Computer to TV Howto

If you would like to watch the Hockey Zone you browse to on the Web, on your TV, then follow the link below to see an instructional video. Link: Computer to TV Video

HDMI Cables

Know your cables! You can pay too much!

HDMI cables come with version numbers and come with several types of plugs. When buying a cable, look for at least Version 1.3 or better. Version 1.4 is the most common at present, with Version 2 just beginning to make an appearance. Each version increment, in the main, simply increases the speed at which the connection is capable of as well as enabling the use of newer technology and gadgetry (Ethernet, etc), much of it not even present on the devices we are using today such as household computers and TV's.

So V1.3 is likely fine, while V1.4 is better, and V2 is overkill and costs too much for now.

When it comes to the plugs on each end of the cable, you need to check your device at each end. Chances are that your TV will have the standard HDMI socket that takes a Type A (male) plug. These are the (male) plugs shown on the cable in the video (link) above.

When it comes to the other end of the cable there are a number of options. Some laptops and desktops may have a socket that will take the Type A plug, again, as shown on the cable in the video (link) above. However, many computers, some laptops and most tablets will have other variations. For example, some computers and laptops will have a DVI (usually DVI-D) socket, while tablets and some video cameras may have either a mini- or a micro- HDMI socket. Suitable cables can be purchased for each of these, i.e. HDMI Type A plug on one end and either a DVI-D, a Mini-HDMI or a Micro-HDMI plug on the other. Note that in the case of a DVI-D to HDMI cable the audio is not passed through the cable. You would require a separate audio cable in this case. There are also DisplayPort to HDMI cables available.

While you can buy HDMI cables from almost anywhere that sells TV, HiFi and/or computer accessories, some outlets are inclined to overcharge significantly. Many of the cheap variety shops sell them at reasonable prices though the quality varies somewhat. The cheap ones are often okay for short runs in static situations, i.e. the devices are close and you're not like to be moving the devices around and/or plugging and unplugging often.

If you are looking for a better quality cable, and in many different lengths, and at very reasonable prices then you should try MSY Technology. Visit the
MSY Website and check out the Parts Pricelist (PDF) and the store locations. One to two metre cables cost around $4 - $7, ten metre cables cost $12 - $24 at the time of writing. Other stores similar to MSY may have similar quality and priced cables.

You don't have to pay silly prices like $80 for a 1.5m cable at Tricky's, Hardly Normal, Jelly Bean HiFly and the like.

Want or need to know more about HDMI? Then I recommend this link for starters.

Kim Rendell