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What is HDMI CEC?

If you have a HDMI device connected to your TV, you’ve likely come across HDMI CEC before.

HDMI CEC is short for HDMI Consumer Electronics Control. The function of this is to allow the TV and HDMI devices to be controlled using one remote control, which is usually the device or TV remote. Essentially, it allows the connected device to have some control of the TV through HDMI. For example, if you have a set-top box connected to your TV, such as a Sky box, HDMI CEC will allow you to turn on both the box and the TV by pressing the power button on the remote for the box. Similarly, this can allow the box to be turned off as well as adjusting the volume.

For some, using HDMI CEC is highly convenient as it means you do not need to swap between remotes just to turn the TV on and adjust the volume. Of course, some functions will require the use of a different remote, such as accessing TV menus.

Understandably, this setting isn’t for everyone. If you have multiple HDMI devices connected to your TV, this would give control to the multiple different remotes. As a result, if a remote is accidentally pressed then the TV may automatically switch sources which can be inconvenient. In these cases, it is appropriate for some to turn this setting off. Some TVs may have the options to activate and deactivate HDMI CEC for different inputs, so you may be able to turn this off and on for different devices.

This setting is also useful to help troubleshoot any potential issues you may face with your TV. For example, if your TV is turning off by itself, you can try turning HDMI CEC off. This is because a device connected through HDMI could be sending a signal that the TV is reading as a command to turn off. By turning off this setting, the TV should not receive this signal and thus not turn off.

To check if your device has HDMI CEC, you can check the user manual or explore the advanced settings in your TV’s menu, which this setting conventionally falls under.