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  • cactusdog - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Haha, thats funny. Wireless that introduces more cables than a wired connection? Sounds like a big hassle. Reply
  • Sihastru - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    I agree, 2 power bricks (with power cables), 2 new boxes, and 3-4 wires for them, just to replace 1 simple cable... It's just that wireless should reduce clutter, not add to it. Reply
  • Solandri - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    I can't help but think that all this is trying to reinvent the wheel.

    Most HDTVs already have over the air digital receivers built in. All we need is for the FCC to open up one or two of the digital TV channels for public broadcast at low wattage like they did the 2.4 GHz spectrum. Then you can just make a doohickey which plugs into your laptop which converts the screen image to a DTV signal and broadcasts it in one of those OTA channels.
  • jonup - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    That's actually a good idea. I like it! We do not even need an FCC approval. We can just order it from China. Reply
  • RangerDave - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    in my line of work (custom home theaters, home automation etc....) there are quite a few installs where we are laying down 50 ft HDMI cables that cost a fortune (aspecially if where trying to stick to hdmi 1.4 standard for 3D) and other installs where we use hdmi to cat5e to hdmi. anyways that being said, i can see this being a viable solution to some setups that i have done but in a typical home theater setup, is completely useless. Reply
  • Homerboy - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    Cost a fortune?
    Hell I just bought a 35ft HDMI cable for $23.
  • enderwiggin21 - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    For in-wall or in-attic runs you're not going to use the $10 cable from monoprice. That's better suited for runs within your rack. You're going to want CL2 or CM rated cable.

    When you have customers and the responsibility to pander to the lowest common denominator, using cable that's tested out to the required length leaves less room for error. The longer the run, the more difficulty at passing the speed tests, ergo the more expensive the cable. Even though the cheaper cable could get the job done just fine, this is an installer's livelihood. Better to use tested, durable cable for such runs than not.

    Bluejeanscable sells CM cable tested and rated cable for $135 for 50ft. To me that's not ultra-expensive; not for 50ft. But even then, it's only tested for Category 2 speeds to 25feet, and Category 1 speeds to 45feet. So imagine how expensive it would be to test out to Category 2 to 50feet. And they're considered a great bang-for-your-buck vendor.
  • enderwiggin21 - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    For clarifcation, CL2 and CM ratings are "to code" for in wall cable runs.

    Someone who makes their living installing has to be "up to code." If they weren't they'd be at risk if something went wrong (a fire, water leakage, etc) and the cable was a catalyst. Or if the owner of the house decided to sell it at some point and it was determined the wiring wasn't up to code, that could jeopardize the home owner's sale as well as open the installer to liability claims.

    If you're DIY'ing it, then you could do whatever you want. Caveat emptor.
  • mikeyD95125 - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    You actually can get CL2 rated cables at monoprice.Here's 50ft for $56. <a href= Reply
  • enderwiggin21 - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    That's a great bargain and I would be tempted to try that in my own installation so I could easily undo it if there were problems. However, it's only rated for "Standard Speed," which is Category 1.

    I know some of the price premiums are snake oil like Monster Cable, but if I run a business I'm using something tested for the product running through the cable and its distance, not leaving something up to chance, *if at all possible.*

    Forgive the length, but...


    * Standard (or “category 1”) HDMI cables have been tested to perform at speeds of 75Mhz or up to 2.25Gbps, which is the equivalent of a 720p/1080i signal.
    * High Speed (or “category 2”) HDMI cables have been tested to perform at speeds of 340Mhz or up to 10.2Gbps, which is the highest bandwidth currently available over an HDMI cable and can successfully handle 1080p signals.

    Q. Will my Standard cable work in High Speed applications?

    Although a Standard HDMI cable may not have been tested to support the higher bandwidth requirements of cables rated to support high speeds, existing cables, especially ones of shorter lengths (i.e., less than 2 meters), will generally perform adequately in higher speed situations. The quality of the HDMI receiver chip (in the TV, for example) has a large effect on the ability to cleanly recover and display the HDMI signal. A significant majority, perhaps all, of the HDMI TVs and projectors that support 1080p on the HDMI inputs are designed with quality receiver chips that may cleanly recover the 1080p HDMI signal using a Standard-rated HDMI cable. These receiver chips use technology called “cable equalization” in order to counter the signal reduction (attenuation) caused by a cable. We have seen successful demonstrations of 1080p signal runs on a >50 ft. cable, and a 720p signal run on a >75 ft. cable. However, the only way to guarantee that your cable will perform at higher speeds is to purchase a cable that has been tested at the higher speeds and labeled as “High-Speed.”

    1. Standard cables (referred to as Category 1 cables in the HDMI specification) are those tested to perform at speeds of 75Mhz, which is the equivalent of an uncompressed 1080i signal.
    2. High Speed cables (referred to as Category 2 cables in the HDMI specification), are those tested to perform at speeds of 340Mhz, which is the highest bandwidth currently available over an HDMI cable and can successfully handle 1080p signals including those at increased color depths (e.g. greater than eight bits per color) and/or increased refresh rates (e.g. 120Hz).
  • entu - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    only reason to use this, i can imagine, would be a beamer in home-entertainment Reply
  • SoCalBoomer - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    I was thinking this would be sweet to connect my desktop (opposite the TV) to the entertainment center so I could play videos . . . much better than running a cable across the room. . .

    Definitely not a be-all or end-all. . .
  • frenzon - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    As a projector owner, I love anything that can reduce my dependence on cables, especially since I'm renting and don't want to rewire the place.

    Currently, if I have my computers at the back of the room, then I have to figure out how to get sound and the PS3 Eye to the front of the room. If I have them at the front, then I have to figure out how to get video to the back of the room. All of this is a much bigger pain in the ass than you'd think (the best no-latency+good-quality wireless audio solution I've found does terrible things to wifi), so any development in wireless video is welcome.
  • bah12 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Actually it should be a 1 cable solution. Given that you should have a A/V receiver, and most of them today have HDMI switching/scaling. You should end up with only 1 HDMI to the projector. That is the setup I use, and long HDMI cables are not too pricey if you look online. I use this setup with a 25' run, and it works perfectly. It does not matter the source (SVID, Composite, Component, HDMI), it all gets scaled up by my receiver and sent over the HDMI.

    Granted you still have to run one wire, but this should be the least intrusive setup.
  • MGSsancho - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    I did the same as this guy. got a good receiver and just hook it all up there. tehre are longer hdmi cables but their massive. you could always run hdmi over dual cat6/5e or fiber. that would get you longer distance, you can control the cable color, more flexible. and you wont have to worry about a 20lb cable than more than 1cm thick Reply
  • Kibbles - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    It would be nice to have something like this for the floating no wire TV look. Somethings that would be good on a future version:
    Multiple inputs on the transmitter side. That way you can have all your hidden boxes hooked up to the TV.
    Power splitter on the receiver. Just about all LCD TVs I've seen have the same power cable as the average PC PSU. It would be nifty if they gave you a T line for the TV power port and the cable, so you can have one less wire showing.
    I don't know how you can do it, but a way to switch the source without having to add another remote would be nice. Merely signal auto sourcing doesn't always work because you might want to leave your DVR on but play a game or something like that.
    Obvious no signal loss every time someone breathes into the signal would be nice too.
  • dnd728 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Google-> "WiCast utilizes Wireless Home Digital Interface (WHDI) technology to wirelessly transmit high definition video and audio signals..."

    So, as I understand it shares this standard with other TVs, video cards, dongles, etc. from various manufacturers.
  • therealnickdanger - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    From WHDI's own website:

    "WHDI-enabled products maintain a robust link with *virtually* no loss of visual quality."

    It would seem that even the WHDI consortium realizes that wireless 1080p is not perfect. They list several examples as to how the technology might be implemented and "home theater" is not one of them. :)
  • teddyg007 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    I was just thinking it would have been sweet for ASUS to get with TV/DVD manufacturers and have this technology embeded into devices. Heck they could even embed it into their top of the line laptops to cut down wires and whatnot obviously turning the circuit off when not in use to keep the battery life in check. Reply
  • chui101 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Can we get an actual figure of how much lag there is, and in different conditions? You could set the HDMI output to clone the laptop display and use the input lag test at

    "Near-invisible latency" might not cut it for Rockband! :)
  • mmatis - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Well, for the way some folks play it, this might even be an improvement! Reply
  • Exelius - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    So would the range be bad for say, connecting a laptop to my TV from the couch? Is there any way this can be improved with a directional antenna?

    All I'm really looking for is a way to connect my laptop to the TV from across the room. I could stretch an HDMI cable, but that's annoying. I just dislike having to maintain an HTPC; I have 2 other desktops to keep going and the HTPC never gets maintained since I only ever use it like once a month.
  • Akdor 1154 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Yep, lag testing would be nice, as would some measure of the picture quality beyond "it looks darker". This article is okay, but not up to Anandtech's usual meticulous standards. A surround sound test would also be nice... Reply
  • clarkn0va - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    " On the receiver the mini-USB port is covered, but it can be used to power the receiver if for some odd reason that's more convenient than just plugging it in."

    It may be a minor difference to some, but there are reasons to use the USB power connector.

    -your power bar is full or too cluttered
    -taking DC from a powered device is more efficient than powering yet another wall wart
    -it shuts off when the device its plugged into shuts off, like a smart switch.

    Waste not, want not.
  • strikeback03 - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    But that USB has to either come from a USB wall wart or have the USB cable plugged into a USB port on a TV or computer that you don't want to use for other things, and that assumes those ports provide enough power, which is questionable if they are designed for a flash drive. I'm also not sure how the transmitter gets by on USB power, as 5.3-5.8W is significantly above what you would expect 5V*500mA to get you.

    Ultimately I still think WiDi makes more sense for the target market, which IMO is more about presentations and quickly showing off figures or photos than about being able to play Blu-Ray or game. In something like a smartphone or netbook it could make a lot of sense to quickly pull up some photos of the kids on TV or similar actions. Other than the projector scenario mentioned before I'm not sure what use WiCast is, as I don't see people keeping the transmitter handy to pull out and hook up much when needed.
  • JarredWalton - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    The transmitter uses *two* USB plugs via an adapter cable to get the necessary 5.7W. I'd think the receiver side would need to do the same, as most USB ports are only specced to provide up to ~2.5W (500mA @ 5V), and presumably the wall wart has some conversion inefficiencies that a direct DC connect over USB wouldn't have. So call it 5W from two ports. Reply
  • mars2k - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    This isn't just about running a long HDMI cable to your HT rig. I would gladly install the sender and receiver boxes if the distances were more than 5 ft. My main computer area is well over 50 feet from the media room. Never going to run Cat 5 that far let alone a bulky HDMI its just out of the question.
    This WiCast would be a perfect solution for a hi end theater setup if it had good wireless performance.
    All those power supplies and usb connections don't mean a thing if you can stash them out of site and avoid a long run of any type of wire.
    Problem with this is the shaky wifi.
    By the way my wireless Roku works great but it streams in a different way but still it works pretty much flawlessly.
  • Wardrop - Monday, November 01, 2010 - link

    Unless something really miraculous happens in the field of wireless data transmission, it's really a dead horse for high-bandwidth applications, especially as bandwidth demands continue to increase. Compared to fibre, or even copper, wireless is inferior on so many levels. The only convenience is the lack of wires and the portability that comes with that. But for most high-bandwidth applications, portability isn't really critical, it's more the lack of wires which becomes the main attraction. The main reason being, is probably because people don't want to run ugly cables around their house, or drill holes in their wall.

    But... that's only because the houses of today are built with the same limitations as the houses of last century. To run a cable out of site, you need to someone to drill holes in your wall, and climb in your attic or under your house. The process needs to be repeated any time you decide to move your equipment.

    What would be nice, is if building were made to accommodate easy routing of cables to any room, via duct or tray systems. The skirting along the bottom of all your walls could easily be made hollow and easily removable, to accommodate installation of cables by simple home users. How you get the cable into and out of this skirting could be achieved in any number of ways. Drilling holes is one option, but I'd like to see pop-out plugs or something every one or two feet, either at the top of the skirting, or just on the face of it. If done cleanly, it should just look like a faint repeating pattern on your skirting. Over time, it will become accepted, much like power points, and light and fan switches are today (I bet they looked petty ugly when they first come to be).

    So my point is, instead of relying on wireless technology to get around limitations of today's homes, why not build homes which are designed to accommodate flexible cabling configurations. It just seems like the logical thing to do in the 21st century.
  • somedude1234 - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    You're asking the home builders to incur an extra cost so that some homeowner (not necessarily the original buyer) at some undetermined point in the future will have an easier time re-wiring for A/V/Data/whatever?

    Never going to happen. Home builders are the cheapest / greediest individuals you will ever encounter. If the original buyer isn't paying cost + an insane markup, why would the builder waste their money? Hint: the original buyer has the option to get cables, conduits, and/or trays run wherever they like, no need for a whole-house generic solution.

    I would settle for a minimum requirement that each building have a core that can be used to get cables between floors, and then let me worry about the horizontal runs.

    In lieu of that, I have a 4' flexible drill bit, and my drywall patching kit =/
  • mckirkus - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    I was going to buy two PCs, one to power my work PC and one as my HTPC. Now I can just invest in one solid PC and set up wireless HDMI on my second monitor out port. Audio over HDMI should work and with a bluetooth keyboard I can control media center from a distance.

    I think this just saved me $1000.
  • Homerboy - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    I already do this. Server is in the basement, but it also runs XBMC.
    I have long HDMI cabel running from basement to TV (A//V)
    Then I also us a USB over Cat5 adapter for the IR pickup and KB/mouse.
  • Splinter Cell - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    You got the point!
    I was planning both HTPC and Work PC, and finally I just make a hole on my wall and let the Work PC connect a HDMI cable to my TV. Added a Logitech PS3 bluetooh keyboard (with touch pad) and now I can fully setup my work PC as a HTPC.
    I think this wireless set can save me a hole on my wall....
  • duploxxx - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    many respond with cable etc, it is just not always possible.... in my case it isn't.

    so the wireless is something that would be interesting to me, but i would require multi source, so it would have been awesome that the sender part would be able to cover more sources.
  • taltamir - Tuesday, November 02, 2010 - link

    wireless has always been vastly inferior to a cable connection, and always will be*

    *unless we unlock instant communication quantum entanglement type communication, if that is even possible.
  • Speed3mon - Wednesday, November 03, 2010 - link

    There are two things i do just about every day, one is visit this website(i love it) and play Quake wars.
    Anand I would be very interested in learning your player name.
  • Speed3mon - Thursday, November 04, 2010 - link

    ^Dustin Reply
  • Zap - Friday, November 05, 2010 - link

    Is it just me, or is the whole obsession with getting rid of cabling getting a bit out of hand? That's just what we need, more cancer rays being broadcast. Reply

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