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The Best (and Cheapest) HDMI Cables

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HDMI cables are simple. They either work or they don’t. It doesn’t matter what you pay for them, how pretty they look, or what kind of promises are made on the box. Once you plug it in, you won’t know the difference.

There are exceptions, of course. If your TV is farther than 25 feet from your cable box, Apple TV, or whatever else you want to connect to, you might need to find an HDMI cable with some sort of active component built in to amplify or relay the signal over such a long distance. But not a lot of people have setups like that. For the rest of us, the only real thing to check is speed. If you have a standard HD TV, literally any HDMI cable will work. If you have 4K, you want a cable that can handle 18Gbps (gigabits per second). That’s all you have to look for.

For my setup, a 50” TV hooked up to my PS4, I’ve been using a budget HDMI cable I found in my parents basement that, although it might be older than the Aesop fables, I’ve never had any issues with. Assuming you don’t have a similar dusty stash of cables to draw from, here are four good and inexpensive cables from reliable companies that will handle nearly any setup.

It supports a bandwidth up to 18Gps so you can also watch movies and television shows in 4K. It also has a lifetime warranty, so if it gets damaged or frayed, you just exchange it for a new one.

This cable has the same 18Gps speed and lifetime warranty, but it’s wrapped in a braided nylon coating that will prevent fraying.

Most TV setups do a good job of hiding cables, but if you’re hooking a laptop up to an external monitor, this slim cable has the same 18Gps speed rating and is a little more discrete. It comes with a lifetime warranty and is available in a variety of lengths from one to eight feet, but unless you’re confident your setup will never change, I recommend getting at least a six-foot length for versatility.

This 25-foot cable can handle distant hookups, like a projector that’s far from your cable box. As with the others, it’s also backed by a lifetime warranty.

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The Best (and Cheapest) HDMI Cables