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Here are the best HDMI switches you can buy

Stop fumbling with cables all the time.
By
March 4, 2022
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Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
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Have you ever owned a TV with just one or two HDMI ports? This is fine for someone with fundamental needs, but the techies and gamers among us can attest to how annoying this situation can get. Imagine having a PlayStation 5, an Xbox Series X, a Nintendo Switch, a streaming TV device, and a cable box, all under one TV. This would force you to go behind the screen and unplug/plug cables way too often.

Those stuck in this frustrating situation might be happy with their TVs and don’t exactly want to upgrade to one with more HDMI ports. Especially considering TVs with more ports are usually more expensive higher-end models. You can’t just add an HDMI port on your TV, though, or can you? The simple (and affordable) solution to this problem is to buy an HDMI switch.

With that in mind, we’ve put together the best HDMI switch guide to help you out!

What is an HDMI switch?

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An HDMI switch is a device that allows for multiple outputs to connect to a single input. This would make it possible for various devices to be connected to a TV simultaneously. This eliminates the need to plug and unplug HDMI cables behind your screen constantly.

While all outputs can be connected to a single input, they obviously can’t be displayed all at once. Unfortunately, the TV still sees this as a single port, so switching to each HDMI port requires an extra step through the included switch.

How do I switch HDMI output sources?

There are three common methods used by switches to change which HDMI device is displayed: manual, remote, or automatic. The manual method will rely on an actual switch or button. Other units come with a remote, making it easy to switch from a distance. Meanwhile, the automatic switches depend on priority. If you set your PlayStation 5 at a higher priority than your cable box, the switch will automatically connect to the console when turned on. Once the PlayStation is shut down, the switch will revert to whatever is prioritized next.

The method used depends on your HDMI switch. Higher-end switches will have more options and features. Switches don’t just differ in how they switch the signal; there are also different models with varying amounts of ports. Some switches even allow for two outputs, for dual-display fans.

Don’t confuse a switch with a splitter

Customers often make the mistake of confusing a switch with a splitter. The difference here is that while a switch allows multiple outputs to enter a single input, the splitter does the opposite. In summary, a splitter would be helpful for those who want to play the content from one device on multiple screens or projections. It’s pretty much a multiplier.

What makes a good HDMI switch?

There are multiple factors to consider when looking for the right HDMI switch. Of course, you want a device that is nicely built and comes at a fair price.

You’ll also want to ensure you have enough inputs for all your devices. If you know you’ll be using plenty of devices, it’s best to get as many HDMI inputs as possible. Ideally, we would get at least one extra slot for future-proofing. Say you have a PlayStation 5, an Xbox Series X, and a Chromecast with Google TV. You could be OK with three inputs, but that would be a problem if you eventually buy another console, or if you want to plug a computer into your TV occasionally.

You also have to decide what kind of technology you want. Of course, HDMI switchers with remote or automatic switching are optimal, but they can also be significantly more expensive. Additionally, it makes little sense to purchase a more expensive switch with fancy features if you won’t be switching that much, or if the switch will be within close range all the time. This is common if you’re using the switch with a monitor on your desk, in which case the switch will always be within reach.

The best HDMI switches

Editor’s note: We will regularly update this list of the best HDMI switches as new devices launch.

Fosmon 2-Port Switch

Fosmon 2 Port HDMI 2.0 Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Two
  • Max resolution: 4K@60fps
  • Switching methods: Manual

The Fosmon 2-Port Switch is simple, multi-functional, and costs very little. All it takes to operate this switch is one button, which selects one of the two HDMI ports available. Of course, this only adds one more port than you had before, so it might not be ideal for your needs if you are trying to hook up many devices to your TV at once.

Gana HDMI Switch

GANA 3 Port 4K HDMI Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Three
  • Max resolution: 4K@30fps
  • Switching methods: Manual

The Gana HDMI Switch is another affordable option. It’s nothing fancy, but it does its job well and happens to expand its input count to three. Operating it is as simple as pressing a single button. If you care about 4K resolution and 3D content, this switch will support those, as well as LPCM, Dolby, AC3, and DTS7.1 audio. It’s simple, affordable, capable, and it works.

Tecknet Switch-Splitter

Tecknet HDMI Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Two
  • Max resolution: 4K@30fps
  • Switching methods: Manual

This device is a really cool one, as it can serve as both a switch and a splitter. Of course, it can connect two devices to one HDMI port on your monitor or PC. On the other hand, it can connect one device to two monitors or TVs, although both screens cannot simultaneously show the same content. It supports 4K resolution and 3D content. All of that is available for a reasonable price, too.

Ugreen HDMI Switch

Ugreen HDMI Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Three
  • Max resolution: 4K@30fps
  • Switching methods: Remote

Those trying to find a good-looking HDMI switch will find this Ugreen accessory very appealing. It has a clean and sleek look , and even the remote has a streamlined design with only four buttons. The unit features three inputs and one output. It also supports 4K content at 30fps and 3D.

Farstrider Switch

Farstrider Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Five
  • Max resolution: 4K@60fps
  • Switching methods: Manual, Remote, and Auto Switch

Things start getting more interesting with the Farstrider Switch, which features five input ports. This allows you to plug in a bevy of devices to a single monitor or TV. It can also handle 4K video at 60fps. What’s better is that you get all types of switching technologies with it. There is a button right on the device for switching manually, but the device also has auto-switching and support for an included remote.

Philips HDMI Switch

Philips HDMI Switch
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Four
  • Max resolution: 4K@60fps
  • Switching methods: Manual and Remote

All the other best HDMI switches are great, but they come from unknown brands. Those who prefer getting products from household names will like this switch from Philips. The unit comes with four HDMI inputs, and you can pick between manual switching or using the remote. You’ll also enjoy 4K content at 60fps.

Zettaguard Switch

Zettaguard
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Five
  • Max resolution: 4K@60fps
  • Switching methods: Manual and Remote

The Zettaguard HDMI switch includes four ports, plus an IR remote to switch between connected devices. You get true 4K resolution support with this device, thanks to its 18Gbps speeds. It also supports audio formats like LPCM 7. 1Ch, DTS-HD, and more.

Iogear Switch

IOGEAR
  • Number of HDMI inputs: Eight
  • Max resolution: 4K@60fps
  • Switching methods: Manual, Remote, and Auto Switch

If you want to go all out with connecting lots of media devices to one monitor or TV, the Iogear Switch could make that happen. It has eight ports that you can use to plug in game consoles, PCs, streaming devices, and more. It also has support for 4K resolutions at 60fps. It also comes with a remote and has auto-switching support. Because it’s bi-directional, you can even use it with touch panels and universal remotes. You get the whole package with this one, but it’s pretty expensive, too.


If you’re looking to take your TV experience to the next level, you might also want to look into our lists of the best smart TVs, Android TV devices, and media streaming products.