HDMI 1.3 cables

On the Sony BDP-S350 Review Thread at the Blu-ray forum someone asked, ‘I am totally confused whether I should be using a HDMI 1.3 cable.’

Someone else responded, ‘If you want to bitstream DTS-HD MA and DD TrueHD you must use HDMI 1.3.’

But this isn’t quite correct. The HDMI version numbers refer to the kinds of capabilities that can potentially be supported. They don’t refer to cables as such because in a basic wiring sense, all HDMI cables are the same.

That does not mean that all HDMI cables work the same. You may not get a reliable connection for higher bandwidth signals over longer cable runs if you use a cheap, thin cable. A cable that works at 1080i may not work at 1080p.

As it happens DTS-HD MA and Dolby TrueHD do not make additional demands on cables. These are compressed audio formats that typically reduce by about 50% the amount of data required to carry the sound. But even way back in the beginnings of HDMI — Version 1.0 — it was specificied to carry up to eight channels of 192kHz, 24 bit uncompressed LPCM.

HDMI 1.3 did double the bandwidth requirements to 10.2Gbps, but that extra bandwidth provides for the future, not for current demands.

I have been using Kordz HDMI cables for several years (since before HDMI 1.3 came into use), and they continue to work perfectly for me, despite being plugged in and out of equipment all the time.

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