Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: What’s the USB connector for?
mCable is not your usual HDMI cable: it has a video enhancing processor inside, which needs power to operate. That’s the only purpose of the USB connector: providing power to the built-in Marseille video processor. If you’re familiar with Google’s Chromecast, it works the same way: you plug it into HDMI for video and USB for power.
Q2: Is there a special direction in which to connect mCable?
Yes. A regular HDMI cable has 2 endpoints that can be connected in any direction, it is completely symmetrical. mCable is asymmetrical: one HDMI endpoint (the shorter one, labeled ‘SOURCE’) must be connected to the source device (Blu-ray player, Streaming box, Game console, AVR...), while the other endpoint (longer, labeled ‘TV’) must be connected to the TV.
Q3: I plugged in the mCable, but I don’t see anything on the screen?
Here’s a troubleshooting checklist for you:
- Be sure to plug in the USB connector at the back of your TV first to power up the built-in Marseille processor.
- Double-check that the connector labeled “TV” and the connector labeled “Source” are plugged in correctly (“TV” to TV and “Source” to source device).
- Make sure that the TV is set to display video from the HDMI input where you connected mCable (usually controlled by a button labeled ‘source’ or ‘input’ on your TV’s remote).
- If this still does not work, try power from a different USB port or from a separate AC-to-USB power adapter (e.g. iPhone charger).
Q4: Is there any special configuration needed for this cable to work?
No, it’s plug and play, you should have video and audio working out of the box. No changes needed to TV, player, computer... No need to create any account.
You should however read the Tech Zone articles about Configuring your source device and Fine tuning your TV if you want to get the best out of your mCable.
Q5: What’s 2160p?
That’s 4K / UHD resolution. Full HD resolution is 1080p (~2 megapixels). UHD resolution is 2160p (~8 megapixels). Note there are 2 flavors of 2160p, both supported by mCable: the most common is 3840x2160, and then 4096x2160 (this is WidthxHeight in units of pixels).
Q6: Is there a difference between 4K and UHD?
In the consumer space 4K and UHD are used interchangeably. The term 4K has been in existence for a longer time in the professional movie business (4K refers to image width in pixels). UHD which stands for Ultra HD is a consumer term.
Q7: I am watching 1080p HD source content, but the resolution of the output from the mCable is still HD (1080p) and not 4K/UHD (2160p). Why?
mCable can process and upscale 1080p 24Hz content (native resolution of Hollywood movies) up to 2160p 24Hz. In fact it can upscale HD to 4K for frame rates up to 30Hz (i.e. 30 frames per seconds). For any input beyond 30Hz, such as 1080p 60Hz, mCable enhances and filters the input to produce a cleaner sharper 1080p video image, and then your UHD TV upscales 1080p to 2160p.
Q8: Output resolution of mCable is same as input? Isn’t mCable supposed to upscale?
First check your input, if it is interlaced (480i, 576i, 1080i) then mCable is in bypass mode, meaning all interlaced video is passed through as-is, exactly as it would through a regular HDMI cable. The other most likely scenario is that your input to mCable is 1080p60 (or 1080p50): in this case mCable is actually processing the video to enhance it but is not upscaling it so your output is 1080p as well, but it’s a better 1080p. Remember HD is only upscaled to 4K by mCable at 24/25/30Hz: so a 1080p24 movie from a Blu-Ray player will be upscaled to 4K; a 1080p60 signal from say a Roku box will be processed (but not upscaled) into a better 1080p60.
Q9: I plugged in the mCable, but I don’t see a big difference.
The video processing technology within the mCable enhances and filters all progressive video content. On some types of content, the difference will not be as obvious as on other types of content. Enhancements will also be more or less obvious depending on your equipment (source device and TV). The video output from the mCable, however, will ALWAYS be better, cleaner, sharper, or at least the same, as the original content. One of the easiest tests if you want to see the difference for yourself at home is to play a DVD and turn on closed captioning / subtitles (but make sure your DVD player is outputting 480p).
Q10: Does mCable work with an AVR?
Absolutely. In fact if you have an AVR all your source devices will benefit from one mCable’s processing if you simply connect the mCable between the AVR and the TV.
Q11: I can see mCable is transforming my HD into 4K, but the picture size seems off?
With mCable, your TV is receiving 4K. Without mCable it was receiving HD. Now your TV may very well apply different picture adjustments to the image (this is usually called ‘Picture Size’ and there is usually a button for this on the TV remote) for HD and UHD inputs. For instance some TVs may overscan HD but do nothing to UHD, which means with HD your image appeared slightly zoomed but was missing some of the edge contents.
Q12: What’s FRC and does mCable do it?
FRC is Frame Rate Conversion, the operation of changing the number of frames per second, for example from 24 to 60. mCable never changes the frame rate: output frame rate is always equal to input frame rate. Marseille highly recommends you send all content in its native frame rate to mCable (e.g. movies are almost always 24Hz natively). Frame rate conversion is always handled best inside the TV. See our Tech Zone Video Primer article to learn why source devices should never do 24Hz to 60Hz conversion when the TV supports 24Hz input.
Q13: I have a plasma TV, can mCable improve my picture quality?
Q14: I would like to use mCable between a computer and a TV or monitor. Will it work?
mCable will work, but what it will do will depend on your setup.
If your computer is set to render on its HDMI output at 4K into a 4KTV, then mCable will be in bypass.
If your computer is rendering at 1080p or less, then mCable can improve your graphics quality especially when you view photos and movies. For productivity applications such as document editing and emails, improvement will be mainly on the text anti-aliasing.
Q15: Does this cable improve picture quality on 720p and 1080p?
Yes, mCable improves picture quality on all progressive inputs (up to 1080p 120Hz input).
Q16: How big is the cable connector?
Both connectors are within HDMI standard specifications for size.
The cross section of the headers is WxH=20.8x11.3 mm (~0.819x0.445 inches).
Source connector depth is 48.4mm (1 29/32 ’’)
TV connector depth is 69.1mm (2 23/32’’)
Q17: Is it mandatory to have a USB port on your TV for this cable to work?
Not really. It’s the most convenient thing to do, but you can also use an AC to USB power adapter instead. Beware these adapters are not all performing the same, we recommend you use a high quality adapter from a reputable brand (e.g. an iPhone charger).
Q18: I don’t know the HDMI version of my TV or player, how do I know if mCable is going to work with my equipment?
mCable is compatible with all HDMI versions, past and future. In fact it helps solve some known HDMI interoperability issues between source devices and TVs.
Q19: Does mCable support HDMI 2.0?
mCable supports a subset of HDMI 2.0:
- 2160p60Hz YCbCr 4:2:0 (in pass through mode)
Refer to mCable Product Brochure for the full specifications, but in short mCable is an HDMI 1.4b compliant device with support for 4K, 3D and ARC.
mCable also helps solve interoperability issues between some HDMI 1.X source devices and HDMI 2.X TVs.
Q20: Will this cable work with my over-the-air (OTA) HDTV tuner?
Yes, it will work with any source device that has an HDMI output.
Q21: What’s AWG?
It’s the cable’s gauge: the smaller the gauge, the thicker the cable. Thicker cables are typically used for longer distances (e.g. 10ft vs 4 ft).
Q22: I have several source devices (set-top box, game console, computer), is this cable going to work for all?
Yes, but mCable connects one source to one TV. So you can only connect it to one source at a time. If you want all your sources to benefit from mCable you can either:
- buy more mCables
- consider buying an AVR
We do not recommend using an HDMI splitter, as they are most of the time very poor quality equipments which significantly reduce the quality of the digital signal.
Q23: I have several TVs, is this cable going to work for all?
Yes but mCable connects one source to one TV. You’ll need one mCable for each TV.
Q24: Does mCable work with game consoles? What’s the lag/latency?
mCable works with all game consoles, including XBox 360, XBox One, PS3 and PS4. mCable’s sub-1ms latency is perfect for gamers.
Quality enhancements are very noticeable on some games.
Tip: you should check your TV’s latency if you’re a gamer and see if your TV has a gaming mode.
Q25: I read the FAQs, mCable still doesn’t work, what can I do?
Please Contact customer support.
Q26: What’s the warranty ?
Please refer to mCable User Guide and Warranty document.
Q27: Does mCable support 3D content?
Yes. mCable’s contextual processing (enhancement and upscaling) is 3D-aware and can handle the following 3D formats: Frame Packing, Side-by-Side (half), Top-and-Bottom. Other 3D formats will be passed-through in bypass mode.
3D Blu-ray (1080p Frame Packing) is supported, so mCable enhances your 3D experience. If you have 720p 3D content, mCable can also upscale it to 1080p.
Q28: Does mCable support 120Hz?
Yes. mCable’s contextual processing is applied to 120Hz content. This allows gamers, for example, to render at 720p 120Hz and let the mCable apply its processing to deliver a stunning 1080p120Hz thanks to its amazing detail enhancement and edge restoration features. Affordable graphics cards and laptops can then be used for high frame rate gaming!
Q29: Does mCable work in Europe (50Hz)?
Yes. See Product Brochure document for the list of all supported resolutions.
Q30: mCable available lengths are too small for my setup, what can I do?
First, as much as we want to sell you more products ;-), you should NOT connect two mCables back-to-back to increase the cable length. Instead simply buy a regular HDMI cable of the proper length in order to extend mCable. For instance if you have a 6-ft mCable and you need to reach 15-ft, then buy a regular 9-ft HDMI cable as well as an HDMI female-to-female adapter and connect them as follows: Source + regular HDMI cable + adapter + mCable + TV
Q31: Does mCable support Audio Return Channel (ARC)?
Q32: What kind of audio formats are supported by mCable?
Pretty much anything that HDMI 1.4b can do:
- Uncompressed Linear PCM, up to 8 channels at 192KHz
- Dolby Digital
- Dolby Digital EX
- Dolby Digital Plus
- Dolby Digital TrueHD
- DTDS-HD High Resolution Audio
- DTS-HD Master Audio
- DSD / SACD up to 8 channels