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RedMere HDMI Cable
Score: 85%
Developer: RedMere
Device Type: Video
Compatible With:


Function:

Unlike most products we review, the product we got to test out RedMere's super-thin HDMI cables wasn't an actual retail device you can pick up in a store. Instead, RedMere created a technology and has sold it to several big-name cable manufacturers to put it in their products. So what's so special about the RedMere HDMI Cable? For one, and this is a big one, it is super thin.

What that means is that you can either use it to run some extremely low-profile HDMI cables between your AV setup and your TV, or keep it in your camera bag if you happen to have one that can output HDMI video. Personally, I know of a portable Blu-ray player we bring on trips that goes great with such an easily stored, and rather lengthy, HDMI cable.

So what allows for the cable to be so much thinner than the standard HDMI one you will find elsewhere? It's because there is a chip embedded on one of the plugs that is powered by your display device in order to better interpret the data, so that some of the redundancy built into the standard HDMI cables isn't necessary. In other words, the cable itself doesn't have to be as large as the standard products because the RedMere Booster Module will amplify the signal to the desired strength and remove any noise that was generated during the transfer. Because of this extra work, the cables don't have to be as big or thickly shielded.

Basically, where normal HDMI cable setups simply allow the data to flow through them in a passive manner and allow the components at either end to do the grunt work, as they are designed to do, RedMere's active cable design adds a bit more intelligence to the cable and helps to transform the signal back to what the TV is expecting from your other device.

As a result, unlike other HDMI cables, the RedMere varieties have an end labeled for your TV. It very much expects the data to flow in a specific direction if it is going to work.


Performance:

Performance is an odd thing when talking about HDMI cables. For the most part, there isn't really a difference between one HDMI cable and another. It's all a matter of sending the digital signal down the pipeline and it either gets there or it doesn't. Unlike analogue signals that can degrade or distort, if you see anything coming out of an HDMI signal, you are seeing what you are supposed to. There is a very interesting and enlightening article about this on CNet for those who want a bit more detail.

As a result, I can't say that the RedMere HDMI Cable looks any better or worse than any other HDMI cable I have been using around my AV setup. The signal is what the signal is. It's only when you consider that it can successfully manage that signal in a much thinner wire that you really see how this cable, or cables with RedMere technology built into them, are different from the rest.


Features:
  • Ultra Thin Cable Makes Traveling Easier
  • Versions Released with HDMI, Micro HDMI and Mini HDMI Connectors

Drawbacks & Problems::

Our sample RedMere HDMI Cable does everything we expected it to do. With the thinner wire, it is easier to bring it along on trips (or simply put it in your back pocket). Given the right connectors, you can hook up your camera or mobile device to a display with little or no issues and even though there is an added chip in the connector, it doesn't feel or look overly bulky or out of place. The only thing you have to be mindful of is that you put the right end in the right place.

That being said, I feel that one of the true drawbacks here is that you can't simply buy a RedMere HDMI Cable, you have to find one of the brands they deal with and pick up their version of this product. This means that you might being dealing with other costs or issues. For instance, while Monster is a big name in cables, because of the general nature of all HDMI cables being the same, you might not want to pay the extra price simply because it has their name on it. Other brands that support the RedMere technology include PNY, Vizio and RadioShack, so you do have some choices in the matter.

It's just a shame that RedMere doesn't work to put out their own cables. I found the one that was sent for me to sample to do exactly what I needed it to do. Here's hoping that the production quality and added costs from the retail manufacturers don't make this product more expensive than it's worth.


-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

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