Extending your centralized media input devices effectively
As TV prices have been increasingly affordable now it is common to find more TV’s being used. Generally most TV’s are placed along the edges of the wall as that is where the TV cables and media input devices are often located. These media input devices could be set top boxes, DVD/Blu-ray players, home theatre PC’s and Apple TV’s for example. Some media input devices are portable enough to be moved while other devices are larger and more difficult to relocate.
When did I realized I needed one?
A situation I came across recently is where I wanted to watch Blu-ray movies in the home theatre for my basement; however the Blu-ray player was in the lounge upstairs. Our home is relatively new and we had multiple Ethernet cables running within the walls which are easily accessible for internet. This allowed me to thread an Ethernet cable from the living room to the basement easily then connecting the transmitting HDMI Extender module in the living room to the receiving HDMI Extender module in the basement.
This is much more practical and cost effective compared to buying an extremely long HDMI cable as it will lose signal quality over a distance of 5 meters for most cables unless it is the more expensive Active HDMI cable. Active HDMI cables are usually not that long, coming in at around 100 feet and it is also extremely expensive costing upwards of $70 USD. If an HDMI cable was used, it would not have fit within our walls due to the larger cable design forcing me to decide about routing it along the floors and down the stairs which require even longer cables between the Blu-ray player and the TV. This shows that in a similar situation, it would be cheaper to use an extender with Ethernet cable which costs less than $60 USD together.
How it made a difference?
Since then I have been able to keep all my input devices together in the lounge and used the lounge TV to consume media content while also being able to utilize the home cinemas in the basement when I wanted to use the big screen too. It was extremely convenient to use as there was an IR receiver and IR booster on the extender which meant I could use the Blu-ray player remote in the basement to control the Blu-ray player upstairs. I also read that if a network switch is used then it could be used as a splitter. This is extremely useful to display the same content in different rooms or over long distances.
Or you can...