Over three years after the launch of the HDMI Specification Version 2.1, major products are now widely available that support HDMI 2.1 features including 4K@120Hz, 8K@60Hz, Dynamic HDR and eARC.
“It’s exciting to see so many new products available with these new features,” said Rob Tobias, CEO and president of HDMI Licensing Administrator, Inc. (HDMI LA). “And with the launch of the latest gaming consoles, consumers can now enjoy a thrilling HDMI 2.1 end-to-end experience with consoles, AVR’s, cables, TVs and monitors. With shipments of HDMI products reaching almost 10 billion since it launched in 2002, HDMI technology continues to be the universal interface for consumer electronics products.”
HDMI 2.1 technology’s enhanced gaming features deliver advanced gaming experiences into the home. These features include Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) and Quick Frame Transport (QFT). The new Fixed Rate Link (FRL) mode of HDMI 2.1 ensures much more robust video delivery over the cable, by using a robust forward error correction scheme, combined with a link training protocol which adapts the link rate, if needed.
“The HDMI Forum didn’t rest after releasing the 2.1 specification and 2020 was one of its busiest years ever,” said David Glen of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. and president of the HDMI Forum. “We launched the Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable Certification Program (UHS Program) and now these UHS Cables are available in the market to enable full the 48Gbps performance of HDMI 2.1. We also released the Compliance Test Specification for Active Cables, and end-users will shortly be able to purchase Active Optical Cables that support longer length installations, an important step in completing the HDMI 2.1 ecosystem.” Regarding the future he added, “In addition to the great products released in 2020, we’re expecting many new products in 2021 supporting the enhanced features of HDMI 2.1.”
The mandatory UHS Program ensures that quality Ultra High Speed HDMI Cables reach the market and support 4K and 8K video, HDR, VRR, eARC and all other HDMI 2.1 features, and cables are required to affix an Ultra High Speed HDMI Certification Label to each package notifying consumers of the certification status of the product. These Certified cable designs must pass rigorous testing requirements for 48G signal performance and pass new state-of-the-art EMI tests designed to minimize interference with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and other radio frequencies.
The HDMI Forum is also promoting HDMI Cable Power. With this feature, active HDMI Cables can now be powered directly from the HDMI Connector, without attaching a separate power cable. This makes attaching and using active HDMI Cables as easy as using passive, wired HDMI Cables.