VESA ratifies DisplayPort 1.4 standard

The VESA standards body has finalized the specification for the DisplayPort 1.4 standard. The association calls this the first major update to DisplayPort since the publication of DisplayPort 1.3, which became a specification back in September 2014.

The most important new feature in this version of the spec is Display Stream Compression 1.2. VESA says DSC 1.2 can allow for up to 3:1 compression of the video stream with end results that its members claim are "visually lossless."

The video stream compression has an immediate benefit. DisplayPort 1.3's Alt Mode already allowed for simultaneous transmission of video and data over USB Type-C and Thunderbolt interfaces. DisplayPort 1.4 goes a few steps further, enabling SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.0) data in tandem with high-definition video. Furthermore, the new standard supports 8K HDR video (7680 x 4320) at 60 Hz and 4K HDR video at 120 Hz.

There are also a few other improvements, too. In VESA's own words:

  • Forward Error Correction – FEC, which overlays the DSC 1.2 transport, addresses the transport error resiliency needed for compressed video transport to external displays.
  • HDR meta transport – HDR meta transport uses the "secondary data packet" transport inherent in the DisplayPort standard to provide support for the current CTA 861.3 standard, which is useful for DP to HDMI 2.0a protocol conversion, among other examples. It also offers a flexible metadata packet transport to support future dynamic HDR standards.
  • Expanded audio transport – This spec extension covers capabilities such as 32 audio channels, 1536kHz sample rate, and inclusion of all known audio formats.

Who cares about crummy 4K anymore? 8K is where it's going to be.

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