HDMI. HDBaseT. 4K. 3D. Blu-Ray. Oh my!
Home video systems can be confusing. All you want to do is watch the game or play Call of Duty 4 or put your kids in front of Frozen so that you can have a moment of Zen. Managing your home video devices should be that simple, but they’re not. In reality, it is a lot more confusing. Industry standards aren’t really standard and don’t remain the standard for very long. The technology driving the home video market, like all other markets, is evolving exponentially. Adding to the confusion is DRM, digital rights management, integrated into all of the technologies, so that the content creators can license their content and make a living creating it. DRM keeps content safe from pirates, but it adds to the complexity of your home video systems.
Remember a few years ago when Sony and Microsoft were battling it out over Blu-Ray Disc verses HD (High Definition) Disc. Sony won the battle. So what is a Blu-Ray Disc? It is like a DVD (Digital Video Disc), but it is high definition. Most Blu-Ray Disc (BD) players will upconvert standard definition (SD) DVDs to HD, but BDs give you high definition without the digital conversion. The best way to think of Blu-Ray Discs, like DVDs, is that they are content delivery, movies and television shows. Blu-Ray Discs are the next evolution of the trusty VHS tape, but in much higher resolution. It’s worth noting that BDs may soon be replaced in home video systems by digital content delivery such as iTunes through Apple TV or Netflix through your smart TV. The content is getting higher resolution, sometimes available in 1080P Full HD resolution, and is easier to stream with increasing bandwidth. What’s next? 4K. 4K is just another technical-turned marketing jargon non-standard standard term for 4000 lines of horizontal resolution or roughly 4 times the resolution of 1080P. We were all told 1080P was it, but now, 4K, also known as UHD or Ultra High Definition, is it. This is the highest available resolution in home video, except that it’s not really available because Hollywood has only just begun filming in 4K.
Once you have your HD home video source, whether it is Blu-Ray Discs, a game console, or Apple TV, you will need home video distribution. HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) was created to provide a video distribution standard adequate for the needs of high definition, but more importantly, providing DRM that meets the demands of content creators. HDMI essentially is the cabling that connects your source, your satellite receiver for example, to your display, your TV or projector. However, like 1080P Full HD, 1080P may soon be replaced by an emerging technology in home video distribution: HDBaseT. HDBaseT in the simplest terms, combines a simple ‘category’ or network cable with an HDMI cable. It allows not only HD video up to uncompressed 4K resolutions to be transmitted over a single category cable but also DTS audio, Ethernet, RS232 or IR control, and up to 100 watts of power. It is sometimes referred to as 5Play because of the transmission of video, audio, data, control, & power. However, like 4K, HDBaseT is only beginning to be deployed and like HDMI, each device in the system must be HDBaseT capable.
What does all of this mean? Trust Fulkra. Trust Fulkra to sort out all of the details. Fulkra will take all of the complexity of your home video systems and reduce it down to you watching the game. We will continue to keep our eyes on the horizon and adapt to technology as it emerges. All you have to worry about is what you want to watch.
Call 877.738.5572 now to get started on designing your home video systems. Fulkra is your number one worldwide video integration company.