HDMI is a marvel of technology. Digital pulses zoom over delicate wires, bringing you audio and video in sharp clarity and contrast. Paired with the newest LED televisions, it can certainly seem as though little slices of life are being beamed across time and space, directly onto your screen. HDMI is a sprinter, though, and not well-suited to marathon runs. Depending on output strength, cable quality, and a number of other factors, you might find yourself losing signal before you get to where you’re going. Resolution is usually the first to drop, followed by the sound or image. It doesn’t matter how long your cable is- if the signal can’t make it, you’ve got one high-tech jump rope.
The job of HDMI repeaters and extenders is to train or push the signal to go farther. There are several different ways to do that. One of the easiest ways is Vanco’s 280330. This HDMI repeater acts just like a regular coupler with female ports for connecting the ends of two cables. The real magic is on the inside. Using only the native 5V power carried over HDMI, this small and unimposing extender can essentially double the distance you can send your signal. It also comes with an optional power supply. It can be used without it, but adding power will allow this little box to boost your signal even more.
This basic coupler design means there’s no set-up. You just plug in your HDMI cables and, if you choose, the included 5V power cord. A special status light will let you know when this little box is up and running. With the added signal enhancement, you can expect to bend HDMI’s distance rules while still enjoying high resolutions, HDCP compliance, and full-channel audio. This extender is directional, so be sure to plug the cable from your source to this product into the “Input” and the cable going from this product to your screen into the “Output.”