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European Custom Installer

System Integration for the Connected Home

Cables and Accessories

Metra Debuts Passive HDMI Cables

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Metra VeloxMetra Home Theatre Group announces the Velox passive HDMI cables-- able to send 18Gbps data for up to 8m standalone and up to 21m when paired with the HDM-GA1 amplifier.

The pre-cut cable is available in different lengths, and uses the so co-called Quicksilver Transmission Line to support 18Gpbs, 4K/60, 4:4:4 and HDR transmission for 8m. As mentioned earlier it can also be used with the Gigabit Accelerator (HDM-GA1) to transmit up to 21m at a full 18Gbps.

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USB-C Gets HDMI Mode

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The HDMI Founders announce an HDMI Alternative Mode for the USB Type-C specification, allowing the connection of HDMI-enabled displays to video sources via USB-C, with no need for additional protocols or adapters.

HDMI USB-CAs announcement press release puts it, "this enables two of the most popular solutions for connectivity to come together-- the small form factor, reversible, and multi-purpose USB Type-C connector being adopted by smartphones, tablets and PC products, and HDMI, which is the leading display interface with an installed base of billions of displays."

HDMI Alt Mode includes all HDMI 1.4b features, including video resolutions up to 4K, Audio Return Channel (ARC), 3D, HDMI Ethernet Channel and Consumer Electronic Control (CEC). The HDMI cable uses the USB-C connector on the source side and any HDMI connector on the display side, all without adapters or dongles.

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PureLink Debuts Locking Screw HDMI Cables

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PureLink locking cablesPureLink announces a line of "locking" HDMI cables under the TotalWire brand. The cables support HDMI 2.0b and HDR content, and have a built-in screw-based locking system to prevent strain and loose connections.

In addition the locking system can eliminate the need for additional port savers and brackets. Spec'd at 18Gbps of bandwidth, the cables handle HDR, CEC and HDCP 2.2 to support multi-dimensional immersive audio and dynamic control options. Also included are multi-layer shielding for EMI protection, and support for 4K@50/60 (2160p) at 4:4:4 colour format.

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Murideo Releases Fresco SIX-A & Fresco SIX-G Combo

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 Fresco SIX-A and Fresco SIX-G Combo

Murideo releases the Fresco SIX-A and Fresco SIX-G Combination, giving AV integrators a new standard for testing, analyzing and commissioning HDMI distribution systems, cabling and interconnects to 18G.

The Fresco SIX-G HDMI Signal Generator & HDCP Tester was designed for the AV integration market to confirm HDMI 2.0 and HDCP2.2 compliance up to the 18 GBP/sec level.

The SIX-G also troubleshoots distributed HDMI systems and a reference source for video calibration (compatible with CalMAN, Light Illusion, and ChromaPure).

One of the biggest challenges for integrators today is determining what infrastructure to put in the systems they design while verifying all of the components will work together. Over the past few years UHD TVs have been a mix of HDCP 2.2 and 1.4, 300MHz and 600MHz –even to the point of varying by port. HDR also adds some unique challenges like exceeding the 10.2 GBPS HDBaseT threshold-- the SIX-G has a full suite of HDR tools to boot.

The SIX-G takes the guess work out of troubleshooting and provides absolute information about HDMI components that will work and identifies ones that won’t work – all in a hand-held, portable field tool.

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Transparent Audio With Shawline Cable

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The Chord Company promises the Shawline high-performance audio cables will add nothing to signals passing through-- “no colouration, no signal loss and no interference.”

Shawline cableFeaturing the company's Tuned ARAY technology, the Shawline analogue interconnects (available in DIN, phono and XLR versions) are fitted with silver-plated Chord VEE 3 phono plugs with PTFE insulation. Meanwhile the conductors are built from silver-plated multi-strand oxygen-free copper, insulated with PTFE and contained within a flexible outer jacket to further reduce noise.

Shawline also comes in a Digital flavour-- one using propietary ARAY conductor geometry and silver-plated Chord VEE 3 plugs with PTFE insulation or high-performance silver-plated BNC connectors.

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Connected Smarts Reach the Tape Measure

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The tape measure may be the last device one might say needs connectivity, yet the Bagel is exactly that-- a "smart" digital tape measure complete with companion app.

BagelThe Bagel offers 3 different measuring modes for users wanting to measure, well, everything. String mode is the most familiar mode, with Dyneema string one simply rolls out of the device, analog-style.

The second is Wheel mode, where users simply roll the Bagel around objects on a built-in wheel, while the 3rd Remote mode combines an ultrasonic sensor and a laser pointer to horizontal and vertical distances.

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USB Type-C. One Cable to Rule Them All.

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USB Type-C

The IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) and USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) announces IEC has formally adopted the latest USB-IF specifications for high-speed data delivery and enhanced usages for device charging.

These specifications-- the USB Type-C Cable and Connector, USB Power Delivery and USB 3.1 (SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps) define a single-cable solution for audio/video, data and power delivery.

The IEC specification numbers are noted below:

  • IEC 62680-1-3 (USB Type-C)
  • IEC 62680-1-2 (USB PD)
  • IEC 62680-3-1 (USB 3.1)

The USB Type-C™ specification defines the physical USB Type-C cable and connector form factor.

USB Type-C, sometimes referred to as USB-C, is a new shape of cable plug and port. Any USB Type-C connector is reversible: you can plug it in either way – upside down or right side up. Also, if you have a computer and a device and both have USB-C ports, you can plug either end of the cable into the PC, and the other in the peripheral.

USB Type-C is about the same size as micro USB connections, so it’ll fit in even the smallest of devices. Type-C USB is also great for charging. With bi-directional power, Type-C USB means your device can charge a peripheral--but if it runs low, the peripheral could charge the host device.

USB Power Delivery provides flexible, bi-directional power capabilities by enabling faster charging and increased power levels up to 100W. The spec defines standardized features that support the global adoption of interoperable power supplies, helping to reduce electronic waste and increase re-usability of adapters and chargers for consumer electronics.

When USB Type-C is combined with USB Power Delivery (USB PD) it can support a much higher power output – up to 100W at 20V and 5A. This is not only enough to charge smartphones and tablets but you can now charge a notebook with USB PD and Type-C. (This adds confusion because some USB 3.1 ports have the 100W Power Delivery feature, while others do not. And some USB 3.0 cables have it, and some do not. And some new laptops like the Apple MacBook and Google Chrome Pixel have such ports for charging.) This also means that devices like hard drives and USB hubs won’t need a separate power cable.

USB 3.1 enables speeds up to 10 Gbps, supporting audio/video for USB hosts, hubs and devices.

Combined with USB Type-C, USB 3.1 and USB Power Delivery define a single-cable solution for audio/video, data and power delivery, building on the existing global ecosystem of USB/IEC 62680 series of International Standards compliant devices.

“USB is arguably the most prolific technology worldwide considering the widespread adoption of devices and global consumer recognition,” says Jeff Ravencraft, USB-IF President and COO. USB Type-C, combined with USB Power Delivery for faster charging and USB performance, is the last cable anyone will ever need. USB-IF is pleased the partnership with IEC has resulted in the approval of these key specifications.”

Go IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission)

Go USB Implementers Forum