I would like to thank VIVIFY for supplying the sample.
VIVIFY offers a range of HDMI and USB cables and focuses on technical aspects instead of marketing gimmicks. While some brands try to sway you with simply impossible statements like "better image quality" or "more vivid colors" for an all digital format like HDMI, VIVIFY communicates the maximum resolution, data rate, HDMI standard, and more when it comes to their display cables. On top of that, VIVIFY offers LED and RGB-equipped ones, and we get to take a quick look at the Arquus 73Ø and Aceso W10 cables in this article.
The VIVIFY Arquus 73Ø ships in a fairly elaborate package meant to be hung on a store shelf. It sports an image of the cable on front and all the really important specifications on the back.
Inside the package is a foam envelope that holds the cable itself. We are taking a look at the variant that is 9 ft long. While you will find classic HDMI cables at much shorter lengths, offering the Arquus 73Ø as such won't make much sense since the cost is mostly in its ends; it simply would not translate into any tangible savings.
With the cable, you will receive a sticker, warranty information, and a test report of your specific cable.
In addition to the HDMI cable, VIVIFY also shipped us their Aceso W10 USB-C cable. It also comes with a built-in LED, but this one is just in the specific color you buy. In our case, the cable will light up red. It also comes in a full-color package and features a Velcro strip for easier cable management.
A Closer Look
While you are able to buy HDMI cables on the cheap from a variety of sources, the VIVIFY is in a league of its own as it actually houses quite a bit of technology in each connector. On top of that, the Arquus 73Ø utilizes fiber optics to enable lighting across the wire, which keeps it really soft at the same time. To process this, the cable actually comes with its own IC in the source end, for example. This is also where you will find a USB-A plug to power it and allow it to communicate with Razer Chroma or the VIVIFY Vnode software.
On the display end, you will also find a similar connector that actually comes with a built-in LED element of its own. Naturally, both ends are gold-plated for good measure.
VIVIFY Aceso W10
While we are taking a closer look, the Aceso W10 cable actually feels slightly bulkier than most cables out there, which make it a bit harder to use in scenarios like charging a mouse or connecting a headset. Instead, it is more for charging/connecting your portable device from your phone to your laptop, gaming console, or battery pack.
Similarly to the Arquus 73Ø, the Aceso W10 comes with a diffusor strip on the side, which will light up in that single color you have purchased.
Cables in Use
To get the VIVIFY Arquus 73Ø all set up, simply connect the source end to your output—in this case, one of our test systems for case reviews—and plug the USB-A plug in to provide the necessary power. The cable immediately lights up fairly brightly. In the picture above, we turned off the studio lighting as it is way brighter than anything you would ever work with, which makes the strip a bit more prominent. Obviously, in a darker environment, where RGB is meant to really pop, the VIVIFY Arquus 73Ø will actually be nicely visible.
Even the display end of the connector lights up, which means it will be a nice little V-shaped branding touch if the back of your monitor is exposed. Below are some videos of the connector and cable lighting. Even though the cable is 9 ft long, the illumination seems to be controlled on both ends, so there is no visible drop in intensity from one end to the other.
Connecting the Aceso W10 USB-C cable immediately has its edge light up red. This is pretty nice and straightforward, but the loss of brightness is somewhat visible in a bright environment, which is not as apparent in low-light surroundings.
VIVIFY also offers their own RGB control software which allows for various effects to be triggered for their cables. In terms of the UI, the software is very prominent and flashy right out of the gate. Installing the software does not take long, but you have to click through several on-boarding slides to get to the end as the installer will just sit there at 100% otherwise.
The core of the Vnode application auto-detects connected VIVIFY RGB products and allows you to select up to four different ones. While that may sound like a low number, having a quad-monitor setup is pretty extreme and rare, which should have it suffice in reality. You may go through several lighting modes or trigger a color of your own choice in the software.
VIVIFY also interfaces to the Razer Chroma ecosystem in the settings menu, where you may check a box to allow the Chroma software to recognize the Arquus 73 and control its lighting effect. Interestingly enough, VIVIFY simply copied some marketing text from Razer and stuffed it into the app, which reads oddly, as if VIVIFY owns Razer.
ConclusionWith RGB becoming a firm staple for gamers, cables seem to be the last frontier since we have seen everything from RGB-equipped PC hardware to monitors, speakers, peripherals, tables, and chairs. So VIVIFY is quite the unicorn in that space. On top of that, their HDMI cables are quite capable when it comes to their technical features. While the price tag of $90 (no Chroma support) or $100 (with Chroma support) for a 9 ft HDMI cable is pretty steep, it offers everything you would expect from a high-end fiber optics cable in terms of technical specifications, as well as the unique RGB functionality. With no-name fiber optic HDMI cables selling for around $40, the VIVIFY Arquus 73 offers in-house production and a 2-year warranty on top of the RGB and interface for $60 so to speak. Thus, this cable is clearly aimed at gamers and enthusiasts who want all the lighting possibilities while still getting all the technical capabilities of a high-end cable.
On the other hand, if you want illumination for your mobile devices as well, the single-color LED VIVIFY Aceso W10 cable is a pretty cool cable to have in your pack, especially because of the 2-year warranty and very study construction for $25.