it would be useless.

This is what I understand, at least.

Unless, as you say, the latching mechanism is already a standard of the HDMI jack.

Is it?

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post #18 of 22 Old 06-30-2008, 01:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Panayotis Melas View Post

Very nice patent, indeed. But, does it not require a relevant jack, to be pre-installed on the device? Otherwise, even if somebody gets this proprietatry cable it would be useless.

This what I understand, at least.

Unless, as you say, the latching mechanism is already a standard of the HDMI jack.

Is it?




If you look closely, and read some of the reviews for them. It latches into the slots that are already in a standard HDMI jack, which are there because if how they are made to provide retention springs in order to apply some small amount of spring pressure on the normal cable end connectors. Their cables have a spring loaded raised latch plate that locks into those slots, and they are released only when you push down on the release button on the cable end.






You will note, that nowhere do they even say that you require anything such as changing the female HDMI jacks/connectors on your equipment. And the reason is, because you don't need anything other than their cables.



http://www.eventdv.net/Articles/Read...rticleID=48955

"Alas, the oft heard "HDMI is not a locking connector! … It is a self-ejecting technology!" Well, no more. What was once the Achilles heel of a desirable workflow is now the secure backbone. Ottovonmo Productions introduced PPC's patented Locking HDMI cable to the production industry at NAB 2008. Able to lock into any HDMI connector, this new locking HDMI cable solves a myriad of problems in the industry."




http://www.ascmag.com/new_products/June2008/#prod495

"Locking into HDMI

Ottovonmo Productions has teamed with PPC, an industry leader in connector technology, to distribute the new Locking HDMI cables for use in video-production applications.


Taking advantage of HDMI’s ability to send an uncompressed 4:2:2-color-sampled picture out to a recording codec — just as HD-SDI can, but for a significantly lower price — the new cables eliminate HDMI’s traditional propensity for coming unplugged, which had made the cables more of a hindrance than a benefit in production environments. Featuring a release button on the connector, the Locking HDMI cables can plug into any HDMI-compatible device, including BlackMagic Design’s DeckLink HD Extreme, the Red One camera and the Canon HV30 and Sony HVR-Z7U camcorders."
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post #19 of 22 Old 06-30-2008, 07:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you so much!

Very-very interesting

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post #20 of 22 Old 07-01-2008, 12:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnla View Post

If you look closely, and read some of the reviews

No. Most people don't have the time to dig deep.
Rather why don't they update their site so to make it clear in a convenient, fast and efficient manner just as you just did in your post?
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post #21 of 22 Old 07-01-2008, 07:02 AM
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Using spring locking HDMI cables doesn't solve the issue of heavy cables breaking the ports. The cables need to be dropped down an supported from the top in order to take the weight off of the ports. Some type of cable management that installs on the top and back of the rack should be the direction to go for a solution.

I'm not snobbish and uninformed.
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post #22 of 22 Old 07-03-2008, 04:58 AM
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Very good point Robetec. There have been issues of internal ports breaking. I think the best solution even though it is not perfect is to use the Monoprice Port Savers.

I do wish that they would redesign the HDMI cable specs.
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