Review (February 2008) - Oppo
By Kevin Nakano
Oppo Digital, Inc. located in Mountain View, CA has a reputation for producing high value products that offer consumers excellent performance for the dollar. Therefore, it is not surpring to see that their latest HDMI 1.3 compliant switcher is available for only $99. The OPPO HM-31 is a 3-to-1 HDMI switcher that features some of the latest chip technology from Silicon Image (one of the founders of HDMI). The HM-31 uses a VastLane SiI9185 HDMI Switching chip and is one of the very few HDMI switches to pass the official HDMI 1.3 certification test. This certification ensures that the HM-31 HDMI Switch is compatible with all HDTV resolutions up to 1080p with Deep Color and PC resolutions up to 1920x1200. The switch is EIA/CEA-861D, DVI 1.0, and HDCP 1.1 compliant and supports DDC and HPD switching to ensure maximum device compatibility. The HM-31 also includes other high-end features such as an RS-232C and IR interface and built-in signal equalizer for longer cable lengths.
The OPPO HM-31 comes with a universal AC power adapter (100-240VAC, 50/60Hz) that supplies 5VDC at 1 amp to the unit. Also included is a small IR remote for selecting one of the three HDMI inputs. The front panel of the HM-31 has indicators for each of the three HDMI inputs. A power indicator is on the front and top of the unit near the power input jack. A manual input select button is available when the user wants to change the input channel by simply pressing the button.
The OPPO HM-31 Switch measures only 7-3/8" x 4-1/2" x 1-1/16" and is a lightweight design. The top of the unit is a black anodized brushed aluminum surface that gives the HM-31 an elegant look. The bottom of the unit has three slotted holes that allow it to be mounted on a wall or cabinet. If this option is used, it would be wise to keep the unit close to the ground to prevent the weight of the cable from pulling out of the HDMI connectors. Unfortunately HDMI connectors do not fully lock, but do have some friction that help keep them in place.
- Kevin Nakano
Mitsubishi HC5000 Full-HD 1080p LCD Projector
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