4K TVs are becoming more common nowadays so choosing a good HDMI cable is very important if you want to get the best picture quality out of it. With so many options on the market, how do you pick the right one? In this guide, we explain what are some of the factors to consider as well as a list of five of the best HDMI cables worth considering.
What to look out for when buying an HDMI cable
Let’s start by looking at what factors you should consider when deciding which HDMI cable to buy.
The first thing that you should look out for is whether the cable is certified by the HDMI licensing administrator. This gives you the confidence that the cable has been tested rigorously and that you will be getting the specifications listed on the box. While non-certified cables are cheaper, do you really want to skimp on a $20-$40 cable when you’re using it to connect to an expensive tv?
The next factor to consider is the bandwidth of the cable which is measured in Gigabits per second (Gbps). Standard HDMI, which covers HDMI version 1 to HDMI version 1.2 has a bandwidth of 3.96 Gbps. High Speed HDMI, also known as HDMI 1.4 has a bandwidth of up to 8.16 Gbps. Premium High Speed HDMI, or HDMI 2.0, has a bandwidth of 14.4 Gbps. Finally, the latest HDMI version, Ultra High Speed HDMI, or HDMI 2.1, has a bandwidth of 42.6 Gbps.
The bandwidth or data rate required is determined by the resolution and refresh rate of the display. For 4K @ 60 Hz, you would need at least a HDMI 2.0 cable. For 4K @ 144 Hz, you would need a HDMI 2.1 cable.
Another important consideration is the length of the cable. Ideally, you’d want to have as short a cable as possible to avoid the signal degrading which happens over longer distances. But because of where the furniture and power outlets are, sometimes, the TV may be far away from the gaming console or computer. We recommend that you get a HDMI cable that’s just long enough for your set up and add a little bit extra in case you need to move. Try to avoid cables that are longer than 18 feet unless you absolutely have no choice.
Best HDMI cables for 4K TVs
Now that we’ve gone over the important criteria to look out for when choosing HDMI cables, here are five of the best HDMI cables for your 4K TV.
The Anker 8K@60Hz HDMI cable is an Ultra High Speed HDMI cable that is backwards compatible with older HDMI specifications. This is the HDMI cable of choice if you’re looking for a replacement cable for your PS5 or Xbox Series X/S because it is able to support 4K @ 120Hz.
We mentioned how important it is to only buy certified HDMI cables and the Anker 8K@60Hz has been officially certified by the HDMI forum. You can see the holographic certification logo on the box and scan it to verify that it is legitimate. The cable has also undergone testing to ensure that it shields against electromagnetic interference so that it doesn’t mess with your wireless devices and networks.
The double braided nylon cable and premium connectors and pins make the Anker 8K@60Hz HDMI cable very endurable. Anker claims it can be plugged in and out 10,000 times and comes with an 18-month warranty.
The only downside to this otherwise very good cable is that it only comes in one length – 6.6 ft (2m). That should be sufficient for most setups but if your console and TV are far apart, you’d need to look at some of the other cables below which have longer options.
The Ubluker HDMI 2.1 cable is a certified Ultra-High-Speed HDMI cable that supports many devices including the PS5, Xbox X/S. Its 48 Gbps bandwidth gives you 4K @ 120 Hz which is good for gaming.
If your existing cables interfere with your wireless or Bluetooth devices, consider switching to a certified cable like the Ubluker HDMI 2.1 cable as it has been tested to ensure low interference with wireless networks.
The Ubluker HDMI 2.1 cables come in three lengths – 3.3 feet (1m), 6.6 feet (2m) and 10 feet (3m). If you need a longer cable for your set up, this would be a good choice.
What sets Monoprice apart from many of its competitors is that it provides a lifetime warranty for many of their products and this cable is no exception. The Monoprice 8K Certified Braided HDMI 2.1 Cable is fairly thick and stiff so if your set-up needs a lot of bending, you may need to consider other options like the Anker above.
The MonoPrice HDMI 2.1 cable has a bandwidth of 48 Gbps and is able to support 4K @ 120 Hz. It is ideal for use with the latest gaming consoles like the PS5 and Xbox X.
It comes in 4 different lengths: 3 ft, 6 ft, 10 ft and 15 ft. If you need a longer cable, the Monoprice HDMI 2.1 cable would be a good and affordable choice under $20.
The CableCreation 8K HDMI cable is a certified Ultra High Speed HDMI 2.1 cable that has a 48 Gbps bandwidth. 48 Gbps is able to support a 4K resolution @120 Hz. This is perfect for gaming consoles and also streaming options like AppleTV.
It has gold plated connectors to reduce the corrosion that can happen over time. The braided wiring helps to increase its durability as well. CableCreation provides a 2 year warranty for this product which should be more than enough. Usually, if there are going to be any problems, they would show up much earlier.
The CableCreation 8K HDMI 2.1 Cable comes in three lengths – 3.3 feet (1m), 6.6 feet (2m) and 10 feet (3m).
Fosmon’s 8K HDMI 2.1 cable has a bandwidth of 48 Gbps and can support video resolutions and refresh rates, including 8K@60Hz and 4K@120Hz. It is also backward compatible with HDMI 2.0b/2.0a/2.0/1.4/1.3/1.2/1.1 versions.
It is a cable designed for gaming, with features such as variable refresh rates, quick frame transports, quick media switching and auto low latency mode, which minimize latency and provide smoother, more accurate visuals and gameplay.
The cable is also built to be extra durable. It is CL3 rated and in-wall ready, and has been tested and certified by the HDMI Forum. It has flexible cotton mesh cable, heavy duty 24K gold-plated corrosion resistant connectors, high quality tinned copper conductors, triple cable shielding with tinplate and high-density aluminum shielding to minimize signal loss and interference. Fomson is confident about the durability of their product and offers a limited lifetime warranty.
Finally, Fosmon’s HDMI 2.1 cable is compatible with a wide range of devices, the PS5 and Xbox S/X gaming consoles, PCs, Blu-ray players, sound bars, and projectors.
Where to buy HDMI cables?
Most people buy their HDMI cables online as the comparison is usually done on the price, specs and the brand name of the cable. Online shopping allows you to compare easily. Major online retailers like Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart all sell HDMI cables and typically carry the more recognizable brand names.
You could also head down to you local electronics store and they should have HDMI cables as well. Local electronics stores tend to carry less recognizable brand name cables as they’re trying to keep the cost low. The most important criteria in our opinion is whether the cable has been certified by the HDMI body.
Final thoughts on the best HDMI cable for 4K TVs
We hope this post has helped to make your decision on which HDMI cable to buy clearer for you. Remember to consider whether the cable has been certified, the bandwidth as well as the length of the cable when you’re making your decision.
The price of certified cables has come down significantly and as long as you’re buying a cable 10 feet (3m) and under, the price is pretty low for quality cables.