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What is the Best Projector HDMI Cable? (4K Projectors considered)


Don’t you love how we’ve left disorganized component AV cables behind? 

Almost all modern projectors come with the HDMI connector, which transmits audio and video signals in one cable. 

HDMI is convenient and easy to set up. It is the best interface for transmitting high-quality digital signals. 

Are you looking for the best projector HDMI cable for you? We’ve got answers.

This article explains the different types of HDMI cables. It also answers some frequently asked questions about projector HDMI cables.  

What is an HDMI Cable?

transmitting between laptop and projector

The High Definition Media Interface (HDMI) connector is the standard for HD media displays. 

An HDMI cable transmits raw, uncompressed audio and video data between HDMI-compatible devices. 

Many digital devices like projectors, HDTVs, cable boxes, PCs, DVD players, and game consoles use HDMI.

The HDMI connector has replaced older analog video transfer interfaces. S-video and Composite video were heroes of the analog display era. 

There are different kinds of HDMI cables. Let’s take a look at what makes them so different. 

Types of HDMI Cables

It is common to see HDMI cables labeled as HDMI 1.4, HDMI 2.0, or HDMI 2.1. This is how manufacturers try to differentiate between the various standards. 

The truth is that these versions don’t describe HDMI cables. They describe the maximum HDMI capacity of devices for which the cables can be used. 

What determines the kind of HDMI cable you should buy?

Simple answer: the HDMI version of your media device and the type of data you want to transfer. 

Speed — measured in gigabits per second (Gbps) — is an important feature of HDMI cables. High-speed cables support higher resolution images and higher refresh rates.

The refresh rate indicates how many times an image is displayed in a second. For media devices, it ranges from 30Hz (30 times per second) to 120Hz or 144Hz. 

A higher refresh rate means smoother and more seamless images or motion pictures. 

Based on speed, the HDMI Forum Technical Working Group classifies HDMI cables into 4 categories. 

1. Standard HDMI Cables

Monster Standard Speed HDMI Cable
Click image for more info

The refresh rate of these cables is 30Hz, and they transfer videos in resolutions up to 720p and 1080i.

Standard HDMI cables are most common in the market. They are compatible with most projectors and support up to the HDMI 1.3 version.

However, if you plan to project content in 1080p, standard HDMI cables are not your best option.

2. High-Speed HDMI Cables

Amazon Basics High-Speed 4K HDMI Cable
Click image for more info

High-Speed HDMI cables transfer videos in 1080p and 4K resolutions at 30Hz. They support devices up to HDMI 1.4b standard. 

These cables are a better choice for movies than Standard HDMI cables. They promote deep colors and support 3D video. 

Now, that’s a definite plus.

3. Premium High-Speed Cables

Premium High Speed HDMI Certified 2.0 Cable
Click image for more info

Premium high-speed cables have a speed of 18Gbps. This makes them well suited to HDMI 2.0 and ARC-enabled devices.

They support high resolutions up to 4K and a high dynamic range (HDR) at 60Hz. These cables can transmit 8K signals, but it shortens their lifespan, so I advise against that. 

Most modern digital projectors and media devices would work perfectly with a premium high-speed cable. 

4. Ultra High-Speed HDMI cables

Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable
Click image for more info

These HDMI cables support videos in 8K and 10K resolution at 120Hz. When used for 4K transmission, their refresh rates can go up to 240Hz.

Devices with HDMI 2.1 are best used with ultra high-speed cables. The cables support HDR, HDCP, HDMI ARC, and also eARC.

Ultra high-speed cables have the highest speed of 48Gbps. You don’t need that much except you’re a gamer. 

NOTE: All the high-speed HDMI cables are backward compatible. This means they each support the functions of previous standards.   

(Check out the article ‘Do Projectors Have HDMI ARC?’ to learn more about ARC)

Things to Consider Before Getting an HDMI Cable

Is speed the only quality of HDMI cables you should take into consideration?

The answer is NO. 

There are some other qualities we advise you to consider before purchasing an HDMI cable. Let’s take a quick look at them. 

1. Length

a long hdmi cable

Connections made over long cables may become weakened. The best thing is to just go for shorter cables in the market. 

However, this isn’t always possible. You have to consider the placement of your projector and media sources and select a cable length that would cover the distance. 

If you can, avoid cables longer than 25ft.

Here’s a tip: If you’re going to buy long cables, buy those of high quality. Remember, high quality doesn’t always mean ‘expensive’. 

2. Type of Installation 

You can’t install regular HDMI cables just about anywhere. 

For instance, if you want to install HDMI cables behind the wall or ceiling, you need those rated CL2 or CL3. They are designed for in-wall installation. 

The rubber covering of standard cables doesn’t protect them from construction materials like nails and screws or fire hazards. 

The Toptrend CL3 Rated High Speed HDMI 2.0 Cable  and Zeskit Lite 48Gbps Slim Certified Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable  are recommended high-quality in-wall cables.

3. Image Resolution

What type of media do you want to transmit? Is the video in 720p, HD, 4K, or 8K resolution?

Your answers would help you determine the best cable standard to use. 

The higher the image resolution, the higher the transmission bandwidth. Large bandwidth signals require high-speed cables.

4. Bonus HDMI Functions

Do you intend to access extra HDMI functions like ARC or HDR? Is your video signal in 3D quality?

To access these features, you need an HDMI cable that supports them. 

High-speed cables support ethernet, 3D, and other functions. ARC and HDR are supported by premium and ultra high-speed HDMI cables. 

If your projector and media device does not support any HDMI functions, a high-speed cable may not be necessary. 

What are the Best HDMI Cables for Different Applications?

1. Best Projector HDMI Cable for Presentations

a presentation

PowerPoint and other formal presentations are often a mix of texts, charts, and still images. They can be projected in 780p or 1080p resolutions.

If you’re purchasing an HDMI cable for the sole purpose of streaming a presentation, standard HDMI cables will work for you. 

Check out the Professional Cable HDMI 1.3 M/M Cable . It might be exactly what you’re looking for. 

2. Best Projector HDMI Cable for Movies

woman watching movie

High-Speed cables are best for projecting movies. They are capable of transmitting high-resolution images up to 4K. 

Most movies today are in full HD or 4K. There aren’t many movies or shows in 8K resolution.

However, if you have a 4K projector with HDMI 2.0, you may go for premium high-speed cables instead. They transmit a more seamless 4K quality and support HDR. 

3. Best Projector HDMI Cable for Gaming

a group playing game

Gaming requires high-speed cables. The faster the cable, the less lag-time you experience while playing. 

Premium high-speed cables are the choice for gaming. They allow 4K gaming at a 60Hz refresh rate. 

We recommend the KabelDirekt 4K HDMI Cable . It is a lengthy HDMI cable for people with spacious home theaters.

Here’s a tip for Xbox Series X and PS5 gamers: games are best played at a refresh rate of up to 120Hz, and your consoles support 4K gaming at 120Hz.

If you have a 4K projector, too, you can enjoy gaming to the fullest with an Ultra high-speed cable like the Belkin Ultra HD High-Speed HDMI 2.1  cable.

4. Best HDMI Cable for 4K Projectors

4K Projector

4K projectors are not common because they are expensive. However, they display pictures of very high quality. 

It should be criminal to have a 4K projector and not utilize its full potential. 

The best HDMI cable for your 4K projector is a premium high-speed HDMI cable.

Premium high-speed HDMI cables let you enjoy all the benefits of HDMI 2.0 which is the standard for most 4K projectors. They support 4K videos at 60Hz. 

We recommend the iVANKY High-Speed 18Gbps HDMI 2.0 Cable  or the AmazonBasics Premium-Certified Braided HDMI Cable 

FAQ

Will a 4K HDMI cable improve picture quality?

For starters, there is no such thing as a 4K cable. 

Cables labeled 4K are high-speed HDMI cables. They may be premium or ultra high-speed cables. 

These different cable standards transmit 4K in different qualities because they support different refresh rates.

An Ultra high-speed HDMI cable would transmit smoother 4K (or other resolution) images than a premium high-speed cable. 

A standard HDMI cable would not transmit 4K at all. You may find your image defaulting to a 1080p resolution quality instead.

Yes, “4K HDMI cables” improve picture quality due to their speed and high refresh rates. However, they will not change a lower resolution image to 4K resolution. 

Conclusion

HDMI is the standard interface for digital media transfer. You can connect your MacBook Pro, cable box, or Apple TV to your projector using HDMI. 

To enjoy bonus functions, you need devices and HDMI cables that support these functions. 

Some of the best projector HDMI cables have been mentioned in this article. Be sure to check them out if you’re searching. Cheers!

Last update on 2022-08-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.


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