Why HDMI? A Change In Cables Can Improve Your A/V Experience In Minutes

by Lewis Gunter - Date: 2006-12-20 - Word Count: 585 Share This!

I'm going to be blatantly honest with you, perhaps even painfully honest. I work at an Internet Retailer dealing with high tech connectivity accessories. I've written copy on products I've never even had the privilege to test. This is not so much because there's anything wrong with the products. It's just that most of the things we carry our for technology that's still outside of my budget. I've known the terms 1080i, HDMI, HDTV and so forth and I'm probably still a few years off from my first full HDTV experience.

Luckily, this isn't the case with all of my personal associates. I had a friend get a nice Onkyo receiver, a 720P projector, and some nice Polk speakers during some crazy Black Friday sales. When I went to his house to view the setup, I was obviously very impressed (though not quite enough to shell out the $$$ he did for his arrangement). He mentioned that he still needed to get some cables (he was running his video feed over a cheap S-Video cable). I gladly told him where I worked and gave him some major hookups on updated cabling, including some nice HDMI cables for connection between his DVD player, receiver, and projector. The results were, in a word, astounding. Let me tell you what HDMI cables did for his setup and what they could do for yours.

Video Signal Quality over HDMI:
I was blown away by the crystal-clear images produced when we transitioned to HDMI cabling. Previously, over S-Video, the video signal was very watchable and if you didn't have a reference point, you wouldn't know what you were missing. However, when the HDMI cables were in place, the picture wowed us all. There was no more fuzziness on the screen. It was especially noticeable since the seating arrangement had us right in front of the projector screen. Normally (and I learned this from sitting close to the TV probably longer than I should have as a child) the closer you get, the more pixelated the image becomes and it is a lot less watchable. With the new, crisp, video signal, our movie watching experience was nigh-unto theater-like for picture quality and even relative size.

HDMI Carries Audio and Video:
HDMI cables have the added benefit of carrying video and audio signals with a single cable. This not only saves cost on additional cabling, but also cleans up your likely crowded A/V hubs. My friend was able to take back a now-unnecessary SPDIF fiber optic audio cable that cost him a pretty penny. While I'm sure there are audioholics out there who would argue the benefits of fiber optic over copper cabling, for our purposes the sound was identical.

Downsides to HDMI:

As with any relatively new technology, there are always things to consider when switching over to HDMI. For one, you will need a DVD player with HDMI out and a display that supports HDMI or DVI inputs. Also, there are reports of HDMI users having issues of audio and video being slightly out of sync. I'm not sure what causes this, but I have heard of it being an issue. Also, some people may want to run audio through fiber optic audio cables and video through HDMI, which is not an option with some players/receivers/displays. Just keep these things in mind when buying HDMI.

There you have it. HDMI cables give you the luxury of carrying digital audio and video over a single cable and give you a picture quality unmatched by other technologies.

Related Tags: digital, hdtv, television, video, high, audio, tv, cable, hdmi, cables, def

Lewis is a technogeek over at http://sewelldirect.com and a lover of fine A/V setups. For more information or to purchase please feel free to visit the Sewell Direct line of HDMI Cables.

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