If you are familiar with the electronic industry, you must have heard about the HDMI vs Component cables debate. And you might have a strong opinion about it.
Although everyone agrees that HDMI’s quality is better, that doesn’t seem to be enough to settle the HDMI vs Component cables debate satisfactorily. If it did, there wouldn’t be people supporting Component cables. The people on that side of the HMDI vs Component cables issue argue that the improvement in the image doesn’t justify the money that is needed to make the change. Especially with plasma TVs and high definition TVs costing as much as they do.
As with most debates that last long, there isn’t a black and white answer that can settle the HDMI vs Component cables issue, since a lot of it relies on the conditions and situations of every person. For example, there are people who couldn’t care less what format they’re watching as long as they can afford it.
Nevertheless, something that can help clarify the HDMI vs Component cables issue is taking a look at the HDMI vs Component cables specifications. And the most important type of HDMI vs Component cables specification is the way these formats handle their respective signal. This is by far, the most essential point that differentiates HDMI from Component cables.
Old Component was conceived as a superior alternative to Composite. Composite is the yellow cable that was the video standard for a long time. It gathers all three colors of an image in one cable. It might not ring a bell to you by itself, but I’m sure you’ll recognize it if you see it along with the red and white audio cables that usually come with it. Well, composite uses the same idea, only that instead of just one yellow cable for video transfer, it uses three cables for video transfer. This allows each cable to handle one of the three main colors: red, green, and blue. These three colors are mixed to form all other colors in an image. Splitting the image into three colors gives a better image than having all colors combined in a single cable. In addition, Component requires the same 2 audio cables that Composite uses in order to transfer stereo sound. This gives us a total of 5 cables for transferring audio and video.
In contrast, HMDI was designed with high definition performance in mind, as well as technology that allows it to handle digital information. Instead of sending 3 signals of colors, HDMI cables send the output of a device in the form of digital information, with the help of a protocol, much like a file or an e-mail is sent from one computer to another. This allows for a much faster transfer rate and thus a better video resolution. In addition, it only requires one cable to transfer both video and audio.
Of course, price is also a great issue in the big scheme of the HDMI vs Component cables debate. While a plasma TV would indeed look better, video resolution is not the highest priority a person may have. And if you can still watch movies on your old TV, why spend so much money?
Finally, I suggest you take a look at a high definition resolution from a store or a friend’s house. Ask prices as well. After watching the difference in quality and discussing the issue with your wallet, you will be able to decide where to stand on the HDMI vs Component cables issue.