So I just bought my first HDTV, a Sony KDS-R50XBR1. Woot! When the salesman started trying to sell me the HDMI and Component cables I’d need I did a double take at the prices and remembered in a couple of threads that you can get cables just as good from a website called monoprice.com for MUCH cheaper, so I passed and figured I’d order them from there. I can’t even unpack and set up the TV until next week when we move into our new place.
When I went to Monoprice, though, I was still kind of bewildered by the selection. Copper cables with gold plating? HDMI to HDMI or male to male? 22AWG? 24AWG? Ferrite Cores? I’m kind of lost and don’t want to waste time ordering the wrong thing.
I plan to hook up a digital cable box (for which I understand I need an HDMI cable for optimal quality) and a DVD player (for which I understand I need a component cable). Anybody want to help me out and tell me exactly what kind of cables I should be looking for?
Assuming your DVD and cable boxes will be close to the TV, buy the cheapest cables at your required length monoprice sells. If they’re over 12 feet away, go up a step on the components.
AWG is the standard measure of weight for the cable. The lower the AWG the thicker the cable. In general this only matters for a digital signal cable like DVI-HDMI if we’re talking over 20 feet, in which case I’d highly recommend at least 24AWG. Ferrite cores and gold plating will reduce interference - again not necessary unless we’re talking about a long cable.
The thing to remember about digital signals is that they are an all-or-nothing proposition - it either works or it does not. There is no such thing as one cable producing a better quality picture than another.
HDMI male to HDMI male is what you want to connect most newer devices that have an HDMI output.
DVI male to HDMI male is what you want to connect older devices that have a DVI output, or a PC.
Now for component it’s a different story, analog connection and all that. I’d say just buy the shortest cable that will work for your set-up.