HDMI or High Definition Multimedia Interface is a cable for varying lengths that are used to connect various digital data sources such as set-top boxes and DVD players to HD compatible display units such as HDTVs and computer monitors. The HDMI cables are an up gradation over the previous counterparts like the VGA, component video or DVI as they can transmit higher resolution images and also audio signals that are supported by the other cables.
There have been many updates of the HDMI cable since their initial release in 2002. All of them have been used for high resolution transmission as all support image resolution of up to 1080p. The first version was called the 1.0 and was introduced as a single cable for transmitting both audio and video signals together. This version had a maximum bit rate of 4.9 Gbps and image resolution at 1080p. Since then the HDMI cable has come a long way with the 1.3 version having maximum nitrate of 10.2 Gbps and Deep Color support that enables it to transmit more color information leading to an enhanced image. HDMI is also backwards compatible with DVI.
The question that comes to our mind is which version of HDMI will be suitable for viewing 3D motion pictures of connecting 3D gaming devices. The answer for that is the latest version of the HDMI cable, HDMI 1.4, which enables 3D sources such as PSPs to communicate with the 3D display devices through the HDMI link. This development can help bringing the 3D technology to everyone’s homes. The LLC, HDMI licensing approves two categories of the HDMI cable (Standard and High speed) based on the bandwidth available on the cable. The High speed cable has a bandwidth of up to 10.2 Gbps and all High speed HDMI cables will support 3D transmission. These cables can transmit resolutions of 1080p in 3D. There are various formats or approaches in which 3D can be displayed in a visual display unit. Various such formats are supported by the HDMI 1.4 such as frame-line, side by side method, 2D and depth method and many more. You need to make sure that your HDTV or home theater system is enabled for 3D which you can view in the specifications. Any high speed HDMI cable will support 3D when connected to 3D enabled devices.
Other than 3D viewing there are other unique features in the HDMI 1.4 cable. It includes an Ethernet channel using which the internet enables connected devices can share the connection without the use of a separate Ethernet cable. There is also the 4K Resolution support because of which digital content of about 4 times the resolution of a 1080p device can be transmitted through it. All devices that are built on the HDMI 1.4 specification will be backwards compatible with the previous specifications and new cable will not be needed till the time you want to use the HDMI Ethernet channel feature. The common 3D formats and resolutions compatible have been specified with the 1.4 version.