Do you have to buy expensive HDMI cables for better quality? Short answer – No

HDMI CablesI can’t stress enough to people that they are mostly wasting money by buying expensive HDMI cables for getting a better quality. In reality all the HDMI cables deliver the same quality because the HDMI communication use digital signals and not analog. It doesn’t matter if you have a $100 HDMI cable of a $10 HDMI cable. All that matters is whether it is a working one or not. If it is a working one the quality will not differ. See below for the explanation about how digital and analog signals differ.

Analog Signals are more like tin can communication. Some times when we communicate through the tin cans connected by a string, the quality is too low and sometimes the words can’t be heard over at the other end. This is because it depends on the quality of the string and its efficiency in transferring the signal. So if you improve the string, the sound quality becomes much better.

Now Digital Signals works more like morse code. All you need is a flashlight which can be flickered to make the communication. So if the other person can see your flashes the communication is successful. It doesn’t matter if you use a $1 flashlight or $10 flashlight, as far as the communicating parties can see the light, the communication will be successful and the quality does not depend on the quality of flashlight. HDMI works in a similar manner, the other end either gets the signal or not. If it gets the signal it will work and the quality of the communication doesn’t depend on the cable. In digital communication all you’re sending are ones and zeros. Another thing about HDMI communication is how it can correct the errors. Digital interfaces all have error correction. That means even if the signal is degraded for some reason (bad cable, interference etc) it will either be corrected at receiving end or resent.

But there are some things you should consider before buying a HDMI cable.

  • The ultra cheap HDMIs might lose their tips if strained or unplugged a lot faster compared to expensive ones.
  • The ultra cheap HDMIs will have thinner wires, so if you bend the cable every now and then, it may break in between and stop working altogether.
  • If you’re going for expensive ones however go for the flat cables for easy organization or 90-degree cables or swiveling cable heads.
  • There are spec levels for HDMI cables too. So you have to buy the right one (1.0, 1.1, 1.3, 2.0 etc). For example if you want the HDMI cable to handle 4K resolution you will have to buy 2.0. But make sure you’re not falling for the marketing gimmicks which say their cable is SuperCable and can take 1000000TB/s so it performs way better than Cheapskates’ cable. In reality you will not even use over 5000TB/s(the numbers are exaggerated :P).

I hope I am clear enough. If you have any doubts feel free to ask us by commenting below.

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