HDMI is a set of rules for playing uncompressed high-definition audio and video. This is the language that allows HDMI-enabled devices to communicate with each other. As the language evolves, new versions are released and new features are added. Currently there are many HDMI versions that are available like: 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.2a, 1.3, 1.4, 2.0, 2.0a, 2.0b, and 2.1. Each version is built on the base of the previous version but only better as it gets newer features. Devices designed for HDMI version 2.0a can communicate with devices that support version 1.0, but may not have access to all features available in version 2.0a.
Manufacturers can choose which features to make available to their devices, even if their product is rated at version 2.1. For the best understanding of what each item can do, pay attention to the equipment specifications.
What is an HDMI cable?
An HDMI cable is a line that carries HDMI video and audio between two HDMI-enabled devices. When used with comparable HDMI devices, this type of cable provides crystal clear audio and picture for high-definition video sources such as:
- Blu-ray and Ultra HD player
- Gaming devices such as X-Box, PlayStation, Wii U
- Computer monitor and laptop
- HD capable cable and satellite equipment
- Media streamer
- HD TV, HDR TV, Video Projector
- Some digital cameras, tablets, and smartphones
The type of cable you need depends on your intended application. There are two main considerations when choosing a cable type:
- Classification and distance
Transfer speed and resolution should also be considered when deciding on an HDMI cable.
- Transfer rate
Transmission rate refers to the bandwidth or number of data bits per second that can be transmitted over a cable to the opposite endpoint. A gigabyte per second (Gbps) is a unit of measure for bandwidth.
Screen resolution consists of two parts:
The number of pixels that fit in a given space and how often the frame rate updates per second. The display can render images on the screen using interlaced or progressive scans.
The interlaced scanning renders an image with interlaced vertical and horizontal lines. Interlaced scanning resolution is the number of pixels the screen can display per line of his, denoted by a lowercase “i”.
Progressive scan renders a seamless image, updating the entire image at once. The number of pixels that fit in one square inch determines the resolution of the scan type.
Cable types by classification
When deciding on an HDMI cable, it’s important to understand the ratings available. There are four main categories of HDMI cables, each optimized for a different HDMI version. In addition, each cable classification gradually increases transmission speed and improves resolution.
Standard HDMI cable
Standard HDMI cables offer resolutions up to 1080i or 720p and are HD-ready at 30Hz refresh rates. HDMI cable that is “ standard HDMI cable” generally has a bandwidth of 5 Gbps. This cable is also suitable for playing Blu-ray DVDs and media streamers.
High-speed HDMI cable
High-speed HDMI cables with refresh rates up to 30Hz enable the functionality of your device. The main difference from standard HDMI cables is that high-speed cables use HDMI versions 1.3 to 1.4a. This introduces features such as Deep Color and 3D graphics. Bandwidth is also increased to 10 Gbps. The usage of these cables is similar to standard cables, with the advantage of better color and 3D video display.
High-quality and high-speed HDMI cables allow you to achieve resolutions up to 4K with high dynamic range (HDR) and refresh rates up to 60Hz. 2.0a and b. This type of cable delivers reliable images with Ultra HD graphics. A high-quality, high-speed HDMI cable is a great option for design applications like Adobe’s Creative Suite, or for playing games at up to 30 frames per second. super speed HDMI cable
Ultra-fast HDMI cables display video in resolutions up to 8K and offer up to 48Gbps bandwidth. HDR TVs can achieve resolutions up to 10K and refresh rates up to 240Hz, or 4120Hz refresh rates for lower resolution video. This type of cable is optimized for HDMI 2.1 and ready for new technology, making it perfect for tech enthusiasts. In the meantime, you can enjoy gaming at frame rates above 30 frames per second and enjoy all the features of an HDR TV.