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HDMI Splitters - Do they work?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
I'm wanting to take the HDMI out of my DVR Charter cable box and split one signal to the AVR for HT room and the other to the bedroom tv. Both tvs are 1080p. At times we want to finish watching a program in bed that we were watching in living room. We only have one DVR and I don't want to have to pay monthly fees for another one just for the few times we would use it, we just don't watch much tv in the bedroom. For that reason I would like get a splitter that actually works. I don't want to compromise the viewing in the HT room......it's not worth it. I have read many posts about splitters that stop working after a while and people having to unplug and plug back in, that sounds like a nightmare. Most of those posts are old so I was wondering if anyone is having success with low cost (under $100) HDMI splitters?
post #2 of 35
If you don't mind stereo output in the HT room and the bedroom, then a splitter (actually distribution amp) will do the job. Remember HDMI only carries one audio stream and one video stream at a time. So you can't have stereo and multichannel at the same time.

Unfortunately since most TVs don't "turn off" even when in standby, the bedroom TV will still be active even when you go into suspend. Your alternative is to change the EDID (the signal that tells the source what capabilities the sinks have) but then your bedroom TV won't get any audio.

Lookup lowest common denominator and how it pertains to HDMI for more information. You'll find a number of threads in this forum.

If it is just a cable box, the easiest way may be to send component video to your bedroom TV and HDMI to the HT Room. Optical digital (or coax digital) audio can be sent to the bedroom TV along with component video.
post #3 of 35
Thread Starter 
Thanks. Yep got to have 5.1 in HT. very good suggestion with component..... I will try that if I have component long enough 15'
post #4 of 35
It is worth buying a component video cable if all you need is HD in a single secondary location. HDMI splitters typically work, but there is no guarantee that they will work at that price point. Nicer ones, like those from PureLink are guaranteed to work, but they cost a pretty penny.

I've done this several times with running component video and analog audio to a secondary area from a Fios/DirecTV/Cable box and it's always worked very well.
post #5 of 35
Thread Starter 
Your right, it is worth it. Would itbe ok to daisy chain two component cables together?
post #6 of 35
Do u have an rf remote system setup for it? Or how do u plan on controlling from the bedroom


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post #7 of 35
I am assuming your home theater has an AVR that has HDMI inputs, and running HDMI from you cable box to AVR and then to the TV. and one last assumption that the AVR has and is set up for pass through to let the TV be used without the AVR being on, you do not have to worry about what you are getting for audio 2.0 or 5.1, you get both, in the right place at the right time.
Insert the splitter after the AVR and before the TV's, running HDMI to both sets.
Monoprice.com has an excellent one for about 50 bucks that I can recommend from experience.
http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10113&cs_id=1011306&p_id=7522&seq=1&format=2
The component cable sets are 5 cables in a set, 3 video and 2 audio, work fine to with just on problem, If you want to watch something with content protection, the component cable will not pass a signal other then other then notification, I had that set up on a DirecTV DVR but because of that and another reason, I switch them out for HDMI.
post #8 of 35
How long is the cable run/route to the Bedroom?

Do you have any cables in place?

How do you plan to control the DVR from the Bedroom?

Are you using HDMI or HDMI + Optical to connect the DVR to your AVR in the HT room?

Joe
post #9 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil17108 View Post

..., If you want to watch something with content protection, the component cable will not pass a signal other then other then notification, I had that set up on a DirecTV DVR but because of that and another reason, I switch them out for HDMI.

I'm not sure that is exactly right although very close.

It's strange with DirecTV's DVRs and component/HDMI and premium movie channels (all channels are content protected in some way). The premium movie channels (HBO, Showtime, Skinamax, etc) are "extra protected". But the way it is done is strange. When a combo component video/HDMI connection on a movie channel is detected, the component video signal gets a message that you should replace the HDMI cable with a component video cable. However, if you put the TV and AVR into standby, then the message goes away and the channel can be seen with component video. I just verified this with an HR24.

So basically for movie channels only you can't have both but you can have either method work and the trigger is both the AVR and its TV going into standby. Very strange and really I can't see how this really blocks anything but succeeds in needlessly making customers upset.
post #10 of 35
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies. I ordered the 5 cable component cables this morning, gonna give that a try. I'm not sure I understand about the protection thing but we don't have any premium channels if that matters.

The run is less than 25' and I have an Universal Automator remote with the expander so we can control the DVR when in the bedroom. If the wife is watching in there and I'm watching in the HT room then she can use the cable via RF. if we're not using the HT tv then I can switch bedroom tv to component and use the DVR which has more HD channels and of coarse recorded programs.
post #11 of 35
Thread Starter 
Joe to answer your last question I am using HDMI only, no optical from DVR to AVR and yes all cable are in place.
post #12 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by alk3997 View Post

I'm not sure that is exactly right although very close.

It's strange with DirecTV's DVRs and component/HDMI and premium movie channels (all channels are content protected in some way). The premium movie channels (HBO, Showtime, Skinamax, etc) are "extra protected". But the way it is done is strange. When a combo component video/HDMI connection on a movie channel is detected, the component video signal gets a message that you should replace the HDMI cable with a component video cable. However, if you put the TV and AVR into standby, then the message goes away and the channel can be seen with component video. I just verified this with an HR24.

So basically for movie channels only you can't have both but you can have either method work and the trigger is both the AVR and its TV going into standby. Very strange and really I can't see how this really blocks anything but succeeds in needlessly making customers upset.
With DirecTV If you unplug the HDMI cable it drops the content protection. I think it is the production companies are the ones pushing this because they do not want a digital HD signal copied. This started about 2 years ago.
So you have your choice, use 2 component cables with splitters, or 2 HDMI with a powered splitter that is not powered by the HDMI cable. Now a lot depends on what your AVR can do. I have one that has 2 HDMI outputs and that works, I tested it but I left the splitter in placed because it was there, and I never know what I my want to try next. Most AVR's have component outs and that can split as in option one. There are so many signal paths today it can become just a little confusing. I find reading and rereading the manuals of all the components and then playing Sherlock Holmes there is a solution to just about everything Watson.
post #13 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil17108 View Post

With DirecTV If you unplug the HDMI cable it drops the content protection. I think it is the production companies are the ones pushing this because they do not want a digital HD signal copied. This started about 2 years ago.
So you have your choice, use 2 component cables with splitters, or 2 HDMI with a powered splitter that is not powered by the HDMI cable. Now a lot depends on what your AVR can do. I have one that has 2 HDMI outputs and that works, I tested it but I left the splitter in placed because it was there, and I never know what I my want to try next. Most AVR's have component outs and that can split as in option one. There are so many signal paths today it can become just a little confusing. I find reading and rereading the manuals of all the components and then playing Sherlock Holmes there is a solution to just about everything Watson.

Actually you don't even have to unplug the HDMI cable - just put the device(s) that are on the HDMI side into standby and the content protection goes away. Then use the component video output without any issues. Of course once the HDMI device comes back you'll lose the component video for the premium (movie) channels only.
post #14 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by alk3997 View Post

Actually you don't even have to unplug the HDMI cable - just put the device(s) that are on the HDMI side into standby and the content protection goes away. Then use the component video output without any issues. Of course once the HDMI device comes back you'll lose the component video for the premium (movie) channels only.

Actually I would Andy. I just tested that out. We have a more the 2 of the DirecTV DVR's and one of those is in the master bedroom. Back in the days (years) before DirecTV set up hole home DVR I ran component cables from the master to my office and to the family room. With the RF option on DirecTV"s remotes we were able to switch rooms and still watch the same show. The panel in the family room also was tied in to the living room HT, now with HDMI. Component cables don't need splitters just Y's. All that is still up there, rarely used now. So I gave it a shot this AM and guess what, nothing but the notification. By the way we have 4 HD DVR's around the place, DirecTV kept giving me free ones after got the first 2 HD TiVo's, long gone now. I even have one in my second garage that I use as my car/bike shop and training room, all tied together one way or another.
Phil
post #15 of 35
Interesting since I ran one of our HR24s with component video and HDMI output. Got the message on HBO. Then put the TV and AVR that was hooked up through HDMI into standby. After that the component video message to a different TV disappeared and the regular program appeared.

So, not sure why we aren't getting a consistent result but the take-away is that there are issues with the premium (movie) channels while running component and HDMI at the same time.
post #16 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by alk3997 View Post

Interesting since I ran one of our HR24s with component video and HDMI output. Got the message on HBO. Then put the TV and AVR that was hooked up through HDMI into standby. After that the component video message to a different TV disappeared and the regular program appeared.

So, not sure why we aren't getting a consistent result but the take-away is that there are issues with the premium (movie) channels while running component and HDMI at the same time.

The test I ran this AM does not have an AVR or switch, just homeruns from DVR to panels. It may be that some sets have a connection to the source or a live input when in standby and some don't.
post #17 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil17108 View Post

The test I ran this AM does not have an AVR or switch, just homeruns from DVR to panels. It may be that some sets have a connection to the source or a live input when in standby and some don't.

My real question (that I've never had time to answer) is how the DirecTV DVRs "know" that a component video active connection is attached? There is no feedback on a component video signal. So, I can only guess they have a circuit that measures the resistance across the component video outputs, but I'm not sure that passes the smell test for something that would likely be included.
post #18 of 35
We actually are running into this issue as well.

Fortunately, downstairs we have a Yamaha RXA2020 tuner to handle this issue (unfortunately the Roku 3) will only pass sound one way, so we have to use the TV audio.

Upstairs, we have a Comcast DVR that is hooked up to the TV via RGA (hooked up direct to coax cable).

The Sony BluRay is using the only HDMI input the TV has.

The Roku 3 needs to be hooked up as well.

Since we do not have a tuner / speakers, would one of the automatic HDMI 3-splitter work? The TV does turn off as far as I know...The cable box stays on as well as the Roku 3 apparently. The BluRay player turns off.

I thought a HDMI 2-way splitter for the BluRay and Roku 3 and hope that when the Sony BluRay is on, it knows. The Sony BluRay also has Netflix, etc but we can use the Roku 3 for that. The BluRay player and Roku 3 are connected to the Internet wirelessly.

(I hope I have used the right terminology on this, I am the middle man in this and know just enough to be dangerous.

Thank you!
post #19 of 35
What is your end goal?

In other words of the Blu-Ray, Roku and cable box, which do you want to see upstairs? and which do you want to be able to see downstairs? Which of the devices are upstairs right now and which are downstairs? Also what is connected into the AVR right now?

I need to understand more about what your ultimate goal is before I can suggest anything.
post #20 of 35
Sorry, probably too much information. We are just dealing with the upstairs - the Xfinity DVR, the Sony BluRay, and the Rolu 3. Nothing special - just those three devices. We use one of the Logitech remotes to handle everything.

Thank you!
post #21 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Bryant View Post

Sorry, probably too much information. We are just dealing with the upstairs - the Xfinity DVR, the Sony BluRay, and the Rolu 3. Nothing special - just those three devices. We use one of the Logitech remotes to handle everything.

Thank you!

That helps. If I understand correctly, you'll have the three devices going to your upstairs TV. The upstairs TV only has one HDMI input. I'm assuming it has component video inputs (perhaps what you meant by RGA?).

Since the inputs are just going to the TV, then I would try to use as many TV inputs as possible before getting a switch (not a splitter). The Blu-Ray player should be hooked through HDMI (it is your highest quality source and modern Blu-Ray players aren't on speaking terms with component video for HD). Then I would look for component video outputs on the cable box and the Roku. If either one does not have component video outputs, then you'll have to get a 2x1 switch (see monoprice for a cheap one). Only get a switch with an external power supply (not one that has no power input). I suspect your cable box will have a component video output, so that should do the trick.

Please let me know if I didn't understand something in your original question.
post #22 of 35
Thank you! I will check that out, since the cable box and Roku are not turned off, and the TV has 6 inputs, one HDMI, and I know the cable box is connected to the TV with the three colored cables.

It is a Sony Wega XBR Bravia and does have a Red, White, and Yellow inputs, Red, Blue, Green inputs with a USB input.
post #23 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Bryant View Post

Thank you! I will check that out, since the cable box and Roku are not turned off, and the TV has 6 inputs, one HDMI, and I know the cable box is connected to the TV with the three colored cables.

It is a Sony Wega XBR Bravia and does have a Red, White, and Yellow inputs, Red, Blue, Green inputs with a USB input.

The red, green and blue connectors are the ones you are looking for. Those are called component video connectors. There will be white and red connectors associated with the red, green, blue connectors. Those are used for the stereo audio. So you'll be running 5 cables to the TV for each component video source.

The USB connector is for still pictures and things like that, so not useful for HD. The Red, White and Yellow combination is for standard definition video. The types of connectors that use these sockets on the TV are called RCA plugs or phono plugs.

HDMI sends a digital video and digital audio signal to your TV over the single HDMI cable which uses a unique connector

So, count up the number of component video sets (one set has red, green and blue). If you have two of those you're set (assuming the Roku has component video outputs as well). If not it's time to purchase a 2x1 switch.
post #24 of 35
The Roku 3 only has an HDMI output. Looks like he will need a switch.
post #25 of 35
He is right, the Roku only has an HDMI output. I am a little dissappointed in the device (mainly on the audio for downstairs) - if we want the speakers, we just turn on the tuner But with the Rok, we have to also make a switch in the settings. Roku told me that the set up was wrong - that all the devices should go into the TV and then into the tuner. But we have always had it this way,

But back to the upstairs... The DVR is actually using the HDMI and the Sony BluRay is using the Red, White, and Yellow outputs.

Since the Roku is unable to be turned off and the DVR is always on, would an automatic splitter be the best option or another way? All the units have HDMI outputs. I just did not know that if we were watching the Roku and then switched to the Cable box, would the splitter know (since both would seem to be giving a signal)

Thank you!
post #26 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Bryant View Post

He is right, the Roku only has an HDMI output. I am a little dissappointed in the device (mainly on the audio for downstairs) - if we want the speakers, we just turn on the tuner But with the Rok, we have to also make a switch in the settings. Roku told me that the set up was wrong - that all the devices should go into the TV and then into the tuner. But we have always had it this way,

But back to the upstairs... The DVR is actually using the HDMI and the Sony BluRay is using the Red, White, and Yellow outputs.

Since the Roku is unable to be turned off and the DVR is always on, would an automatic splitter be the best option or another way? All the units have HDMI outputs. I just did not know that if we were watching the Roku and then switched to the Cable box, would the splitter know (since both would seem to be giving a signal)

Thank you!

Since you have a Logitek remote, get an HDMI switcher that will receive IR remote signals and use that the infrared signal to switch. The auto-switchers sound great but I always find them annoying since they switch when I'm not expecting.

The Red, White and Yellow outputs would be the worst way to hook up a Blu-Ray player since you would only get standard definition that way. In the future, use HDMI only for the Blu-Ray player. You would get a 2x1 HDMI switch. Roku would go on one input and the Blu-Ray on the other.

Component video (red, green and blue) is fine for the DVR (no loss in quality).
post #27 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Bryant View Post

He is right, the Roku only has an HDMI output. I am a little dissappointed in the device (mainly on the audio for downstairs) - if we want the speakers, we just turn on the tuner But with the Rok, we have to also make a switch in the settings. Roku told me that the set up was wrong - that all the devices should go into the TV and then into the tuner. But we have always had it this way,

But back to the upstairs... The DVR is actually using the HDMI and the Sony BluRay is using the Red, White, and Yellow outputs.

Since the Roku is unable to be turned off and the DVR is always on, would an automatic splitter be the best option or another way? All the units have HDMI outputs. I just did not know that if we were watching the Roku and then switched to the Cable box, would the splitter know (since both would seem to be giving a signal)

Thank you!

There are older Roku devices that have more output options. While the processor is slightly faster on the Roku 3, the updated UI on the older units has closed the gap. I got an automatic HDMI switch from Monoprice and also have a Roku (2XS). It also comes with a remote for manual switching. Since the Roku is always on, I need to manually switch to that port when I want to stream. Generally speaking, the switch will change to the source that is most recently turned on. Some switches prioritize ports so #1 will come on before #2, etc., regardless of when you turned the source on. HDMI-CEC can also confuse auto switching from time to time but, if you can also manually change inputs, it shouldn't matter.

I'm with Andy. How you have the BD player connected isn't good. If you decide to buy a switch, I would get at least 1 port extra in case you decide to add another source.
post #28 of 35
I thought it was. I think that since the DVR was there first it got the HDMI.

I would like to get at least a three-way (I actually saw the TV that I one has two HDMI inputs, it is a Haier. Maybe it is time to change to that.

I was hoping that the automatic was set up to do something similar (the source most recently turned on). The only issue I see here would be that if I turned it back to the DVR and it was on channel 4 (which I wanted to watch), it might not switch unless I "activate" the DVR.

If there are some good ones, please let me know (or at least maybe have a remote) LOL
post #29 of 35
This is the one that I have:

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10110&cs_id=1011002&p_id=8463&seq=1&format=2

This is a 3X1 that seems to be in the same "family":

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10110&cs_id=1011002&p_id=8462&seq=1&format=2

They have a great return policy and their customer service is excellent. One of the inputs is on the front so that's another reason why I wanted to order a unit with extra ports.
post #30 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corey Bryant View Post

I thought it was. I think that since the DVR was there first it got the HDMI.

I would like to get at least a three-way (I actually saw the TV that I one has two HDMI inputs, it is a Haier. Maybe it is time to change to that.

I was hoping that the automatic was set up to do something similar (the source most recently turned on). The only issue I see here would be that if I turned it back to the DVR and it was on channel 4 (which I wanted to watch), it might not switch unless I "activate" the DVR.

If there are some good ones, please let me know (or at least maybe have a remote) LOL

Just about everything, (TV's) I see have 3 to 5 HDMI inputs. Check out Monoprice.com for switch's I have used Monoprice products with great results. Here is a link
http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10110&cs_id=1011002&p_id=8462&seq=1&format=2
that my be just what you need, but look at the full range and get one that is powered, they also have HDMI cables at great prices. Spend some time there and read all the info with each switch. Have Fun, it looks like you got the same advise twice, must be right.
Edited by Phil17108 - 5/31/13 at 5:46am
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