As you might have heard, there’s a new an improved HDMI standard ready to be released to consumers. The new standard will provide better performance and support for the new 4K TVs that currently hitting the market. Although this standard comes much later than expected, we’re still glad that it has finally been announced.
While the old HDMI 1.4 standard was capable of showing 4K UltraHD resolutions, it could only do so at 30 or 24 fps, depending on the resolution of the video. The new standard will be able to push 4K resolutions at 60 fps, which allows for better, more fluent videos.
Which areas does HDMI 2.0 improve on?
As mentioned before, HDMI 2.0 will be able to support 4K signals (3840×2160 or 4096×2160 resolutions) at 60 fps. The bandwidth per-channel has been increased, from a total bandwidth of 10 Gbps to 18 Gbps, across the three channels of the HDMI standard. In this new standard, the DDC (display data channel), TMDS (transition minimized differential signaling) and CEC (consumer electronics control) channels receive 6 Gbps each.
Thanks to the increase in bandwidth, HDMI 2.0 can support two different video streams, which can be shown on the same screen. Apart from the increase in bandwidth, HDMI 2.0 also supports 32 audio channels, having 1536KHz audio sampling and what they call “dynamic synchronization of video and audio streams“, which presumably helps with synchronization for audio and video (a.k.a. better audio-to-lips-sync).
In terms of the hardware, the connector has remained unchanged, so backwards compatibility will be possible. HDMI’s competitor, DisplayPort offered support for 4K video for a long time now, so it will be interesting to see how well this new standard will be implemented by customers.