Last updated: August 12, 2021
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HDMI cables for 4K are the interface for fast and interference-free transmission of high-resolution image and sound formats in home cinema technology or the gaming sector. The most common use is in the connection of TV and receiver. The signals are transmitted digitally and, depending on the HDMI type, in high quality.

They differ mainly in the insulation of the cable, with nylon being very flexible and rubber very resistant. We have created this HDMI cable 4K test 2022 for you so that you can find the right HDMI cable for your needs.

For this purpose, we have compared different HDMI cables for 4K and listed their areas of application, as well as advantages and disadvantages for you, so that your purchase decision is as easy as possible.




Summary

  • HDMI cables for 4K allow you to transmit 4K digital picture and sound formats quickly and stably in a single cable and are mainly used for game consoles and home cinema systems.
  • They differ mainly in insulation and transmission speed, with nylon insulation with HDMI High-Speed being the most popular variant.
  • In terms of price, the cost increases with the quality of the insulation and length of the cable. The longer the cable, the higher the quality of the insulation must be for a perfect transmission. The best price-performance ratio is achieved with an HDMI high-speed cable with a length of 10m.

The Best HDMI Cable For 4K: Our Picks

HDMI cable for 4K: buying and evaluation criteria

In order to make your decision easier when buying a new HDMI cable, we will show you below what you must consider. These are the most important aspects:

We will now go into more detail about the individual criteria and explain them in detail.

Plug type

There are three main types of plugs. Type A (standard), Type C (mini) and Type D (micro). They are decisive for the compatibility of the HDMI cable with the connected devices. A cable has one connector at each end of the cable.

When buying, make sure that the plug type and the socket of the device match.

It is important to know that entertainment devices in particular rely on the type A standard, as it is very stable. Type C and D are more often used for smaller devices that have little space for connections. So-called HDMI sockets are built into all HDMI-compatible devices. The HDMI plug is inserted into the HDMI socket and thus establishes an intact connection between the devices.

If the wrong plug is selected, a correct connection to the HDMI socket is not possible! Therefore, look carefully at the plug socket of the device you want to connect and then make your choice.

Cable material

Rubberised or braided? These are the two most popular options when choosing a cable. Rubberised cables protect against moisture and are designed for outdoor use. Braided cables are very flexible and ideal for indoor use.

However, there are also HDMI cables that can be particularly useful in home entertainment. They are particularly flat and can be laid very well under wall coverings so that you do not trip over them. No matter which cable you choose, make sure that it is made of pure copper cable. This offers the best conductivity and guarantees stable data transmission speeds.

HDMI type

Depending on the intended use, you should pay attention to the correct designation of the HDMI type! There are now only three main groups of HDMI types: HDMI standard usually does not support 4K picture formats, as the transmission rate is only 2.25 Gbit per second and is therefore too slow for larger picture formats than HD. HDMI High-Speed, with a transfer rate of up to 10.2 Gbit per second, is recommended for 3D and 4K image formats, as well as high-definition audio.

Here there is the option of integrating an Ethernet cable for an Internet connection. HDMI Premium High-Speed, on the other hand, enables 4K formats in 60Hz. This means even smoother transitions with razor-sharp images. This plays a particularly important role in the gaming sector.

Compatibility

An HDMI cable can also fulfil several functions in one. On the one hand, there is the possibility of having an additional integrated audio cable available through HDMI-ARC (Audio Return Channel). This is useful if you connect an audio system to your TV and want to save a cable. As already mentioned above, the HDMI cable is available with Ethernet function.

From HDMI High-Speed onwards, it is possible to forward an Internet access or network connection to other devices and supply them with Internet without an additional cable. So much for the theory. In practice, however, you will hardly find this, as many devices do not yet support this function.

Length

All kinds of cable lengths are available on the market. The offer ranges from 0.2m to 30m. However, the transmission rate decreases considerably from 20m length and an HDMI repeater is recommended to amplify the signal. A length of up to 10 metres is optimal.

This guarantees stable transmission and you don't have to worry about loss of quality in picture and sound. If you still want to be on the safe side, then you should rather choose a high-quality HDMI cable with a premium high-speed connection.

HDMI cable for 4K: Frequently asked questions and answers

Below we have summarised the most important questions about HDMI cables for 4K resolution and will answer them for you in order. Our goal is that you know everything about HDMI cables by the end of this guide.

Who is a HDMI cable for 4K suitable for?

A HDMI cable 4K enables the forwarding of 4K image formats with audio track to an external playback device (TV, screen). It is therefore used primarily in the entertainment sector and its versatility makes it one of the best-selling cables in this segment.

HDMI cables are especially needed for home cinema and gaming.

HDMI cables come in different shapes and colours. Depending on where they are used, you need the right cable. When setting up a home entertainment system, cables that are as flat as possible are advantageous because they can easily be hidden under floorboards or wall panelling. However, if HDMI cables are used outdoors, where it can get wet and dirty, then cables with a rubber coating are preferred.

A particularly popular entertainment segment is the gaming sector. Here, it is important that the HDMI cables are very flexible and stable at the same time. The speed and freedom from interference of the transmission rate play a major role and are decisive for performance in gaming. For this purpose, nylon-coated cables have been specially developed that are extremely flexible and break-resistant.

HDMI Kabel 4K-1

HDMI cables made of nylon braiding are break-proof and flexible, so you can easily roll them up without tangling them.
(Image source: Rakin / pixabay)

If you're using a 4K-capable TV or just want to connect your games console to a screen and can't do without the great, colourful resolution of 4K or higher, then it's worth upgrading to an HDMI cable for 4K.

What are the different types of HDMI cables for 4K?

In the following, we will introduce you to the most commonly used types of HDMI cables for 4K and show you all the advantages and disadvantages in a compact summary:

Type Advantages Disadvantages
HDMI cable 4K made of nylon braiding Flexibility and versatile use indoors It is rather unsuitable for outdoor use as it is not very resistant.
HDMI cable 4K with multi-alloy Increased stability of the transmission rate Usually relatively expensive and hardly usable in everyday use. Large cable circumference.
High-Speed HDMI Cable 4K with Ethernet It enables the connection of Internet-capable AV components Hardly usable, as not yet supported by most devices.
Premium High-Speed HDMI Cable 4K High bandwidth of supported formats (3D, 4K, HD audio). 100% compatible with today's devices Currently still quite expensive with a price range of 30 to 70 euros.
HDMI cable 4K with ARC (Audio Return Channel) Saves the audio-out cable (e.g. S/PDIF) from the TV to the receiver Lack of compatibility, especially with older devices. Frequently, activation is first necessary on the device.

As already mentioned, it depends very much on the use of the HDMI cable. HDMI cables for 4K made of nylon braiding are mainly used for gaming and do not require additional functions such as audio feedback or internet forwarding, as this would greatly reduce performance.

HDMI Kabel 4K-2

HDMI cables with the standard connector type A are not as easy to pull out and therefore give better support.
(Image source: Csaba Nagy / pixabay)

If you opt for a premium high-speed HDMI cable for 4K, don't expect it to also come with a multi-alloy. You're likely to be disappointed here, as premium in this case guarantees higher transfer rates, but for an extremely stable connection you should look for HDMI cables for 4K with special multi-alloying.

How much does an HDMI cable for 4K cost?

The price range between HDMI cables for 4K is wide. Depending on the intended use, quality and length, you can expect to pay between 5 and 70 euros. In general, it can be said that HDMI cables for 4K with good insulation and high transmission rates are more expensive and the quality and length of the cable are a decisive factor in the pricing.

HDMI cables for 4K with a length of 0.5 to 1.5m can be bought for as little as 5 euros. If you opt for a high-speed HDMI cable with a length of 10m or more, you will have to dig deeper into your pocket for a price starting at 30 euros.

Type price range
HDMI cable 4K under 1.5m length approx. 5 to 10 euros
High-Speed HDMI cable 4K from 10m length approx. 30 to 70 euros
HDMI cable 4K with fibre optic core approx. 50 to 100 euros

The cheapest HDMI cables are those that are used frequently, such as in gaming. You only need short cables for this.

It is best to pay attention to the correct HDMI™ certification.

Only HDMI cables with HDMI™ certification guarantee 100% compatibility between your devices and give you a guaranteed 4K resolution of 4096 x 2160 pixels, as well as colour depth and HDR colour contrast in picture formats.

The top class of HDMI cables for 4K are cables made of fibre optics. They no longer have a pure copper cable and correspond to the latest state of the art. This is also reflected in the price, as prices of 50 to 100 euros are not uncommon here.

Where can I buy an HDMI cable for 4K?

HDMI cables for 4K can be bought in DIY stores, electronics stores or in many online shops. You can even find good HDMI cables in many supermarkets at the checkout or at petrol stations.

What alternatives are there to an HDMI cable for 4K?

Here is a brief overview of possible alternatives to HDMI cables for 4K. This is useful if you want to continue using your old HDMI cables without 4K support or if you only have short HDMI cables for 4K available but need a longer connection.

Type Description
HDMI cable with 1.4 interface By reducing the bandwidth, HDMI cables with 1.4 interface can also transmit 4K picture formats in 60Hz.However, this is very complex to implement and requires special expertise, as the settings of the output and receiving device must be changed.
HDMI repeaters HDMI cables with a length of up to 10m are ideal. If you need more than this, you can simply link two HDMI cables together with an HDMI repeater to achieve the desired length. The HDMI repeater amplifies the signal and does not require an extra power source. The disadvantage, however, is that the connection is more susceptible to interference and a stable signal can no longer be guaranteed above a length of 40m.

Whether for a quick solution by using old HDMI cables or combined lengths. It is always advisable to buy an HDMI cable for 4K in the desired length and speed to match the connected device. You save yourself a lot of headaches and the time saved due to a quick, uncomplicated installation can be enjoyed with great picture and sound recordings in 4K quality.

How do I dispose of an old HDMI cable for 4K?

Contrary to popular belief, disposing of HDMI cables in the residual waste is not a solution. HDMI cables in particular contain a pure copper cable and gold-plated connectors that can be recycled very well. Therefore, you should take the cable to a scrap dealer near you, because this way you can even save some money.

Never dispose of old HDMI cables in the residual waste. They still contain many recyclable raw materials.

If this is too time-consuming for you, you can hand in your cable to the electronic scrap department the next time you visit your local building yard. Every municipal building yard is obliged to accept electronic waste. If you want to do it yourself, I recommend bringing a wire cutter, knife and gloves.Depending on the sheathing of the cable, you should carefully cut open the nylon or rubber coating along the cable with a knife and remove it with your hands.

The cable underneath should remain undamaged if possible. Some cables still have an aluminium layer over the copper cable. You can also carefully cut this off with a knife.

HDMI Kabel 4K-3

Copper cables are worth a lot on the market! It is worth selling them at a scrap dealer.
(Image source: Alex Tepetidis / Pexels)

Then cut off the cable plugs at both ends with wire cutters. Now you have a pure copper cable that you can sell on Ebay or at a scrap dealer, for example. The more HDMI cables you have to dispose of, the more money you will make from selling the copper.

Conclusion

HDMI cables for 4K are versatile. Depending on the insulation, you can use them outdoors or indoors. They are available in all possible lengths and guarantee a fast and interference-free transmission of high-resolution 4K image and sound formats to your receiving devices. When buying, you can choose between nylon and rubber insulation and determine the HDMI type depending on the desired transmission rate.

HDMI cables for 4K with nylon insulation are perfect for gaming. HDMI cables with rubber insulation, on the other hand, are suitable for outdoor use in wind and weather or in flat form for home cinema systems. When choosing connectors, consider the compatibility of the devices with the HDMI cable, then you can enjoy a flawless connection of your high-resolution image and sound formats.

Image source: Savusia/ 123rf

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