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DisplayPort General FAQS

1. Who owns and develops DisplayPort Standards?

DisplayPort is a video interface standard administered by VESA, the Video Electronics Standards Association. DisplayPort is the new generation AV interface developed by the GPU/display industry segment and it continues to gain market momentum. DisplayPort enables high display performance, robustness, and versatility, highest degree of system integration, and greater interoperability among various device types.

2. What is the current version of the DisplayPort Standard?

DisplayPort 1.3 was published in September, 2014 and defines the new normative requirement and informative guideline for component and system design.  Most DisplayPort products currently available in the market today (as of January 2015) were built to the previous version, DisplayPort v1.2a. Testing that is performed for DisplayPort device certification is also still based on the DisplayPort v1.2a Standard (devices must be certified to use the DisplayPort logo). Products built to DisplayPort 1.3, as well as compliance testing based on DisplayPort 1.3, should become available within 2015.

3. Which types of products include DisplayPort?

DisplayPort was originally developed as the next generation personal computer display interface and is now available on a wide range of tablets, notebooks, and desktop computers as well as monitors. It is now also becoming available on digital televisions, including some 4K TVs, as a display input.

4. What are the user benefits of DisplayPort?

DisplayPort provides several direct and indirect benefits to the user. Direct benefits include higher performance capability, the availability of display adapters for legacy display types, and the ability to connect multiple displays to a single video output. Indirect benefits include smaller system form factor and lower system cost, because DisplayPort enables higher system integration, requires less RF shielding, and is royalty free. DisplayPort also uses a small connector, or can be combined with other interfaces onto a single common connector. As the only AV interface with link training, a more robust and stable link is established.

5. How is DisplayPort different from HDMI? Aren’t they very similar?

DisplayPort and HDMI are very different technically, and each began with a different product focus. For over ten years, HDMI has been the de-facto connection for home entertainment systems and is used widely on HDTVs as an AV interface. Some PCs and monitors include HDMI to enable connectivity with HDTVs and other consumer electronics gear. DisplayPort, a newer standard originally developed to support the higher performance requirements of personal computers, is based on updated signal and protocol technology similar to that already used in today’s computer systems, enabling an increase in performance and integration. Because DisplayPort uses common signaling technology in use for data communications and a packetized data structure, through a common connector, it can be combined with standards such as USB and Thunderbolt. With link training/link quality monitoring as in data communications, DisplayPort provides a more robust and stable AV link.

6. How can I use my existing display or digital TV set with a new computer that has a DisplayPort output?

DisplayPort has the unique ability to support external display adapters. The DisplayPort Source device (such as a notebook computer) provides power at the DisplayPort plug to power such an adapter, and it detects the type of adapter connected, as well as the type of monitor. Inexpensive DisplayPort adapters are readily available for VGA, DVI, and HDMI displays. Adapters for HDMI 2.0 will become available in the near future.

7. Does DisplayPort also support audio?

Yes, DisplayPort supports multi-channel audio and many advanced audio features. DisplayPort to HDMI adapters also include the ability to support HDMI audio.

8. Can DisplayPort support 3D Stereo?

Yes, DisplayPort includes protocol support for transmitting left and right eye display data. DisplayPort 1.3 enables the support of 4K Stereo at 120Hz frame rate with full 24 bit 4:4:4 color.

9. Does DisplayPort include content protection capability?

Just like DVI and HDMI, DisplayPort supports HDCP content protection. DisplayPort 1.3 supports the latest HDCP 2.2 content protection that is required for the latest premium AV contents.

10. What are some of the unique capabilities in DisplayPort?

Because of its high data rate, DisplayPort 1.2a systems today can support 4K displays at 60Hz refresh and full 30-bit 4:4:4 color (non-chroma subsampled).  DisplayPort 1.3 systems will support 5K displays (5120 x 2880) at 60Hz refresh, and for 4K displays will enable deeper color and higher refresh rates. When enabled with DisplayPort’s Multi-Stream feature, several monitors can be connected to a single output on a video source device (such as a laptop or computer), using a daisy-chain or hub configuration.

11. How does VESA assure interoperability among DisplayPort enabled systems?

VESA manages the DisplayPort Compliance program which is designed to assure interoperability between various systems. To bear the DisplayPort Logo, a system must pass compliance testing and the system OEM needs to be a VESA member, which assures they are aware of the latest DisplayPort related specifications and updates.

12. How has the adoption of Thunderbolt affected DisplayPort?

Thunderbolt takes advantage of DisplayPort technology, and Thunderbolt Hosts (such as notebooks and personal computers) are backward-compatible with DisplayPort cables and DisplayPort monitors. This means you can plug a DisplayPort monitor into a Thunderbolt computer output, using a standard DisplayPort cable. The adoption of DisplayPort technology by Thunderbolt has helped to accelerate the adoption of DisplayPort in high-end computing and video post-production.

13. What is the data transfer bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.3?

By providing the option to support a new higher data transfer rate known as HBR3 (High Bit Rate 3), which provides a link rate of 8.1 Gbps per lane, DisplayPort 1.3 offers a 50% increase in total link rate to 32.4 Gbps when using all 4 lanes in the DisplayPort cable. Allowing for data coding overhead, this provides a total data transport capacity of 25.92 Gbps or 3240Mbytes/sec.

14. Will DisplayPort 1.3 enable further performance enhancements to 4K UHD displays?

Yes, when including the new HBR3 link rate option, DisplayPort 1.3 will enable a 4K UHD display to operate at a 120Hz refresh rate using 24-bit pixels, or a 96Hz refresh rate using 30-bit pixels.

15. Will DisplayPort 1.3 enable support beyond 4K resolution?

Yes, as DisplayPort 1.3 with HBR3 becomes available for production, we should see computers and displays that support 5K x 3K using a single cable.

16. Will DisplayPort 1.3 support 8K displays?

Yes, by using the new HBR3 link rate, DisplayPort 1.3 will support 8K displays with a 60Hz refresh rate at 24-bit-pixel visual quality, however, until DSC is enabled, the 4:2:0 chroma sub-sampled pixel encoding format must be used. 4:2:0 is normally acceptable for the playback of pre-recorded content, such as movies, which uses 4:2:0 pixel format for compression, but is less desirable for rendered graphics from computer or other graphics generating video sources.  In the future, DisplayPort will support DSC which will provide a better alternative for 8K display support.

17. How many 4K displays could I expect to connect to my computer using a single DisplayPort 1.3 connection?

Assuming the DisplayPort Multi-Stream feature is enabled and the Source can support such monitor configuration, DisplayPort 1.3 with HBR3 can support two 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) displays at 60Hz refresh with and 24-bit pixels, using the VESA video timing that is used with DisplayPort connections. This will also require the appropriate Multi-Stream hub or at least one monitor with Multi-Stream daisy-chain capability.


18. Does DisplayPort 1.3 enable support for the latest content protection?

Yes, DisplayPort 1.3 enables support for HDCP version 2.2. This requirement will apply to DisplayPort-to-HDMI 2.0 converters as well (including USB Type-C to HDMI 2.0 converters that utilize DisplayPort Alt Mode).

19. Does DisplayPort 1.3 still support adapters to VGA, DVI and HDMI?

Yes.

20. Does DisplayPort 1.3 enable support for camera RAW format data?

Yes, this is a new feature for DisplayPort 1.3.

21. How does DisplayPort 1.3 impact the capabilities of Multi-Stream?

A: Using the DisplayPort Multi-Stream feature, combined with the new HBR3 link rate option, DisplayPort 1.3 can enable the following example display configurations, without the use of compression:

• Two 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) displays

• Up to Four 2560 x 1600 displays (see note 2 below)

• Up to Seven 1080p or 1920 x 1200 displays (see note 2 below)

• One 4K UHD display with up to Two 2560 x 1600 displays

Notes:

(1) The examples above assume the following:

• HBR3 and Multi-Stream supported by both the video source and displays

• 60Hz refresh with 24 bit color, using the 4:4:4 pixel format and VESA monitor timing

(2) The number of connected displays might be limited by video source capability. Typical personal computers support a maximum of 3 to 6 displays.