Which Works Best? HDMI Switch vs Splitter

By Best HDMI Switch | HDMI Switch Advice

Nov 21

We are now in a technological era where more technical terms and devices seem to be too complicated to understand and use. One of these is the HDMI. HDMI what? It stands for high definition multimedia interface.

It is a registered video/audio interface that transfers compressed or uncompressed digital audio data and uncompressed video data to a compatible video projector, digital audio device, computer monitor, or digital TV from a HDMI compliant source such as display controller.

Most digital TVs today come with only one or two HDMI slots. So you need a cable or device which will make the most out of these two slots. You can choose between HDMI switch or splitter but which one works best?

HDMI switch vs splitter – Knowing the basics

The standard one or two HDMI slot(s) for a digital TV is not enough. I know you want to hook up all the components you have and it would be inconvenient if had to unhook each component every time you want to use other devices. You need more slots.

There are two ways that you can choose from to have more slots on your TV – the HDMI switch or the HDMI splitter. This article won’t tell you which is better but it will look into each tool to help you determine which will work best according to your preferences.

What is HDMI switch?

A HDMI switch is a small box, usually weighing less than 12 ounces, connected to your TV as the “in”. It usually has 2-5 ports where you can plug other components such as gaming consoles, blu-ray player, DVD player, computer monitor, and other HDMI compliant devices. You can “switch” between all of the components. It is convenient because it usually comes with an IR remote control.

Disadvantages of HDMI switch

Some entertainment systems that use HDMI are intended to run together. For example, a DVD player can also simultaneously play with surround sound. With a HDMI switch, you can’t play more than one of the connected devices at a time.

What is HDMI splitter?

On the other hand, a HDMI splitter is connect to one HDMI port on your TV and splits into two. Therefore, if you connect two components to a HDMI splitter, both of them will be led back to the same port. HDMI splitters work like the traditional coaxial splitters.

Disadvantages of HDMI splitter

The major problem that users experience with HDMI splitter is the potential overloading of ports. When you use both components that are connected with the splitter, the TV screen may appear cluttered and the TV might react to it. On other instances, if you want to play one component on multiple TVs, the picture may appear jumbled or grainy.

Which works best for you?

Thinking about HDMI switch vs splitter? There is still some confusion as to which of these devices are best suited for specific needs. You might prefer a HDMI switch if you want to connect more components or gaming systems which you will not use all at once.

The splitters are preferable if you want to simultaneously use two or more components, using a blu-ray player for two TVs for example. If you want to avoid overloading your TV, many retailers recommend HDMI switchers.

HDMI history and versions

Since its development began in 2002, manufacturers have been constantly improving HDMI. The founders of HDMI are Panasonic, Philips, Silicon Image, Sony, Hitachi, Thomson, Toshiba, and RCA. They sold 5 million HDMI in 2004, 17.4 million in 2005, 63 million in 2006, and 143 million in 2007. It has become the standard of most high definition TVs.

When choosing HDMI, check its technical specifications such as compatibility, connectors, extenders, cables, cost, and communication channel protocols. Since many digital TVs have a standard 1 or 2 HDMI ports, you can choose between HDMI switch and HDMI splitter to increase the number of ports.

The purpose and disadvantages of HDMI splitter and HDMI switch have been discussed above. Choosing between HDMI switch vs splitter depends on your preference and purpose. At any rate, both devices make viewing and gaming experiences much better compared to analog TVs and other older devices. Truly, we are now in the technological era where convenient and better home entertainment is the norm.

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