Some things to keep in mind when buying 4k

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs' started by D007, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    Yeah, it's hard to know if the couplers or keystones are causing any sort of interference. I did purchase these couplers to try out, and it didn't help. I'm also using these keystones, which didn't help either.

    Now, one thing I'm wondering is if it was a mistake to trust a refurbished cable. My 15-foot Series-1 cable was sold as refurbished by BJC, which made it a bit easier to swallow its expensive price tag. However, I'm sure we've all had some refurbished goods in the past that weren't as good as they said. I know that this 15-foot cable can support Enhanced mode all by itself, but while you might expect it to work with an extra 5 feet of lesser-yet-still-premium cables, it doesn't.

    I did purchase a few active HDMI cables, but I don't know how restrictive they are to being run to a keystone on the source side. I'm assuming that I'll have to put the brush wall plate that you mention in on the receiver side if I decide to go with the active HDMI cable. I can always test it outside of the wall to see what restrictions I have. I ordered three Monoprice models to see how they work. One of them may end up being used elsewhere if it seems to work as those active cables are hard to find in shorter lengths, and my second spot will require a longer cable anyway. (I think I got 1 25-foot, 1 30-foot and 1 15-foot.) Anyway, I feel like I'm turning myself into a cable tester with all the cables that I'm trying out. :p

    Do you mean does the audio work fine if the video works fine? I can try it out when I get another cable. It is very weird though since it isn't the receiver adjusting the volume as the volume never changes. Just off an initial guess, I'd lean toward it being a firmware bug or something... especially since it only seems to fix itself when the unit is put into standby.
     
  2. rbk123

    rbk123 Senior member

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    Why not give the Monoprice premium certified HDMI cable a try? The 15' is only $10 so it's worth a try.

    I have both Blue Jeans and the Monoprice cables and can't tell a difference in performance - they both work very well. The Blue Jeans connectors are a higher build quality but I can't tell a performance difference.
     
  3. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    I've grown somewhat of a distaste toward the way Sony has implemented their Smart TV efforts. They use Android TV, and frankly... it sucks. Not only did Sony use an underpowered SoC, which I knew about prior to buying it, but the Smart TV's always on functionality can introduce some weird anomalies like I saw last night. Essentially, I got to a point where my Xbox One S could not output 4K to HDMI3, but it worked fine in HDMI2 (both are 18Gbps ports). All I would see is a black screen where sometimes the contents would flicker. I figured something happened to HDMI3, and I'd need to get the TV replaced or fixed; however, forcing the TV to fully reboot (i.e. pulling out its power cord) fixed everything. I'm curious if it was attempting to use active HDMI cables that caused something weird to happen. I don't know how well they work when connected to a device that is technically still on. Will the device provide it power as it needs it for error correction?

    Although, I do still get this weird "HueyModule has stopped working" error sometimes, and I've had my TV crash on me twice in only two weeks of ownership. (Goes to a black screen and it reboots like the full reboot described above.) I'm sorry, but I expect a lot more from a premium TV, but I guess I should've expected that from Android. The biggest complaint about Android is given its open source nature, it gets implemented by companies that don't do a good job implementing it, and you get frustrated people.

    I went through and bought the 15-foot one, because... well, I've already spent well over $100 in cables, so why not keep trying more. :p
     
  4. Fallen Kell

    Fallen Kell Diamond Member

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    Fixed that for you. Sony and "premium TV" do not belong in the same sentence any more, as there is no such thing (15-20 years ago, yes, but not now).
     
  5. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    Well, I do certainly remember the days of the Trinitron TVs and such, but Sony still puts out what would arguably be considered a product with plenty of premium features. That's why the use of Android TV is a big negative for me, because it really stands out as a poor choice or implementation in what's arguably a very good TV (it's the second highest 4K TV on rtings.com). It's kind of awkward when you hear tons of praise for TCL's Roku-based system... especially when TCL is the cheaper brand that's sort of this generation's Vizio (rises from the budget brand to being a fairly respectable cheaper option).

    Although, I can say that with some of the annoyances that I've had with it, I might've considered putting up an extra $400 for the top-rated LG C7 OLED instead.
     
    #30 Aikouka, Aug 16, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2017
  6. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    I ended up running the 3-foot BJC Series-FE to the Monoprice 15-foot Premium to the 2-foot BJC Series-FE, and it worked fine. It seems kind of crazy that the BJC cable wouldn't work in the same situation as the Monoprice cable (even using the same couplers). I did buy a refurbished Series-1 cable, so I wonder if that could be the problem?

    Oh, and as an update to the previous post about active cables, the TV did require a full reboot to properly use the active cable. (Enhanced Mode only worked after the TV was fully rebooted.) It's kind of goofy and it seems like an error on Sony's part.
     
  7. rbk123

    rbk123 Senior member

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    It's not abnormal. I have to reboot surround processors and receivers semi-often because they get confused. It's the HDMI standard; it needs a lot of changes to make the implementations more consistent and reliable. Doubtful that will happen any time soon as anti-piracy is their real focus.
     
  8. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    I don't know... I still think it has to do with the TV itself. This is the first TV that I've owned where it doesn't appear to actually turn off. It's more like a computer monitor that's asleep, which is quite evident when I turn it on. My previous TVs would take upwards of 10+ seconds to turn on, but this one is on in about 2-3 seconds. My thought is that while the display is turned off, the other components are still operating in a reduced power mode. It's likely some sort of firmware implementation that determines not to provide power to the HDMI port because there wasn't any draw on boot-up.

    Although, all of this makes me wonder if we'll ever get a change to the HDMI standard that introduces a new plug and such. It would be interesting if they went with a style that was reminiscent of the USB 3.0 Micro-B connector. Essentially, tack on an extra bit with more pins for data transfer while the original portion resembles the existing cable. That way, if you only need basic HDMI, you insert your cable into the old part only. The only negative is that it would make the cable heads much wider when they're already kinda big for going through conduit and such.

    Ultimately, it seems there are only three solutions:
    1. Raise the transfer rate (MHz) for each pin, but reduce the overall effective length.
    2. Introduce a new connector with more pins (data lanes), which may cause more physical pains for end-users
    3. Introduce an entirely new standard, which may provide the most growth potential, but be the biggest headache.
     
  9. Fallen Kell

    Fallen Kell Diamond Member

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    The new standard already exists and it is called displayport. Current standard allows for 8K 60Hz 30bit color, with 32 audio channels.
     
  10. Aikouka

    Aikouka Lifer

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    Ugh, I just can't seem to catch a break. So, the 15-foot Monoprice cable was working with the other two cables and keystones. I went to watch a movie on Sunday, and... as you can guess, it stopped working. :mad: I ended up having to hook the active cable back up, which worked fine... until.... I was watching Magnificent Seven, and twice during the movie I noticed slowdowns. I did a bit of Googling, and another user reported similar issues (with a different movie) and said it was his Xbox One S that caused the problem. I'm going to try another movie tonight, and see what happens.

    Fair point! I guess we just have to find our "courage" to switch. :p