HDBaseT Spec Finalized; Combines video, audio, network, power, and USB in one cable

by Alex Kuretz on July 3, 2010 · 6 comments

in News

The HDBaseT Alliance is a group of companies including Samsung, Sony, LG, and Valens Semiconductor who have joined forces to develop a solution for delivering high-definition video, audio, ethernet, and high power over standard Cat5e/Cat6 cables. The Alliance has recently announced that the HDBaseT 1.0 specification has been finalized, which means we should see devices such as Blu-Ray players, DVRs, and other devices available in late 2010 or early 2011. The Wikipedia page has a good introduction to the technology, and this document provides an overview for the features in the HDBaseT 1.0 spec and how it compares to other technologies such as HDMI.

I have to say that a robust feature set like this delivered via the low-cost ethernet cables that are already commonly available throughout many homes has me excited to see how it develops. Though I’m sure Monster Cable will find a way to sell a cable for 10x the normal market cost. What do you think, will this make HDMI obsolete?

Article by

I'm Alex Kuretz, and I'm the founder of MediaSmartServer.net. I was the Lead Test and Integration Engineer at HP for the MediaSmart Server until April 2008 when I moved on to other opportunities outside HP. I've kept active in the Windows Home Server community, creating several add-ins and helping users make the most of their Home Servers.


Damian July 3, 2010 at 4:48 am

@ Alex,

I saw this a few days ago and must say the idea is very exciting. I am interested to see how long it takes before manufacturers start integrating this into their products. I think this alongside Wireless HDMI could make HDMI cables obsolete (and really Wireless HDMI could make all cables obsolete in the future)

cskenney July 3, 2010 at 5:47 am

Reading through the info, it sounds really neat. I have to wonder about compatibility with the ethernet hardware already in use in our homes. In other words, do we have to worry about someone accidentally plugging a HDBaseT transmitter into a LAN jack and taking out network hardware (like my ethernet port on my router or PC)? Or, will this play nicely on the same cable and no isolation is necessary between HDBaseT and a LAN?

cskenney July 3, 2010 at 6:13 am

A little more reading and I found my answer. The HDBaseT is designed to be used on separate cabling. In the event that a network cable is plugged into the HDBaseT connector, the system will fall back to 100BaseT full-duplex mode using an internal ethernet switch.

Scott July 3, 2010 at 11:44 am

The real question here… will it have the HDCP issues that HDMI currently has?

Mac July 5, 2010 at 10:18 am

HDCP… if Sony is involved, it won’t have HDCP issues, it’ll be something far more complicated and awful.

Comp1962 July 11, 2010 at 8:18 pm

Nice write up Damian as usual. Very interesting information as I read through all the links you posted.

I wonder if there will be some sort of interface component that will be developed to connect and control Legacy Devices of which most of us has.

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