I’m sure most of you have gone to Best Buy or some other retail outlet and have seen Monster Cables. They are the cables that have super fancy packaging and brag about how superior they are. I’m going to save you a lot of money and explain why most of the things that Monster says about their cables are not lies, but not full truths either.
Monster Black Platinum HDMI Cable 9 ft:
Specs taken from Monsterproducts.com
27Gbps Ultimate-high speed rated
Cable For Life performance guarantee
For those who demand the best in high definition home theater – now and in the future
Ultimate 1080p, ultra HD 4k at 60fsp
Delivers up to 7.1 lossless digital surround sound for the ultimate movie, music, and game experience
So let’s break this down:
27Gbps Ultimate-High Speed – Let’s break this down a little bit, most HDMI Cables are rated as high speed (category 2) or standard speed (category 1) by the HDMI Organization (http://www.hdmi.org/). The HDMI Organization is the group that defines the standards for HDMI. High Speed is rated for 1080p and 4k signals. That being said though, even a standard speed cable could handle 1080p, it’s just not rated for it. Normal speeds for an HDMI Cable are 3.4 Gbps (10.2 Gbps total, there are 3 lines / channels in one HDMI Cable). I’m not sure exactly how Monster gets to 27 Gbps, my guess is that they add more channels to the cable itself but that doesnt really matter. What matters is that the claim that the cable can do 27 Gbps is not proven and Monster will probably not be able to give you a straight answer about how they got to the number. The “faster” a cable is will not make your picture look any better or your sound, sound any better.
Cable for Life – The only reason I could ever see having a lifetime warranty on a cable is if that cable was really expensive… which, Monster Cables are. A 9 foot Black Platinum Monster Cable goes for $99.99 at Best Buy.
Future Proof! Ultra 1080p and 4k! – Seeing how currently 4k TVs are just starting to gain momentum, I don’t think that you need to future proof your cables at this point. but oh wait, normal Category 2 (High Speed) HDMI Cables can display 4k. Also, the term “Ultimate” in front of 1080p is just dumb. 1080p is 1080p anyway you slice it, a cable isn’t going to make someones 1080p movie look any better.
Delivers up to 7.1 Lossless Surround Sound – Any HDMI Cable can do 7.1 surround sound and deliver it… that’s what the cable was built to do, carry signals.
Let’s take a quick look at a competing HDMI Cable from Monoprice.com
This cable is a 10 foot HDMI Cable.
Without writing it all out here, the cable does EVERYTHING the Monster Cables claims. So you would think the price would be the same right? Wrong! The Monoprice HDMI Cable goes for: $5.15.
Most of what Monster relies on is fancy packaging and wording to make their cables stand out and thus are able to charge a whole lot more for a product that is essentially the same as a cheaper version. Just one last thought, the Monster Cables (and some other brands) claim that they can do 120hz and 240hz. Even that is a lie because the cable themselves can’t create those kinds of signals, the TV does, the wire simply transfers the data. So the $5 wire can also do 120hz just as well as the Monster Cable can.
Feel free to leave any questions if you want more clarification on this topic!