4K is yesterday's news! VESA ushers in the 8K era with DisplayPort Standard Version 1.4


When DVDs were first released, I was dubious that they could best the amazing quality of VHS. A trip to my local Nobody Beats the Wiz for a demo changed my opinion, however. Subsequently, the mainstream release of HDTV, Blu-ray and ultimately 4K have kept me excited and anticipating more. Heck, some companies have even released 5K displays, but I digress.

As many consumers are just beginning to embrace 4K in their homes, it is already old news. Today, the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) announces the publishing of DisplayPort Standard Version 1.4. Why is this exciting? Because it essentially ushers in the 8K era at 60Hz!

"The first major update to DisplayPort since version 1.3 was released in September 2014, DP 1.4 is also the first DP standard to take advantage of VESA's Display Stream Compression (DSC) technology. DSC version 1.2 transport enables up to 3:1 compression ratio and has been deemed, through VESA membership testing, to be visually lossless. Together with other new capabilities, this makes the latest version of DP ideally suited for implementation in high-end electronic products demanding premier sound and image quality", says VESA.

The association further says, "DP 1.4 further builds on the capabilities of the standard’s prior incarnations. The use of video transport compression enhances the ability to take advantage of the USB Type-C connector, enabling both high-definition video and SuperSpeed USB, while also facilitating High Dynamic Range (HDR) and 8K video across the DisplayPort or USB-C connector. Examples of increased display resolution with the new standard include 8Kp60Hz HDR deep color and 4Kp120Hz HDR deep color".

VESA shares the other major features below.

  • 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.

Truth be told, I am being a bit facetious calling 4K "yesterday's news". If you recently bought such a TV set or computer monitor, it will not be obsolete anytime soon. With that said, when it comes to technology, nothing is ever "good enough". While 4K is the bee's knees today, the sand in the hour glass seems to already be draining.

Are you excited for DisplayPort Standard Version 1.4 and 8Kp60Hz? Tell me in the comments.

Photo credit: flixelhouse / Shutterstock

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