HDMI Simplified

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Need to learn about HDMI without reading a ten-page report? Then read on!  This is a quick HDMI introduction, followed by a review of the basic features from the new HDMI 1.4 specs, ending with an overview of the different HDMI labels.

HDMI has become the default choice for the digital transfer of high definition and sound.  Development of the first HDMI connector started in 2002 by a group of high end electronic equipment companies.  At the time the DVI connector was used for HDTV. HDMI 1.0 was designed to improve upon the DVI connector "by using a smaller connector and adding support for audio, and enhanced support" for color. 

HDMI 1.4 has many new features, however, HDMI cable manufactures are not required to install all features.  It is therefore important to check what features are included in any HDMI cable you purchase.

The following additional features were introduced in HDMI 1.4:

  • An Ethernet channel to support high speed bi-directional communication between equipment.
  • An audio return channel which again allows for bi-directional communication.
  • Defined common 3D formats and resolutions
  • 4K Resolution Support resolutions, four times higher than the current 1080p HD standard.
  • Expanded support for color spaces

The HDMI organization has also introduced a new buying guide for HDMI enabled products. Instead of organizing product features by the HDMI 1.3 or HDMI 1.4 specs, they have created five performance capability groups

Standard HDMI
Standard HDMI products provide coverage for resolutions up to1080i (the i refers to interlaced) plus digitial surround audio. Most HD Channels are transmitted at 1080i but this is still a step below 1080p.

Standard HDMI Cable with Ethernet
Standard HDMI cable with Ethernet has the same specifications as a Standard HDMI cable, but offers an Ethernet Channel for device networking.Data transfer speeds can support up to 100 Mb/sec.

High Speed HDMI
High Speed HDMI products can deliver up to 4k x 2k resolution which is four times that of 1080p content.  These cables will also support 3D technology

High Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet
High Speed HDMI cable with Ethernet has the same specifications as a High Speed HDMI cable, but offers an Ethernet Channel for device networking.  Data transfer speeds can support up to 100 Mb/sec.

Author Box
Jeff McRitchie has 314 articles online

HDMI might not stand for Heavy Duty Media Intellectuals, but the idea isn’t far off. These High Definition Multimedia Cables have become the new standard in our digital audio and digital video world. Perfect for LED, LCD, Plasma flat screens and even new computer monitors. At BestPriceCables we carry HDMI 1.3, HDMI 1.4, HDMI Adapters and much more!

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HDMI Simplified

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This article was published on 2011/12/23