By September 13, 2013

Analogix SlimPort HDMI Video Adapter Review

The 2013 edition of the Nexus 7 Android tablet is mostly awesome. As I noted in my review, one of the things I dislike about it is the SlimPort display adapter. This microUSB-sized port does triple duty; it’s also the charging port and the data transfer port.

One of the things I dislike about it is that SlimPort isn’t a widely adopted technology, and getting adapters is difficult.

Here’s my review of the “best” SlimPort adapter, made by Analogix.

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Okay, pretty straight-forward. The microUSB part goes into your Nexus 7 2013, your HDMI cable goes into the HDMI part of the Analogix adapter. The other end of the HDMI cable goes into your televison.

Then — MAGIC.

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Well, not magic, but there you go — display mirroring from my tablet to my television.

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Landscape mode proves a better experience.

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Penguins in landscape mode a better experience still.

So, it works well enough, so what’s the bad news?

First off, the cost. When I bought my Analogix SlimPort adapter it was $30 delivered from Amazon. You can buy a similar MHL cable for $10 on Amazon, or $5 from Monoprice. If you’re feeling extra cheap and/or don’t care about having a short cable, you can buy a straight up microUSB-to-MHL adapter for less than $3.

The second shitty thing is availability. There aren’t a lot of people making SlimPort adapters right now. They are so hard to find now that the Analogix adapter has ballooned to $127 as of this writing. There is a different (maybe?) Analogix model available for $30 on Amazon right now. There’s a direct SlimPort to microUSB long cable selling for over $200 right now. Holy shit.

The third thing is that Chromecast, Miracast, and whatever else is going to come along wirelessly broadcast some or all of your tablet’s display to your television. That absolutely beats the pants off of running an HDMI cable to your tablet and anchoring yourself to a spot in the room.

I bought the adapter because at my last job it was very hard to present our Android app to the rest of the organization. People never brought the right adapters, so I figured I’d buy and carry my own.

Unless you plan on doing presenting or playing FPS-style games from your Nexus 7.2 I’d say pass on the Analogix SlimPort adapter. It does a fine job, but I suggest holding out for a wireless alternative.

Not recommended for most.

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