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  1. DisplayPort Questions Explained – Cable FAQ Guide

    What is DisplayPort?

    DisplayPort (left in the image above) is a 20-pin digital video cable developed by the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA). It is one of the most advanced cables on the market today and was specifically designed for use with computer monitors.

    What is Mini DisplayPort?

    Mini DisplayPort (right in the image above) is a downsized version of DisplayPort that is used on devices too small to fit a standard DisplayPort.

    What is Thunderbolt?

    Thunderbolt is an off-shoot of Mini DisplayPort developed by Intel & Apple most commonly seen on Apple products. While Thunderbolt and Mini DisplayPort look the same, Thunderbolt is much more advanced. Mini DisplayPort is not forward compatible with Thunderbolt, but Thunderbolt is backward compatible with Mini Displayport.

    What is DisplayPort 1.2?

    DisplayPort 1.2

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  2. What are DisplayPort Cables?

    DisplayPort is the latest and greatest audio/video cable available today. While it does have many similarities with HDMI, DisplayPort is even more powerful. Whereas HDMI was designed as a multi-purpose cable capable of working with any and all electronics, DisplayPort was specifically created with computer monitors in mind. Capable of supporting HD video at even higher resolutions than HDMI, there is no better choice than DisplayPort when cable quality is your primary concern.

    DisplayPort Specifications

    The original DisplayPort cable, version 1.0, was developed by VESA (Video Electronics Standards Association) and introduced in May 2006. Since then, several newer versions with various improvements have been developed and replaced their older counterparts. Many DisplayPort cables on the market are not marked with a version number, so knowing the age of the cable is the best way to tell how well it performs. These days, users would be unlikely to come across a cable older than version 1.2. This was the first version of DisplayPort to fully outshine HDMI, being capable of supporting higher maximum bandwidth.

    Like HDMI, DisplayPort is capable of supporting audio/video instead of being video-only like many of its competitors. Despite these differences, DisplayPort connections can be adapted to other video formats including HDMI, DVI, and VGA. This can be done with an adapter cable or independent adapters can

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  3. HDMI Questions Explained – Cable FAQ Guide

    What Does HDMI Stand For?

    HDMI stands for High Definition Multimedia Interface.

    What is HDMI?

    HDMI was developed as a new audio/video cable standard when the industry started manufacturing electronics with digital technology, replacing older analog machines. A coalition of major electronics manufacturers worked together to develop HDMI technology. HDMI 1.0 was first introduced to the open market in 2002.

    Does HDMI Support 4k?

    The current standard version of HDMI, HDMI 2.0, fully supports 4k video. This version of HDMI was released in September 2013. HDMI 1.4 cables, the standard from 2009 to fall 2013, have limited 4k support. Older HDMI cables do not support 4k.

    Does HDMI Carry Audio?

    Yes, HDMI is an audio/video cable. An extractor can be used to separate the audio & video signals into separate lines.

    How to Connect an HDMI Cord?

    Simply plug one end of the HDMI cable into the audio/video source and the other to the audio/video display. Make sure the display is on the correct HDMI input and the sound/images should display automatically.

    How Much Does an HDMI Cord Cost?

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  4. Cable Distance Limits - Audio/Video

    Every type of cable has a maximum distance. These distance limits can vary greatly from one type of cable to the next. Along with determining whether a cable will work, distance limits will also determine how well a cable works. Knowing the fundamentals behind cable distance limits is the first step in selecting the best cable for your needs.

    Cables will always have some sort of “maximum signal” rating, depending on the type of the cable. For ethernet cables, it will be the maximum upload/download speed. For HDMI, it will be the maximum resolution of the video. And so on and so forth for other cables. Any type of “maximum” rating should be taken with a grain of salt.

    Those ratings are the best possible rating the cable is capable of under theoretical, perfect conditions. For example, modern HDMI cables are all rated for 4k. But if the HDMI cable is running through a coupler, users will almost certainly not get 4k. Each time a signal passes through a connection, even just connecting a cable to something like a TV or computer, the signal quality degrades a little. Using devices like extenders and couplers will make the signal weaker; for example, coupling a 10’ cable to a 5’ cable will result in a weaker signal than just using a single 15’ cable.

    Another key factor for signal quality is the distance of the cable. The further a signal has to travel, the more it will degrade by the time it gets from Point A to Point B. Going back to our HDMI example, a 15’ cord will give a clearer image than a 50’ cable. It is possible to get around this issue using an extender/boo

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  5. American Wire Gauge (AWG)

    American Wire Gauge (AWG)

    What is American Wire Gauge (AWG)?

    American Wire Gauge (AWG, sometimes called the Brown & Sharpe wire gauge) is the standardized wire gauge system used to measure the size of electric conducting wire in the United States since 1857. AWG refers to wire made with a solid metal core. It is represented as a simple number that is calculated by finding the radius of the wire, squaring that number, and multiplying it by pi (AWG = πr²). The smaller the number is, the thicker the cable will be.

    Stranded wire is also commonly referred to using AWG, but it a little more complex. Because standard cables are made using multiple wires instead of a single solid core, they can be given multiple numbers. For example, a cable called “24 AWG (7x32)” means that the overall outer diameter is 24 AWG but on the inside, the cable has seven 32 AWG wires.

    Common Wire Gauges

    Certain types of cables will always be the same AWG. For example, RG58 cable is always made as a 20 AWG cable regardless of manufacturer. Coax cables tend to be the same size across the board with different connectors made for the different kinds of cables. There are a few exceptions, such as cables with Quad Shielding being a little thicker and needing special connectors, but these are few and far between.

    On the other side of that, there are some cables that come in different variants and as a result, can have different AWGs. Ethernet cable is a prime example for this. Standard ethernet cable is typically 23 or 24 AWG from most manufacturers. However, you also have versions like

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  6. Audio & Video Cables

    Audio and video cables go hand-in-hand, often being paired together. Some cables can even transmit audio and video on just one line. Over time a lot of new audio and video cables have been introduced, so the cable you need will often depend on the age of the equipment you are using. Most TVs, computers, and other devices can use multiple types of audio and video connections, so it is good to be able to identify them and know your options.

    Audio-only cables include:

    • 3.5mm
    • 2.5mm
    • ¼”
    • Optical Toslink
    • XLR
    • SpeakOn
    • MIDI

    Video-only cables include:

    • S-Video
    • DB9
    • VGA
    • DVI

    Audio/video cables include:

    • F-type
    • BNC
    • RCA
    • Component
    • HDMI
    • DisplayPort

    Audio-only

    3.5mm

    3.5mm, also called ⅛” cables, is one of the most common audio cables. They are sometimes called “headphone jacks”, being the type of connection used for headphones. These ports are frequently found on cell phones, computers, and televisions.

    There are a few different versions of 3.5mm: TS, TRS, and TRRS. TS cables will have one ring, dividing the metal sections into two conductors and are most often used for mono connections like microphones. TRS has two rings to give it three conductors, allowing them to be used for stereo connections such as speakers. TRRS has three rings for four conductors to support stereo aud

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  7. HDMI Adapters

    HDMI: The New Standard

    HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) cables are the new standard for audio/video cables on modern televisions, computers, video game consoles, and more. The majority of new electronics today are built with at least one HDMI port. HDMI is excellent at what does, being able to transmit digital audio and video through a single line.

    While HDMI is fantastic, many older devices that predate HDMI are still around and in use. Some newer devices are also built with only alternatives to HDMI, although this is much less common. When either of these scenarios come up, the easiest solution is to use an HDMI adapter. There are different types of adapters (as well as converters) that you may need depending on what you want to convert to HDMI.

    HDMI to RCA

    Converting HDMI to RCA is one of the more common problems that you can run into, with RCA being the old standard for televisions. Devices such as VCRs, older DVD players, and older video game consoles will only have RCA connections. RCA has mostly been phased out of modern devices. When using older electronics with a newer TV or vice versa, going between RCA to HDMI usually becomes an issue.

    Because RCA is analog and HDMI is digital, the device is called a converter instead of an adapter. Converters, unlike adapters, are one-way. If you convert RCA to HDMI, something like an old VCR to a new TV, you would need this converter. If you need to go

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