Thursday, January 5th 2017

HDMI 2.1 Specification Announced: 8K60 and 4K120, Dynamic HDR, Game Mode

HDMI Specification 2.1 is the most recent update of the HDMI specification, featuring advanced features for the HDMI ecosystem. It supports a range of higher video resolutions and refresh rates, including 8K60 and 4K120, Dynamic HDR, and increased bandwidth with a new 48G (48 Gbps) cable. Version 2.1 of the HDMI Specification is backward compatible with earlier versions of the specification, and it also introduces an interesting new mode: Game Mode VRR, which by itself supports variable refresh rate, which "enables a 3D graphics processor to display the image at the moment it is rendered for more fluid and better detailed gameplay, and for reducing or eliminating lag, stutter, and frame tearing." This new Game mode spec, which is similar to the G-Sync and FreeSync technologies already available, will also apparently work with both PCs and consoles.
HDMI Specification 2.1 Feature Highlights include:
  • Higher Video Resolutions support a range of higher resolutions and faster refresh rates including 8K60Hz and 4K120Hz for immersive viewing and smooth fast-action detail.
  • Dynamic HDR ensures every moment of a video is displayed at its ideal values for depth, detail, brightness, contrast, and wider color gamuts-on a scene-by-scene or even a frame-by-frame basis.
  • 48G cables enable up to 48Gbps bandwidth for uncompressed HDMI 2.1 feature support including 8K video with HDR. The cable is backwards compatible with earlier versions of the HDMI Specification and can be used with existing HDMI devices.
  • eARC supports the most advanced audio formats such as object-based audio, and enables advanced audio signal control capabilities including device auto-detect.
  • Game Mode VRR features variable refresh rate, which enables a 3D graphics processor to display the image at the moment it is rendered for more fluid and better detailed gameplay, and for reducing or eliminating lag, stutter, and frame tearing.
Also interesting is the built-in support for object-based audio, which means you'll be able to use the new cables and ports with Dolby Atmos sound and similar technologies. Object-based audio such as this expands the previous 5.1 and 7.1 setups to include numerous speakers which are placed around a room to create an all-enveloping, "3D" sound experience.

The new specification will be available to all HDMI 2.0 Adopters and they will be notified when it is released early in Q2 2017.
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10 Comments on HDMI 2.1 Specification Announced: 8K60 and 4K120, Dynamic HDR, Game Mode

#1
NBH
Does this mean the end for g sync and free sync if a monitor supports this and a GPU has a HDMI 2.1 socket?
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#2
cryohellinc
Game Mode VRR features variable refresh rate, which enables a 3D graphics processor to display the image at the moment it is rendered for more fluid and better detailed gameplay, and for reducing or eliminating lag, stutter, and frame tearing.
Wow! Does this mean death of Gsync/ Freesync? Or works in some different way? Also will it work all the time, or only up to specified monitors refresh rate?

If that's the case, it can be only a positive news, as monitors will become instantly cheaper and won't require you to have a specific GPU to stick with.

I can only see that as a positive notion.

Besides any advantages in quality between say Displayport and HDMI?
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#3
Xzibit
NBH said:
Does this mean the end for g sync and free sync if a monitor supports this and a GPU has a HDMI 2.1 socket?
No. "Game Mode VRR" is just a standard means of communications with-in HDMI. Just like DisplayPort has "Adaptive-Sync" which is used by AMD FreeSync.

Just because something has a updated HDMI socket doesn't mean it takes advantage of all its features. 4k TVs continue to be a perfect example of that.
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#4
doudou
NBH said:
Does this mean the end for g sync and free sync if a monitor supports this and a GPU has a HDMI 2.1 socket?
Game Mode VRR seems like they adopted AMD custom hdmi port design for freesync.
i wounder if current amd freesync over HDMI will work with hdmi 2.1
and for those who ask about G-Sync feature may update their G-Sync module to do this and say that this is for the best gaming experience as usual (as for reason for that they will say to have more solid experience because pannel quality differ) and also displayport will probably update to a 1.5 with higher bandwidth when the time is needed (and also it already support 8k60fps and 4k240fps with DP1.4 and 32.4Gbps with Display Stream Compression) and also 4k screens with 144hz and 120hz are still not available yet they may be show in CES soon but it will take some time to be adopted
i think HDMI 2.1 will be very good for VR headset since they use HDMI
monitor will probably have both available and they will most likely support VRR and FreeSync. G-Sync if nvidia release a module for HDMI 2.1 monitor also otherwise it may not support G-Sync (but really who care what they call it since it all give the same effect anyway)
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#6
eidairaman1
Force tv manufacturers to ground the hdmi jacks properly and have tvs with grounded power cords from tv to outlet. Having a back voltage from those ports causes nothing but issues on TV boxes.
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#7
Prima.Vera
I hope it will take less to be implemented than DP 1.4 which still cannot be found even on the new released models.
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#8
Ubersonic
Prima.Vera said:
I hope it will take less to be implemented than DP 1.4 which still cannot be found even on the new released models.
The spec was only finalised in March, how many high end GPUs have been designed and launched since then? (it's 0), and how many high end displays? (a handful but as as the GPUs don't exist they are hardly going to add features and therefore cost to monitor designs when the cards aren't there yet).
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#9
Prima.Vera
Ubersonic said:
The spec was only finalised in March, how many high end GPUs have been designed and launched since then? (it's 0), and how many high end displays? (a handful but as as the GPUs don't exist they are hardly going to add features and therefore cost to monitor designs when the cards aren't there yet).
Both AMD and nVidia latest solutions support DP 1.4 and a max resolution of 8K@60Hz. Relax.
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#10
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
I wonder how long of a cable can handle 8K60. Already see a lot of issues related to HDMI 2.0 and 4K60.
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