Are HDMI Cables Backward Compatible?
People are upgrading their systems all the time. As they do so, they start to worry about their HDMI cables. They’ve read or heard stories about older HDMI cables creating all sorts of issues. Some people want to be proactive. But are HDMI cables backward compatible? If they upgrade their HDMI cables and not their other gear, will it cause issues? Let’s discuss!
As much grief as we give HDMI over here, they have done one thing right. Their newer cables are backward compatible with older cables. If you have an older HDMI cable that you need to replace for whatever reason, you can do so with a brand new Ultra High Speed Certified HDMI cable and not worry about “breaking” anything. We’ve even got a guide to help you find the least expensive options. Will your system look or sound any better with this newer cable? No! But your cable will, at least, be up to date.
Do You NEED To Upgrade Your HDMI Cables
If you haven’t upgraded any of the rest of your home theater gear, you don’t need new HDMI cables. They will make no difference to your sound or picture. Most of the time, you can upgrade one or more pieces of gear without needing new HDMI cables. If your system isn’t experiencing any performance problems or dropouts, then you don’t need a cable upgrade.
Your equipment will default to the highest resolution or capabilities of your weakest device. Replace one thing? Well, everything else is still old so you don’t have a problem. But replace enough things and eventually, you will.
If one of your HDMI cables breaks, or if you are installing one in a wall, you should upgrade them to the highest possible quality HDMI cable solution. This will ensure that any future upgrades won’t be hamstrung by your older HDMI cables. Plus, since new HDMI cables are backward compatible, they’ll work just fine with your old gear.