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New monoprice HDBase-T HDMI extender products...?


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#1 etc6849

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Posted 15 February 2012 - 06:37 PM

I'm working on more of a permanent install for several TVs in my home. It finally occurred to me that having a PC at each TV for Windows Media Center adds too much to the cost of my install. In all, I'll only have four TV's so why not share two PC's?

What I was thinking about using instead is two mini-ITX PC's in a 42" Leviton can. Each PC would feed into the 1x4 HDMI extender below. I haven't decided on a brand of TV yet, so feel free to comment on that too. What I'd like to get are TV's with a published text based IP protocol to where one could use a socket connection and control the TV or receive status changes from the TV when any of it's buttons are locally pressed.

I saw that new HDMI extenders and splitters are out that use HDBase-T signals. Could HDMI splitters and extenders finally be reliable? I've never used an HDMI splitter, but can a splitter distribute protected content over some number of displays? If so, what happens to the other displays when one display is turned off?

Here's the 1x4 extender and splitter combo I was looking at over at Monoprice:
http://www.monoprice...&seq=1&format=2

Edited by etc6849, 15 February 2012 - 06:39 PM.


#2 az1324

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 04:09 AM

Is it really HDBase-T? http://hdbaset.org/c...tified_products

#3 Frederick C. Wilt

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:40 AM

That doesn't appear to be a HDBaseT device - I'm thinking it's more of a typical HDMI over CAT device often lumped into the "balun" category.

#4 etc6849

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 10:54 AM

Yeah, I'm wondering if the description is wrong too. Could it be using the HDBaseT-Lite chipset? The price seems too good to be true for what it is if it's really using HDBase-T baluns.

Edited by etc6849, 16 February 2012 - 01:35 PM.


#5 etc6849

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:21 PM

Anyone have experience with this extender:
http://www.monoprice...rmat=4#feedback

At least it looks to be real HDBaseT with ethernet and IR. Although, I'm confused as to why Monoprice is listing things as "HDBase-T" instead of HDBaseT.

Having to buy the extenders separately really adds to the cost of my install, but I do want things to work.

#6 standon

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:33 PM

Anyone have experience with this extender:
http://www.monoprice...rmat=4#feedback

At least it looks to be real HDBaseT with ethernet and IR. Although, I'm confused as to why Monoprice is listing things as "HDBase-T" instead of HDBaseT.

Having to buy the extenders separately really adds to the cost of my install, but I do want things to work.


I use the extender above for my theater (from the rack to the projector). Previously I had used the $20 wall plate extender and I would get an infrequent flicker maybe once every hour - then I ran into the HDMI 1.4 thing (my projector is 3D). So far it works great, my run is not long at all but everything else I've tried didn't work. I don't use the IR function though.

I use it with the 4x1 3d matrix on monoprice, no issues at all. It's controlled via IR, so currently my Harmony One does all the work but I have plans to switch to a GC100 in the theater. The upgrade to 3D has really been annoying as my Marantz doesn't do pass thru and won't display 3D. How far are your runs?

Would XBMC work instead of Windows Media Center? It has a public API, there is a driver for it in CQC. You can give my old extenders a try if you want, I have a brand new set I purchased as a backup. It works surprisingly well for a $20 piece of equipment. Just pay the shipping to you. Both the link and the cheapo ones use two cat5/6 and recommend shielded cables.

Edited by standon, 16 February 2012 - 03:35 PM.


#7 etc6849

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 05:08 PM

Nothing's wrong with XBMC, but I haven't tried it a long time and my impression was that it doesn't offer PVR functionality without a third party program. For WMC control, I use vmcontroller and wrote a module for Premise that uses it. With vmcontroller and Premise I can send message pop-ups ("call from...." or "front door bell"), get a string of what's being played, etc.

My shortest run is about 30 feet, but my longest is probably 70 feet or more. This probably means that I don't need HDBaseT, but I was wanting to future proof some.

#8 standon

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:21 PM

Yeah the whole future proof thing is getting me right now ;)

Maybe HDBaseT stuff will drop in price in the future, 4K has been introduced and claims to use HDMI 1.4 as well. There are more 3D tvs advertised every week. My run in the theater is only 30 ft but I had to switch to HDBaseT. I tried the cheap wall plate extenders and a set of Gefen extenders with no luck.

#9 Frederick C. Wilt

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 12:22 AM

Yeah, I'm wondering if the description is wrong too. Could it be using the HDBaseT-Lite chipset? The price seems too good to be true for what it is if it's really using HDBase-T baluns.


The description mentions HDBase-T but nothing in the images shows the words HDBase-T on any of the devices or the box - so I am not sure. The other device you mentioned does show the jacks with the HDBaseT marking but again I am not sure.

I tend to be somewhat skeptical when it comes to Monoprice branded products.

#10 standon

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 12:16 PM

The cheap wallplate adapters are the daily deal today for $12.10 a piece.

#11 tadr

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 11:51 PM


The description mentions HDBase-T but nothing in the images shows the words HDBase-T on any of the devices or the box - so I am not sure. The other device you mentioned does show the jacks with the HDBaseT marking but again I am not sure.

I tend to be somewhat skeptical when it comes to Monoprice branded products.


I don't see how a typical HDMI-cat5/6 balun could transmit as far as monoprice is advertising without using HDBaseT over a single cable. All of the other comparable products require multiple cat-6 cables. I actually just ordered the 1x4 splitter on monoprice advertised as HDBaseT here: http://www.monoprice...&seq=1&format=2

I should be getting it early next week and will report back on performance. I'd be happy to crack it open (if it's easy to do so) and report back on what I find inside so hopefully we can confirm whether it is or is not HDBaseT after all.

#12 etc6849

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 03:13 PM

Thanks tadr :)

I'm particularly interested in how things work with 1080p over 60 feet and if any of the HD audio formats (TrueHD and DTS Master Audio) are supported. The description notes that LPCM is supported, but says nothing about other formats.

This 4 way HDMI splitter is still the cheapest hope for accomplishing what I want with my setup. I'm still curious too if it's using the HDBaseT Lite chipset. I tried getting that info from Monoprice and they sent me a non-disclosure agreement to sign?!?

#13 tadr

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Posted 02 March 2012 - 12:49 PM

Source is 1080P at 60hz from a HTPC.

Some initial findings/quirks:

1. I am getting green sparkles/noise in the picture over a ~75 foot run. However, that run is currently terminated in a patch panel in the basement and a keystone jack in the wall. (i.e., patch cable from HDMI splitter to patch panel, in-wall cat6 cable from patch panel to keystone jack in the room, patch cable from the keystone jack to the extender unit). The picture is 99% intact and watchable, but there is some clear corruption. I plan to crimp rj45 ends directly to the cable that's run in the wall (so there are no terminations other than the beginning and end points) and retest this weekend. I tested four drops in the room (this is our office, so I went a bit overboard with wiring) so I am confident it is not an issue with the particular cable.
2. I was unable to get one monitor to work when I had the receiving unit hooked up directly to the monitor via an HDMI-->DVI cable (this particular monitor supports DHCP, but does not have an HDMI port, only DVI). For some reason, when I put a monoprice 1x2 powered splitter in between the receiving unit's output and the input to the monitor (using only one output from the 1x2 powered splitter), I get a picture. This is an extremely short run for testing (~10 ft), so it is not a distance problem. This monitor works fine when the hdmi->dvi cable is connected directly to my source.
3. I previously used an HDMI detective on the output of my HTPC. I could not get a picture on any of my devices with the HDMI detective connected between the source and the HDMI splitter.
4. The picture looks perfect on two short runs, one to a 55" Samsung LED TV and the other to a 25" Asus LCD Monitor.

I plan to experiment more this weekend and will report back. It looks like I should be able to get it open fairly easily, so I'll also try to crack it open and post some pictures.

Unfortunately, I don't have a good way to test audio formats, so my testing will be limited to the 1080p video signal only.

Edited by tadr, 02 March 2012 - 12:51 PM.


#14 etc6849

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Posted 03 March 2012 - 10:46 AM

Thanks Tadr!

I may have done something stupid last night as I've already terminated the tv end to two cat6 keystone jacks before reading your post (home depot has the leviton cat6 extreme jacks for $3.49 on clearance). I haven't terminated the other end, but I was planning to coil the cat6 cable up and put a cat5e plug on the end (no patch panel). The reason for coiling it up is so I can have extra to run to a rack later, but can use the cables for internet now :) I ran two cat6 lines, so hopefully no matter what you find, I can buy one of the monoprice solutions (probably this one paired with a cheap monoprice matrix switch using rs232).

Over 75 feet is a must for my install as the project will quickly get vetoed if a TV isn't installed in the Master Bedroom!

1. I am getting green sparkles/noise in the picture over a ~75 foot run. However, that run is currently terminated in a patch panel in the basement and a keystone jack in the wall. (i.e., patch cable from HDMI splitter to patch panel, in-wall cat6 cable from patch panel to keystone jack in the room, patch cable from the keystone jack to the extender unit). The picture is 99% intact and watchable, but there is some clear corruption. I plan to crimp rj45 ends directly to the cable that's run in the wall (so there are no terminations other than the beginning and end points) and retest this weekend. I tested four drops in the room (this is our office, so I went a bit overboard with wiring) so I am confident it is not an issue with the particular cable.






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