HELP! HDMI broken in wall assembly!

C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
Disclosure: I'm a newbie to home A/V but understand most of the lingo. I just purchased a home that came equipped with speakers installed in the wall and ceiling, a built in cabinet to house the receiver with access area in the storage room behind. The previous owner had it installed and ran an hdmi cable from the receiver, through the wall and ceiling to the opposite wall where they cut a hole to connect to a TV. I plugged my apple TV into one of the HDMI inputs on the receiver and the outgoing HDMI (installed) to the HDMI output. It worked temporarily until I formally hung the TV with a new bracket and bent the HDMI to fit the turn it needed to make toward the TV (LG LED). I was unaware, until now, that you can't bend an HDMI like that. I purchased a new 50' HDMI in hopes to connect to the old and pull through the wall and ceiling with the new cable following. The old cable didn't budge. The local home theater companies won't come to the house to look. What do you think are my options? Wireless HDMI? Complete reinstall? I find it hard to believe that when they installed that HDMI, they didn't give an "out" in case the cable failed. I'm at a total loss here. I want to take advantage of the really nice speakers and theater setup, but I'm afraid I've just got high end wall art now. Any help this community can provide would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
 
everettT

everettT

Audioholic Ninja
If you have cat5 or six ran to both areas you can use baluns. Have you gotten in the attic to see what's up? Most installers use pipe and I stall a chase for times like these.
 
BoredSysAdmin

BoredSysAdmin

Audioholic Overlord
If you have cat5 or six ran to both areas you can use baluns. Have you gotten in the attic to see what's up? Most installers use pipe and I stall a chase for times like these.
cat6 or cat6A, don't use cat5 or cat5e with HDMI baluns. save yourself a few gray hairs.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
Curious also, what 50' hdmi cable did you get? Is it active or optical? That's a really long run....
 
O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
If the cable didn't budge then it sounds like the cable is either tacked into place or is hung up at a bend. Unfortunately it sounds like you will have to reinstall cabling. Even if you could get the current HDMI cable to work, my guess is that it won't be able to reliably handle the current video standards (HDMI 2.0b). If it's an old install, folks weren't that concerned about HDMI cables because you could run 1080i over long distances with just an active or even passive cable. 4k and 4k HDR has changed all that.

An option, albeit a bit expensive, would be to have an electrician run a conduit down the inside wall where your receiver is. This this can be done on a non-load bearing wall without opening up the wall.I've done it. Run the cable thru the ceiling as before, if you don't have a 2-story home (you don't need to install a conduit there if you don't want to even tho it does make a cable pull easier) and then down, via conduit to the tv side. Install a pull string as well for future cable pulls.

50' is long for any cable so if you're going to push 4k HDR at that distance, then I would recommend a hybrid fiber cable (Ruipro has excellent reviews). Currently, that's the most reliable way to push 4k HDR at 50'. Forget wireless HDMI.

Solid core CAT-6 cable (non-CCA and not CAT-6 ethernet cable), actively terminated with something HDBT (even tho that also has some issues right now) is another alternative. In fact, if you run conduit (which is the ONLY way to future proof cabling) you could go ahead and install the solid core CAT-6 and terminate it with a punch down keystone jack to extend your ethernet connection so you could hard wire your HTS. I do that now.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
Disclosure: I'm a newbie to home A/V but understand most of the lingo. I just purchased a home that came equipped with speakers installed in the wall and ceiling, a built in cabinet to house the receiver with access area in the storage room behind. The previous owner had it installed and ran an hdmi cable from the receiver, through the wall and ceiling to the opposite wall where they cut a hole to connect to a TV. I plugged my apple TV into one of the HDMI inputs on the receiver and the outgoing HDMI (installed) to the HDMI output. It worked temporarily until I formally hung the TV with a new bracket and bent the HDMI to fit the turn it needed to make toward the TV (LG LED). I was unaware, until now, that you can't bend an HDMI like that. I purchased a new 50' HDMI in hopes to connect to the old and pull through the wall and ceiling with the new cable following. The old cable didn't budge. The local home theater companies won't come to the house to look. What do you think are my options? Wireless HDMI? Complete reinstall? I find it hard to believe that when they installed that HDMI, they didn't give an "out" in case the cable failed. I'm at a total loss here. I want to take advantage of the really nice speakers and theater setup, but I'm afraid I've just got high end wall art now. Any help this community can provide would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
Why won't they come out to look at it?

It's hard to believe, but some installers don't think toward the future, which means, they think HDMI cables last forever. They don't, even if you don't bend them.

Did they install a Cat5e? If so, you can buy a set of HDMI extenders and hope they work but remember- single Cat5e won't pass 4K/HDR/full color.

Bend the cable back and see if it works-if it does, buy a Vanco super flex cable- they come with lifetime warranty.

https://www.vanco1.com/product/the-ultimate-hdmi-adapter-super-flex-flat-hdmi-high-speed-male-to-female-cable/
 
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C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
Curious also, what 50' hdmi cable did you get? Is it active or optical? That's a really long run....
I didn't know there was difference. The Best Buy person just handed me a box with a 50' HDMI cable after I told him my situation.
 
C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
If the cable didn't budge then it sounds like the cable is either tacked into place or is hung up at a bend. Unfortunately it sounds like you will have to reinstall cabling. Even if you could get the current HDMI cable to work, my guess is that it won't be able to reliably handle the current video standards (HDMI 2.0b). If it's an old install, folks weren't that concerned about HDMI cables because you could run 1080i over long distances with just an active or even passive cable. 4k and 4k HDR has changed all that.

An option, albeit a bit expensive, would be to have an electrician run a conduit down the inside wall where your receiver is. This this can be done on a non-load bearing wall without opening up the wall.I've done it. Run the cable thru the ceiling as before, if you don't have a 2-story home (you don't need to install a conduit there if you don't want to even tho it does make a cable pull easier) and then down, via conduit to the tv side. Install a pull string as well for future cable pulls.

50' is long for any cable so if you're going to push 4k HDR at that distance, then I would recommend a hybrid fiber cable (Ruipro has excellent reviews). Currently, that's the most reliable way to push 4k HDR at 50'. Forget wireless HDMI.

Solid core CAT-6 cable (non-CCA and not CAT-6 ethernet cable),actively terminated with something HDBT (even tho that also has some issues right now) is another alternative. In fact, if you run conduit (which is the ONLY way to future proof cabling) you could go ahead and install the solid core CAT-6 and terminate it with a punch down keystone jack to extend your ethernet connection so you could hard wire your HTS. I do that now.[/QUOTE
Thanks, Otto. I was afraid of that. I need to determine if the other cable aside from the HDMI is CAT5 or CAT6. Just looks like a coax to me. Again, I'm still learning all of this stuff so I apologize for the lack of knowledge.
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
First, return the cable to Best Buy. You paid WAY too much.

Second, take a few photos of your setup and of any additional cabling which may be run between the TV and equipment locations. This can help us figure out a solution for you.

In reality, people love to say "Just use the old cable to pull a new one." It never works. Or almost never works. Cable pulls, especially those installed pre-drywall, use small holes that the cable barely fits through and then the cable goes through any number of 'convenient' turns rather than a nice smooth, wide open cable path.

Typically cables, when installed at the time of construction, are put in by electricians or inexperienced AV guys who care NOTHING about replacing the cable, having a back up plan, or future-proofing in any way.

Coax is a very common cable to pull behind a TV, where it is most often completely useless to anyone. If any extra cables you have don't go to the location where your equipment is, what does it matter anyway?

At the end of all of this, the cable you broke, COULD be spliced back into place if you take your time and carefully put it all back together. It's a fairly insane process and has a high likelihood of failure. But, I've seen it done before by someone who did it and used the cable for several years with 1080p content.

But, in reality, you will want to take a few photos of the space, post it, and get ready to cut some drywall and open things up so you can replace that cable.
 
O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
@Cnickdrive - the other cable could in fact be a coax. It's not uncommon to install a coax for future use along with an HDMI cable. In fact, for conduit installations, I always recommend installing another cable or two (coax, extra solid core CAT-6, etc) along with a pull string for possible future use. Just leave a nice service loop in the j-box and you're set. Even if you don't have a need for the extra cabling now, you're all set just in case.

I would respectfully disagree with the poster above about splicing a cable. Very difficult to do and that still doesn't solve the issue of how "current" the existing cable is that you're splicing to. And yeah, using the existing cable as a pull string won't work in this case if you can't pull the existing cable through now.

Is this a single story house or two story?
 
O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
A 50' HDMI cable could be just about anything. What kind of cable did you purchase (name on the cable)?
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
I would respectfully disagree with the poster above about splicing a cable. Very difficult to do and that still doesn't solve the issue of how "current" the existing cable is that you're splicing to. And yeah, using the existing cable as a pull string won't work in this case if you can't pull the existing cable through now.
Oh, as I said, this is a fairly insane process if someone chooses to splice a HDMI cable back together. But, if someone is just trying to roll with 1080p for a bit, then it MAY work. It is still much better to pull a new cable, but not always a practical solution, or within budget at any given time.

So, if he can't afford to pull a new cable through walls right now, and he doesn't want a cable across the floor, and other options are kind of out the door, then splicing the cable may be worth a few hours (or more) of work... if it works, then he can enjoy 1080p for a bit until things change up.

If I had a choice between going wireless or splicing a cable together, I would splice the cable together as I think that IF it worked, it would be more reliable.

But, at the end of the day - a new cable which is 18Gb/s rated, should be run along with a cat-6 cable - at the very least. If walls have to be opened to create a pathway, a long term solution should try to be determined as well. Like conduit.
 
O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
If his house is a single story, then running conduit should not be too difficult, especially if the inside walls are not load bearing. I've done that in a previous home and the only holes in the wall were for the j-boxes. An experienced, qualified electrician should be able to do it for a reasonable cost.
 
C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
Thank you all for your input. This has been EXTREMELY helpful. I took the TV and bracket off the wall and explored the hole where the damaged HDMI was coming through. After digging more through the existing cables that were hidden in the wall, I found a cat5e. There are no plugs (not a big deal) but now I'm considering an HDMI balun to run from the receiver to the TV, as one or more of you suggested. The setup would look like this: AppleTV-->Receiver-->HDMI Balun Output-->CAT5e 30'-->HDMI Balun Input--TV. I don't need sound through the extender as it will be provided to the speakers via the receiver. Just need the video to the TV. The issues are a) will cat5e support 1080p over 30' of cable? and b) there are a ton of hdmi baluns out there, which one do I pick? I've been reading reviews and am currently considering the J-TEC CAT 5e/6/7 HDMI Extender.
I've included some pictures. I tried to capture the path that the cable was installed from behind the receiver which is housed in the built-in cabinet at the bottom left of the picture, to the TV wall.
 

Attachments

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O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
30' might be possible for 1080 (but nothing beyond that) if the CAT-5e is a solid core cable (non-CCA and not CAT-5e ethernet cable). But you'd probably have to use an active extender. I'd still be a bit concerned on why you couldn't pull the cable thru. Is it tacked down, hung up on a bend, or what?
 
C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
I think all of the above. Without being able to see past the hole it’s coming out, it’s just not budging on either end. I think they tacked them down plus they run through multiple floor boards in the ceiling.
 
C

Cnickdrive

Audiophyte
30' might be possible for 1080 (but nothing beyond that) if the CAT-5e is a solid core cable (non-CCA and not CAT-5e ethernet cable). But you'd probably have to use an active extender. I'd still be a bit concerned on why you couldn't pull the cable thru. Is it tacked down, hung up on a bend, or what?
It’s a cat5e with eight wires. That must mean it’s not solid core? You can see it in the picture I posted.
 
O

Otto Plyot

Junior Audioholic
The wire looks like solid core. You can take a knife and scrape the surface to see if it is copper all the way thru or just CCA (Copper Coated Aluminum), which is what you don't want. You can use solid core to extend your ethernet connection but using a punch down keystone jack or extend an HDMI connection by using HDBT, but you'll need a power source for that. HDBT should work just fine for 1080.
 

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