We all hate wires, right? So do the good folk at Taiwanese manufacturer ZyXEL, who have conjured up a snazzy HDMI kit that beams full HD video from a variety of sources to a TV elsewhere in the room.
It means that your Blu-ray deck, games console and TV receiver don’t have to be placed near your TV, reducing clutter and the number of cables dangling down behind it – particularly helpful if your screen’s mounted on the wall.
The system comprises a transmitter, a receiver, a remote control and a power adapter for each unit. You also get two HDMI cables in the box and a wall-mount bracket. The transmitter is slightly larger than the receiver, measuring 181 x 156 x 57.6mm, and boasts a surprisingly attractive design for an ostensibly workmanlike product. Its gloss black finish and slinky curved bodywork are hugely appealing and won’t look out of place plonked on top of a hi-tech Blu-ray deck.
It looks great then, but build quality isn’t as solid as we’d expect at this price. Both the transmitter and receiver are remarkably light, and the bodywork is on the plasticky side. A sturdier metal case would have been preferable, but it’s not a deal breaker.
Around the back are four HDMI inputs, which should cover most people’s collection of HD devices. All of these inputs are v1.4a, which means they’ll support any resolution all the way up to 1080p 3D. The system can cope with frame sequential, side-by-side and top and bottom 3D signals.
Next to the inputs are a power switch and a button that lets you toggle through the sources without the remote to hand. On top of the transmitter is a row of lights indicating which HDMI input is currently in use.
The receiver is aesthetically similar to the transmitter, minus the lights on top, and measures 148 x 118.6 x 44.7mm. It sports a single HDMI v1.4a output, on/off switch and power input, with a small light on the front to indicate a connection. Thanks to the wall bracket in the box, you can stick it on the wall next to a wall-mounted TV (the receiver faces downwards to sit flush to the wall) but will be equally at home sat horizontally on a tabletop.
Because the WHD6215 uses the WirelessHD 1.0 standard, it handles transfer rates of up to 4Gbps and operates at a frequency of 60GHz, which is currently unique and should give it an advantage over systems that use the usual 2.4GHz frequency in terms of reliability and sidestepping interference – but not transmission range.
The signal range is up to 10 metres (30 feet), which is fine for use within the same room with line-of-sight between the two units, but this short range, combined with the way the 60GHz band works, rules out beaming HD signals around the house.
Not only does the WHD6215 support 1080p 3D pictures, it also handles 7.1-channel and two-channel LPCM, as well as Dolby Digital and DTS signals between (two to six channels) and CEC functionality.