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post #1 of 6 Old 05-28-2020, 06:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Power inserters

Any thoughts on these, i just read about them. Do they effect 4K/HDR ?

I have a monoprice active cable 35’ and i think its too big a draw on my video devices, i think.......

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post #2 of 6 Old 05-28-2020, 07:27 PM
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Any thoughts on these, i just read about them. Do they effect 4K/HDR ?

I have a monoprice active cable 35’ and i think its too big a draw on my video devices, i think.......

It's probably the other way around. The active cables are designed to draw 50mA of power, which isn't a lot. What the problem may be is that the HDMI port is delivering inconsistent power so there are fluctuations which messes with the signal. A power inserter delivers a consistent 5v/500mA ( or thereabouts) from the source end to ensure that there is enough current to carry the signal to the sink. You can even try it at the sink end. They do work but it is not absolute or a 100% guarantee. The problem is usually seen with some projectors. There also may be some degradation in the signal because it constitutes a "break" in the HDMI chain but I've never seen anything visually when I tested them on my system.


Make sure your cable run does not have any sharp bends in it because that can affect signal propagation. What issues are you experiencing? Keep in mind that an active cable is designed to ensure signal integrity over long distances. It does nothing magical to the signal quality. It also depends on which HDMI chipsets are used in the connector ends. If the cable is marketed as Redmere, then it is using the older chipsets. The cable should have the Spectra 7 chipsets. Spectra 7 purchased Redmere and their technology a few years back but there are still Redmere cables on the market.

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post #3 of 6 Old 05-29-2020, 06:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Any thoughts on these, i just read about them. Do they effect 4K/HDR ?

I have a monoprice active cable 35’️ and i think its too big a draw on my video devices, i think.......

It's probably the other way around. The active cables are designed to draw 50mA of power, which isn't a lot. What the problem may be is that the HDMI port is delivering inconsistent power so there are fluctuations which messes with the signal. A power inserter delivers a consistent 5v/500mA ( or thereabouts) from the source end to ensure that there is enough current to carry the signal to the sink. You can even try it at the sink end. They do work but it is not absolute or a 100% guarantee. The problem is usually seen with some projectors. There also may be some degradation in the signal because it constitutes a "break" in the HDMI chain but I've never seen anything visually when I tested them on my system.


Make sure your cable run does not have any sharp bends in it because that can affect signal propagation. What issues are you experiencing? Keep in mind that an active cable is designed to ensure signal integrity over long distances. It does nothing magical to the signal quality. It also depends on which HDMI chipsets are used in the connector ends. If the cable is marketed as Redmere, then it is using the older chipsets. The cable should have the Spectra 7 chipsets. Spectra 7 purchased Redmere and their technology a few years back but there are still Redmere cables on the market.
So, just maybe my video processor was designed to work properly with short run copper or long distance with fibre-optic and a supplied power.
However the 5vdc draw may be creating a bit of havoc.

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post #4 of 6 Old 05-29-2020, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by kgveteran View Post
So, just maybe my video processor was designed to work properly with short run copper or long distance with fibre-optic and a supplied power.
However the 5vdc draw may be creating a bit of havoc.

No. All HDMI inputs/outputs are designed for 5V/50mA. An active cable, any active cable, is designed around that spec so that they only need the 50mA current output of the HDMI port. The 5V is for the HDMI chipsets, not the cable. Passive cables are not affected by the power requirements of the HDMI ports. HD (1080p) typically works fine with active cables at almost any length. The problem is that 4k HDR and beyond have much stricter requirements for signal continuity so any fluctuations can have adverse effects. And the circuitry in the connector ends of active cables may be able to handle any power issues depending on the cable's mfr and their proprietary chipsets (if they have them). What would be nice is if the chip designs of the HDMI chipsets incorporated a higher current output to compensate but that's not gonna happen. I really hate HDMI but it's what we are stuck with.
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Last edited by Otto Pylot; 05-29-2020 at 08:44 AM.
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post #5 of 6 Old 05-29-2020, 07:30 PM - Thread Starter
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So, just maybe my video processor was designed to work properly with short run copper or long distance with fibre-optic and a supplied power.
However the 5vdc draw may be creating a bit of havoc.

No. All HDMI inputs/outputs are designed for 5V/50mA. An active cable, any active cable, is designed around that spec so that they only need the 50mA current output of the HDMI port. The 5V is for the HDMI chipsets, not the cable. Passive cables are not affected by the power requirements of the HDMI ports. HD (1080p) typically works fine with active cables at almost any length. The problem is that 4k HDR and beyond have much stricter requirements for signal continuity so any fluctuations can have adverse effects. And the circuitry in the connector ends of active cables may be able to handle any power issues depending on the cable's mfr and their proprietary chipsets (if they have them). What would be nice is if the chip designs of the HDMI chipsets incorporated a higher current output to compensate but that's not gonna happen. I really hate HDMI but it's what we are stuck with.
Ok, now im confused. My processor has an output connected to the PJ input, where does the 5vdc for the cable come from ? The larger end is connected at the Pj
Monoprice uses Spectra7, I overlooked that when i purchased it.

Im not having issues just wondering why the video processor manufacturer tech rep is saying powered cables may be an issue

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Last edited by kgveteran; 05-30-2020 at 05:09 AM.
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post #6 of 6 Old 05-30-2020, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by kgveteran View Post
Ok, now im confused. My processor has an output connected to the PJ input, where does the 5vdc for the cable come from ? The larger end is connected at the Pj
Monoprice uses Spectra7, I overlooked that when i purchased it.

Im not having issues just wondering why the video processor manufacturer tech rep is saying powered cables may be an issue

The HDMI chipsets in the device (receiver, tv, blu-ray, etc), any device that uses HDMI, will require the 5v to power the chipsets. The HDMI port will output 50mA for any active cable that it is connected to to power the chipsets that are in the connector end of the cable. If it's a passive cable, the 50mA output does nothing.


Spectra 7 is the current chipsets used in most active cables that are copper-based only (not fiber or hybrid fiber). If you have a cable run that is under 25', then you really don't need an active cable because data transfer between source and sink (HDMI 2.0) should work just fine. Over 25' then the recommendation is hybrid fiber which is an active cable and they usually have proprietary chipsets in the connector ends.


I don't understand about the "larger end" being connected to the pj from the processor. What exactly do you mean by processor (a receiver?) and what kind of cable is connected from it to the pj? Active HDMI cables have the same connectors on both end only they are usually labeled Source and Sink or TV to designate which end goes where because they have to be connected is a specific manner. Passive cables are not "directional" so they can be connected regardless of either end, and they are not labeled.


Projectors can have issues with active cables for the very reason I mentioned above, inconsistent current output at the HDMI port.

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