Premium certified HDMI cables

Seems all the big branded cable manufacturers have not brought out any Premium certified HDMI cables yet.  Although plenty are available online and in the consumer stores.

 Any one tried one ?  

Most are cheap compared to lower spec branded.   So for £20 I've ordered one.  Shall see if it'll better what's used at the moment.

Original Post

Yes I've got a big one and 4K !!  Might upgrade the Skybox to their UHD package one day in the not too distant future. 

Probably not until the big brands come out of R@D will any one spend good money on something that will obviously give better results on picture quality.

I recently bought a couple of Atlas 5m HDMI cables for around £150 each. I was assured they would work with 4K HDR content.....they didn't work with Sky SDR 4K broadcasts let alone 4K blu ray. After sending back two TV sets to John Lewis which I assumed to be faulty, my suspicions were raised when the third set was also faulty and I started looking elsewhere.

Fortuitously after cancelling calibration of the set twice and discussing the problem with the calibrator, he recommended some £15 no name cables and guess what, not a single problem since.

I appreciate the length of my cables may have been a factor in all this but, I for one won't be investing heavily in fancy, expensive HDMI cables again. I was lucky enough to get a refund on the expensive ones. The calibrator assured me there was no merit in the expensive ones.

The only thing I will say - I've two 4K sources, an Oppo 203 disc player & an Amazon FIRE TV, which connect to a 4K Denon sound processor and thence to the display. I've a motley assortment of HDMI leads, some of which work fine, but a few cause picture breakup. I've two Amazon cheapy cables that are identical and appear to be very well constructed but one causes dropouts, the other doesn't. So I have subsequently bought Premium Certified leads, all of which work fine, although there is absolutely no difference in picture or sound quality with any of the HDMI leads.

Reading up on www/press on this & copy/paste some points:    the Premium HDMI Cable Certification Program is the HDMI industry's means of identifying cables that have been tested to perform at a specific level that will carry 4K content.    Any cable rated as 'high speed' should pass 4K content provided it is indeed a true 'High Speed HDMI cable'.      HDMI Licensing acknowledges the issue of some "high speed" cable not being up to the task of actually handling the full HDMI 2.0 bandwidth, saying:  "Although many current High Speed HDMI Cables in the market will perform as originally expected (and support 18Gbps), some unanticipated technical characteristics of some compliant High Speed HDMI Cables that affect performance at higher speeds have been found. These cables are compliant with the Category 2 HDMI Cable requirements and perform successfully at 10.2Gbps, but may fail at 18 Gbps."   ........  hence, HDMI Licensing introduced a third testing tier in addition to "Category 1" (Standard) and "Category 2" (High Speed): the "Premium HDMI Cable."

If a cable is failing to carry the content, its seen as    "Sparkles": individual dropped-out pixels, "Line dropouts" where a whole line of video, or the rightward portion, drops out, "Intermittently flashing or jumping picture" indicating that so much picture data is being lost that the display is losing sync, & finally no picture.     It does not involve blacker blacks & more verdant greens. 

Finally I took my Mark Grant G1080 HDMI which is claimed (& tested) for 1080p around to my AV buddy to run on his 4K setup & it worked just fine.

So yes, just connected up the new HDMI cable. Compared to my other one blacks are definitely more blacker, depths are more deeper, colour seems more natural in light, natural light seems more natural,   Although motion and small detail definition seems not so good - perhaps it needs to burn in more.

Per my previous post I took my BRP HDMI to my AV buddy's house to run on his 4K setup.    I had forgotten it was 3m long & it only needs 1m.    So to hell with the expence, I've lashed out £8 +P&P on a 1m cable.  I'm not too bothered with AV just so long as it works but I did look around at cable specs & the claimed performance & selected on that.   The 'Premium Certified' cables must conform to HDMI v2.01b with 18Gb/s bandwidth.  AQ have one that they claim goes up to 27Gb/s, but the cable itself is a bit chunky & I picked up on a customer comment that it was not easy to bend.   Instead I went with a cable that has 21Gb/s,  ordered last evening,  its shipped already & ETA is tomorrow (sunday)  amazing !!!

The specs are confusing as the HDMI specs are separate from the HDMI cable specs... it feels like a typical proprietary specification to me.

There appear to be four cable specs currently and at least the first three, appear the same construction of four twisted shielded pairs of cable, with different cross talk performance - kind of like Ethernet cable.

  • Standard (with Ethernet and automotive variants); suitable up to 1080i / 720p
  • High Speed (with Ethernet variant); suitable up to 1080p, 4K @ 30 Hz, 'deep colour' and 3D
  • Premium High Speed (with Ethernet variant); suitable upto 4K @ 60 Hz, Rec 2020 UHD, and HDR [18 Gbps bandwidth]
  • 48G; suitable upto 4K, 5K, 8K and 10K @120 Hz [48 Gbps bandwidth]

 

clearly the 'certification' aspect is largely a marketing quality control aspect, probably necessary as the specification is proprietary and is consumer industry led... but a quality supplier conforming to the cable specifications doesn't need to necessarily purchase the 'certification'

If you are 'seeing' differences with blacks and colours between cables it suggests to me you have a RFI issue.. possibly caused by the cable itself

Its a pity the ethernet cable industry doesn't have some form of conformance 'certification' .   All claim to be CAT whatever number but very very few actually include a conformance test with the cable to prove it.  Blue Jeans & MeiCord are the only ones I'm aware of.  We (some people) pay a lot of money for ethernet cable believing the big CAT numbers are better for audio, but thats another subject.   My question is do they actually perform to the various category spec's ??  are we sure ???  I've read tests of CAT7 only just passing CAT6A some even worse.   Thankfully,  unlike HDMI where 18Gb/s is actually needed for 4K,  we only need 100Mb/s for audio & even CAT5e with its 1000Mb/s leaves us with plenty of headroom. 

It's here already, and the 48G has been created to meet its new protocol bandwidths.

Mike, I guess certification for Ethernet cables isn't used because it's not really needed or deemed useful in the majority of cases . Cat5e as you say with 4 pairs is good for 1Gbps at 100 metres. In the commercial world if a product is specified to 5e it needs to be as with fibre classifications and of course ultimate performance depends on environmental matters as well as how the cable is laid. Its not some sort of consumer marketing gimmick... but of course some Ethernet cables have entered the glitzy sweety shop of consumer bling where  anything goes. If you need to test Ethernet cables specifically then manufacturers like Fluke make suitable testers


 

Agreed Simon, I'm aware of most of the Ethernet testing & admit my post was a bit of a teaser.   My own cables come with a Fluke test cert. & despite knowing it is OTT for  audio streaming, it is reassuring to know I've bought what I paid for.  As for me buying a Fluke cable conformance tester, I might just get those SMC40A's first

Mike-B posted:

................,I've lashed out £8 +P&P on a 1m cable.  

'Premium Certified' HDMI v2.01b & with 21Gb/s bandwidth.   Ordered late Friday pm arrived Sunday pm.     Nice tight plugs & nice to not need to coil up 2m of excess cable length.   It works just fine,  nothing else to say,  it's now waiting for a new 4K disc player (make/model yet to be decided)

After a few days running in and a little tweaking over some picture settings Emmerdale has never looked so good.  

Motion and detail is now motoring on full cylinders. Glad now that I never went ahead with purchasing that expensive Nordost Heimdall HDMI high speed cable.

Although no doubt there will be a mk2 Premium Certified, or even 2.1 version from Nordost and many others to tempt in the future.

Hi Mike-B,
Are you able to say where you bought this sensible cable?  I am about to buy a 4k TV and really don't fancy the idea of shelling out £300 or so for an AQ Vodka (or similar) posh HDMI cable, when a £8 or £10 one will be perfectly fine.

Thank you in anticipation, FT

Foot tapper posted:

Hi Mike-B,
Are you able to say where you bought this sensible cable?  I am about to buy a 4k TV and really don't fancy the idea of shelling out £300 or so for an AQ Vodka (or similar) posh HDMI cable, when a £8 or £10 one will be perfectly fine.

Thank you in anticipation, FT

Sorry Foot Tapper I missed your post,  I don't look around on this section much.   Hope it's not too late.        Brand is OMARS I bought it from the big river.   £7.99 for 3 feet  (yes it is "feet") + p&p

Finkfan posted:

@TOBYJUG have you had chance to put your old hdmi cable back in and compare to your new Goobay premium one? 

The old one - chord Company C view - hasn't gone back in. The Goobay premium has trumped it in all areas.    Almost afraid to touch it in case I upset the magical pixie dust that it must surely contain. But, yes I'm sure it's the premium' side of it rather than the particular brand.

I think thx certification has been around for a while, and a subset of the High Speed with Ethernet classification. Any Premium' certified cable would surely be capable as downward compatibility is not an issue. As far as I know only cables with a Premium certificate are premium cables.        Good luck

nbpf posted:

............ I have tested the cables using DVDs, Blu-Rays, and jellyfish testfiles (http://jell.yfish.us/) up to 400Mbps.

The Premium Certified HDMI cable is a conformity compliance scheme & is concerned with verifying cable compatibility with 4K which requires a bandwidth of 18Gbps,  these cables are normally shown as HDMI 2.0     The so called High Speed cable (HDMI 1.4)  has a bandwidth of 10Gbps & handle TV 1080p.       Also announced this year is HDMI 2.1 which has a bandwidth of 48Gbps.

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