Although many versions of the HDMI cable specification have been released over the years, some of the earlier versions are no longer in use. This is because each new version is an update of the last, with new features and functions added, making the version that came before it virtually obsolete.

There are two versions of HDMI cables which are still widely used. These are HDMI 1.3 (a, b and c) cables and HDMI 1.4 versions.

An HDMI 1.3 cable is the perfect version for most people, as it contains a host of useful features and support for all HD technology. These cables are cheap to buy and easy to come across, and they will serve you well for years to come.

However, as HDMI 1.4 cables are an update of the 1.3 specification, they are bound to contain more impressive features. These include the Audio Return Channel (ARC), the Ethernet Channel, support for super high-resolution displays and crucially, support for 3D technology.

This means that unless you want to upgrade your home entertainment system and start enjoying 3D or super high-resolution technology, your HDMI 1.3 cable will be perfectly acceptable. However, if you ever plan to buy a 3D-enabled display or other component (including 3D games consoles), an HDMI 1.4 cable is essential.