There is a lot of confusion about HDMI versions. Which HDMI cable do you need? v1.3, v1.3c, v1.4, v1.4a? What about for 3D?
Over the years, as HDMI has developed, many different version numbers have been available. Naturally, the latest version has always been the most expensive for consumers -- and the most profitable for retailers, so the retailers will generally push these latest versions as a "must have" or, in the case of cables, "the only way to get your new TV/projector/blu-ray/etc to work properly". Most of the time this is simply untrue.
The HDMI Licensing organisation have recognised this issue and the amount of confusion it causes consumers, so they have released new guidelines for the naming of HDMI versions to make things less confusing for consumers. It is now against HDMI licensing terms to refer to the version number of HDMI-compatible products.
The new names for HDMI types:
- High Speed with Ethernet
- High Speed
- Standard with Ethernet
- Standard Automotive
If you were to go out today and buy a brand new Full HD 3D TV, receiver and blu-ray player, they will probably all be v1.4a. If you want to use all of the features of your new equipment (such as Ethernet channel / internet sharing, audio return channel, 4k x 2k support, etc) then you will need a "High Speed with Ethernet" HDMI cable.
However, if you simply want to connect a blu-ray player to a TV or projector you can use a "High Speed" HDMI cable (even though retailers might tell you something different). Note that in this situation a "High Speed with Ethernet" HDMI cable will also do the job, but you might be able to save a few dollars by purchasing a "High Speed" HDMI cable instead.
What about 3D? If you have a 3D blu-ray player and a 3D TV or 3D projector, you will need at least a "High Speed" HDMI cable. Standard HDMI cables are not suitable for 3D.
At Selby, we stock both "High Speed" and "High Speed with Ethernet" HDMI cables. However, the difference in production costs is marginal so we are phasing out the non-ethernet HDMI cables. "Standard with Ethernet" HDMI cables are not capable of 1080p or 3D, so they are pretty rare in the marketplace and are generally not reordered by most suppliers due to lack of demand from consumers. Automotive HDMI cables are a specialist product which are not currently a part of the Selby product range.
See our full range in the HDMI cables section of our store.