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Old 12-16-2007, 03:42 PM   #1
Audio5oh Audio5oh is offline
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Default Compatibility issues with HDMI cables, Home Theater Receiver & Blu Ray

I posted a question on the "newbie thread", asking if anyone has heard of issues with certain HDMI cables NOT decoding the new HD surround sound formats of Blu Ray players when hooked up to a compatible receiver. My question is, has anyone ran into problems with HDMI cables of another brand, other than Monster Cable, not decoding the HD surround formats? Of course this is assuming you have a receiver that decodes the new formats? Below is the quote from a guy that posted this concern (Crutchfield.com) after buying the Sony BDP-S500 Blu Ray player;
"People who purchase this BD Player and have an Onkyo capable of decoding Dolby-True HD and DTS HD will need to get an HDMI 3.1 cable. when I first hooked this up, I almost returned it because it wasn't decoding these formats. After a few calls to Crutchfield and Sony, Sony said to use the HDMI 3.1 cable. I didnt even know there was such a thing as 3.1 cables, I thought they were all just "HDMI" cables. Boy was I amazed after I picked one up (for the same price as the older kind). The sound is amazing and you can hear the difference!"

Last edited by Audio5oh; 12-16-2007 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:48 PM   #2
WickyWoo WickyWoo is offline
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It's all marketing.

Any cable will work
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:48 PM   #3
mrtaber mrtaber is offline
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There is truth to this, and a lot of snake oil, too. In my HT system, I bought the Oppo to play SACDs and DVD-Audio. Now, to pass the SACD audio as DSD to my receiver, I needed an HDMI 1.2 cable. The HDMI cable that Oppo kindly included in the box was HDMI 1.1, so no joy. I had to pass the signal as PCM (i.e., decode in the player).

So yes, HDMI cables do make a difference. And yes, if you want the new lossless codecs to decode on your receiver (HDMI-1.3 capable receiver), you need cables capable of passing that bandwidth. But you don't have to sell a kidney for these cables. I got mine from Blue Jeans Cable: high quality, reasonable prices.

Don't overpay, but remember that HDMI is pretty fickle, so don't skimp on your cables either. As for "hearing the difference"--this is digital that we're talking. It's all "on-or-off"...so either the cable will pass the signal adequately for your receiver or not. My opinion (not trying to start a flame war here): the rest is just psychology.


Mark
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:51 PM   #4
WickyWoo WickyWoo is offline
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Quote:
The HDMI cable that Oppo kindly included in the box was HDMI 1.1, so no joy. I had to pass the signal as PCM (i.e., decode in the player).
Are you sure it's not just your player/reciever that's only 1.1?

EDIT I just looked it up to be sure

Any difference between them is in the transciever chips. The cable is a cable

Last edited by WickyWoo; 12-16-2007 at 04:55 PM.
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:56 PM   #5
mrtaber mrtaber is offline
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In this case I'm sure, Wicky. It's HDMI 1.3a. When I bought the new cable, it passed DSD to the receiver no problem. Now, as to what "version" the cable is, I try to avoid those things. I just bought a good, journeyman quality cable and all was well.

The original cable didn't seem to be defective (although this too is a possibility), since it played DVDs and regular audio CDs just fine (and passed the PCM signal just fine as well).

Regardless, myself, I've never bought a "versioned" cable. I just buy decent (not hyped, not "high end") cables, and all seems to work. I try to keep it simple, because my life is complex enough at work during the week! :-D

Mark

Last edited by mrtaber; 12-16-2007 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:01 PM   #6
BTS BTS is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WickyWoo View Post
Are you sure it's not just your player/reciever that's only 1.1?

EDIT I just looked it up to be sure

Any difference between them is in the transciever chips. The cable is a cable
That player is 1.2 but the cheapest hdmi cable from cablemart worked on mine.The DSD light comes on my receiver.Snake oil I tell you
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:09 PM   #7
mrtaber mrtaber is offline
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Default Cables, revisited

OK, they need a blushing emoticon. Just out of curiousity (I do not pretend to be an expert in these matters), I went, and re-hooked up my Oppo with the original cable (the one that didn't work). Well, you guessed it. It passed the DSD like a champ. I just had to make sure the cable was seating fully in the DVD player. My only excuse is that in the excitement of setting up my new home theater, I just...didn't check that the cable was seated completely. Fortunately, I only bought the one new cable, so didn't waste too much money. Oy.

Snake oil, indeed! So everyone (myself included) can save some money.

Mark!

Last edited by mrtaber; 12-16-2007 at 05:20 PM.
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:24 PM   #8
WickyWoo WickyWoo is offline
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Old 12-17-2007, 05:33 AM   #9
Audio5oh Audio5oh is offline
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I agree with Wickey. I think there is some confusion as to the different versions of HDMI output/inputs that are equipped with today's tv's, dvd players and receivers versus HDMI cables. For example, my Yamaha dvd player has HDMI version 1.1. My HDMI cables are "SonicWave" manufactured by Impact Acoustics. SonicWave does NOT specify if their cables are compatible with HDMI version 1.1, 1.2 or 1.3. In fact, I gave a phone call to Impact Acoustics and they say all HDMI cables are the same, except some brands insist on selling them at a much higher price, for example, "Monster Cable". They girl I spoke with says their cables have been tested to pass 1080p.
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Old 12-17-2007, 05:37 AM   #10
Phane Phane is offline
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Don't know if the cable really makes a difference or not but Monoprice.com has a seperate category for HDMI 1.3 cables and considering they only cost $6.50 for a 6 foot cable, I don't see the harm in trying.

Linky to monoprice.com's HDMI cables
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Old 12-17-2007, 06:28 AM   #11
olarmy96 olarmy96 is offline
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This is especially true with digital cables. You either get the information or you don't. There's no in between.

For example, I bought my HDMI cable in the PS3 section because it's a lot cheaper than if you buy a Monster in the TV section.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BTS View Post
That player is 1.2 but the cheapest hdmi cable from cablemart worked on mine.The DSD light comes on my receiver.Snake oil I tell you
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:09 AM   #12
JohnGalt JohnGalt is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WickyWoo View Post
It's all marketing.

Any cable will work
+1 My systems consists of:

PS3 --> $0.98 HDMI cable from Amazon --> Yamaha RX-3800V --> $0.98 HDMI cable from Amazon --> Pioneer PDP5010.

No problems at all here. The only times you need to worry about cables is if you're running very long (think 50 feet or more) runs or if you have an ungodly amount of RF noise (like, for instance a high powered HAM radio with a directional antenna pointed right at your HT setup) in the immediate vicinity. As a practical matter if you're doing in-wall HDMI cables from room-to-room you might need to upgrade the guage of the cable but for normal use anything will work.
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:13 AM   #13
JohnGalt JohnGalt is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phane View Post
Don't know if the cable really makes a difference or not but Monoprice.com has a seperate category for HDMI 1.3 cables and considering they only cost $6.50 for a 6 foot cable, I don't see the harm in trying.

Linky to monoprice.com's HDMI cables
If you don't mind being gouged for $4.98 shipping per cable you can get a 2 meter HDMI cable for $0.38.
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:38 AM   #14
martinstraka8282 martinstraka8282 is offline
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I've had some handshaking issues with some of my components, especially when I tried to integrate a 5x1 monoprice HDMI switcher. I traded it in for a 4x2 switch, and I only had one problem... I had to hook my oppo 981 directly up to my receiver since it would not pass the audio no matter what I tried. As for cables, I have 7 and have never had a problem with them not working with any of my components.
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Old 12-17-2007, 11:42 AM   #15
gerardfma gerardfma is offline
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Sure, marketing is marketing, and some "non 1.3" cables can, and will, work, but there is no wide guarantee that a cable designed for a given bandwith would transport a 4 times greater bandwith!

Sorry guys, but thinking any 1.1/1.2 cable would *always* work is as stupid as thinking that a Cat3 network cable would transport 10GB Ethernet requiring Cat5 or Cat6 without errors...
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Old 12-17-2007, 11:48 AM   #16
Neo65 Neo65 is offline
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The hdmi cable are really just copper strands of equal lengths.

Unless you have to run 35ft or more of hdmi, I doubt there's any difference. If the cable is 6ft or less, barring manufacturing flaw with bad contacts, they're all the same.
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Old 12-17-2007, 11:52 AM   #17
gerardfma gerardfma is offline
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You're so sure of what you write that you're certainly a great cable designer, so I'd better give up
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Old 12-17-2007, 12:42 PM   #18
Rustmonsteru Rustmonsteru is offline
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I just bought a new tv and the sales guy must of been having a good day b/c he gave me a 4m Monster 1000 cable free. That's about $200.00; I doubt it's worth a quarter of that but I'm not giving it back.
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Old 12-17-2007, 12:43 PM   #19
moviefan moviefan is offline
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Monster is like Bose, good products, way overpriced.
A good source for quality cables at a fair price is CobaltCable.com.
Excellent products, no tax, and fast,free, 1st class USPS shipping.
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Old 12-17-2007, 12:54 PM   #20
docjan_uk docjan_uk is offline
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Meh, at a metre or two it really doesn't make a difference, I got the cheapest cable I could find, cost me 5.00 and everythings absolutely perfect.

Now, when and if I get myself a nice 1080P panny projector in the future and end up having to have a long cable run, the quality of the cable will probably have to go up with the length itself just to eliminate signal degradation and the sparklies that will come with it.
Till that day, the 5 pound cable will do.
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