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Networking Sony Television Entertainment Technology

HDBaseT Supporters Hope To Kiss HDMI Goodbye 336

Posted by timothy
from the rj-45-rocks dept.
arcticstoat writes "HDMI's short-lived reign over the TV cable racks could soon be over, thanks to a new usurper that combines several connections into a standard Cat5e/6 network cable with an RJ-45 connector. Designed by a coalition of consumer electronics manufacturers called the HDBaseT Alliance, which includes Sony, Samsung, LG and Valens, HDBaseT promises to not only carry video and audio signals, but also provide a network connection, a USB signal and even electricity using a single cable. The Alliance predicts that we'll start seeing the first HDBaseT equipment creeping into the shops later this year, but says the bigger wave of adoption will occur later in 2011."
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HDBaseT Supporters Hope To Kiss HDMI Goodbye

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:35PM (#32763280)
    Will Monster make a special gold-plated, oxygenated cable for it? Because the guy at Best Buy said that is only way to really hear the crispness of the digital audio.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by roc97007 (608802)

      I think his brother works over at The Good Guys.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jimbolauski (882977)
      You mean the cat 6m standard.
    • by FlynnMP3 (33498) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:49PM (#32763514)

      It's not known well, but temperature and altitude affect the clarity just as much, if not more, than the cable construction methods. The colder it is the less jitter is introduced in the signal path as the molecules are not moving around so much. Closer to sea level, the predictability of the air pressure reduces the effects of signal variance. Which you can hear if your listening space is 10 degrees Celsius or cooler.

      All Best Buy audio employees know this but are bound to secrecy by Monster Cable. Probably for marketing reasons.

    • Re:One question (Score:5, Informative)

      by unix1 (1667411) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:58PM (#32763700)

      That would be funny if it wasn't true [denon.com]. You can get it [amazon.com] from Amazon too.

      • by Danse (1026)

        That would be funny if it wasn't true [denon.com]. You can get it [amazon.com] from Amazon too.

        Some pretty funny reviews there too :)

    • by smbarbour (893880)

      Maybe not Monster, but Denon already does. [denon.com]

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by acedotcom (998378)
      uhhh...actually they already do [crutchfield.com]. I die a little inside thinking of people that buy that stuff.
  • Kiss HDCP bye too? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:36PM (#32763288)
    Can we please kill HDCP? Please? There is no technical reason why my monitor should not be able to be connected to an HDMI-capable entertainment device by means of an HDMI-DVI adapter.
    • by TubeSteak (669689) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:46PM (#32763456) Journal

      Can we please kill HDCP?

      Nope.
      Searching for hdbaset + drm turns up little of use,
      but searching for hdbaset + hdmi shows us DRM has already been included

      Valens Semiconductor's HDBaseT Receives HDCP Certification From Intel's DCP LLC
      updated 8:58 a.m. ET March 9, 2009,
      http://www.valens-semi.com/media/1526/msnbc.pdf [valens-semi.com]

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by JoelWink (1846354)
      I once spent an hour trying to figure out why the DVI output from my Time Warner Cable box would appear on my computer monitor for two seconds, then disappear. I finally realized it didn't "trust" my monitor and HDCP was the culprit.
      • by elrous0 (869638) *
        Well, obviously that's because you're a pirate--out to steal the money right from Tom Cruise's stylish pocket.
        • by Surt (22457)

          Are you crazy? That guy dresses like a doofus. He looks like Steve Jobs half the time.

    • Can we please kill HDCP? Please? There is no technical reason why my monitor should not be able to be connected to an HDMI-capable entertainment device by means of an HDMI-DVI adapter.

      Yes, there is a technical reason your monitor can't be connected to your entertainment device... Your monitor doesn't support HDCP decoding. Mine does. A HDMI > DVI adaptor works fine, and I've been using my computer monitor as a television for more than a year now.

      With that said, the solution works best when your monitor supports native HD resolutions.

      • Yes, there is a technical reason your monitor can't be connected to your entertainment device... Your monitor doesn't support HDCP decoding.

        Then what's the technical reason to require HDCP in the first place?

        • by Burning1 (204959)

          HDCP is a copy protection system. I'm all for getting rid of it, but I strongly doubt that doing so would earn any support from content creators.

          If you want to know the reason for HDCP's existence, you need look no further than Wikipedia.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDCP [wikipedia.org]

          • I strongly doubt that [dropping one form of copy protection] would earn any support from content creators.

            Can you phrase that without reference to happy gods [gnu.org]? Words like "content" (presumably meaning "any work of authorship other than a computer program") and "creator" (comparing authors to deities) have connotations too sympathetic to the incumbent commercial publishers that demand HDCP in the first place.

            If you want to know the reason for HDCP's existence, you need look no further than Wikipedia.

            Which only illustrates my point. Preventing the owner of a lawfully made copy from making use of the work in a way permitted by fair use or other limitations of copyright isn't a "technical reason". HDCP is a

          • by Miseph (979059)

            "I strongly doubt that doing so would earn any support from content creators."

            s/creators/financiers

            Actual creators tend to be pretty happy just knowing that somebody thought their content was cool, and if they can find some way to do it while putting food on the table they're downright ecstatic. The money guys who promise to put that food on their table if they'll please just sign on the dotted line, then often sue the actual creator into bankruptcy and forbid them from ever seeing their creation again are

      • Yes, there is a technical reason

        You are confusing should with can. The statement is that "There is no technical reason why my monitor should not", not "There is no technical reason why my monitor cannot".

  • HDCP (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MillionthMonkey (240664) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:37PM (#32763310)
    What's going to deny me the right to watch my own stuff whenever I'm not allowed?
    • by Mashiki (184564)

      HDCP ...
      Ending up the butt of pedobear jokes forever.

    • Re:HDCP (Score:5, Funny)

      by 19thNervousBreakdown (768619) <davec-slashdot@noSpam.lepertheory.net> on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:47PM (#32763478) Homepage

      What on earth makes you think they're going to give up on encryption just because they're going with a connector that encourages senior citizens to plug 100W output cable boxes into their cable modems' ethernet port?

      • What on earth makes you think they're going to give up on encryption

        Nothing, because I don't. But I'm also not assuming it will still be HDCP.
      • Re:HDCP (Score:5, Interesting)

        by jythie (914043) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @05:04PM (#32763838)
        This is why I need mod points.

        Years ago I worked on jukeboxes that had RJ45 based audio connections.... oh the network cards we blew out when those cables got crossed.. and we were actually TRYING not to mix them up.
        • by X0563511 (793323)

          Color coding (or just putting tags on) can help with that...

        • Can't this be solved by not pushing 100w until the devices negotiate the connections and have established that the input device capable of handling the power?

          • by soundguy (415780)
            Current cannot be "pushed". A device presents a load on an electrical circuit and will DRAW a certain amount of current depending on that load.
            • [sigh] yes excuse my colloquial usage and thank you for correcting me. Good thing nothing you have said in any way changes the POINT of what I said which is the SOURCE of the power can LIMIT current flow until such time as the source of the current has established that the connected device is capable of handling it. Much like the USB standard limits current until such time as the hub has established that the device is suitable for the full power.

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              >>>Current cannot be "pushed". A device presents a load on an electrical circuit and will DRAW a certain amount of current depending on that load.

              Hello. Electrical engineer here. What you just said is complete rubbish. A device does not "draw" current like a sucking vacuum. If devices could do that, we would not need power supplies or batteries. The devices would just draw the current from thin ain. The current is indeed "pushed" and the amount of push is called the voltage (measured across t

      • by hedwards (940851)
        I doubt they will, they'll probably just chock it up to pirates, and demand that congress enact a statue making anybody that fails to pay there extor... er licensing fees a felon. Including the worst of all, the people that are too busy reading public domain books rather than watching movies. I mean, why on Earth should they be allowed to read Cervantes, Shakespeare and Mark Twain without paying for the privilege.
  • Wait... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Pojut (1027544) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:41PM (#32763366) Homepage

    FTFS:

    thanks to a new usurper that combines several connections into a standard Cat5e/6 network cable with an RJ-45 connector

    Does that mean I can use one of the dozens of ethernet cables currently languishing in my closets?

    • Re:Wait... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ZERO1ZERO (948669) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:43PM (#32763402)
      And subsequently route the signal via patch panels / wall plates to various locations around your basement/home/place of work?*
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Pojut (1027544)

        The possibilities are giving me a happy in my pants. Seriously. If this is the case, awesome things could be coming soon.

        Side note: is it lame that I get happy in my pants over this kind of stuff? ::looks around:: nah.

        • It is not lame, it is completely understandable.

          What is lame, is that you call it "a happy in my pants". I feel ridiculous just typing that.
    • Re:Wait... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Walt Dismal (534799) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:58PM (#32763692)
      The short answer is I expect no, but here's the long answer why.

      A Cat5/6 cable has multiple twisted pairs. To reduce inter-signal interference, the pairs are made with different twist rates per foot. This results in slight distance differences between pairs resulting in up to 50 foot length difference internally per 1000 feet. Now, since standard video such as VGA or component video is usually separated into RBG and (maybe) sync lines, the cable length differences result in delay of one or more of the analog video signals relative to each other and this shows up as actual and visible color fringing with a normal cable. (I've seen it.) The solution is that conventional video over Cat5/6 requires active electronics (some vendors use delay lines but those are hard to time-adjust and it locks you to a known cable vendor/mfg spec) to support clean video. This raises the cost. My basis for this is that I'm involved in video conferencing systems, some using long-run video cable in a building as well as packet-based video for external destinations. If HDBaseT involves manufacturers shifting to packet-based video, it's going to be a very interesting different world, because this will require devices on each end to use codecs and video to/from packets, raising costs for consumer electronics.

      • by Coren22 (1625475)

        If HDBaseT involves manufacturers shifting to packet-based video, it's going to be a very interesting different world, because this will require devices on each end to use codecs and video to/from packets, raising costs for consumer electronics.

        You mean like HDMI which is packet based?

      • by X0563511 (793323)

        It's a good thing that HD is a digital format then! (I don't think seperate sync lines are still used?)

    • Does that mean I can use one of the dozens of ethernet cables currently languishing in my closets?

      YES - that's the whole point of it.
      See the official Technology Comparison Table [hdbaset.org] - it says "use existing network wiring."
      It also says "low cost standard cat5e/6 LAN cable" - but then that's essentially what the line you quote said too.

  • by ICLKennyG (899257) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:41PM (#32763374)
    I would tag this as a sudden break out of common sense, but I am not sure that it is. Yes, it's better in that I will be able to terminate my own video cables again, but how many cable standards do we need? I fully welcome our new Cat5e overlords but I just want the madness to stop.
    • by X0563511 (793323)

      ... but I just want the madness to stop.

      It won't. That's how technology works these days, sorry.

  • Aaaarrg (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Cylix (55374) * on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:44PM (#32763416) Homepage Journal

    I'm rather divided on this particular bit of news.

    I'm invested in the HDMI technology already and I don't really want to replace everything. With the HDMI 1.4 spec they will address most of the current issues with the technology and provide backward compatibility with the existing devices on the market. HDMI 1.3 kinda sucks if you have an AV receiver and 5.1 setup. (Long story short video processor creates delay and without an auto-sync setup there will be issues with video and audio). This is all made possible because of the requirement for a protected path and downgraded audio on analog ports!

    In theory HDMI 1.4 provides a built in protected return audio path, networking, power and a kitchen sink. Regardless, it is rather unimportant to me at this juncture because I doubt I will be upgrading my television and receiver in the near future.

    The entire HDBaseT looks like they did mostly the same offerings but in an entirely new cable
    which has been around for ages. I get the feeling that actually plugging the cable into a switch won't do much good.

    I'm going to assume that in the end they really just get around some royalties and introduce even further market fragmentation.

    Good jorb!

  • by hkmwbz (531650) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:49PM (#32763516) Journal
    Maybe I've just had bad luck, but the little pin that is supposed to keep the network cable in place always breaks on me. And when it does, the cable never seems to sit as tightly as it should.

    Am I doing something wrong, or does everyone else have similar experiences? If it's the latter, using it as the connector for this new thing sounds like a terrible idea.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Paul Rose (771894)
      >> Am I doing something wrong Maybe. For me these break when I'm too lazy to properly detangle a pile of wiring, and I resort to pulling the cable out of the pile. The connector goes through backwards and often damages the retainer. I've never had one get damaged any other way.
    • by Pojut (1027544)

      In my experience, spending the extra 25 cents on a quality connector (or an extra couple of bucks on a quality "pre-made" cable) is worth it.

    • by I'm not really here (1304615) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:57PM (#32763686)

      Get / make cables that have the "boots" on them. (Search for Cat5e booted ends [google.com] to see what I mean).

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by holmstar (1388267)
        I hate those boots. They inevitably get hard and make depressing the retaining clip difficult. If you have to use one of those in a place with little finger room, good luck getting it out without a flat-head screwdriver or something.
    • by twmcneil (942300)
      I think you're supposed to depress the little pin before you yank it out of the jack, and I don't mean tell it a sad story.
    • by X0563511 (793323)

      As others have said, boots are your friend.

      If you buy them premade, they are usually called "snagless"

  • Light Peak (Score:4, Informative)

    by TempeNerd (410268) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:49PM (#32763520)

    And let the battle for a new standard begin.

    I had thought Light Peak was the likely replacement technology.

    10Gbps and backward compatible with USB.

    "At 10Gb/s, you could transfer a full-length Blu-Ray movie in less than 30 seconds. Optical technology also allows for smaller connectors and longer, thinner, and more flexible cables than currently possible. Light Peak also has the ability to run multiple protocols simultaneously over a single cable, enabling the technology to connect devices such as peripherals, displays, disk drives, docking stations, and more."

    http://techresearch.intel.com/articles/None/1813.htm [intel.com]

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      I still want to know what Intel has up their sleeve with light peak.

      10Gb/s over fiber isn't new or all that interesting; but, in the networking world, it isn't all that cheap. What have they done to make the equivalent of shoving a 10GbE fiber interface into random bits of cheap consumer electronics remotely viable?

      Second, while neither optical cables nor optical connectors are quite in "will die if you give them a funny look" territory, they definitely won't stand up to the kind of abuse that even g
  • I'm guessing now this makes our hdtv's worthless, as well as our home receivers if we want to use these new features.
  • RJ45 bad idea (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:51PM (#32763554)
    Its -always- a bad idea to keep different cables with the same connector. Good luck getting the average person to know the difference between all of the cables with the same connectors.
    • "Good luck getting the average person to know the difference between all of the cables with the same connectors."

      No, I don't think that's the architecture being described. It appears to me, if I read this http://www.hdbaset.org/files/HDBaseT_Comparison_Table_Nereus.pdf [hdbaset.org]chart correctly we'll be plugging everything in to one port in the media device (tv). We'll be getting our ac, ethernet, and video sigs from one cable. Kind makes me wonder what the amperage rating for 10baseT copper is...

  • /.ers who were crying for Ethernet instead of HDMI back when HDTVs were first coming out, were doing so for reasons of data sharing with PCs, cable range, price, and available peripherals (eg, switches).

    If you're using some proprietary protocols, so you don't get the same range, and you can't use standard network switches to route and boost the signals, why bother? Why not use 9P9C jacks (like cheap UPSes)? All of 10 cents more expensive for a larger jack/connector, and then you wouldn't confuse the two a

  • The proper solution was to go to fiber. They could do long runs, it would have had better expandability and provides better electrical isolation between the components. The expandability may not seem important until you spend a boat load of money burring a cable in a wall or a ceiling only to have to rip it out again later.

    • by tepples (727027) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {selppet}> on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:57PM (#32763684) Homepage Journal

      The proper solution was to go to fiber. They could do long runs

      The major U.S. motion picture distributors don't want you to do long runs. You could be doing runs to a nonsubscriber's house or doing long runs through a building that is large enough for a commercial public performance. That's why HDCP requires proximity.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by cheesybagel (670288)

      Like Light Peak [wikipedia.org]? Maybe the video interface after this one.

      Seriously, obsolescence is getting ridiculous. It used to be you could use the same video interface for a couple of decades. Heck a TV could easily last a decade or more.

      Now everything gets obsolete quickly. Plasma? LCD? Perhaps OLED next? Crikey.

  • by Burning1 (204959) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:54PM (#32763626) Homepage

    Haven't we learned anything from PS/2 connectors? Installing ports that are physically, but not electronically compatible on consumer devices is a stupid solution.

    Given that a lot of receivers and devices currently have built in Ethernet ports for network connectivity, I can't see this as being a particularly good idea... It's not as if hard wired Ethernet ports are common in residential walls...

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Nadaka (224565)

      Hopefully anything using this connector will poll the other side of the cable for its capabilities before it starts dumping 100w of power out the other end. Similar occurs with current systems using PoE and detection of 10M, 100M or 1G network speeds.

      This is actually something I am very much looking forwards to. It can cut down on the expense and hassle of a half dozen different cable types. Cat5e/Cat6 is fairly cheap compared to a lot of cable types and can be custom fit.

      Imagine a monitor with this and the

      • by holmstar (1388267)
        Mod me off-topic if you like, but the term "CPU" stands for the main computer chip that is inside of the metal box that you are referring to as a CPU. You should be calling that metal box a "computer".

        I don't know where that computer is a "CPU" stuff started, but I find it annoying as hell.
  • by nimbius (983462) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:57PM (#32763672) Homepage
    this madness will end with new standards, it wont. The connector standard has become as much a marketing phenomenon as it has a control of the customers choice of provider and repeat purchase options. Just take a look at cellphone power connectors as a prime example. or for us old farts, i can simply whisper betamax and we're all sent running for cover. The easiest thing to do in light of all these changes is wait a few years for the price to drop substantially, and upgrade components as needed. yeah, i still have VGA for my monitor, and composite or svid for my video. things that need to go a long distance get baluns or repeaters.

    at the risk of getting the troll stamp, you could go so far as to say the entire HDMI standard and its accompanying 720p/i 1080p/i standards are complete poppycock. computer monitors have had resolution superior to these standards for years before their inception.
    • by srleffler (721400) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @10:20PM (#32768014)
      Actually the cellphone makers agreed to standardize their power connectors a few months ago, at least in Europe. All smartphones will have a common power connector, and you'll be able to use any power supply. Eventually, phones won't come with a power supply, you'll just keep using the old one. I believe the new standard is one of the small USB connectors.
  • And it's old technology... read comments to appreciate: http://www.amazon.com/Denon-AKDL1-Dedicated-Link-Cable/dp/B000I1X6PM [amazon.com]
  • A long as cable and sat boxes don't have this it will not take off and it can take 1-2 years for new boxes to roll out.

  • This makes sense (Score:3, Insightful)

    by steveha (103154) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @05:10PM (#32763930) Homepage

    Remember how parallel ATA was replaced by serial ATA? Despite fewer wires, it can handle more data, because it's easier to push a serial protocol at a very high clock rate than to get a bunch of wires to synchronize perfectly at a high clock rate. And crosstalk between signal wires is a serious issue; check a parallel ATA cable sometime and notice how many ground wires it has. (To use the fastest parallel ATA modes, you must use an 80-wire cable, and over half of those 80 wires are ground wires, just to guard against crosstalk.)

    So I found it surprising that HDMI was a parallel cable spec! And I do not find it surprising at all that this new standard will be a very high clock rate serial protocol over standard Ethernet cabling.

    Note that this came out of industry, and not out of an ivory-tower standards group.

    steveha

  • I've only just finished spending ~$600 refitting my flat from a rat's nest of VGA / component / coax / SCART cables to all-HDMI in the hopes that it would last ~25 years like VGA has :(

    Dear audio / video companies, can you please stop raping us with new "standards" several times per year?

  • Given how much digital horsepower you have to put in a flat panel screen anyway, at some point the TV will turn into something that looks like your desktop PC, where instead of having external scsi cards for your external CD burner, and a firewire port for your external TV tuner, you'll have internal CD bays and internal tuner cards. My prediction is that the final word in the standard might be an internal PCI-like bus in the TV that accepts standard devices like DVD drives, cable TV cards, etc that have a
  • Drop the power part to much that can go wrong and 100w may be pushing it for thin e-net cables.

    Just way for the day that the cable plugs this into the cable box Ethernet port that is hooked to the built in modem the blows the cable line out and not the tv out rj-45 port.

  • Oh baby, the thought of being able to crimp my own AV cables to the CORRECT length is actually giving me sexual arousal. I'm so F'ing sick of having to measure and special order cables to get within 3 feet of the correct length. Being able to make my own cables would be a godsend.
  • I'm assuming that my current 1Gbps switches will need to be replaced, or are the HDBaseT going to be Point to point only?

  • 10.2 Gb/s? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Animats (122034) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @05:49PM (#32764592) Homepage

    The spec claims that this approach can pump 10.2Gb/s over unshielded twisted pair. So this is really 10Gb/s "Ethernet" technology. [hdbaset.org]

    But only in one direction. [valens-semi.com] Like ADSL, it's high-bandwidth only from the "content source". Video travels only in one direction; the reverse direction is 100Mb/s Ethernet packets.

    They don't propose to power displays via this cable. The idea is to power disk players, cable boxes and such from the big-screen display. Control them from there, too. "PC-based media servers are no longer required and CE devices are once again the emperors of the living room." If they can get the inter-device control issues figured out (something the consumer device people have a history of botching), that could accelerate acceptance.

  • HDWhat?

    Am I the only person that still has a TV with a picture tube that connects to that fancy DVD player via RCA jacks?

    And I likes it!

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