tributaries4blogD-Tools MVP member Tributaries offers this article on cable performance.

Most cable companies, including Tributaries, have at one time stated that HDMI cables under 4m should all perform the same. Without sounding like a presidential candidate flip-flopping his/her point of view, it is very apparent that better built HDMI cables will perform better even at short lengths. Most people don’t take the connector’s build quality into consideration.
Here are 3 very important connector features that you should consider when purchasing HDMI cables:

  • Interference from electrical wires, fluorescent lights, and even the sun, can harm a digital signal. As we continue through this digital revolution, properly shielded cables are more important than ever. In the analog world, signals that are altered by interference can be repaired by the electronics, using a simple algorithm. Digital electronics, however, have to take an “educated guess” as to what bits of information are missing. If the bits, which are 1’s or 0’s, are incorrect, it can lead to errors and artifacts. This can happen with short or long HDMI cables. When you buy an HDMI cable, both the cable AND the connector must be fully shielded to protect from interference. Tributaries Series 3, 5, 7 & 9 HDMI connectors are made with a copper foil designed to provide a continuous, uninterrupted shield for both the cable’s conductors and the internal soldered connections. In addition, both Series 7 & 9 connectors are made using die-cast metal providing a 2nd layer of shielding as well as a permanent, attractive finish.
  • It is generally accepted that molded connectors are inferior to most other types of connectors. Due to their inexpensive cost, most HDMI connectors on the market today are built with molded connectors. Molded connectors lack rigidity and structural integrity. If you have an occasion to move your TV and forget to unhook an HDMI cable with a molded connector, chances are the connector will break and fail internally. Tributaries Series 7 and Series 9 HDMI connectors are built using die-cast metal housings. The use of these stronger more durable connectors results in greater reliability as well as better and more consistent performance.
  • As you know, the tightness of an HDMI connector when plugged into the HDMI receptacle is extremely important not only to the electrical connection but also to its physical stability. The snug fit of a Tributaries HDMI cable offers a more reliable connection than the commonly available poorly made cables available on the internet, through distribution and free in the boxes with equipment. All Tributaries HDMI cable, the Series 7 and Series 9 more so, are engineered to fit snuggly and securely into the proper receptacles.

So there you go; three reasons why you should be selling better HDMI cables. As HDMI specifications change and data rates increase over time, cables are going to be asked to handle more and more data. Some cables that perform marginally now can actually pass static tests and do an acceptable job of displaying a fixed picture or spreadsheet. However when the display’s error correction system is taxed, as happens when watching sports or other fast changing action, the greater number of errors cause a breakdown in image quality. Over time, with higher data rates, cables will be required to do more. Better HDMI cables will enable your high performance displays to perform up to their capabilities, now and in the future.

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