Product Review (March 2008)
Accell Corporation™ - UltraAV™ 4-8 HDMI Switch

With the popularity of flat panels installed in today's homes, the need for more advanced HDMI distribution products is not uncommon. Accell's new UltraAV HDMI 4-8 Switch is designed to accept up to four HDMI sources from components such as DVD players, personal video recorders, gaming consoles and set-top boxes. The selected input is then mirrored to up to 8 HDMI enabled displays. While most consumers will not have this number of displays, there are those in commercial environments that need to drive large numbers of displays. The 4-8 unit is easy to use and produces reliable video on the connected displays.

The inputs are identified as 1 through 4. The eight outputs are label A through H. The switch includes built-in signal booster that accommodate cables as long as 25-meters (82-feet) between the video source and the switch. Video resolutions up to 1080p are supported. The unit is a fairly compact design that measures 9"(W) x 4.5"(L) x 2"(H).

The input can be selected by using the front Select button or with the small IR remote. The remote measures 3.5" x 1.5" and is only 1/4" thick and uses a standard CR2025, 3-volt lithium button battery. Separate On and Off power buttons are provided on the remote along with dedicated input select button for each of the four inputs. The UltraAV HDMI 4-8 Switch incorporates smart-switch technology that automatically switches to the active HDMI source. The unit prioritizes the active source starting with Input 1 and ending with Input 4. Since the unit is not always placed in a location with clear line-of-sight when using the remote, Accell has included a self-adhesive IR extender with a 5-foot cable. This allows the unit to be hidden away while the IR receiver can be placed in a convenient location visible to the IR remote.

Back Panel
A total of twelve HDMI connectors (4 inputs and 8 outputs) occupy the back of the unit. The power switch, power input jack and IR extender jack are also located here. Power comes from a switching power adapter that provides 5VDC rated at a whooping 4 amps. The unit is designed to be cascaded to provide more outputs if needed. If more than 8 outputs are needed, it is possible to cascade a second 4-8 switch to provide up to 15 HDMI outputs. Unfortunately we did not have 8 displays to connect at once, but we did cycle our second display through all of the connectors with the unit responding with perfectly clear 1080p video.

Performance
We tested the UltraAV™ HDMI™ 4-8 Switch using our Sony PlayStation 3 and Dish Network Vip622 DVR as HDMI sources. We set the output of the ViP622 to 1080i and the output of the PlayStation 3 to 1080p. Short 6-foot HDMI cables were used between the source components and the switch as well as the connection to our Mitsubishi LT-52133 LCD display. The performance was excellent with no degradation in the video or audio from the source. Regardless of the output we connected to the switch, the performance was consistent. It would have been nice to see an RS232 interface for some high-end applications where a central controller is used.

Conclusion
It might be rare that users require so many HDMI outputs from their source, but there are certainly some installations such as sports bars and retail showrooms that benefit from the HDMI™ 4-8 Switch. The design is simple and the IR extender gives users the flexibility to hide the unit from view. With a street price of less than $300, the UltraAV™ HDMI™ 4-8 Switch is a real bargain. The unit supports 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p resolutions and is fully HDCP compliant. There is nothing we know of that touches this product in the price range.

- Kevin Nakano




OneCall: Your Home Theater, Digital Camera, and HDTV Experts



Review System

Display: Mitsubishi LT-52133 52" 1080p LCD Display
Video Processor/Scaler: Anchor Bay Technologies DVDO iScan HD+ A/V Processor
Preamplifier/Processor: Parasound AVC-2500U THX-Ultra DTS/DD Preamp/Processor
Amplification: Parasound HCA-2205AT THX-Ultra Five Channel Amplifier
Bass Management: Miller & Kreisel BMC Mini 5.1 Bass Management Controller
Front Speakers: Miller & Kreisel S-150THX (L+R) and S-150AC (Center) Speakers
Rear Speakers: Miller & Kreisel SS-250 Tripole® Surround Speakers
Subwoofer: Two Miller & Kreisel MX-350THX MkII THX-Ultra Push-pull Subwoofers
Room Treatments: Echo Buster panels and Bass Buster towers
Set-top Box: Dish Network ViP622 HDTV Satellite and Terrestrial Receiver with HDMI
Blu-ray DVD Player: Sony PlayStation3 with HDMI
HD-DVD Player: Toshiba HD-A1 HD-DVD Player with HDMI
DVD/CD/SACD Player: Sony DVP-NS900V DVD/CD/SACD Player
DVD Audio/Video Player: Kenwood Sovereign DV-5900M 400-Disc DVD Changer
DVD Player: OPPO Digital OPDV971H DVD Player with DVI Output
D-VHS VCR: JVC HM-DH30000U D-VHS High-Definition D-Theater VCR
Media Server: Kenwood Sovereign MRH1 Entre
Remote Control: Remote Technologies Inc. T3 Controller
HDMI Cable: VizionWare Hi-Wirez 15-meter Active 1080p Cable
HDMI Cable: Accell UltraRun 45-meter 1080p Cable
DVI Cable: AudioQuest DV-1 20m DVI-D Cable
A/V Cables: Ultralink Platinum and Advanced Performance Series Cables


Review at a Glance


UltraAV™ HDMI 2-1 Audio/Video Switch

Features:

  • Switch easily between any 4 HDMI sources
  • Mirrors an audio/video source on up to 8 displays
  • Supports 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p resolutions
  • IR remote with battery (included)
  • Includes IR Extender
  • Works with HDCP compliant devices

    Specifications:

  • HDMI Connectors: 4 inputs/8 output, HDMI Type A 19-pin female
  • IR Extender Length: 5-feet
  • Power: 100-240VAC, 50/60Hz
  • Dimensions: 9"(W) x 4.5"(L) x 2"(H)
  • Switch Weight: 2.2 lbs.
  • Signal Booster: 82' max. cable length from video source to switch
  • HDMI 1.2 compatible

    Includes:

  • 4x8 HDMI Switch
  • Remote control with battery
  • 5-foot IR extender
  • Power adapter
  • Set-up instructions


    Company Information
    Accell Corporation
    44951 Industrial Drive
    Fremont, California 94538
    Tel: 510-438-9288
    Fax: 510-438-6775
    Support: 510-438-9288

    Street Price : Less than $300
    Source: Manufacture supplied

    Warranty: 10-Year Manufacturers Warranty

    URL: www.accellcorp.com
    Support: support@accellcorp.com


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