Launch of the HDMI 2.1 specification, introducing a new era of dynamic HDR video


Enlarge / 10K is a large number of pixels.

HDMI Forum

In January, the HDMI forum – the commercial partnership that develops the HDMI specification for video interconnects – described its plans for HDMI 2.1. That specification has already been finalized, giving a definitive view of what is reserved for our video hardware.

Despite a version number that suggests it is only a minor update, the specification represents a significant step forward for HDMI 2.0. What underpins everything is a new cable, the ultra high-speed HDMI cable, which supports data transfer speeds of 48 gigabits per second. The new cables are compatible with previous versions of HDMI, use the same plugs and real plugs, but allow connections substantially faster than the 18 Gb / s of HDMI 2.0, let alone the 10.2 Gb / s of HDMI 1.4.

What can you do? do you do it with all that bandwidth? More resolution, higher frame rates and more color depth. With the new cabling, HDMI can support uncompressed 4K video at up to 120 frames per second, with a high dynamic range color with up to 12 bits per channel. Reduce in one or more areas and you can advance more in others; limit your framerate to 30 fps, and the specification will support 12K uncompressed 8K video; Use a chroma subsampling and you can reach 60 fps with the same resolution and color depth.

HDMI 2.1 also allows video transmissions to go beyond the 48 Gb / s limit with a new feature called Screen Transmission Compression. This function compresses video transmission on the fly, allowing theoretical data rates of up to 128 Gb / s, for subsampled 120fps chromed videos of 12-bit HDR 8K. And if 8K does not have enough pixels, there are several 10K formats compatible with a resolution of 10,240 × 4,320, intended for specialized commercial applications.

HDMI Forum

Beyond the raw data speeds, HDMI 2.1 also offers some additional features. Players will be interested in Variable Refresh Rate, essentially a standardized version of Nvidia & # 39; s G-Sync and AMD & # 39; s Freesync (which is a standardized feature of the DisplayPort connection standard), which alters the refresh rate On the fly to match the speed at which the frames are produced by the GPU and Quick Frame Transport, which somehow reduces the latency of the HDMI connection.

For moviegoers, High Dynamic Range (HDR) allows the screen to change its contrast and brightness frame by frame, and the enhanced audio return channel (eARC) increases audio compatibility with 7.1-position and audio systems. high speed like Dolby Atmos and DTS: X.

Even with the full specification, it will be a while before we really see HDMI 2.1 hardware on the market. Over the next nine months, the HDMI forum will launch compliance tests, and only then would we expect to see it available in the shipping products. The range of new features means that, in some way, it is a mixture; few of us will feel the urgent need to upgrade to 8K and 10K video, even for 4K, the content ecosystem is in its infancy, but certain audiences would see immediate benefits of VRR and QFT, with video cards and monitors supporting them. [19659011] [ad_2]
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