More and more gamers are getting their hands on either the Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5 these days, though some still are yet to dive in. A vital component to optimise the visual and audio outputs of these next-gen consoles is the HDMI cable. Thankfully, each console ships with an Ultra-High-Speed HDMI 2.1 cable which is essential to be pushing 4K/8K outputs. For most, the cables provided should be long enough for your set ups. However, if you’re like me and have a projector or sound bar that is several metres away from the console, I’ve been stuck at 1080p output and creating an unsightly entertainment centre due to the limited reach of the cables. That is until now, with the release of Laser G-Tek HDMI 2.1 cables at 3m and 5m lengths and still push 4K/8K.
Laser is an Australian-owned consumer electronics company with its roots in importing and selling 5.25″ floppy disks and storage cases in the late 80’s. Now they are one of the first companies in Australia to have their HDMI cables certified at these longer lengths and to Ultra 2.1 specifications. If you’re using your old Xbox One/PlayStation 4 HDMI cables, these are likely HDMI 2.0 which can deliver 4K, but it will be limited to a max of 60 FPS due to its limited bandwidth of 18Gbps. These G-Tek branded HDMI 2.1 cables can deliver up to 48Gbps bandwidth which means it can support up to 4K@120Hz and 8K@60Hz.
With TVs like the 65” TCL X925 Mini LED supporting 8K, having these longer cable options means I’m getting closer to finally upgrading my home theatre set up and can start proper next-gen gaming. Outside of a gaming sense, these cables can stream movies and TV shows at 4K, depending on your home entertainment system. Netflix Ultra HD, Foxtel 4K, Apple TV+ and several other streaming services are offering 4K options, so these longer length cables have arrived at an opportune time. These Laser G-Tek HDMI 2.1 cables are available in three sizes – 1.8m ($59), 3m ($79) and 5m ($99).
Getting more technical, these Laser G-Tek HDMI cables will give full support for 48-bit colour, enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC – for full uncompressed audio signals), High Dynamic Range (HDR), Auto Low Latency Mode, Variable Refresh Rate, Quick Frame Transport and Quick Media Switch. I wasn’t aware of some of these terms until I reviewed the TCL X925 TV with built-in Onkyo sound bar, so I was quite excited to enable all those options and stream older TV series like Band of Brothers in amazing visual and audio quality with no lag whatsoever. Watching the movie Gravity gave me the same epic feeling looking back down at Earth as when I watched it in the cinema years ago.
Presentation-wise, I’m a fan of the old big box games of the 90’s. When I received the package from Laser and opened it up, it was a feast for my eyes to see the 3m and 5m cable boxes with high tech art, mentioning the gaming consoles and well presented. The cables themselves feel sturdy and durable, and come with a lifetime guarantee. While most people will have them tucked behind a cabinet, mine is going to be running through dusty and weathered roof and wall cavities, so I’m pleased with the durability that these cables offer as I’m confident they will withstand the elements for years.
While these cables are going to be essential for console gamers, they can also be used to enhance PC gaming. My 2K PC monitor is currently using a DisplayPort 1.4 cable and DP1.4’s bandwidth goes up to 32.4Gbps, but my Asus Rog Strix RTX 2060 only supports HDMI 2.0 so DP is my preferred performance choice. The best Nvidia RTX 3070 / RTX 3080 / RTX 3090 and AMD Radeon RX 6800 / 6900 graphic cards today support HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4, so I’d recommend these Laser G-Tek cables for PC gaming if you have one of those mythical beasts in your gaming rig. HDMI 2.1 cables do seem at the top of their class today, at least until DisplayPort 2.0 cables start to hit the market sometime in the future. DP 2.0 is said to have a bandwidth of 80Gbps which is a huge step up and will become the gold standard for PC gaming, but they are a while away yet.
Overall, the Laser G-Tek HDMI 2.1 cables are highly recommended for both console and PC gamers, being the highest performing AV cable on the market today at 3m and 5m lengths. The extra bandwidth will help you push the latest next-gen consoles and TVs/Projectors to their limits with 4K@120Hz and 8K@60Hz outputs. Their competitive price points and additional 3m and 5m lengths make them ideal for those with home theatres or require longer length cables to optimise their home entertainment set ups.
This review utilised units provided by Closer Communications. The Laser G-Tek HDMI 2.1 cables are available now from JB Hi-Fi in 1.8m, 3m and 5m lengths.
Written by: @ChrisJInglis