HDMI, USB, RF, Composite, Ethernet: Smart TV Connectivity Explained

Smart TVs are now designed with multiple cable ports to connect to almost any device around your home and also connect to the internet; this makes owning a Smart TV more entertaining than just using a regular TV.  All these connectivities have been created just to give Smart TV users the best of experience via sharp images and crisp sound from multiple devices.

HDMI [High Definition Multimedia Interface]

HDMI has become very consistent on most Televisions [smart TV & non-smart] mostly because of its ability to deliver uncompressed audio and video data between devices all through a single cable. You will also find HDMI ports on other digital devices like AV receivers, DVD players, DVR, Blu-ray Disc players, decoders and digital media players.

HDMI connector has evolved over the years, and different types have been made. HDMI connector plugs vary depending on your device type.

Types of HDMI Connectors

  • Type A (standard)
  • Type C (Mini)
  • Type D (Micro).

Your TV connector plug will most likely come with the Type A [standard] connector.

Types of HDMI cables

  • Standard HDMI Cable – up to 1080i and 720p.
  • Standard HDMI Cable with Ethernet.
  • Standard Automotive HDMI Cable.
  • High-Speed HDMI Cable – 1080p, 4K 30 Hz, 3D, and deep color.
  • High-Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet.

USB [Universal Serial Bus]

The USB connector is useful when you need to watch a movie or play music from a flash drive or external drive. Most smart TVs support the standard USB Type-A like the one on computers.

Types of USB Cables/connectors

  • USB Type-A: Rectangular connector Used in Personal computers, power adapters, and TVs.
  • USB Type-B:  These types are Square shaped connectors, they are not as common as the type-A USB but are commonly found in printers.
  • Mini-USB
  • Micro-USB: current standard for mobile devices.
  • USB Type-C
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Ethernet

Most smart TVs have options for wi-fi connection that allows you stream movies online from your television. But wi-fi networks are not always consistent, they can seize or go bad any second. This is where Ethernet connectivity comes in-just like the ones used for router connections, it can be used to connect a TV to the internet.

Composite/component AV

The Composite & component AV connector is used to transmit data from speakers, DVD players, decoders to the Tv. Composite AV was the standard for old TVs, but some smart TVs still have them, it has 3 cables — one port for video and the other two ports for audio left and right.

Component AV is designed like the composite except that it comes with 5 cables-3 for video connections and 2 for audio connections.

RF Antenna input

Radio frequency antennas are common on old TVs. Fortunately, they are still present on smart TVs. It uses coaxial cable to send TV radio frequency signal from the antenna to the TV set.

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