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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is there any real answer on the value of buying expensive HDMI cables?

Most seem to agree that analog benefits from higher priced high quality cables but HDMI is another question.


Until recently the stock answers when someone asked about HDMI cables was,

1. Monster sucks (but that seems to be the answer about any cable question!)

2. Digital bits are digital bits, 1's & 0's don't care if they are sent down a $5 Monoprice cable or a $120 monster cable so don't waste your money on high priced cables.



But there now seems to be some different "facts" coming up.

On the discussion about HDMI version 1.3 (which many believe is not worth waiting for but that's another question) they say the data transfer rate is much higher & are now saying that cables made for HDMI 1.1 won't be able to carry the amount of data that 1.3 will be capable of transmitting.


So what is the truth?

When I get my HDMI 1.3 receiver will I see better sound & pic quality if I use a high quality cable from my PS3 to the receiver or will the $15 monoprice cables I've been using work just as well?
 

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I haven't tested out any 1.3 equipment so my views are based on speculation.


Quality can make a difference even with digital cables. While it's true that if the data is transmitted and received, one signal is the same as another. What can happen on crap cables however, is that you can get data drop outs. This would be most evident on longer cable runs (25+ feet). With 1.3, since your dealing with a higher transfer rate, you could very well find that a cable that worked 100% perfectly for 1.1, isn't up to snuff. The real question at this point in time is how are you going to test this? Do you have any equipment that will be contain deep color or TrueHD? Until that is available, even your HDMI 1.3 will be transmitting at the 1.1 rate.


That being said, the expensive cables are a rip off and are not necessary. There is a difference between a pos cable and the $15 cables you can get at monoprice. The monoprice ones seem to be very good quality. Just remember that most of the wiring even in the expensive cables, comes from the same manufactoring sources. If cables are specifically marked as 1.3 then perhaps they were tested and certified to handle 1.3 sources.


The bottom line is, try out the monoprice cables and worry about getting better cables IF they don't work. My guess is they will work fine.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


So what is the truth?

When I get my HDMI 1.3 receiver will I see better sound & pic quality if I use a high quality cable from my PS3 to the receiver or will the $15 monoprice cables I've been using work just as well?

As a follow-on to your question I think we need to understand exactly what some things mean. For instance, when you say "When I get my HDMI 1.3 receiver" I think you'll hear the response that "HDMI 1.3" doesn't by itself guarantee that you'll get "better sound & pic quality". It will depend on which portions of HDMI 1.3 the manufacturer put into the receiver.


They may have only included "Deep Color" for the pic quality but didn't include any of the audio portions, which there are more than one audio feature. Unfortunately, here is where everyone (HDMI, Dolby, etc.) are saying the buyer should be looking for HD features such as "Deep Color", Lossless, Lip sync, etc. Those involved are making it a "Buyer Beware" issue instead of renaming HDMI 1.3 to something like HDMI 1.3 FULL or Extended. I think this issue is why we now have some coming up with CERTIFICATION type software or process that vendors can put their products through as a means to help out the consumer who is at the mercy of the manufacturers much like when they use "HD Ready" or "HD capable" BS.


This is by no means an attack on anyone. It is simple stating that their lack to detail of specifications branding is causing consumer confusion. Hence, the certification became a necessity. They can fix this first by admitting there's a problem arising and that they shouldn't ever make it a BUYER BEWARE thing. Many are looking at "HDMI 1.3" as a LABEL that indicates that all or the NEW HD audio/video will be in that product. Simply further name the label when the product includes ALL of the HDMI 1.3 specs. Then you can "Buyer Beware" all you want.
 

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So then we ask, "Since HDMI 1.3 has more 'bandwidth', does that mean I need thicker cables, better quality cables, certain connecters, etc".

What guage wire do we need? 12, 16, 24?

What quality? 99% pure copper? 99% pure gold? 58% pure aluminum?

What type of connectors? A new type? One that is backwards compatible with HDMI 1.1? One that has a certain number of "pins" or "soldering points"?

I do not know the answers. I would like to find out if the connecters are to be different, I think that would be the biggest difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by hc2 /forum/post/0


I would like to find out if the connecters are to be different, I think that would be the biggest difference.

I would think if they changed the connectors (not including the HDMI mini connectors) that it wouldn't be HDMI anymore.


After all they aren't calling it DVI v2.3.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


Is there any real answer on the value of buying expensive HDMI cables?

Most seem to agree that analog benefits from higher priced high quality cables but HDMI is another question.


Until recently the stock answers when someone asked about HDMI cables was,

1. Monster sucks (but that seems to be the answer about any cable question!)

2. Digital bits are digital bits, 1's & 0's don't care if they are sent down a $5 Monoprice cable or a $120 monster cable so don't waste your money on high priced cables.



But there now seems to be some different "facts" coming up.

On the discussion about HDMI version 1.3 (which many believe is not worth waiting for but that's another question) they say the data transfer rate is much higher & are now saying that cables made for HDMI 1.1 won't be able to carry the amount of data that 1.3 will be capable of transmitting.


So what is the truth?

When I get my HDMI 1.3 receiver will I see better sound & pic quality if I use a high quality cable from my PS3 to the receiver or will the $15 monoprice cables I've been using work just as well?

Do not buy overpriced cables no matter what!!!! Did you know it costs Monster just about the same amount of money that most of cables at monoprice cost to make their product? The mark-up is pure profit. If you think it costs them anywhere near $150 to make an HDMI cable then you are dreaming! It costs them maybe $5 each at most. They rake in more money then anyone else on their pure profit operation luring unsuspecting average joes into the cable scam every day. It is really sad that so many people fall for their hard pushed sales pitches and glitsy product displays. You are NOT, I repeat, NOT getting a better product buying the "Premium" digital cable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by miniz /forum/post/0


Do not buy overpriced cables no matter what!!!! Did you know it costs Monster just about the same amount of money that most of cables at monoprice cost to make their product? The mark-up is pure profit. If you think it costs them anywhere near $150 to make an HDMI cable then you are dreaming! It costs them maybe $5 each at most. They rake in more money then anyone else on their pure profit operation luring unsuspecting average joes into the cable scam every day. It is really sad that so many people fall for their hard pushed sales pitches and glitsy product displays. You are NOT, I repeat, NOT getting a better product buying the "Premium" digital cable.

So you are saying that I should just pick up the cheapest cables, interconnects & speaker wires I can find to hook up a sunfire amp to B&M speakers?


Or do you just hate Monster?


This is the kind of crap that flows from the internet "experts" on this site.

This is exactly what isn't needed in this thread.


In case you didn't know it Monster cables are actually cheap when compaired to a set of $3000 Nordost valhala speaker cables.


Unless you can do better than flaming a company I'm not intrested in what you have to say.

Show me some facts, not troll crap!
 

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Wow that was pretty harsh themoose. I have used Monster cables in the past and I spent a lot of money on them. One day someone told me about this board AVS. I checked it out and after reading a lot of posts about Monoprice I tried them myself. Guess what their cables work just as good as monster at least I could not tell a difference. I have nothing against Monster I will buy them if they are on the discount shelf. I have friends that work for the big box stores and the mark up on Monster cables is ridiculous. If you like Monster buy them or give Monoprice a try. Me personally I like saving money and putting it towards new equipment.
 

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WOW....I can tell someone likes the Monster and other overpriced, overhyped cables! Just do a quick google search and you will see 100's of reports, tests and studies that have been done showing that price does not equal video/sound quality when it comes to cables. I would NEVER spend $3000 on speaker cable, ever. You would have to be just plain obsessed and sick to put down that kind of money on a cable.


My favorite and one of the best tests done was one completed by PC World. They concluded and I quote:

You don't need to spend a fortune on cables. The HDMI cables performed comparably in both our instrument tests and our visual tests. And with analog cables, the analyzer revealed some degree of variation in quality, but the variances did not translate into noticeable differences in our visual tests.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,12...1/article.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by xterraml /forum/post/0


Wow that was pretty harsh themoose. I have used Monster cables in the past and I spent a lot of money on them. One day someone told me about this board AVS. I checked it out and after reading a lot of posts about Monoprice I tried them myself. Guess what their cables work just as good as monster at least I could not tell a difference. I have nothing against Monster I will buy them if they are on the discount shelf. I have friends that work for the big box stores and the mark up on Monster cables is ridiculous. If you like Monster buy them or give Monoprice a try. Me personally I like saving money and putting it towards new equipment.

I have both Monoprice & Monster in my system & have had good luck with both.

This is NOT a thread to bash Monster or any other cable manufacture, it's a thread to get facts, not spew out false statements because someone doesn't like a particular company.


I'm looking for actual information here, opinions are fine if you can back them up.

Saying "Do not buy overpriced cables no matter what!!!! " is not helpful at all because some cables are obviously better than others in some situations & I'm wanting to find out if that applies to HDMI since there is so much misinformation on this site.
 

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Moose dont get the thread closed. If you don't like what this person has to say then ask some on else. The thread just got statred.
 

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Keep this thread in check guys. You should be talking about the HDMI format and not cables and costs.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


Is there any real answer on the value of buying expensive HDMI cables?

Most seem to agree that analog benefits from higher priced high quality cables but HDMI is another question.


Until recently the stock answers when someone asked about HDMI cables was,

1. Monster sucks (but that seems to be the answer about any cable question!)

2. Digital bits are digital bits, 1's & 0's don't care if they are sent down a $5 Monoprice cable or a $120 monster cable so don't waste your money on high priced cables.



But there now seems to be some different "facts" coming up.

On the discussion about HDMI version 1.3 (which many believe is not worth waiting for but that's another question) they say the data transfer rate is much higher & are now saying that cables made for HDMI 1.1 won't be able to carry the amount of data that 1.3 will be capable of transmitting.


So what is the truth?

When I get my HDMI 1.3 receiver will I see better sound & pic quality if I use a high quality cable from my PS3 to the receiver or will the $15 monoprice cables I've been using work just as well?

Monster does not suck. They are very good cables, just grossly overpriced. Yes, HDMI 1.3 carries more bandwith but that is a non issue now. Go ahead , buy gear now, enjoy it and in five years upgrade. You will not be missing much. The PS3 is 1.3 but is your display? Most people out there would not be able to tell the difference between 1.2 and 1.3 content right next to each other. Enjoy.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


I'm looking for actual information here, opinions are fine if you can back them up.

Saying "Do not buy overpriced cables no matter what!!!! " is not helpful at all because some cables are obviously better than others in some situations & I'm wanting to find out if that applies to HDMI since there is so much misinformation on this site.

Moose, I have been researching a lot on HDMI since I just got a new television. What I found out was that HDMI is a digital signal and cables do not make a difference in a digital signal.


I found a great article, an interview with the Director of Marketing for HDMI Licensing in which the director discusses the basics of HDMI. ( http://www1.electronichouse.com/info...mi_basics.html )


A few quotes from interview that I found really interesting:


"Fatter cables do not necessarily mean better signals. Previously, fat cables were deemed superior because the copper was thicker and the cables carried more shielding. Additional shielding reduced the likelihood of interference between the copper strands, which led to a better signal.


In the world of digital cables, there's no need for shielding since there is no possibility of interference within a cable."

The Best Quote


"Digital cables are either compliant or they are not; they either work or they don't. Compliance is given to a specific speed rating, and the default speed that all HDMI logo'ed cables meet is 75MHz, which corresponds to 720p or 1080i video resolutions.


Unlike analog, there is no such thing as an HDMI cable that makes the digital audio or video data come out better than another. If the 1s and 0s make it to the other end, the cable has done its job, period. "
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


CrasMack, have you read this thread http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=783574

A few pages in they seem to be saying the opposite & that HDMI 1.1 cables will not pass as much information as 1.3 cables.

Hey, I will check out that post but to make it clear, my previous comments were about whether big $$ cables were better then cheap cables and according to the director of HDMI licensing, the answer is no. My comments had nothing to do with the current hdmi version versus HDMI 1.3...
 

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I have had some experience, several years ago, sweeping analog cables , fixed & variable waveguide, etc.... While not mentioning brands, a thicker (to a degree) copper, silver, or especially gold* cable, with properly constructed ground/shield will perform better in analog applications. For one thing, in cables, the electrons actually flow on the "surface" of the wire/strand.


Now for passing digital information, whatever the minimum spec is that will not unduly distort the square wave to such a degree that 1's & 0's become undistinquished from one another, then that cable is good enough.


About the 1.1 versus 1.3 cables. I'm not 100% sure but I am fairly certain, that the HDMI is TDM (Time Division) & not Frequency Divided. That is, for more bandwidth, one would send more pulses in a given set of time. Or another way to put it, is the rest period between each pulse would decrease. For example, let us say that (NRZ) a '0' is 1.5V & a '1' is 8V. To get more bandwith from the output device, one would not change either of those voltage values, one would just send the individual voltages faster.




*If you look at the Periodic Table of the Elements, one will find Gold, Silver, & Copper appearing one of top of each other in that order. Their location, in the connecting peice, between the left & right side of the table is called the Transitory Metals; as the elements transition from the ert on the left to the inert of the right. Because Gold is close to the right side & higher in the table than either Silver or Copper it does hold a higher electronegative value than those other two earth metals. Gold is a much better conductor than copper. In fact gold wants to "pass" those electrons along so well, that it will often interact with the air around it. Copper being the most easliy found of the 3 is the cheapest, but Silver is the best compromise. It conducts better than Copper, but is not so reactive as Gold.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMoose /forum/post/0


So you are saying that I should just pick up the cheapest cables, interconnects & speaker wires I can find to hook up a sunfire amp to B&M speakers?

That's a good place to start, though you'd do well to at least buy the cheapest of some known brand/store, like Radio Shack, A/R, monoprice, etc. There's certainly no demonstrated sonic/video need to pay Monster prices.
 
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