HDMI Over Ethernet Technology and It's Importance Discussed
Building a network with fewer cables has emerged as a key requirement in recent years. This is because cable clutter can lead to several confusions and accidents, if not managed properly. To accomplish this, various technologies have been developed over the years. HDMI over Ethernet is one of those technologies that have gained traction in recent years. Now, you may ask how does this technology help in superior signal transmission while using fewer cables? This post seeks an answer to this question and covers everything you would like to know about this technology.
HDMI and HDMI Over Ethernet Discussed in Detail
HDMI stands for High Definition Multimedia Interface and it is a replacement for analog standards. An HDMI video/audio interface
facilitates the transmission of compressed and uncompressed digital audio files or uncompressed video files from an HDMI-compliant input to a suitable output. The advanced versions of HDMI can support 4K and high definition 3D signals in high digital quality as well as can support up to 32 channels of surround sound in a single cable.
HDMI over Ethernet or HDMI over IP is an extended technology that distributes video signals of high definition from a single source to multiple screens utilizing any existing Ethernet infrastructure. This distribution is usually performed using devices such as switches, extenders, matrices, and so on, and special Ethernet-enabled HDMI cables. All these devices receive a single input signal, which is distributed to multiple outputs, without any signal degradation. These outputs may be distributed at the same location or across multiple destinations. The Ethernet HDMI cable can support high-speed data of 100 Mb/seconds, which is a required speed of home networking applications.
Is HDMI Over Ethernet Suited for Long Distance Transmissions?
Yes, it is suited for a long-distance transmission. Distribution of video signals using coax cables or analog video cables comes with its own set of challenges such as frequency losses. These cables also lead to the deterioration of signals. Here, IP extension makes a difference. HDMI over Ethernet uses fiber optic cables and AV/KVM extension devices to transmit compressed video or audio files over long distances at a high resolution. Fiber optic cables are immune to electromagnetic interference and they facilitate signal transmission to any distance without any degradation. Another great thing is that the Ethernet-compatibility of HDMI cables does not affect unencrypted or encrypted data; rather, it allows users to share or access data across Internet-connected devices.
High-end audio visual over Ethernet systems installed in areas such as stadiums or outdoor screens employ compression algorithms such as H.264 to send data packets over long distances. This algorithm when combined with Ethernet-enabled HDMI technology enriches the visual experience of spectators. The algorithm also helps reduce the signal delay to three or two frames per second. Along with this, IP-driven extenders and Ethernet switches
are used for ensuring disturbance-free long-distance transmissions. Generally, managed Ethernet switches are considered for this combination because they enable users to have a better control over the network.
Owing to the increasing demand for HDMI over Ethernet applications, HDMI has rolled out new connectors that support various speeds. The following are five different types of HDMI connectors that support standard and HDMI over Ethernet applications:
Standard HDMI Cable: This cable supports data rates up to 1080i/60.
Standard HDMI Cable with Ethernet: This cable includes Ethernet connectivity.
High Speed HDMI Cable: This cable is designed to support data rates beyond 1080 P. It means, you can enjoy 3D formats as well as deep color through the cable.
High Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet: This cable also possesses Ethernet connectivity.
Automotive HDMI Cable: This cable helps connect in-vehicle HDMI devices and external HDMI devices.
A Few Popular HDMI Over Ethernet Products You May Need
Firstly, you would need two devices that support HDMI Over Ethernet. These devices are usually termed as HEC compatible. Then you would need an HDMI cable with Ethernet and any of the following devices depending on the requirement.
HDMI Splitters: As the name suggests, these devices help split HDMI signals for display across multiple screens, such as ones you can see at stadiums, where different screens are placed for multiple viewing experiences. Splitters allow accurate reproduction of signals without attenuation or delays. They are also used to distribute audios separately from videos.
HDMI Converters: They allow you to convert digital HDMI to digital or analog video or audio formats.
HDMI Adapters: You can use these devices to connect HDMI input devices and display devices.
HDMI Over Ethernet Switches: These switches enable the switching of signals between IP displays and content players.
HDMI Video Transmitters and Receivers: These systems support the high-quality transmission of signals over an Ethernet cable. They can meet the requirements of most demanding CCTV applications. They also assure connectivity to remote Ethernet applications.