Connecting Your Macbook to Your HD Ready Television

Over the years we have seen unprecedented growth in the demand for new technology. The development of computer technology has accelerated drastically over the past ten years, resulting in a higher number of consumers that looks to only increase over the coming years. And how is the country’s obsession with technology manifesting itself? Largely through the purchase of Apple’s range of Macbooks. The Guardian discusses Apple’s sudden popularity in comparison to PC’s – it seems there is a craze for those iconic sleek silver and white designs. And it looks like Macs are only going to get bigger (or rather, smaller) and better. So we’re here to let you know how to connect your television cable to a Macbook, so that if and when you decide to get one, you can keep using your existing HDMI cables.
Most TV’s made in the last few years should already have an HDMI port – this is one of the main features of an HD Ready TV, so double check by all means, but you should find one on your TV. The next thing to do is check that the port on your Macbook and the port on your television are compatible. This all depends on which generation of Macbook you have, and how old (or cheap) your television is. Check your Mac first: if it’s a more recent version, it should have the Thunderbolt (otherwise known as Light Peak) port. Read up more about the Thunderbolt here – it’s quite a clever little piece of technology. The Thunderbolt is compatible with a HDMI port – all you need is an HDMI cable and a MiniDisplay Port to HDMI adaptor. Get an adaptor from Amazon and you’re set!
An earlier version of the Macbook won’t have the Thunderbolt technology, and will probably instead have a MiniDisplay Port. However, luckily nothing else will change – you can still use a combination of HDMI lead with a MiniDisplay Port to HDMI adaptor. Have a look at our HDMI leads and take your pick from our different sizes and capacities.
We’re treading back through history now, but if your Macbook is old enough to have a Mini DVI port, you can still transfer images to your TV. The only problem is that the Mini DVI port is incapable of transferring audio, so it’s not easy to watch films on the television from your laptop. However, for photos and images, the Mini DVI port works just as well as any other kind, and is compatible with an HDMI cable. Like with the other ports, you will need an adaptor, only this time you’ll need a Mini DVI to HDMI adaptor. Find one here on Amazon. Once you have this, you can use your regular HDMI cable and connect your Macbook and TV no problem!
We hope this has been useful for you. We think Macbooks are fantastic, but understand that sometimes you just need the big screen to watch your favourite films and videos! That’s why we’re pleased to be able to help you find solutions for linking your Macbook to your television. Happy watching!

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Specialist HDMI Cables from Cables UK

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Why should we use HDMI?

As technology had advanced in the recent years there has been a development of different kinds of HD display devices and even more number of ways for connecting your devices to the source. The result is that every display has a myriad of plugs behind it such as for DVI, HDMI and component video connectors. This has left us all very confused on which one is the right choice. In order to figure that out all that needs to be done is gain knowledge on the difference between these different types of cables and which can be best compatible with our HDTV. Different formats will be available even when huge costs are incurred on manufacturing and use of the product because this can turn out to be a very lucrative business if the consumers like the product better than the others.

Initially, when HDTVs were launched data used to be transmitted from set- top boxes or DVD players in analog form. This was done using the component video inputs which used to work well the Cathode Ray Tube TV displays. Even the VGA cables today transmit data in analog form. As the market has slowly been captured by LCD or plasma TVs, the use of component or VGA transmission has reduced as they transmit data in compressed form resulting in the loss of data during transmission and a poor quality screen image. HDMI cables on the other hand, transmit uncompressed digital data as the result of which the image on the screen is of a superior quality.

Though DVI is a major improvement over the analog VGA that has been used with CRT displays for a long time, DVI cannot match the HDMI cables in many ways. A major flaw with the DVI cable is that it cannot transmit audio signals whereas the HDMI cable has what is called the 8 channels of audio transmission in uncompressed for that lets it transmit audio formats like Dolby digital and DTS without any data loss that can lead to degradation in sound quality. The HDMI cables are also cheaper to manufacture than the DVI cable and comes in longer lengths that can help you easily connect your wall mounted LCD or HDTV to the DVD player or set-top box. It also supports copper cables of lengths up to 15m.  So, the DVI cable is not a good option when you need to connect your HDTV to the input.

Whenever you want to consider the connectivity options with your HDTV the best option would be to see if it has the HDMI connectivity. This is because presence of the HDMI input will largely impact the compatibility with the newer connectivity options in the future like the UDI input for PC monitors. Because the HDMI is very flexible, it has HDCP copy protection and multiple channels to transmit digital data you can be sure that whichever HD source you connect it to, you will get the maximum quality resolution available in your High Definition display which a DVI cable cannot ensure.

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HDMI Cables-1.3

HDMI cables have been instrumental in the information age for the conversion of the analog video signals to digital signals wherever it has been possible. The High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) is used in all HD equipment for the signal to be transported from the input (your PC for example) to the output which is your HDTV or your computer monitor. Since 2002, after the launch of the first HDMI cables 1.0, many newer versions of the product have been released like the 1.1, 1.2, 1.3 and most recently 1.4 for 3D viewing. With each launch the cables have become better in terms of the bandwidth of data they can transmit, the number of colors viewed and the types of soundtracks that it supports.

The HDMI cable 1.3 offers all the latest features if you do not intend to watch 3D videos or use it for 3D gaming. HDMI cable 1.3 is a much upgraded version as compared to the previous 1.1 and 1.2 HDMI cables so getting HDMI 1.3 cable will enable you to take advantage of the extra features that are available with it along with the incredible picture quality that you already had with your previous HDMI cables. There are a lot of additional features in the new 1.3 HDMI cable one of them being the extended data rate support which simply means that data can travel at a higher rate using the HDMI cable 1.3 at the rate of 4.95 Gbps. The cable is also supported for eventually doubling the data speed up to 10.2 Gbps.

The HDMI cable 1.3 also provides greater picture quality, sharper picture resolution of the order of greater than 1920x 1080 (also known as 1080p) and also provides higher color because in contrast to the HDMI 1.2 (which allocates only 8bit/pixel), the HDMI 1.3 gives the options of allocating 10,12 even 16 bits for one pixel. This means more data is used for the transmission of each color thus improving the picture quality. The ‘Lip Synch’ feature ensures that the digital video and the audio has been synchronized properly and allows the consumer to do so in an external HDMI device such as the surround sound system. The cable also includes optional mini connectors that can be connected to smaller HD devices like cameras. Another interesting feature of the 1.3 cable is that it has backwards compatibility with the previous versions of the cable so that even if your display does not support the 1.3 cable, the source of your image and your display will arbitrate the best format that can be displayed on your monitor or HDTV.

The HDMI 1.3 cable can transmit a greater bandwidth of data (which means faster flow of information), can display over one billion colors thus increasing picture quality, has automatic audio syncing capability (also known as lip sync) and supports Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master audio soundtracks which have superior sound quality. All these features make your HDMI 1.3 cable truly essential for any kind of HD display and for superior quality audio.

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Basic Features of HDMI

The HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) is a plug with a cable that has been developed for connecting High Definition players, Set-top boxes etc. to your HD monitors or HDTVs. It has advantages over the three component video connectors that have been used for connecting your DVD players etc. to your displays. This is because the component cables carry the data in analog form. This means that the data is converted from digital to analog and then back to digital after the transmission. In contrast, the HDMI cable carries digital data in uncompressed format and therefore does not result in any loss of data. Because of this reason the HDMI cable also does not result in any loss of data when transmitting multi channel digital uncompressed audio. Uncompressed basically means that in order to no loss of data would occur fit the data into the available space like on a DVD.  So, Dolby digital can be used with an HDMI cable and would result in no loss of data because HDMI has multi channel audio space. The advantage is that over time if loss of data keeps occurring then the resultant sound will get coarser even with a Dolby digital 5.1 which is a much less loss format as compared to mp3.

There have till now been five versions of HDMI cables (1.0, 1.1, 1.1, 1.3, 1.4) all of which can transmit 1080p data and contain eight channels of digital audio. This means that in order to view maximum resolution on your HD monitors you have to use an HDMI cable otherwise you would end up limiting the resolution of your HDTV. But obviously if you displays are of a lower resolution then using an HDMI will not increase the resolution. A very unique feature of the HDMI 1.3 is called the ‘auto lip-sync’. This feature aligns the audio and the video signals travelling through it so that there is no latency between when the video appears on the screen and when the sound is heard.

A seeming disadvantage of an HDMI cable can be when certain cables do not seem to work with your HDTV displaying nothing on your screen. It is not actually a disadvantage because it is related to HDCP or High Definition Digital Content Protection which is a digital anti-piracy scheme. To connect any device like an HDTV, DVD players, set-top boxes, AV receiver etc. using an HDMI cable you need to check in the product specifications whether both the devices are HDCP compliant. This means that the two devices can communicate with each other and will not display an image on your monitors till the time both the devices are ensured to have HDCP anti-piracy codes. If this is not done then the HDMI cable will not send any data through it and no image will be seen.

Including all these features the 1.3 HDMI has additional features that can display brilliant color. HDMI 1.4 can also be used for the viewing of 3D and for playing 3D videogames using play station.

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HDMI 1.4: Finding the Right HDMI Cable

HDMI technology has been developing at a furious pace and if you are ignorant about this, you’ll find it difficult to choose the right cable. The alternative is to be at the mercy of dealers who are out to take advantage of your ignorance by giving you high priced cables.

However, while you don’t have to be an expert, you also need working knowledge of these features. Thankfully, choosing the right cable is not rocket science.

Available HDMI Cables

There are 5 cables from which you can choose the appropriate one for your HDMI needs. Each cable has been designed to meet specific standards and they are labeled according to the cable type. These labels are the authorized classification and are meant to help consumers select the best ones for their needs.

Standard HDMI Cable: This cable has been designed to provide support for almost all home applications and can transmit video resolutions of up to 720p or 1080i. These video resolutions are the high definition videos usually found in satellite TV, cable TV, HD digital broadcast and DVD players.

Standard HDMI Cable with Ethernet: The Standard HDMI cable with Ethernet is about the same thing as the Standard HDMI cable. It offers similar baseline functionality (i.e. it supports almost all home applications and can transmit video resolutions of up to 720p or 1080i) in addition to providing a dedicated channel for device networking. This channel known as the HDMI Ethernet Channel makes it possible to share internet, network home devices and also distribute digital content. However, in order to enjoy the Ethernet channel, both devices have to be enabled for the HDMI Ethernet Channel.

High Speed HDMI Cable: This cable was specifically designed to support and transmit video resolutions of 1080p and above. This includes all present day sophisticated display technologies like 3D, 4K and Deep Color. So if you want to link a 1080p source device like a Blu-ray player to a 1080p display like a HDTV, or you want to experience other advanced technologies, you should get the High Speed HDMI cable.

High Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet: The High Speed HDMI cable with Ethernet is similar to the High Speed HDMI cable and offers baseline functionality (i.e. it was designed to support and transmit video resolutions of 1080p and above. This includes all present day sophisticated display technologies like 3D, 4K and Deep Color). In addition to these, it provides a dedicated channel for device networking. This channel known as the HDMI Ethernet Channel makes it possible to share internet, network home devices and also distribute digital content. However, in order to enjoy the Ethernet channel, both devices have to be enabled for the HDMI Ethernet Channel.

Standard Automotive HDMI Cable: The Standard Automotive HDMI cable was specially designed for transmitting and distributing HD video in vehicles. It supports video resolutions of 1080i or 720p and has been designed to withstand noise, heat and vibration, stress factors associated with the automotive environment.

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Running full-screen dual monitors with HDMI

HDMI cables can be used to plug in to your laptops or monitor to make them run at their full resolution (which is also known as 1080p). If we want to run two monitors simultaneously connected by an HDMI cable then there occurs a problem and the second monitor will not run at its full resolution. We will try to figure out way to deal with that problem in this write-up.

Well, firstly you need to figure out a way to connect two monitors with a 1080p resolution simultaneously to the same output to get a dual monitor setup. You need connect the HDMI output of your monitor or your laptop to the second monitor using an HDMI cable and you are good to go. But the problem you will encounter is that the second screen will display a black boundary around the image which means that it is not showing the highest resolution. This will happen even after you set the windows screen configuration to its maximum resolution (1080p) and take care of all the other settings. Even if you try to connect any media-center PC/laptop to an HDTV using an HDMI cable you will face the same problem.

Now to solve this problem you need to know that your primary laptop/PC (from which the image is transferred to the second monitor) contains an ATI graphics processor that will allow you customized control over the display of your screens with the use of the ATI Catalyst Control Center. Also remember to do this only when both the monitors are connected. Here is how you can solve or correct the screen of even your second monitor when trying to connect with the HDMI cable. Firstly, launch the Catalyst Control Center and switch over to the advanced mode to correct the resolution. You will find a ‘Graphics’ button at the upper left corner of the screen. You need to click it and a drop down menu will appear. Select ‘Desktops and Displays’. You will find a tab saying ‘please select a display’ under which you need to select the monitor whose screen resolution you want to set and then click ‘configure’. Now you will notice a ‘Scaling options’ tab on your screen. When you click on this option a bar will appear on your screen with ‘Underscan’ written on one side and ‘Overscan’ written on the other. What needs to be done to drag the bar towards the overscan side till the time the size of the image on your second monitor increases to the size of the display and the black boundary disappears.

If you follow the above steps you’ll surely be able to connect two monitors together using an HDMI cable and make both of them work at their highest native resolution which is 1080p. Considering you have spent a lot of money on your high resolution monitors make sure you adjust them to maximum resolution when connecting with an HDMI cable to get the ultimate viewing experience.

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HDMI: The right choice for HDTV

In the present times there are so many different kinds of options available to us to connect our HD display units such as the DVI, VGA and HDMI that it becomes very difficult to make the right choice and get the best possible quality of picture on our HDTV or computer monitor. Firstly, we need to understand why so many options are made available in the first place and why there is so much competition in the market over something as small as a cable connector.  A lot of effort goes in creating and then making your product the market standard. It means besides the requirement of a lot of investment there are product specific issues like cost, backwards compatibility, HDCP piracy protection etc. that need to be addressed for creating a product that becomes widely accepted as a standard. After so much effort anyone would want their product to win the market competition. Our job is to figure out which product suits best our requirements of working well with an HD display.

HDMI transmits the source signal in digital form which helps not only in the preservation of high quality image data but also prevent the copying of the High-Resolution digital material serving as an anti-piracy application with the use of HDCP (High Resolution Digital Content Protection). The presence of content duplicity protection gives content providers security so that they do not hesitate in the use of high quality performance data.
In the PC industry the aged VGA connector was replaced by the DVI cable that was very useful as it could support both the digital and analog signals in the single wire that was connected from the graphics card to the display. That was a major improvement of the DVI over the analog transmitting VGA cable that could not support the digital LCD displays. But even the DVI cable is not a good option to connect your HDTV to your set-top boxes even when the manufacturers provide an input for DVI. This is because the DVI connection takes too much space and does not support audio formats. The HDMI though very similar in features contains lot of improvements over the standard DVI cable. These include the eight channel of high resolution audio transmission that removes the need to connect wires for both audio and video to and from every device. A single wire serial bus can also aid in carrying remote control signals.

Overall the HDMI comes with stricter technical standards and the HDCP content protection that makes it better for use than the DVI. Not only this HDMI is backed by various top industry electronics manufacturers and the movie content providers because of the HDCP copy protection. This is why all new HD-DVD players and set-top boxes, blu-ray players, all have an HDMI input. Getting an HDMI cable will not only let you view the highest resolution image (1080p) possible on your HDTV, but it will also ensure compatibility with all future electronic digital High Resolution display devices.

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What HDMI Cable do I need to watch 3D Tv

HDMI or High Definition Multimedia Interface is a cable for varying lengths that are used to connect various digital data sources such as set-top boxes and DVD players to HD compatible display units such as HDTVs and computer monitors. The HDMI cables are an up gradation over the previous counterparts like the VGA, component video or DVI as they can transmit higher resolution images and also audio signals that are supported by the other cables.

There have been many updates of the HDMI cable since their initial release in 2002. All of them have been used for high resolution transmission as all support image resolution of up to 1080p. The first version was called the 1.0 and was introduced as a single cable for transmitting both audio and video signals together. This version had a maximum bit rate of 4.9 Gbps and image resolution at 1080p. Since then the HDMI cable has come a long way with the 1.3 version having maximum nitrate of 10.2 Gbps and Deep Color support that enables it to transmit more color information leading to an enhanced image. HDMI is also backwards compatible with DVI.

The question that comes to our mind is which version of HDMI will be suitable for viewing 3D motion pictures of connecting 3D gaming devices. The answer for that is the latest version of the HDMI cable, HDMI 1.4, which enables 3D sources such as PSPs to communicate with the 3D display devices through the HDMI link. This development can help bringing the 3D technology to everyone’s homes. The LLC, HDMI licensing approves two categories of the HDMI cable (Standard and High speed) based on the bandwidth available on the cable. The High speed cable has a bandwidth of up to 10.2 Gbps and all High speed HDMI cables will support 3D transmission. These cables can transmit resolutions of 1080p in 3D. There are various formats or approaches in which 3D can be displayed in a visual display unit. Various such formats are supported by the HDMI 1.4 such as frame-line, side by side method, 2D and depth method and many more. You need to make sure that your HDTV or home theater system is enabled for 3D which you can view in the specifications. Any high speed HDMI cable will support 3D when connected to 3D enabled devices.

Other than 3D viewing there are other unique features in the HDMI 1.4 cable. It includes an Ethernet channel using which the internet enables connected devices can share the connection without the use of a separate Ethernet cable. There is also the 4K Resolution support because of which digital content of about 4 times the resolution of a 1080p device can be transmitted through it. All devices that are built on the HDMI 1.4 specification will be backwards compatible with the previous specifications and new cable will not be needed till the time you want to use the HDMI Ethernet channel feature. The common 3D formats and resolutions compatible have been specified with the 1.4 version.

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HDMI cable labels can mislead buyers

HDMI cables are standard cables that are connected from your DVD players, PSPs, set-top boxes to your monitors or High-Definition TVs for a very high quality of viewing experience at the highest possible resolution. They are manufactured by various companies and are available in various sizes or lengths depending upon your requirement.
It has been observed by all consumers of this product or anybody who has made an attempt to buy this product, that the labels contain headings with different frequencies printed on them such as ‘120Hz’, ‘240Hz’, ‘480Hz’ etc. indicating that they have specifically been manufactured for the specific refresh rate of an HDTV. However, it is interesting to know that a television’s refresh rate has got nothing to do with the signal that is transmitted from a set-top box to the TV. It is related to any HDTV’s individual circuit. This fact makes us realize that an HDMI cable transmits the same signal to your HDTV no matter what the label is specifying. The misleading label is simply put there for you to conclude that the cable can influence the refresh rate and end up spending money on useless upgrade of the HDMI cable. More misleading labels such as ‘3D’ or ‘Blu-ray’ are also used to suggest to the customer that the cable will enable a 3D image or a higher quality image on your HDTV simply by changing the cable. This is in fact not true but simply a way to fool customers to buy a different so called variety of HDMI cable which will in reality have no effect on your image quality at all.

There are simply two categories that HDMI cables have been divided into by the HDMI licensing LLC which are ‘Standard’ and ‘High Speed’, and by regulation the cables have to be labeled as either of the two.  The ‘Standard’ cable is used to view 2D content and the ‘High Speed’ for 3D content up to 1080p resolution. Sadly, no other regulation governs the labels being put on this product leading to false advertisement. Various manufacturers sell various versions of the ‘High Speed’ cable itself such as those with different frequencies (120, 240) and with features like 3D, and raising the price each time an additional feature is added. The truth is that any High Speed cable will handle any video signal that is passed through it.

It is very important to understand that one HDMI might be better than the other in terms of the material it is made up of, which makes it more durable. A better material will cause the wire to not wear out due to long term use and also not cause any problem with signal transmission. However, simply spending more money on HDMI cables even before understanding what the label on the product is trying to say will not lead to the desired results. One needs to be a smart consumer so that we don’t end up wasting money on useless upgrades. Instead, that money can be spent on buying better products.

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