Switches & Repeaters

Monoprice Is Going 8K!

Monoprice is going 8K! Monoprice announced a slew of 8K HDMI switches and splitters at CES. And now we have more details and pricing! So, if you missed the article, the Monoprice Blackbird 8K60 HDMI switches are their prosumer line of switchers/splitters/matrixes. They all offer 8K60, 4K120, and all the HDMI goodies you could want. And they start at $39.99! Let’s discuss. 

Shared DNA

All of the Blackbird devices share very similar specs, offering 8K60, 4K120, HDMI 2.1 specs, and support for all the HDR/HGL formats. On top of that, all the switches support HDMI audio passthrough for multichannel LPCM, Dolby, and DTS audio formats. Three of the units also offer audio extraction. This is helpful for those who want to pair these units with older AV receivers without eARC! Plus, each unit includes a wireless infrared remote for seamless control. 

Monoprice Blackbird Specs

  • Switches between two HDMI inputs and splits the signal to two HDMI displays.
  • Supports video resolutions up to 8K@60Hz 10-bit with the YCbCr 4:2:0 color space, including 8K@30Hz 10-bit with YCbCr 4:4:4, and 4K@120Hz 10-bit with YCbCr 4:4:4
  • Complies with the HDMI 2.1 and HDCP 2.3 specifications
  • Excellent for gamers, support for Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), Fast as Possible V-active (FVA), and Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) HDMI features
  • Supports HDR, HDR10, HDR10+Dolby Vision, and Hyper Log Gamma (HLG) passthrough
  • Supports multichannel compressed and uncompressed audio streams, Including LPCM, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital EX, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS:X, DTS 96/24, DTS High Res, DTS-HD Master Audio, and Direct Stream Digital (DSD)
  • Built-in signal equalizer with retiming
  • Advanced EDID (Extended Display Identification Data) management

The Monoprice Blackbird Lineup

Monoprice offers five units in their Blackbird line: two HDMI switches, two HDMI splitters, and an HDMI Matrix. 

Blackbird 8K60 HDMI Switchers

Blackbird 8K60 2×1 HDMI Switch ($39.99). Share any two HDMI sources to an HDMI display, supporting the latest source outputs up to 8K/60Hz and 4:4:4 12-bit sampling. 

Blackbird 8K60 2×1 HDMI Switch with Audio Extraction ($149.99. Provides the same HDMI switching functionality, resolution, frame rate, and sampling as the 2×1. Plus, splits audio from the HDMI stream. And this allows users to serve audio to their TV or display, as well as to an AV receiver or soundbar via TOSLINK or 3.5mm aux connection. 

Blackbird 8K60 HDMI Splitters

Blackbird 8K60 1×2 HDMI Splitter with Audio Extraction ($149.99). It can distribute any HDMI source up to 8K/60Hz with 4:2:0 sampling. And it sends it to up to two 8K HDMI displays. For example, the splitter can route HDMI audio to both displays via TOSLINK and 3.5mm aux by decoupling the HDMI audio signal. 

Blackbird 8K60 1×4 HDMI Splitter with Audio Extraction ($329.99). It supports the same resolution, frame rate, and sampling and distribute any 8K/60Hz HDMI source to up to four 8K HDMI displays.

Blackbird 8K60 HDMI Matrix

Blackbird 8K60 2×2 HDMI Matrix ($179.99) serves double duty as an HDMI switch and splitter. It can pass content from two HDMI sources to two HDMI displays. And it can send content from one of the HDMI inputs to two displays simultaneously. This unit routes source HDMI audio to the displays and connected audio systems via TOSLINK and 3.5mm aux outputs.

Our Take

I was excited when Monoprice announced these at CES, and I am excited to know the prices. Monoprice has made a name by offering high-value, low-cost products. And the Blackbird line is no exception. The competition better take notice! And offering a basic switch at $40 and an audio extractor at $140 is a great value. Plus, this will help you breathe new life into older gear, avoiding a costly upgrade! I for one, am glad Monoprice is going 8K!

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