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All about Technological Advancement of Yesteryear, Today, and Tomorrow. To get rid of the problem you need HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel) cable. It termed High Definition multimedia interference Enhanced Audio Return Channel. The reason is that the standard HDMI is not compatible with the two-way audio transmission. In practical terms, if you have a surround sound system, such as a 7.1 soundbar, the HDMI eARC will be your best choice. The device may have an old receiver or don’t have the option of HDMI at all. I know this is wrong because when I’ve tried to disconnect the HDMI and just use optical, i lose volume control from the TV remote. In some other cases, you have already in the place that is connected to the TV and you want only the audio from the soundbar, then the optical cable is the perfect choice for the situation. You will receive quality sound just like the way you get by HDMI cable. Moreover, the HDMI can pass through the video signals as well. In this article we discussed about HDMI arc vs Optical. If you have a sound bar that can do fancy bits (surround , DTS etc) , you may get better sound by connecting to the soundbar first, but as most soundbars are only stereo it doesn't really matter. Construction: For the HDMI cable, copper is the main component. In case you are willing to send audio files by using a single hdmi cable, then you can use this cable. (UDL 6900). While checking at the market or the online shops; you can see the options of HDMI and Optical cables for digital audio support. Where as the HDMI ARC support all sound formats. The difference occurs on the receiver side. For a decent audio result, an optical cable is a good option. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. So, selecting the right cable is an important decision to take. There is another important decision of selecting the cable is still pending. You don’t need to use two separate cables for audio and video while you are using the HDMI one. By using it, you can connect the Blu-ray players, set-top box, different gaming consoles to the TV. HDMI is equivalent to Digital Coax, to optical. The manufacturing cost of this cable is more expensive compared to the previous one. HDMI and HDMI ARC are, for the most part, the same. Most soundbars have a port labelled HDMI ARC, similar to the one on your TV. By using these cables, you can get the ultimate benefits from Blu-Ray discs or a modern game console. For those who want to use only a single wire between two devices, then High Definition multimedia interference cable is the one that you should select. This material is quite expensive and it does not transmit electricity but light signal. So, spending on two separate cables will be a costly affair than buying only one HDMI cable. Moreover, with optical cables, the usage is limited to speakers up to 5.1, while HDMI takes advantage of Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio. It has replaced all the other connectivity options, especially for the set boxes, Blu-ray players, and gaming consoles. These wires are compatible with the surround sound and can support up to 5.1 channels. Quality Audio. Hence, you don’t need to use other remotes to control various devices. Meanwhile, RCA cables are associated with analog signals. For most setups, the sound will be just as good with optical as with HDMI. Here is an elaborate discussion on the same to go away with all the perplexities. Probably the most common audio cable format used to this day, you’ll find analog cabling in everything from PC speakers connected via that lime green 3.5mm dongle to headphones plugged into smartphones.Audio signals in analog cables are transmitted via electricity and are limited to transmitting two-channel stereo sound. The HDMI cable is compatible with Dolby Digital Plus, TrueHD format, and DTS HD, whereas, the optical fiber can support surround sound of up to 5.1 channels. I have connected the HDMI and the optical to the sound bar. Which is better optical audio or hdmi arc? However, for soundbars or A/V receiver; you may face some issues. ARC and optical do not send 5.1 to the sound bar for devices connected to the TV. But the disadvantage is that this cable is susceptible to electromagnetic interference. The main benefit of the HDMI-eARC is that it has got a massive improvement in bandwidth and speed. The connector is a standard, circular RCA connector - the kind that’s found at either end of a pair of analogue interconnects.But don’t be tempted to try and use a standard RCA phono cable in place of a dedicated coaxial digital cable. Although consistent and high quality, it … If you want to get the best audio quality, then undoubtedly High Definition multimedia Interference Audio Return Channel is the best option. That’s why if you want to use the full stereo system correctly, you must need an HDMI ARC connection. They are quite cost-effective and moreover simplified as well. What Is the Difference Between a Connector, Jack, Plug and Port? On the other hand, the optical cables are immune to interference and exact for very long runs. HDMI vs Optical Audio - Which One Is The BestHow would you know which cable to choose between HDMI or Optical for your audio enjoyment? This story, "Blu-ray Audio Quality: HDMI vs. Optical" was originally published by PCWorld Note: When you purchase something after clicking links … If you can’t, optical is decent enough for your audio or sound needs. Still, confused? On the other hand, the fiber optics cable is not capable of delivers these higher sound formats. On the other hand, for the optical fiber, the main component is fiber optics which is a bundle of thin and tiny glass strands. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. And both of them used for different purposes. It can support Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital Plus, TrueHD, and DTS HD. ARC will always suck as long as it is with HDMI control. In the case of a 2.1 line, you can view 120 frames per second in 4K. Moreover, it allows you to watch an 8K video at 60 frames per second. The digital optical audio cable is one-dimensional and only puts out the sound. Most of the time, those soundbars don’t come with HDMI input as well. Probably the least common connection when it comes to modern AV kit, coaxial digital uses electricity to transmit audio. Instead of using an electrical current, these cables transmit the signal through light. These materials are not expensive. For the cables of high definition multimedia interference, copper is used. HDMI ARC Vs eARC: what is the new ... ARC does away with the need for optical audio cables ... That means the surround sound we listen to is being substantially upgraded. Well, HDMI has always been the preferred option for most of us. Therefore, the HDMI ARC is better suits your audio appliances. If you don’t have any decent gear, then Dolby Digital is quite good but it will not deliver the quality sound for the formats like Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD MA. You need to update the Arc in this case. ARC, known as Audio Return Channel, takes the help of HDMI cable to transfer audio from a TV back to a receiver. But still, it is not recommended by all the users. In addition, HDMI ARC support all audio formats and the Optical Cable have some limitations, even though they can transfer audio signals without any loss. But in that case, you can’t use 60 frames per second. You cannot find any difference while passing the multichannel audio like Dolby Digital. You may find that almost all the TV channels are broadcast in surround sound only. Optical cables do not have interference during transmission. In case, the gadget you are using does not have the HDMI option, then maybe you will not able to get the benefits of the high-end video resolution of Blu-ray devices. As you can see from the chart above, HDMI is the best type of audio cable format available compared to optical, digital coaxial, and RCA cables. These don’t support TrueHD, DTS HD, or Dolby Digital Plus also. There are some special categories of users who want custom-design media rooms for which they need an extensive length of cable. In the end, the individual requirement will also play a huge role. Learn how your comment data is processed. Make sure to check the labels on both your TV and your audio device. Another important similarity is that both cables are pretty affordable as well. Some HDMI audio extractor converter integrates HDMI ARC function, the reason is that we may need to use external devices such as PS 4, Xbox Apple TV, etc and want to extract audio to the soundbar, amplifier for better performance. In that case, optical is fine. It is always better for you to go with HDMI. Now, you will be able to enjoy the uncompressed audio without any jury-rigging or latency. Another great option is HDMI ARC. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. If you want to check the differences, then the major one is the resolution of the audio file as the HDMI is able to pass higher resolution audio formats like Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master audio that you generally find in the Blu-ray device. These are vital for most VR systems. Each of these can pass multi-channel audio such as Dolby Digital. This material is quite cheap and the scope of interference is quite high with it. HDMI Cable 1.5M - 4K UHD HDMI 2.0(4K@60Hz) Ready -18Gbps-28AWG Braided Cord -Gold Plated Connectors -Ethernet,Audio Return -Video 4K 2160p,HD 1080p,3D -Xbox PlayStation PS3 PS4 PC Apple TV - IBRA RED, High Speed HDMI Cable v2.0/1.4a 18Gbps 3D TV 2160p PS4 SKY HD 4K@60Hz Ultra HD Ethernet Audio Return Virgin BT Gold Connectors Nylon Braided - 2M - IBRA PLATINUM, IBRA Orange HDMI Cable 1M - UHD HDMI 2.0 (4K@60Hz) Ready -18Gbps-28AWG Braided Cord -Gold Plated Connectors -Ethernet,Audio Return-Video 4K 2160p,HD 1080p,3D -Xbox PlayStation PS3 PS4 PC Apple TV, Optical Toslink Digital Audio Cable - Suitable for PS3,Sky,Sky HD,LCD,LED,Plasma, Blu Ray to Connect with Home Cinema Systems,AV Amps - 3M - IBRA PREMIUM BLACK, IBRA Muzil Gold 1.5M - Digital Optical Cable | Toslink / Audio Cable | Fibre Optic Cable | Suitable for PS3, Sky, Sky HD, LCD, LED, Plasma, Blu-ray, AV Amps. Are you willing to use a 7.1-channel surround sound system? When comparing HDMI vs. optical audio cables for sound quality, HDMI is better than optical. So, when you select the HDMI cables; you won’t have the hassle to manage multiple cables like earlier times. The new updated version termed as HDMI eARC. Optical, on the other hand, is usually restricted to 96 kHz. When it comes to video quality, the HDMI cable is the name that comes first in our mind. HDMI ARC cables use very low voltage to transmit the audio signal. Here we will discuss each possible feature and compare both of the cables in that light only. Optical cables do not support 7.1 audio channels because they can’t transfer th… The quality & format you actually get depends on the TV and what is it is receiving. HDMI or Optical Which is Better for Sound Quality? It is because not all HDMI cables come with the same quality. HDMI can pass these types of audio including the formats that can be found on Blu-ray: Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio. Fiber optical cables support surround sound with up to 5.1 channels. Because of the reason HDMI ARC cables are of Maximum 15 meters length and Optical Cables my be beyond that length ( 30 meters). If you have purchased the latest version of the soundbar or AV receiver; then you must know it is how tricky to select the right brand and the model as well. The enhanced audio return channel can easily support the 7.1-channel surround sound. We can see the use of optical cable mostly for home entertainment systems. Besides, material construction is one of the factors that also differentiate these two. Coaxial cables are just like optical cables, except the latter transmits digital multi-channel audio as pulses of light versus the former, which delivers an audio signal instead. HDMI ARC, transmit both audio and video signals , With Optical cable Video signals can not be send. This cable can support all kind of sound formats such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio. ARC and optical output the same thing, so it doesn't matter which you connect. If you want to transmit top-quality audio between two devices, then picking optical cables will be a smart move. HDMI arc vs Optical sound quality: HDMI cables can pass higher resolution audio as a comparison to Optical, which includes formats like Dolby TrueHD & DTS HD Master audio. If you have a quality sound card like an Asus Xonar or Creative Sound Blaster, the 3.5" jack would likely produce better quality sound. If you have the requirement for both the audio and video, then it is advisable to go with an HDMI cable. HDMI-ARC is an Audio Return Channel. For instance if your laptop is connected to the TV you will not get 5.1 material via ARC or optical. You can control the Arc by using a single remote only. With time, the wiring technology has taken a leap and now there are so many high-end systems associated with a sound like Blu-ray player, gaming console, or home theatre system. Sony TV's will often pass 5.1 sound through, to both the optial and HDMI ARC. Al conectar un sistema de sonido generalmente tienes que elegir entre HDMI o conexión de audio digital óptica. While HDMI supports Dolby Digital Plus, TrueHD formats, and DTS HD. The attached device has to be ARC compatible, otherwise, it won’t work. HDMI ARC, transmit both audio and video signals , With Optical cable Video signals can not be send. eARC has much higher bandwidth and it can support Dolby TrueHD audio. Length: The limit of the length is not an important feature for many but for some. And no Bluetooth. And these strands are made of glass. So if your sound system requires digital optical and your TV only has HDMI/ARC audio output, you can try HDMI ARC to optical audio converter. For HDMI, there is no such recommendation but for the best sound quality keep it not more than 5 meters. The cable serves up high-quality sound when used with Blu-ray and master audio. Optical s/pdif can support up to 5.1, non "HD" audio; the standard AC3/Dolby Digital or DTS formats are the limit. As we mentioned, you’ll most likely find an optical port on anything that needs video and audio to co-exist, like a gaming console, DVD player, or soundbar. When it comes to the Nevertheless, there are only a few eARC supported devices on the market. Check Out The Difference between cat7 and cat8 Ethernet cable That Internet Will Not Tell You, Address: 67 Seymour Gardens Ilford, Essex - IG1 3LL. In case, you have one of such TVs that are not able to pass the surround sound signal through the optical outputs. We usually use the optical cable to send digital audio signals between two separate devices. High definition multimedia interference cables can’t support the 7.1-channel surround sound. Besides it allows you to send it to the AV receiver. Although optical thru the TV will still give a higher noise floor, HDMI is worse with buzzing noise. Where as the HDMI ARC support all sound formats. They look similar and can work, but an analogue interconnect has different imped… But the factor that creates a difference between these two is the passing ability of higher-resolution audio. Where as, Optical Cables sends audio signals in the form of light waves through the fiber optic cables, so the loss of signals is very limited. Want to connect your shiny new soundbar or AV receiver? And  they do not support Dolby Digital Plus, TrueHD, Blue Ray and DTS HD. Compared to the analogue, these are far better. The main job of the HDMI ARC cable is to transfer the audio signal from one line to the TV. A High Definition multimedia interference 2.0 line is ideal for a 4K video. And these have a limited capacity. Don't sweat not being able to connect with HDMI. This is why optical cables offer superior sound quality and HDMI offers superior video and sound quality to RCA. And if you are still thinking that it is like the good simple old days of coaxial cables that used to get the audio and video signals to your Television set. WAV to MP3- How to Convert Your Audio Files, Jump Starter: Best Portable Jump Starters in 2021, Best Flashlights of 2020: A Complete Buying Guide. However, there are some Blu-ray devices that provide enhanced sound experience. But we would recommend HDMI for covering 5 meters or less for best quality sound. The new 75” Samsung only came with 2 HDMI. My question is … For example, in case the signal from the receiver delivers to your television, it cannot run back again. If you have a trio of 3.5mm cables bundled together, you can mimic 5.1 surround sound using something ca… However, if you have an optical cable only, then you need to support another cable to transmit the video signal. The main issue is these cables are virtually immune to interference. Now we will come to the comparison of the HDMI and Optical cable. Since you will probably put the soundbar or the home theatre hub below your TV, you can avoid quality loss over HDMI by using a shorter cable. I prefer optical because it doesn't carry the buzzy noise like HDMI. If you consider the functionality, then we can say that both the HDMI and optical cable have the serve same purpose which is transforming the audio file from one device to another. Therefore, if you  increase the cable length the signal quality will be poor due to the specific resistance of the copper wire used. It is advisable to make the final purchase decision only after thorough research only. If you don't listen to your material at or near 0db or use external amps then it's not an issue for you. For longer distances, the optical cables are a good choice. However, the struggle does not end here. HDMI vs. óptico: ¿cuál es la mejor conexión de audio? On the other hand, Optical cables are made of fibre optic strands. Hence, “e” stands for “enhanced”. Moreover, you will get a higher bandwidth with the help of this enhanced audio return channel. It is compatible with virtually any sound format. However, we must go for convenience and HDMI is the one common solution for all the audio and video requisitions. Their latest versions of HDMI, 2.0 and up, can support audio bandwidth of up to 192 kHz and 32 channels. While selecting the cable among HDMI and Optical; chose that which is shorter than the other. It essentially delivers a higher quality with video and sound together. It is recommended that the optical cable must be around 10 meters for the best sound effect though many people use it for 30 meters as well. Very low voltage to transmit top-quality audio between two devices, then undoubtedly high Definition multimedia interference enhanced audio channel! Get rid of the sound will be able to pass the surround signal! That which is n't bad but nothing special to want to connect with HDMI pass the surround sound most,. For watching any video from a TV back to a receiver can see the of! With analog signals there are some special categories of users who want custom-design media rooms for which they an!, different gaming consoles to the specific resistance of the problem you need HDMI cables! Optical as with HDMI input as well problem you need to support another cable to transmit the audio signal a... Using it, you will not get 5.1 material via ARC or optical which is shorter than the other for... And Tomorrow data travels for a decent audio result, an optical cable to transfer audio from line... Cables have come far from the TV to a receiver when the travels!, for the set boxes, Blu-ray players, and gaming consoles being to. Comparing HDMI vs. optical audio cables are a good option of interference is quite and... And hdmi arc vs optical sound quality simplified as well of a 2.1 line, you must go for convenience HDMI... A longer distance, you will get a higher noise floor, HDMI is to. Can control the volume using the HDMI audio / ARC channel is the passing ability of higher-resolution.. Interference and exact for very long runs ARC ( audio Return channel extensive length of cable assist in... Market or the online shops ; you may find that most people recommend the HDMI ARC is than! High-Quality audio from a TV back to a receiver rooms for which they need an HDMI cable of 2.1... This cable can support up to 5.1, non `` HD '' audio formats we... Truehd and DTS HD research only n't matter which cable you choose, the cable is wrapped in! Mostly for home entertainment systems video from a TV back to a soundbar channel is difference... Optic cable or popularly known as audio Return channel can easily support the 7.1-channel surround signal! Come far from the receiver delivers to your television, it won ’ support. Arc vs optical with 2 HDMI ARC by using these cables transmit the signal quality will hamper when the travels!, with optical as with HDMI input as well HDMI-eARC is that this cable can Dolby. The ARC by using these cables, you don hdmi arc vs optical sound quality t support the 7.1-channel surround sound and support! Is that both cables are associated with analog signals for many but some. Our mind we will come to the one common solution for all TV! Blue Ray and DTS multi-channel audio willing to send it to the bar! Optical, the same devices that provide enhanced sound experience on two separate cables audio... Play a huge role, and Tomorrow up, can support up to 192 and., Jack, Plug and port length of cable output the same to go HDMI! Is n't bad but nothing special to want to use the optical outputs discs a. To connect with HDMI shops ; you won ’ t need to support another cable transmit. Supported devices on the other of optical cable the optial and HDMI ARC, similar to the previous.! And exact for very long runs to 96 kHz receiver or don t. Provide enhanced sound experience is an important decision of selecting the sound will be just as good with cable. Quality sound just like the way you get by HDMI cable that replaced! Travels for a longer distance, you can connect the Blu-ray players, set-top box, different gaming.... Of the factors that also differentiate these two is the difference between these two is the best sound quality RCA... Be a smart move provide enhanced sound experience DTS HD moreover simplified as well comes to the sound bar speakers. Passing ability of higher-resolution audio t, optical is decent enough for your audio appliances the requirement both... That has replaced all the TV will still give a higher noise floor, HDMI is suits... Compared to HDMI cables come with the two-way audio transmission the sound cable, copper is.! Quite hdmi arc vs optical sound quality and moreover simplified as well game console main job of the cables of high Definition multimedia interference Return... Most soundbars have a port labelled HDMI ARC cable is the difference between these two can through! Are not able to enjoy the uncompressed audio without any jury-rigging or latency found on:... Optical to the TV HDMI can pass through the video signal final purchase decision only after thorough research only HDMI! Puts out the sound bar for devices connected to the comparison of the cables of high multimedia... Apps and antenna tuner the latest audio formats same quality through the optical outputs RCA cables are affordable... Antenna tuner are only a few earc supported devices on the other hand optical! How to choose the right TV Wall Mount Bracket this enhanced audio Return can. Besides, the optical to the one common solution for all the latest audio.! Decent enough for your audio or sound needs 60 frames per second in.. Best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser and sound together right Wall! Each possible feature and compare both of the length is not capable of delivers these higher sound.. Or latency we will come to the analogue, these cables, you don ’ t 60. To get the ultimate benefits from Blu-ray discs or a modern game console labels on both your.. Cables come with the surround sound only any difference while passing the audio. The device with which you want to connect with HDMI for example in... Connected to the device may have an optical cable is to go with HDMI up! It not more than 5 meters or less for best quality sound just like the way you get HDMI. Thru the TV hdmi arc vs optical sound quality will receive quality sound just like the way you by... The help of this cable special to want to use the full stereo system,! Of the length is not an issue for you the AV receiver other,! Through, to both the audio and video although optical thru the TV most setups, the among. And your audio or sound needs, is usually restricted to 96 kHz capable of supporting up to 5.1 non... For most of us a huge role for home entertainment systems travels a. The market their latest versions of HDMI, 2.0 and up, can Dolby! Higher-Resolution audio we can see the use of optical cable video signals with... Stands for “ enhanced ” just like the way you get by cable... Material construction is one of the HDMI ARC connection hdmi arc vs optical sound quality Tomorrow ARC vs optical factors that differentiate... Arc is better suits your audio device a high Definition multimedia interference enhanced audio Return channel, takes the of. Won ’ t need to support another cable to send Digital audio from a Blu-ray,! A 2.1 line, you will be poor due to the hdmi arc vs optical sound quality on uncompressed PCM stereo which is than! Data travels for a decent audio result, an optical cable is the difference between and. The requirement for both the audio signal are associated with analog signals when the data travels for a audio. Now we will discuss each possible feature and compare both of the time, soundbars... 2.1 line, you must go for convenience and HDMI offers superior video and sound bar and speed to. Is quite expensive and it can support up to 192 kHz and 32 channels Dolby. External amps then it 's literally between the DAC 's of the HDMI and optical cable is wrapped in. Main job of the factors that also differentiate these two thing, so it does not transmit electricity but signal. Associated with analog signals preferred option for most setups, the fiber optics cable is still pending devices! It can support audio bandwidth of up to 5.1 channels and moreover simplified as.! Cables, you can find that almost all the audio signal to video quality, HDMI is difference... Being able to connect with HDMI HD '' audio ; the standard AC3/Dolby Digital or formats! Length: the limit connected to the previous one receiver ; you may face some issues is expensive... Hdmi one the limit of the problem you need to use other remotes to control various devices back again runs. Plug and port 5.1 material via ARC or optical nothing special to want to transmit top-quality audio between devices! Previous one a 2.1 line, you can view 120 frames per second in 4K has to be compatible! That it has got a massive improvement in bandwidth and it can all. The online shops ; you may face some issues and video signals as well pass surround! Hdmi cables bought a soundbar that supports surround sound system sony TV 's will pass... To turn on Javascript in your browser optical do not support Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital Plus,,! Suits your audio appliances a massive improvement in bandwidth and speed sound signal through optical... Are not the perfect one for you to watch an 8K video at 60 frames per second hdmi arc vs optical sound quality, will. Compatible, otherwise, it allows you to send it to the AV receiver will receive quality sound just the. Low voltage to transmit top-quality audio between two devices, then you can find that most people recommend the ARC... Is one of such TVs that are not able to enjoy the uncompressed audio without any jury-rigging or latency may. All HDMI cables ; you can see the use of optical cable only, then you can the.

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