searching for a specific type of cable
August 19, 2008 3:18 AM   Subscribe

hello all; I am trying to locate a previous iteration of the HDMI cable. it seems that my Akai TV does not function with the current flavors of HDMI (1.3). the tech support desk at Akai tells me that I need to use a 1.1 or 1.2 cable, and that they are readily available. they are not. I've tried Radio Shack and ebay (admitedly, that isn't a comprehensive search); just trying to cut through the clutter here. thanks in advance.
posted by rxbert to Technology (8 answers total)
Best answer: A quick google search for HDMI 1.2 cable suggests that these are pretty easy to come by.
posted by dseaton at 4:31 AM on August 19, 2008

I think you're being misled by the Akai tech. As far as I know, HDMI 1.3 cables are just certified to run at a higher speed - they don't actually make much difference to older devices. Trying a new cable is always a good move though - can you borrow any random HDMI cable (the shorter the better) from a friend and try that? Could it just be whatever you are plugging in won't work with your TV regardless? Which HDMI device(s) are you trying?
posted by samj at 4:47 AM on August 19, 2008

A word of advice, don't spend a lot of money on HDMI cables.
The HDMI cables I use with my TV were literally less than $2.00 each, found on amazon, and I've never had a problem with them.
posted by jozxyqk at 5:04 AM on August 19, 2008

Umm. HDMI 1.3 *cables* are the same as previous versions. As part of the spec, they are rated for signals at a higher frequency (340Mhz instead of 74.5Mhz) but all that means is thicker wires and better shielding from interference, but the cable itself hasn't changed wiring at all.

OK, there's different types of connectors, and the new type C mini connector introduced with hdmi 1.3 - which might be what he meant - won't work presumably, but I'm assuming your cable physically plugs into both devices ok. (Most devices are the small type A connector)

There is however quite a big difference between 1.1, 1.2 and 1.3 devices in terms of supported features. I can fully understand that your tv doesn't have the functions and features of a hdmi 1.3 TV. Most likely it's a handshake issue between whatever you're plugging into the TV, and the TV - I've seen a few bluray players not like certain TVs. Sometimes a firmware upgrade is needed for one or both devices to get them talking, and mismatches in HDMI standard support of the two devices doesn't help.

Personally, I think that tech is blowing smoke up your ass so he doesn't have to actually fix the problem, but if you're determined to find an 'hdmi 1.1' cable, then look for category 1 hdmi 1.3 cables - category 2 is the newer high frequency, high quality ones, category 1 are cables made to the old standard. It's not a bad idea to try a different cable though, I just don't see how a higher spec one could cause your problem.

And yes, the shorter the better with HDMI, as with all AV leads.
posted by ArkhanJG at 5:15 AM on August 19, 2008 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you don't mind me expanding your question: Is the problem that you've added a new component somewhere? Possibly this one supports HDMI 1.3 and your TV doesn't.

For example, you get video, but not audio over HDMI? No HDMI cable will fix that, but you could run audio over another source.

There a lot of AV nerds here if you want to add some more details.
posted by poppo at 6:12 AM on August 19, 2008

I'll nth the 1.3 issue - a 1.3 cable is merely capable of more bandwidth and less interference. I am using 1.3a cable with some older equipment with no problem. You may want to check out They have HDMI cables rated at all levels. Google the reviews and you'll find almost nothing but praise for their prices, quality and service. Here is a link to their HDMI cables. I just used them to outfit a home theater and was very pleased. Blue Jeans Cable has also been highly recommended. Whatever you do, avoid paying for extremely overpriced Monster Cable.
posted by flyingrock at 6:37 AM on August 19, 2008

Response by poster: thanks to all for the thoughtful and helpful comments and suggestions. to add on to what I said this morning (very early, so not fully awake); but I am impressed to know that there are A/V "geeks available on this site, and I mean that in the best possible way!
I have had the Akai TV for a little over a year now, using composite cable to relay the sound and picture from my DVD player. last month however, I purchased a hard drive based DVD player/recorder that uses HDMI. while attempting to connect my (inexpensive and NOT MonsterCable) HDMI cable I experienced what I described to the Akai tech support as a "freezing" of the display/menu on the TV. the text that would normally show the input and such was complete gibberish. the TV completely locked up and only turning the power off and dis-connecting the cable would resolve it. meanwhile the DVR that was connected via component was fine, I was even able to connect a laptop to the VGA source. so, thanks again and I hope that I am able to resolve the issue soon!
posted by rxbert at 9:43 AM on August 19, 2008

A lot of AV nerds, but no further answers!

You don't mention your exact TV model, but similar to what I mentioned above it is possible that the Akai is, though 1.1 or 1.2 seems to be supported according to what your tech support guy said, perhaps not fully adhering to the standard.

A Google search find a few angry people with such problems.

*Is it possible to set the output of the DVD recorder to other resolutions? I wonder if you change the output to 480i if that would change anything. If it works, it likely means the Akai is compliant with the standard.
*I guess you have tried successfully sending signal from the new DVD recorder to the TV over composite, like your old one did, and had no problems? Just wondering if they played nice with a standard signal.
*What about component (looks like the red, white, and yellow composite, but they are red, blue, and green instead)? If all else fails, component provides way better video than composite. It's not quite HDMI, but it's still a noticeable step up.
posted by poppo at 3:27 PM on August 19, 2008

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