REJOICE, ELECTRONIC NERDS, as the HDMI 2.1 spec is out, promising to bring support for imaging tech including Dynamic HDR and enough bandwidth to support 10K resolutions.
The HDMI Forum, which we envisage as a collection of cowled people worshipping a winding mass of the trapezoid cable, revealed the specification of the upcoming cable and connection standard, potentially through invoking the power of some electronics deity.
But putting such speculation aside, the most interesting part of HDMI 2.1 is its ability to support 4K and 8K resolutions at high frame rates.
Not many people will likely be too excited about the latter, but after the glut of cheaper 4K tellies that cropped up in the Black Friday sales, better 4K frame rates has a bit more pull to it.
Refresh rates for 4K will top out at 120Hz, while 8K will peak at a still solid 60Hz.
The refresh rate will also be appealing to gamers, especially when playing online where a smooth experience can be the dividing line between being heralded as a champion or being lambasted by angry teenagers for being a 'n00b'.
A variable refresh rate option is also on offer to reduce the lag and stuttering that can be encountered when watching movies or playing games.
Support for Dynamic HDR is also a nice addition. For those who don't know, HDR stands for high dynamic range, which essentially offers higher contrast, vivid colours and near retina-searing brightness for compatible TVs and displays; Dynamic HDR does that but adjusts the settings on the fly to correspond with what's being displayed, which is pretty cool if you like that sort of thing.
HDMI 2.1 will also be backwards compatible with current HDMI ports, so there are benefits here for everyone.
Various compliance testing is underway and will carry well into 2018, so don't go expecting the standard to crop up on TVs and monitors anytime soon.
But it's gratifying to see image and display tech keep getting pushed, even though 4K resolutions have yet to become a de facto standard in the screen scene. µ
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