A Failure to Communicate Part II

According to one industry source with whom I spoke recently, the odd communication problem reported on in Part 1, below, is an artifact of CEC. CEC is a new feature offered by many manufacturers that allows the user to control various components through their HDMI connections. Often, these operations are automated.

CEC is the generic name for this feature, but in the interests of enhanced consumer confusion manufacturers have elected to come up with their own trademarked names for it. Samsung calls it Anynet+. Toshiba's name is CE-Link. Sony goes with Theatre Sync. Pioneer likes HDMI Control.

According to my source, CEC is a work in progress (I'm being kind—those weren't his exact words) and prone to the sort of glitches I have described. He is no fan of the feature, even though his company uses it. Like many who work for the US branch of overseas manufacturers, he does not make final design decisions.

We're not in a position to pass judgment on CEC in general. It might work better with some products than others. It might be less reliable, do weird things, or not work at all when products from more than one company are involved. It might presume too much about your intentions, i.e., you want to keep using the disc player even with the TV off, and it can't figure out why you'd want to do that!

Sort of reminds me of the story of the man who had his house completely automated, only to find one day that it wouldn't let him in. Could have been worse. it might not have let him out.

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Jeffrey's picture

It is fascinating to me that so many manufacturers use their customers as unwilling product testers. This has gotten so bad with so many manufacturers that customers are usually surprised when their products actually work as advertised. I noticed in the set up menu for the BDP-1200 there is an option to turn Anynet+ off. I am curious if this made any difference in your communication issue?

Bruce in HR's picture

It almost seems as if the intention of the manufacturers is to force consumers into a single-brand HDTV experience.

Tyler's picture

Just more proof that HDMI is a plague on humanity and is possibly the worst thing to happen to the electronics community....ever. This is what happens when you let the movie industry decide what type of connection will be used...

Cajun_Mike's picture

Thomas, the Sony 60" 1080p Rear-Projection SXRD HDTV Model: KDS-60A3000 is out in stores now. I hope you will get a sample to reviews ASAP. I'm tempted to buy one now, but want to read a professional review of it first. Hurry, it's football season! ;) Mike

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