HDMI 2.1 – New specifications for HDMI

Find out about HDMI 2.1 and how it supports higher speeds and 8K video content.

high speed hdmi 2.1 cable for improved video and audio quality.
Image: HDMI.org

What is HDMI?

HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) is a cable that combines both video and audio into one connection. HDMI cables provide improved picture and sound, not to mention less cable clutter. It is a technology that first appeared around 2004 and is widely used around the world.

The current HDMI 2.0 standard

HDMI 2.0 cables handle 4K/HDR/ARC etc. and this is the current standard for 4K TVs and devices.

The cable specs are v2.0, 18Gbps, UHD 4K/ARC at 2160p, 60hz suitable for all 4K devices and Foxtel approved. Pro TV fits all TVs with v2.0 at present.

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What is the new HDMI 2.1?

As of writing in Aug 2020, HDMI 2.1 is more for future use and the shift to 8K.

v2.1 will provide more bandwidth, support for 8K content, improved audio, and faster gaming. Basically, your picture quality and audio quality get a nice boost.

New TVs and soundbars are now starting to incorporate this technology into their designs and 8K content is slowly emerging.

The good news is that v2.1 is backwards compatible so your TV, AV equipment or computers with standard cables will still work if connected with any newer gear. The connector shape and socket size remain the same.

To get the full benefit though, you will need to buy new HDMI 2.1 cables. Also, the cables will eventually switch to fibre optic HDMI as they pass much higher speeds/bandwidths for v2.1 and beyond.

eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel)

HDMI 2.1 now includes eARC so the audio bandwidth has been expanded significantly. This enables more audio to travel through the cable so a fuller sound spectrum can be heard. Your TV will sound even better with through a soundbar or AV receiver. More like going to the cinema!

HDR (High Dynamic Range)

HDR is also expanded through v2.1 allowing for more colour and contrast to pass from the content source, through the cable and onto your TV or monitor. Expect more brilliant colour when viewing.

For gamers

HDMI 2.1 enables data to pass more quickly to your equipment, meaning less lag and visuals that appear on the screen faster. The technology that makes this happen is auto low latency mode, VRR (variable refresh rates) and QFT (quick frame transport). More about TVs for gaming.

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We hope you find this information helpful. See our prices for TV installation and mounting.

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