Apple’s Digital AV Adapter Gets Interesting Little Changes
Up until a year ago, there wasn’t an official Apple-endorsed option for connecting iOS devices to the HDMI ports of high-definition televisions; the company instead sold some very expensive composite and component AV cables that were capped at far below the 720p output capabilities of the latest iPads, iPhones, and iPod touches. So Apple released the Digital AV Adapter in March 2011, featuring a male Dock Connector plug at one end and two ports at the other: an HDMI port for audio and video, and a female Dock Connector for charging. The Digital AV Adapter was typically Apple, made from glossy white plastic with gray cabling, and priced at $39—just enough to seem a little too expensive given that you still have to self-supply an HDMI cable in order to do anything with it, and your own wall adapter/Dock Connector cable to be able to charge a device with it.
Last week, with little fanfare, Apple updated the Digital AV Adapter to coincide with the announcement of the third-generation iPad. You can tell that you’re getting the new Adapter because it’s in a box (shown above) rather than a transparent bag. The new packaging specifically references the iPhone 4S, while mentioning that mirroring is “supported by iPad 2 or later,” without naming the third-generation iPad.
And Apple has made a series of tweaks to the Adapter itself. The new Adapter is ever so slightly longer than its predecessor—4 millimeters longer, or roughly 4.5” long.
The cable connecting the male Dock Connector plug and HDMI/female Dock Connector ports is slightly thinner.
The male Dock Connector plug is considerably smaller on the new model than the old one, and therefore more case-compatible.
The new model number is A1422 versus A1388. Apple has also switched the part number from MC953ZM/A to MD098ZM/A.
The male Dock Connector plug now has pressure-sensitive lock and unlock buttons on its sides.
The female HDMI/Dock Connector port housing is now several millimeters taller on the new model than the old one, and the HDMI port hole (on the bottom Adapter shown below) looks a little nicer than before.
Are there electronic differences? We’ll be playing with them more to find out. But the fact that Apple has changed the Digital AV Adapter at all after only a year is interesting. The smaller male Dock Connector plug is definitely welcome given that the original did occasionally present challenges with cases, and though no one’s going to care about the slightly longer length, it’s also a little surprising to see the female port side get bigger. Expect some updates to our review in the near future.
If you have a comment, news tip, advertising inquiry, or coverage request, a question about iPods or accessories, or if you sell or market products, read iLounge's Comments + Questions policies before posting, and fully identify yourself if you do. We will delete comments containing advertising, astroturfing, trolling, personal attacks, offensive language, or other objectionable content, then ban and/or publicly identify violators. Wondering why we're talking about something other than iPods? Check the Archives: Backstage has been here and kicking it since 2004.
- Report: Some third-party repairs ‘bricking’ iPhones with iOS 9
- Report: Apple to bid on NFL Thursday Night Football streaming rights
- Apple to begin taking broken iPhones for trade-in, offer in-store screen protector installation
- Apple ordered to pay $625M to VirnetX in patent case
- Apple Pay reaches 2 million retail locations
- Apple acquires security company LegbaCore
- Zagg to acquire Mophie for $100 million
- Report: iPhone 7 to include flush camera lens, drop rear antenna bands
- Report: iPhone 5se, iPad Air 3 set for March 15 unveil
- Alleged iPad Air 3 drawing shows Smart Connector, four speakers, camera flash
- Gumdrop Cases DropTech Case for iPad Pro
- Edifier MP700 Rave Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- Just Mobile HoverDock for Apple Watch + HoverDock for iPhone
- VRS Design Dandy Layered Case for iPad Pro
- Just Mobile TENC for iPad Pro
- Native Union DOCK Lightning
- Native Union DOCK for Apple Watch
- Hitcase Pro+ Action Pack and Snap for iPhone 6/6s
- Urban Armor Gear Trooper for iPhone 6/6s
- NEBO CaseBrite for iPhone 6 Plus/6s Plus
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iTunes 12.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 8.4 + Apple Music
- CE Week 2015: IK Multimedia, Monowear’s Apple Watch bands + More
- Live From CE Week 2015: Brand New iPad, iPhone + Mac Accessories!