If you want to buy a relatively cheap TV nowadays, you will probably find yourself limited to just two HDMI inputs. You could buy a more expensive TV and get three or maybe four HDMI inputs, but these are usually Smart TVs and out of date within a few years. I’d rather get a dumb television and plug in whichever smart devices I please even if this means a lack of connectivity. The Kinivo HDMI Switch solves this problem.
Switching HDMI cables just isn’t fun, or good for the life expectancy of your input sockets. Between game consoles, personal video recorders like Sky or Freeview Plus, streaming boxes like NowTV, Chromecast, or Fire TV there just isn’t enough plugs. Enter the Kinivo 5 port HDMI switch (they do a three port model, too).
The unit fits neatly underneath my TV. It features five inputs for your devices, an output to connect it to your television, and a socket for the mains connection. Four of the input connections line the rear of the HDMI switch whilst the fifth is on the left hand edge next to the power input (a UK adapter is supplied). The output socket is on the right hand side to connect to your TV.
A remote control is supplied and allows cycling through each port in order, or switching directly to a numbered input. It is possible to flick between the inputs with a button on the front of the switch itself if you lose the remote and need to switch manually.
Resolutions up to 1080p are supported, which I have tested as well as 3D support (which I have no way to test, if you have please let me know in the comments!). I have tested the switch with a Nintendo WiiU, Sky NowTV Box (a rebranded Roku box), EE TV freeview PVR, and Sony PS3 and found that no quality it lost (being HDMI it shouldn’t, and there was no lack noticeable in games)
- I have found Auto Switching works well, even with Chromecast
- Easy way to extend HDMI connectivity of modern sets with minimal HDMI sockets
- LED lights are a bit bright in a dark room (I’ve hidden my HDMI switch behind my soundbar, so this isn’t a problem for me)
- Requirement for power might be a problem for some people
I tried a cheaper HDMI switch previously that doesn’t require external power, but it froze up randomly. I haven’t had this issue with this HDMI switch in the month that I’ve had it. I haven’t had to disconnect or reconnect any cables at all, and the automatic switching works so well that I’ve not had any reason to use the supplied remote control.