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Interesting report from PC World...

Whether you hook up your TV via digital connections, analog connections, or both, you are unlikely to detect any difference in picture quality between a cable with a moderate price and a luxury brand. The only difference you're likely to notice is how the cable looks behind your TV.
...and the money missing from your wallet (57)

http://www.pcworld.com/reviews/article/0,aid,121777,pg,1,00.asp

As we have indicated on this forum many times, there is no difference in ultimate picture quality between a modestly priced cable and a "luxury" cable (like Mon$ter).

I would have preferred if the PC World testing were done "double blind", but the results in this case are "the same" in that the actual performance of the cables was "the same". Yes, there were minor differences in some electronic measurements.

Interestingly, one "failing" of the $300 Mon$ter brand HDMI cable was that due to the weight of it, it fell out... Quite the opposite of the connectors on the Mon$ter Component Video cables which are almost "too snug" and have been known to damage the equipment they're connected to...

Edit: We have had similar comments from others on this forum - the heavy cables can either fall out, or damage the HDMI port on equipment, due to the weight of the cable. The lighter (28 ga) cables can therefore be better for your TV, provided you don't need the 22 or 24 ga for in-wall installations or long lengths like 15'+. (25' changed to 15' due to newer specs (HDMI 1.4, 3D, etc) in recent years, as per below)

The cables tested cost US$18-$300.

Edit 2010.09.09 (modified for additional bandwidth for newer specs, BD, etc.): Another test result with similar results, however, at longer lengths (15'+) or for in-wall applications, it's best to get a "good" cable, just as we have repeatedly stated here. For longer lengths, suggest 22 or 24 ga.

http://gizmodo.com/gadgets/hdmi-cable-battlemodo/the-truth-about-monster-cable-part-2-268788.php
Link may take some time to display, be patient.

Long Cable Test... Mon$ter not worth it again.


Edit 2008.02.24 - MarketPlace confirms the same:

http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=81285

Edit 2008.12.16 - CNET:

http://reviews.cnet.com/hdmi-cable/?tag=mncol;txt
 

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I find that I spend my time watching what is displayed on the front of my TV and I rarely ever look at how nice the back of my TV looks. Therefore, I'll take a pass on the "luxury brands".

:D
 

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And many guys with way too much $$$$$$, don't care, as long as they
have the most expensive "name" brand equipment.
So if they want to help keep the ecomomy rolling, that's fine with me.
What gets me is when someone with few dollars gets duped into buying
something he doesn't need.
But they "buyer beware" is a fact of life everywhere.
 

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I just purchased an Sony SXRD tv, and for the money I spent on the TV I couldnt imagine going too cheap with the cords. I spent a lot of money on the component cables cords, but was able to pay only 2/3 of the cost.

After you talk down the price of the tv and you go to buy expensive cables be sure to negociate the price of them too.
 

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I have Dollorama RCA cables and it was only $1.15. They do the same thing as Monster cables and guess what, I have spare money to buy the latest movie coming out on DVD. :eek:
 

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Sorry to hear that leafsfan7524. I ask you this. When you bought a printer did you buy a premium USB or parallel cable? The thing is cable cost was never a real issue with PCs even analog RGB cables. You could shop around and find the best price. Why people think HDMI or DVI-D would be any different is beyond me. These same people often time will not have their set professionally calibrated so the logic of spending money to have the best picture just does not fly. Using dollar store video cables and a professional calibration would be better than $200 video cables and a non-professional calibration. My suggestion to new TV owners is if you feel the need to spend money, buy your cables for $30 and spend $270 for a professional calibration. You will get more bang for your buck.
 

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I used to buy Monster cable for 2 Reasons.

1) I read somewhere there was a "rule of thumb" that said you should spend about 10% of the cost of electronics on cables (ie $1500 TV = $150 cables)

2) I had no idea that #1 was a complete load of BS.

I always thought I was doing the right thing until DHC opened my eyes a long time ago.
 

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IMHO you need at least a decent quality of cable to insure the integrity of the component connections as well as quality of cabling. I use a relatively low-mid priced set of component cables (about $200) for my DVD connection but we are talking 35' runs here. It's the terminations that are the major part of the cost here.

As far as audio goes in my case it's a different story. I can hear differences between cables as I believe it's not only the electrical properties of the cable but also the electrical "match" or "synergy" of certain cables with individual components. In my system some sound “harsher” and “colder” while some models, from even the same manufacturer sound “smoother” and “warmer”. And no, if I had to spend the approx. $1200 mfsrp or so for each of the 3' audio interconnect sets I use I wouldn't be running out and buying them.
 

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I hate to keep posting this but...
One of the best posts I've read is below where the guy uses a coat hanger to get DD AC3:
http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htforum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=157357

Also, I use the Red, White, Yellow composite cables that come with VCRs and the like for my component cables. I have a 120 inch screen and can't see a difference in PQ.

"Better" cables are a load of crap, and almost every electronics store makes their money by selling them. If you've ever bought an HDTV you will know that they really push Monster or other expensive cables telling you that you shouldn't buy an expensive system and cheap out on the cables.

At Wackys the guy actually became upset when a friend refused to buy cables from them. They gave him a great deal on the TV assuming they could get their money back on the cables. A good bargaining chip actually, just lead them into thinking you want the best cables and get a cheaper price on the TV and then reject the cables when you're at the cash. What are they going to do? Actually sir we gave you that price assuming we could gouge you on the cables.
 

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.....it really depends on your own situation and environment.

Digtial domain cables, unless they are very long runs, probably will not benefit much from upgrade.

Analog cabling, be it interconnects for audio or video or speaker wire, can benefit
from a step up from 'zip-cord & coat-hangers'...particularly if they have to span long runs. Monster is a particularly poor brand, namely because many of their plugs are far too tight....i've pulled sockets out of compoents with Monster junk. To me, quality plugs on the IC's that are 'just right' for fit and won't loosen over time or repeated use can be pretty much most of the issue.....the same goes for good lockable bananas on speaker cable lengths. A good route to go are through the many online vendors that will build you custom cables with high quality components like Belden coax and Canare plugs at a fraction of the price that a 'cable boutique' would charge you for their latest smoke&mirrors brand. That's what iv'e done with IC's and i use 4 strand twisted speaker cabling due to some very long runs....just as some preventative maintainance
against picking up hums etc on 60' runs.
 

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Jake said:
Sorry to hear that leafsfan7524. I ask you this. When you bought a printer did you buy a premium USB or parallel cable? The thing is cable cost was never a real issue with PCs even analog RGB cables. You could shop around and find the best price. Why people think HDMI or DVI-D would be any different is beyond me. These same people often time will not have their set professionally calibrated so the logic of spending money to have the best picture just does not fly. Using dollar store video cables and a professional calibration would be better than $200 video cables and a non-professional calibration. My suggestion to new TV owners is if you feel the need to spend money, buy your cables for $30 and spend $270 for a professional calibration. You will get more bang for your buck.
Actually my printer sucks, so I couldnt imagine spending a lot on a cable. With the system I have now I purchased lesser quality cords in the past and had problems with them (mainly s-video)...Monster is guaranteed for life, so I know as long as the technology doesnt change i wont have to buy or worry about the quality of my picture in the future...for now im going to stick with my old optical cables, bc i dont think monster will be worth it, but with video for me i think it's the right choice

im not disagreeing with you, but im just saying it's probably the right choice for some people...if i spent $2000 on a tv i wouldnt but high end cables...ive dealt with being cheap on my system in the past and ive paid for it, whether it comes to buying an s-video cable or speaker wire

all i was saying is be sure not to pay full price for the cables
 

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high quality vs normal cables

I was always under the assumption that the higher quality cables cost more for three reasons; gold connectors (obviously for better connectivity), insulation (for less noise, and longer distances), and name recognition (no advantage). If it's the case where the cable is the bottle neck for the PQ or SQ in your product then spring for the better ones... otherwise who cares. I guess the only way to know is to try it and see for your self... unless there is a guide for distance etc out there?

Also... it seems to me that it makes more sense to have a high quality cable when the signal is analoge... not so much for a digital signal (unless its optical).
 

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I suppose there are arguments on both sides of the fence. But IMHO it don't make no diff to the average person's eyes and ears. I tried component cables versus svideo and there ain't no visible difference. I'm certain the same is true of the cable quality. Save your money for DVD's or a better tuner or video display.
 
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