I have this problem, hope u can enlighten me. To connect my new Panasonic Plasma with my Dell xps gen 2 laptop (separate graphic card, not on board) I bought a hdmi-dvi cable. As I connected the cable (with power off) sparks where coming from the dvi port. As u guessed, no luck getting image on my Plasma.
But then I discovered the Monitor would not accept dvi signal from laptop (signal error) anymore AND HDMI ports on TV didnt work with my blu-ray anymore (worked before). The supplier claims the cable can NEVER have caused the dvi problems from my laptop and so they wont pay damages. I hooked up my laptop at another monitor and still no luck (vga is working fine).
As the plasma was working correctly with blu- ray on the hdmi port (so did the laptop dvi port with monitor) before use of this cable, my conclusion is that it must have been caused by a faulty cable (and not by high voltage hdmi ports as the supplier claims). Do u agree or am i missing something? Thnks for help.
You would also be pretty hard pressed to create sparks with 5V (you can make sparks with shorting wires with as little as a couple volts, but any DVI or HDMI port is designed to make this nearly impossible, it takes roughly 500V to break down an air gap), that cable would have to be rediculously bad, or something is terribly wrong with one of the ports.
Well, I guess the cable could be bad, all you have to do is trace the pins, Pin 18 is +5V, it could be connected erronously to other pins, or it is shorted across other pins. Very simple to check for using a multimeter.
I must add though, the chances of getting any compensation, even if it is a bad cable, are almsot zero.
Only certain cables would have any coverage for damaged components. Such as power bars.
They are only legally responsible for damage if they claim to cover it explicitely. Otherwise all they are responsible for is repalcing the broken cable if it came broken. You will probably be told that you should have tested the cable first.. Sorry.
Sorry to reply to an old thread, but I have a similar problem and wanted to chime in.
I have a Panasonic Viera LCD 42'' and have had several problems with sparks and video cables.
1-Plugged in a MacBook Pro to HDMI without the mac being plugged in and video-out worked fine
2-Plugged in a Dell XPS to HDMI with the power plugged into the Dell and got a large spark and a burn mark on the XPS
3-Plugged in a brand new PC to the Panasonic using VGA and got a large spark.
4-Plugged in same PC using HDMI out. First connected it to the PC, then to the TV. Once the cable neared the TV there was a large spark, and the HDMI port is burned on the Panasonic.
With the first two scenarios we were using crappy power strips, and the devices were plugged into separate strips.
In the last 2 scenarios, all devices were plugged into the same Monster Surge Protector/Line Conditioner.
We have an XBOX 360 plugged into another open HDMI port and it's working fine. Also have several devices plugged in using RCA connections
Doesn't seem like it would be the video-out devices at fault since the problem occurred with two different computers
The problem happened with a VGA cable too, and two separate HDMI ports/cables as well, so it does not seem like it's the cables or ports either.
I don't know why the issue only happens with computers that are plugged into a power source, but we currently think the issue is related to the electricity in our house somehow.
Thought the surge protector would've solved that issue, but clearly it's still a problem.
I'm no electrician, and am afraid to plug anything else in to my TV at this point since I've no explanation for the sparking.
Will keep testing and post any results I come across. I *will* get this to work.
TV worked with with all input devices when plugged into another part of the house on a separate circuit. Not sure what this really proves, but it would seem the problem is most likely being caused by the electricity in our building. Beats me as to how or why.
I'm pretty sure you are on the right track about your home's electrical wiring. My brother also had problems quite similar to yours. He blew out about 4 plasma TV's, (most of them Panasonic Vieras) cable boxes, and other such equipment trying to get his home theater set up. Mind you, he works for the cable company and understands all of these procedures very well. He now has everything working fine, only after completely rewiring the electricity in his home. Now today I just opened up my new Sony Bravia and 10 minutes out of the box as I plug in my PS3 to the first HDMI port the cable/port on the TV end caught fire instantly. Now the TV doesn't work and I don't have an extra HDMI cable to test my PS3 to make sure it works (my cord is burnt to hell). I may decide just to have my money refunded because I currently rent and it will not benefit me any to invest in rewiring the place, and I don't particularly want to mail the TV back... wait for a new one... and watch that one blow up in my face too. The more TV's I destroy, the less willing they may be to give me my money back.
I encountered a similar problem connecting macbook to my 26'' LCD TV.
I bought a mini-DVI to HDMI convertor cable recently and connected my macbook to my 26'' LCD TV (Vizio). It worked fine for 3 days and suddenly the port stopped working. I connected macbook to the second HDMI port to which my DVD player was connected just to figure out where the problem was. It worked for few minutes but when I switched back my DVD player to the port I got no picture from the DVD player. It seems macbook blew up both the HDMI ports of my TV. I had both HDMI ports working before and one of them was connected to the DVD player for more than 18 months and gave no problem.
I don't know if the HDMI ports have been damaged irreparably or there is some way to fix them.
I am going to add to this old post also, because I too have encountered this Arcing of 5V (measure from the hdmi ground to the output device). I my case the output device's HDMI port fails in a short period of time just like one of the other posts here. I burnt up 2 Home Theater Amps HDMI Outs to the TV. My conclusion is that it is the floating ground of the devices, that is devices without a case ground, a 2 wire power plug which a lot of the laptops PS's have.
Mine, I feel, came from the Sat Dish receiver HDMI input to the Amp. My attempt to stop the action will be to commonly ground all the devices to the AC Ground. I feel this is the only way to protect them. I has to be some component in the failed devices that can't take the rogue voltage jumping the ground. I saw this when I live in brazil and had a US Home theater in a box plugged in there with no ground. Created a pretty good hum in your touch until I grounded everything.