MICRO CENTER: COMPUTERS AND ELECTRONICS
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Geek Candy
Expand Your HDMI Connections
by rob

In this era of high-definition video, it’s a necessity to have the correct inputs to keep your signal purely digital. However, most HDTVs include only one HDMI input (two if you’re lucky) for all of your HD peripherals. What do you do if you have a Playstation 3, XBOX 360 Elite, Apple TV, HD DVR, and other HDMI devices? You could go through the whole unplug/plug ritual, fishing behind your TV to find that tiny port. A better solution would be to get a switchbox for all of your HDMI sources.

QVS’ HDMI Manual Share SwitchQVS’ HDMI Manual Share Switch is the simplest (and least expensive) of these switches. You can switch between two HDMI inputs with an 80s-style rotary knob on the front. However, expanding your ports by one isn’t that forward-looking. You’ll be back to unplugging if you acquire another HDMI device.

IOGear’s HDMI Automatic SwitchIOGear’s HDMI Automatic Switch looks more modern than the manual switchbox. Instead of a knob or a remote to switch between sources, it detects and switches to the active device. This means when you boot up your PS3 it will see that device and automatically show it on your HDTV. On the downside, this means you’ll have to reboot your devices for this switch to see them as a new device.

Cables Unlimited HDMI 3 to 1 Switch With RemoteCables Unlimited has the best solution for those of us that have all the cool HDMI gadgets. Their HDMI 3 to 1 Switch expands your ports while giving you a remote to control the switching from the comfort of your couch. You can tuck the switch (and the tangle of cables) away from view and set the remote receiver out where people can see, leaving your home theater setup tidy. If you lose the remote between cushions, there’s still a button on the unit.

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