HDMI could soon be replaced by new cable technology

Jul 05, 2010 by Lin Edwards report

(PhysOrg.com) -- A new audio/video cable techology is being developed that might spell the end of HDMI cables, which are currently used to connect a wide range of audio and video devices. The new technology is known as HDBaseT and carries audio and video signals and power on standard Cat 5e/6 Ethernet cables.

The new technology has been developed over the last six months by four technology companies: Sony Pictures Entertainment, Samsung, LG, and Valens Semiconductor, which together form the HDBaseT Alliance. The group hopes the new technology and products conforming to it will begin to be shipped later this year and predict its use will become widespread during next year and beyond.

The HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) cable was introduced in 2003 and has been gaining popularity, especially with the rise of Blu-ray and the adoption of , so much so that almost all televisions now ship with HDMI technology.

HDMI has advantages over other types of audio/video cables but also has disadvantages such as switching delays and cable length limitations, both of which are addressed by HDBaseT. HDMI only carries uncompressed audio and video signals. Wireless technologies such as WiGig, WHDI and Wireless HD offer alternative options, but they cannot transfer power to devices as HDBaseT can.

HDBaseT is a network-based standard called “5PlayTM” that enables a single cable to carry high definition video, audio, up to 100 watts of power, 100BaseT Ethernet, and control signals simultaneously. The cables, which are inexpensive Cat5e/6 type rather than expensive HDMI, can be up to 100 meters in length. The ports are replaced by standard RJ-45 connectors. The HDBaseT specification supports the latest HD video, 3D, and high resolution 2K x 4K (4096 by 2160).

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Chairman of the Alliance, Ariel Sobelman, said the new technology is “poised to become the unrivaled next-generation home networking transport to meet the ever-changing trends in the digital media market.”


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More information: www.hdbaset.org/

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User comments : 42

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Topperfalkon
5 / 5 (5) Jul 05, 2010
So it's open standard, promotes PoE, and has an effective theoretical coverage of 1.6km (extended star).

Seems like a good idea to me. Cat5e cable is pretty cheap anyway.
Egnite
5 / 5 (3) Jul 05, 2010
Excellent news! Crimping an ethernet cable to whatever length you need is far quicker and cheaper than ordering a specific length of hdmi.
Bob_Kob
5 / 5 (2) Jul 05, 2010
Ive always wondered why video couldnt be transmitted over cat5/6 since well data goes over it routinely, so video could be the same?
John_balls
not rated yet Jul 05, 2010
So it's open standard, promotes PoE, and has an effective theoretical coverage of 1.6km (extended star).

Seems like a good idea to me. Cat5e cable is pretty cheap anyway.


No , it can only be 100 meters in length without using repeaters just like any cat5e cable.
kevinrtrs
5 / 5 (2) Jul 05, 2010
There will have to be HDBaseT to HDMI converters to bridge the gap between introduction of equipment with the new cabling and the older equipment with only HDMI.

Seems to me somehow like a way to force people to once more change their hardware in some way, i.e. stimulate the market to spend more money.

Don't get me wrong - it's good to have better technology. It's just that it seems like HDMI has hardly had it's run when a new one is introduced - for whatever reason.

HaveYouConsidered
2.7 / 5 (3) Jul 05, 2010
What fun. Yet another way to plug the wrong kind of signals and power into the wrong piece of equipment, possibly damaging both ends of the connection, just because they both use RJ-45's. Standardization is such a wonderful thing. I hope the manufacturers are considering this.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (3) Jul 05, 2010
What fun. Yet another way to plug the wrong kind of signals and power into the wrong piece of equipment, possibly damaging both ends of the connection, just because they both use RJ-45's. Standardization is such a wonderful thing. I hope the manufacturers are considering this.

What exactly are you talking about?

Using the same connector doesn't mean there's a potential to "blow up" a piece of equipment. We use very standard power schemes amongst differing signals with similar connectors. For example, if you plug an RJ45 phone, (yes they exist) into a network the worst thing that happens is the phone won't work until you plug it into the correct port.
No , it can only be 100 meters in length without using repeaters just like any cat5e cable.
Depends on the required signal parameters.
AngryMoose
1 / 5 (1) Jul 05, 2010
What fun. Yet another way to plug the wrong kind of signals and power into the wrong piece of equipment, possibly damaging both ends of the connection, just because they both use RJ-45's. Standardization is such a wonderful thing. I hope the manufacturers are considering this.

What exactly are you talking about?

Using the same connector doesn't mean there's a potential to "blow up" a piece of equipment. We use very standard power schemes amongst differing signals with similar connectors. For example, if you plug an RJ45 phone, (yes they exist) into a network the worst thing that happens is the phone won't work until you plug it into the correct port.

I don't know much about Ethernet cables but I wouldn't think my laptop supports 100Watts of power going down a pin that was meant for data.
DaveGee
5 / 5 (3) Jul 05, 2010
They wouldn't use the 'pins' that are normally used for data... They would likely use the same power pins used by existing POE schemes that already send up to 51W over standard ethernet cable.

"The IEEE 802.3at-2009 PoE standard, also known as PoE+ or PoE plus (ratified September 11, 2009), provides up to 25.5 W of power. Some vendors have announced products that claim to comply with the new 802.3at standard and offer up to 51 W of power over a single cable by utilizing all 4 pairs in the Cat.5 cable."
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (2) Jul 05, 2010
I don't know much about Ethernet cables but I wouldn't think my laptop supports 100Watts of power going down a pin that was meant for data.

It actually supports more power than that. Ethernet communication happens at about 40 Watts but the equipment is designed to handle over 408 Watts.,
pubwvj
3 / 5 (1) Jul 05, 2010
A secret plot to sell more cable and new equipment. Annoying. I'll stick with my 10 year old stuff. It works. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
jerryd
3 / 5 (1) Jul 05, 2010
Why not just use standard cable TV cables? They easily carry the bandwidth many x's over at $1-2 each! Using push on ends makes connections easy.

Why do they need to carry power and even then the CTV can carry it too. I just think they want to make money from them.
John_balls
5 / 5 (2) Jul 05, 2010
They wouldn't use the 'pins' that are normally used for data... They would likely use the same power pins used by existing POE schemes that already send up to 51W over standard ethernet cable.

"The IEEE 802.3at-2009 PoE standard, also known as PoE+ or PoE plus (ratified September 11, 2009), provides up to 25.5 W of power. Some vendors have announced products that claim to comply with the new 802.3at standard and offer up to 51 W of power over a single cable by utilizing all 4 pairs in the Cat.5 cable."

POE is run over standard cat5e/6 wiring to switches.
John_balls
1 / 5 (1) Jul 05, 2010
What fun. Yet another way to plug the wrong kind of signals and power into the wrong piece of equipment, possibly damaging both ends of the connection, just because they both use RJ-45's. Standardization is such a wonderful thing. I hope the manufacturers are considering this.

What exactly are you talking about?

Using the same connector doesn't mean there's a potential to "blow up" a piece of equipment. We use very standard power schemes amongst differing signals with similar connectors. For example, if you plug an RJ45 phone, (yes they exist) into a network the worst thing that happens is the phone won't work until you plug it into the correct port.
No , it can only be 100 meters in length without using repeaters just like any cat5e cable.
Depends on the required signal parameters.

NO it doesn't, it's a physical limitation of the medium itself. Please , you don't know what you are talking about.
VrIgHtEr
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
http://www.amazon...00I1X6PM

well i guess we're finally going to find a use for that cable... not :D
visual
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
So it manages to cram upwards of 4 Gbit/s that's needed for fullhd on the same cables that we use for 1Gbit/s currently? Though it would need even almost 8 Gbit/s for the resolutions common to 30" displays like 2560x1600@60... can it really do that? Quite hard to imagine...
But if it is indeed possible, shouldn't we see a version of this just for networking at these increased bandwidths?
Ethelred
3 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
So it manages to cram upwards of 4 Gbit/s that's needed for fullhd on the same cables that we use for 1Gbit/s currently?
No. It is pretty obvious that the 'standard' will entail a 5play DECODER on the display. This means that it is a way to sell new displays with expensive decoders for which the HDBaseT Alliance owns the patents. And most likely will have even more copy protection.

Ethelred
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
NO it doesn't, it's a physical limitation of the medium itself. Please , you don't know what you are talking about.

You're wholly incorrect. The category of cable and ability to perform is measured in distance for optimum output. You can run the medium over longer distances as long as you do not require optimum output. Hence why 10 bTX, 100 bTX, and 1000 bTX have differing length requirements.
John_balls
1 / 5 (2) Jul 06, 2010
NO it doesn't, it's a physical limitation of the medium itself. Please , you don't know what you are talking about.

You're wholly incorrect. The category of cable and ability to perform is measured in distance for optimum output. You can run the medium over longer distances as long as you do not require optimum output. Hence why 10 bTX, 100 bTX, and 1000 bTX have differing length requirements.

No kidding and after 100 meters you have degradation of signal without using a repeater,so no , I'm no wrong.
Guys , I work with this stuff every day along side the equimpment that attach to it, give it a rest.

I find it odd where people don't have an understanding of a concept yet they continue to speak upon it as if they are a subject matter expert.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
No kidding and after 100 meters you have degradation of signal without using a repeater,so no , I'm no wrong.
Guys , I work with this stuff every day along side the equimpment that attach to it, give it a rest.

You're not the only person who works with switching equipment on a regular basis. You're wholly incorrect when you state that the medium has a single max loop length.
I find it odd where people don't have an understanding of a concept yet they continue to speak upon it as if they are a subject matter expert.
Seeing as you're a NOC monkey and I'm an electrical engineer I think you should be a bit more humble in tossing around ad hominem insults.
KBK
3 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
That much power, that much data.

so... boys and girls..since it is likely to be unshielded, as shielding would create phase shift on delta function..and this cable carries power and high levels..so..how much RF spray is going to be coming off this puppy??

How about your health? So maybe you can have your fancy-schmancy cable and data rates, but can you survive it's use or placement in your home?

A recent study has sown, for example, that people with box spring mattresses are getting cancer over 33x times more often from sleeping on antennas vs those who use a futon or similar.

So think about all that crap RF in your bluetoothed and wireless household of convenience. And any power level cable with huge data rates that needs to be unshielded to function and have minimal dielectrics to prevent delta slurring or transient modulation..is going to, by definition, have notable RF leakage.
John_balls
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Great your an electrical engineer, proud of you. I'm a network engineer that actually works on the equipment and trouble shoots it. Again , after 100 meters the signal degrades. Have I seen cable runs work @ 110 meters , yes, but you sometimes run into issues. If you say you work on switches then you surely have read a network book that will tell you the same.

Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Great your an electrical engineer, proud of you. I'm a network engineer that actually works on the equipment and trouble shoots it. Again , after 100 meters the signal degrades. Have I seen cable runs work @ 110 meters , yes, but you sometimes run into issues. If you say you work on switches then you surely have read a network book that will tell you the same.

Yes, the first chapter of MS Network essentials for one. However, once you start talking about things that aren't pre-requiring cat5e and you start talking about transmission strengths and types that are non-network oriented that number fluctuates depending on signal strength need.

Conversely, if you deal with this equipment every day you'd know that cat 5 is limited at 100M for networking, and 5e is out to 350M. 6 is upwards of 550 to 1000M depending on your source and signal strength. Do you know what makes them different? I do.
John_balls
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Right, I'm refering to network oriented communications pertaining to ethernet standards.
Oculus
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Pointless bickering over length limits notwithstanding, did anyone else notice how this spec doesn't come close to the bandwidth of DisplayPort? Sure, the benefits of Cat5e/Cat6 cabling and the long runs are Good Things(TM), but the "can scale to 20Gbps" means that the first generation won't, so you'll need new hardware again when 1440p (2560x1440) and 4k come out. Same with the Ethernet speeds which "can scale to Gigabit" but don't, yet.

We need to yell and scream and *not buy hardware* until the industry is willing to settle on a "standard" that lasts more than two years. HDMI 1.4 is barely ratified, yet it's already obsolete (100 Mbps Ethernet, 1080p max, no USB, single-link design).
John_balls
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Oculus, if you waiting for the industry to wait on a standard before coming out with a product you will be waiting a long time.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Right, I'm refering to network oriented communications pertaining to ethernet standards.
And seeing as that isn't really relevant here why did you assert such authority prior? Especially when even within the above field you're incorrect? Bullying people online get you off?
Pointless bickering over length limits notwithstanding, did anyone else notice how this spec doesn't come close to the bandwidth of DisplayPort?
Digital, no, analog, yes. 5e was developed with an analog display focus. Couple that with compression technology and digital isn't really out of the question either.
Oculus
not rated yet Jul 06, 2010
Oculus, if you waiting for the industry to wait on a standard before coming out with a product you will be waiting a long time.

I know. I just get annoyed at the churn and built-in EoL in all our modern equipment. I'm using a 30" monitor over a Dual-Link DVI cable... a spec so old that the working group disbanded. Meanwhile there was a seven-year gap between DVI-DL and another spec that supported my monitor (DisplayPort 1.1 in late 2007) and HDMI finanlly caught up last year with 1.4 -- I was wrong about the 1080p max on HDMI 1.4; it does support 4K.
John_balls
1 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
Right, I'm refering to network oriented communications pertaining to ethernet standards.
And seeing as that isn't really relevant here why did you assert such authority prior? Especially when even within the above field you're incorrect? Bullying people online get you off?
Pointless bickering over length limits notwithstanding, did anyone else notice how this spec doesn't come close to the bandwidth of DisplayPort?
Digital, no, analog, yes. 5e was developed with an analog display focus. Couple that with compression technology and digital isn't really out of the question either.


Oh it's not relevant??Go read the article again, sheesh. And I'm not incorrect but then again I can't expect someone with an MCSE to understand ethernet standards.
And no, bullying on line does not get me off but posers posting as an authority on a subject that can even understand the article annoy me.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
Oh it's not relevant??Go read the article again, sheesh. And I'm not incorrect but then again I can't expect someone with an MCSE to understand ethernet standards.
Which would be your credential, not mine.
And no, bullying on line does not get me off but posers posting as an authority on a subject that can even understand the article annoy me.
I'm going to ignore the typo and assume you meant "can't". Seeing as you have little knowledge of the standards and are claiming authority, while simultaneously not understanding the article implies that you're rallying against yourself. It appears your statement is factually accurate when applied evenly.
John_balls
1 / 5 (3) Jul 06, 2010
Oh it's not relevant??Go read the article again, sheesh. And I'm not incorrect but then again I can't expect someone with an MCSE to understand ethernet standards.
Which would be your credential, not mine.
And no, bullying on line does not get me off but posers posting as an authority on a subject that can even understand the article annoy me.
I'm going to ignore the typo and assume you meant "can't". Seeing as you have little knowledge of the standards and are claiming authority, while simultaneously not understanding the article implies that you're rallying against yourself. It appears your statement is factually accurate when applied evenly.

No, network engineers don't get mcse cert but I notice you had no problem refering to their books.

A sign of being a man is to admit when one is wrong. You sir are showing the sign of a coward, a stubborn one at that.
You have stepped into an area to which you have limited knoweledge and have been caught in a lie.bye
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2010
No, network engineers don't get mcse cert but I notice you had no problem refering to their books.
Oh sorry, CCNA. Not much of a big difference considering both books give just an overview of cabling technologies and focus more on the operating and control schemes of the various softwares and firmwares.
A sign of being a man is to admit when one is wrong. You sir are showing the sign of a coward, a stubborn one at that.
You have stepped into an area to which you have limited knoweledge and have been caught in a lie.bye
Care to tell me what the lie was? And would you further care to admit that you were incorrect in stating cat 5e has a max loop length of 100 meters?
Raygunner
not rated yet Jul 07, 2010
RE: the worry that the 100W will damage Ethernet based appliances - for power to flow I'm pretty certain that there will have to be a handshake between the equipment requesting power, and even how much power, for power to flow. With Ethernet abilities I'm sure POE will be mixed in as well. Pretty well thought out it seems. I think a "mini" RJ45 connector might be developed to reduce the connector footprint. A cheap RJ45 to mini RJ45 (RJ45m?) dongle could be used to adapt older full size CAT5 and 6 cable ends if need be.
Eric_B
5 / 5 (2) Jul 08, 2010
with all this hardware expertise has anyone yet to explain why big girls love macs?...

not that i have anything against either...just curious.
Bonkers
not rated yet Jul 09, 2010
PoE is designed not to blow-up other equipment, amazingly.
Ethernet is a magnetically isolated system using up to four tiny input transformers to couple the data. DC voltages can be coupled in common-mode onto the 4 differential pairs and can carry power up to about 150W provided some conditions are met. These are that the DC imbalance (due to resistance tolerance in each half of the pair) is no more than about 7mA (today's transformers) or a bit more with redesigned parts. Also critical is that the power is ramped after plug-in, otherwise it blows the gold plating off the connectors. You will need to be careful not to hot-unplug it for the same reason.
panorama
5 / 5 (1) Jul 09, 2010
I never thought I would see such a heated argument over cable technology. This is an interesting article and discussion though.
Especially this...

with all this hardware expertise has anyone yet to explain why big girls love macs?...

not that i have anything against either...just curious.

Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jul 09, 2010
with all this hardware expertise has anyone yet to explain why big girls love macs?...

not that i have anything against either...just curious.
Big Girls, Macs. Big Mac Girls. I could go for some fries about now.
Ashibayai
5 / 5 (3) Jul 09, 2010
Wow...Hardware limitations aren't made in textbooks, they're simply labeled in them. A kind of guarantee that states the hardware specifications used to create the cables should work under normal conditions to some designated minimum degree. Obviously you'd get better results trying to pump out 1 bit of data every second than Gbs. The signal will degrade, but it's not as if it reaches 100m and instantly radiates away into thermal energy. (As entertaining as that might be... =D )

Also, arguments born from semantics are fun to read.
BXCellent
not rated yet Jul 11, 2010
Why not also use this to replace USB? Then we'd only need one type of connection. This has way more bandwidth than USB and also supports power.
Husky
not rated yet Jul 11, 2010
...and sata as well? many people play content from their nas disks nowadays
Raygunner
not rated yet Jul 11, 2010
USB is in the spec per the graphic. As for SATA - sounds good to me but I don't know if the bit rates are good bi-directional - I think it more or less one way. Although with USB that should do the same thing if the bit rate is high enough.
Hunnter
not rated yet Jul 12, 2010
"can scale to 20Gbps" means that the first generation won't, so you'll need new hardware again when 1440p (2560x1440) and 4k come out.

You'll still be hanging on to your old stuff when 1440p and 4k come out? That's a while yet.

As for replacing everything with Eth or USB, partially for it.
Standardising on high-bandwidth ports would be nice, but space requirements for some of them aren't entirely good in the internals of PCs.
Is SATA awful? Yes, it could be improved on significantly. But it is better than IDE, remember. It already was an evolution.
Internal wiring should stay a separate standard, one designed around smaller size requirements in general. (but still enough to actually grab the damn things with tweezers!)
Everything outside? Totally. As long as the sockets are labeled nicely.
USB + Eth though, not just one or the other. Why? That Eth plug is awful for repeated disconnects, USB beats it in that respect. USB3 is perfectly fine for now.