Originally Posted by Otto Pylot
That's unfortunate. If the cable works as expected then that's all you can do. Thicker gauge cables are better for maintaining signal integrity but then you run the risk of increasing the strain on the HDMI input, and the bend radius can be greatly reduced. Solid copper wire is a must but unless the cable mfr states that in their description, a lot of cables are copper coated aluminum (CCA) to keep costs down which is no bueno. At over 20' I'd recommend a hybrid fiber cable, not just a fiber cable. Hybrid fiber cables not only have a glass fiber optic core, it is surrounded by solid copper wiring for the lower bandwidth options like ARC, HDCP, and EDID which frees up more bandwidth for video. They are also active so they can not be certified by an ATC due to HDMI.org's restriction of certifying active cables, copper or fiber.
And that's one benefit of AQ , even though they are priced quite high, you wont get CCA from them, it will be pure copper.
And there is nothing unfortunate about a label not being stamped on the carton, i dont chase labels i chase quality. For performance, the cable's build quality is what matters. 28 or 26 gauge can be made flexible for bends without putting strain on the plug, it's the flexible cable jacket that will play a role in this.
And over 18 -20 ft., copper would cause issues, it'll still work but with the highest resolutions like 4k hdr, youl'll get constant drops or a blank screen. If you're pairing to a 4k projector and running in wall needing a length of 25,35 or 50 ft., copper is not an option, a fibre optic cable will work, the newer hybrid ones will work too. Technically, pure silvers would work too, but due to the enormous costs of having pure silver end to end at such big lengths, they dont get manufactured.
Just to let you know, some of the cables i have were bought even 'before' hdmi 2.0a became standardized. hdmi 2.0a was what introduced hdr support. i have 2 audioquest pearl hdmi cables (i got them relatively cheap in a christmas deal) from 2014, they work with 4k60 4:2:2 12 bit.
If you ask AQ about this premium certificate thing, their tech support tells you it's not needed. Because even their highest end cables to this date dont have any logo, however they still work.