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Innovation

Who would pay for a $1,000 HDMI cable?

There's always been controversy surrounding the claims of companies like Monster Cable that their $100 cables are superior to the ones you can buy online for $5. It just happens to be very "convenient" that these pricier versions are the ones Best Buy stocks right next to the HDTVs, but never has the dirt-cheap ones that seem to work just fine for many of us.
Written by Sean Portnoy, Contributor on

There's always been controversy surrounding the claims of companies like Monster Cable that their $100 cables are superior to the ones you can buy online for $5. It just happens to be very "convenient" that these pricier versions are the ones Best Buy stocks right next to the HDTVs, but never has the dirt-cheap ones that seem to work just fine for many of us.

Anyway, it's one thing to argue the merits of these consumer-priced cables; it's another thing to consider the new Wireworld Platinum Starlight HDMI cable, which costs a whopping $1,000 for a one-meter version&#or more than many, many HDTVs. What do you get when you drop a grand on this glorified wire? According to the company's press release:

"The Platinum Starlight HDMI cable features molded carbon fiber connectors, the company's unique new 24-conductor DNA Helix™ design with solid silver conductors, and high-speed/high-bandwidth capabilities to meet even the most stringent system requirements - including the new HDMI v1.4 High Speed with Ethernet specification."

The design doubles the number of conductors that most other HDMI cables possess, which helps it have an incredible maximum throughput of 21Gbps, or more than twice that of the HDMI v1.4 High Speed spec. In addition to the one-meter version, Wireworld will also sell a range of these cables from 0.3 meters to 30 meters starting in February. (Imagine the price of the 30-meter version.)

So the Platinum Starlight HDMI cable is definitely designed for the future-forward home theater owner who wants to stay well, well ahead of the curve. Of course, that owner is probably named James Cameron or Jerry Bruckheimer, but the question is exactly when the technology that can actually make use of all that bandwidth will become available. After all, that HDMI v1.4 High Speed spec is new, which means it will be some time before someone will figure out how to use the 10.2Gbps of the spec, much less 21Gbps. (4k anyone?) And it once begs the argument as to whether you really need a $100 HDMI for a typical home theater, much less one that costs 10 times as much (or 100 times as much at MonoPrice.com).

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