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Comparing Displayport 2.1 vs 2.0 – Specifications & Differences

Displayport 2.1 vs 2.0

DisplayPort provides many high-performance features compared to other digital interfaces. It is designed to substitute older standards like VGA and DVI. It unlocks new possibilities in digital displays, computing, and consumer electronics. Before discussing how it is unique from DisplayPort 2.0, let’s understand the details of each of them.

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What is DisplayPort 2.0?

DisplayPort 2.0 is the advanced version of DisplayPort technology. This progressive technology can transmit video and audio over a wide range. It includes many innovative features not found in earlier versions of DisplayPort. It is well-known for its high refresh rates and high resolution, which is possible due to its increased bandwidth.

It is the only port that can support up to 16K resolution. So, it presents high-quality movies, and the video games operate efficiently on this version. Its extraordinary features include panel replay (saves power and quickly recharges the devices) and multi-monitor setups. DP 2.0 is linked with fast, high-resolution displays like 4K and 240 Hz monitors that don’t depend on compression.

DisplayPort 2.0 connectors and cables are the latest advancement in DisplayPort technology. It enables video and audio transmissions across a single line through HDR, DSC (Display Stream Compression), and Forward Error Correction like the previous DisplayPort standards.

It can simultaneously run two 4K resolution displays at 144 Hz and 8K screens at 85 Hz. It can run an 8K display at up to 85 Hz refresh rate (without any image compression). It supports 16K resolution at 60 Hz with the highest bandwidth of 80 Gbps.

DSC makes DisplayPort 2.0 even more proficient by providing support for up to three 10K screens operating at 60 Hz with HDR over a single DisplayPort 2.0 connection.

It also supports dual 8K displays at a refresh rate of up to 120Hz with 10 bits per pixel (BPC) or HDR. Alternatively, it can support a single 16K display @ 60 Hz with 30 BPC and HDR.

DP 2.0 supports a maximum resolution of 10K (9,600 x 10,240 pixels) without compression or any color degradation and a maximum refresh rate of 240 Hz @ 4K resolution. But when DSC technology is implemented, its highest resolution can be up to 16K. At this resolution, audiophiles and gaming enthusiasts will benefit the most. Moreover, at 16K resolution, there will never be compression, and the 10 BPC rate is still maintained.

DP 2.0 also supports great multi-screen support enhancements. This feature attracts productive users who have high-resolution requirements.

Although three 4K monitors are simultaneously connected, the refresh rate can reach 90 Hz without any compression. You can still maintain the refresh rate at 120 Hz, although you combine it with your two 8K monitors.

DP 2.0 is recommended for daisy chain or multi-monitor setup because it supports high resolution, high refresh rate, and up to 3 monitors. The refresh rate and resolution decrease when you run content across multiple devices. Hence, it is vital to have a high refresh rate and resolution.

  • DP 2.0 also supports a full-color resolution of 4:4:4.
  • DP 2.0 continues its support for DP Alt Mode, which allows it to be used on USB-C ports.
  • The bit rate is 40 Gbps.

Bandwidth is an essential aspect of the video interface. Usually, it denotes the maximum amount of data that can be transferred in a defined time. A great bandwidth speed guarantees outstanding overall performance.

DisplayPort 2.0 supports 80 Gbps bandwidth. As per VESA, you will at least receive the outstanding performance of 77.4 Gbps bandwidth.

The following table shows the resolution and refresh rate for various display setups:

Display setupResolution and Refresh Rate
Single display16K display at 60Hz and 30bpp 4:4:4 HDR (and DSC)

10K display at 60Hz and 24bpp 4:4:4. (without compression)

Dual DisplayTwo 8K displays at the rate of 120Hz and 30bpp 4:4:4 HDR (with DSC)

Two 4K displays at the rate of 144Hz and 24bpp 4:4:4 (without compression)

Triple DisplayThree 10K displays at the rate of 60Hz and 30bpp 4:4:4 HDR (with DSC)

Three 4K displays at the rate of 90Hz and 30bpp 4:4:4 HDR (without compression)

How well DisplayPort 2.0 works for streaming and gaming?

The two critical aspects of mobile gaming and console gaming are refresh rate and resolution. DisplayPort 2.0 provides the highest refresh rate and resolution. Hence, it is an outstanding choice for streamers and gamers. Commonly, streamers use two monitors and displays. DP2.0 efficiently supports a daisy chain or dual display setup for these situations.

DP 2.0 is a suitable choice if you play high-end AAA games. Streamers and pro gamers can boost their productivity and overall working experience by setting up multi-monitors via DP 2.0.

What is DisplayPort 2.1? 

If you are dealing with high-frame-rate 4K or 8K graphics, you require a port and cable to support the huge amount of data transmitted from your computer to the monitor. This is where DP 2.1 proves to be useful. It has many features that help you enjoy next-gen graphics on the latest displays.

It prioritizes enhancing DisplayPort over USB Type-C (DisplayPort Alt Mode) and USB4 compatibility. USB 4 and USB-C are the standards invented by the USB Implementers Forum. Most devices will use both these standards in the future.

Any device that previously supported DP 2.0 will also support the DP2.1 standard. DP 2.1 allows the VESA’s standard to have improved compatibility with USB.

DP 2.1 allows DisplayPort tunneling. Both these features assist this standard to align with USB4 perfectly. The end-users may not find much difference. But those devices transmitting DisplayPort data over the same wire as the USB data need not have to compromise on video signal quality.

This revision is targeted explicitly at streamlining the devices’ design through DisplayPort Alternate Mode support. This is because the modification in the 2.1 standards suggests that DP 2.1 and USB4 can share a PHY.

DP 2.1 also covers an update on the cable specification. It allows 40-Gbps DP40 cables with lengths of more than two meters, and the sizes of DP80 cables can extend more than one meter. Both these cables carry four lanes of UHBR (Ultra-high bit rate) video.

DP40 carries a 10-Gbps rate per lane and DP80 carries a 20-Gbps rate. DisplayPort 2.1 also supports bandwidth management and authorized support for VESA’s DSC and Panel Replay technologies. These improvements don’t increase the DP 2.1 standard’s refresh rates and resolution. But they make this standard more efficient when you run through USB.

DP 2.1 shares some similarities with DP 2.0. A UHBR20 connection delivers 75 Hz @ 8K uncompressed or 240 Hz @ 4K. These are possible with 10-bit color depth.

The refresh rates will be slightly lower than HDR10 content, 8K @ 60Hz is still allowed. At 8-bit depth and DSC enabled, the maximum refresh rates are more. In this case, a 16K display @ 60 Hz is possible.

ParametersDisplayPort 2.1 (DP80)DisplayPort 2.1 (DP40)

 

Maximum Total Bandwidth80 Gbit/s40 Gbit/s
Maximum Passive Length1m2m
Data channels44
Maximum Refresh Rate (4K/10-bit color)267142

DisplayPort 2.1 vs. DisplayPort 2.0:

DP 2.1 provides several improvements compared to DisplayPort 2.0.

DisplayPort 2.1 authorizes using the same physical layer (PHY) specification as the USB4. As per VESA, this change will provide more efficient DisplayPort tunneling across the newest generation of USB-C. With USB-C becoming more universal, it is perfectly compatible with DisplayPort 2.1.

Alan Kobayashi is the DisplayPort Task Group chairman and VESA board chairman. He stated that obtaining greater alignment between USB and DisplayPort on a standard PHY is a significant effort in VESA, considering the substantial overlap in use case models among USB4 and DisplayPort ecosystems.

Some of these improvements are:

  • More robust compliance with USB4 PHY and USB Type-C specifications
  • Improved connectivity through DisplayPort tunneling over USB4 (DisplayPort bandwidth management feature enables DisplayPort tunneling to work with other I/O traffic over the USB with higher efficiency)
  • Longer cable lengths while still maintaining high throughput.

Another significant improvement DP 2.1 standard brings is Mini DisplayPort and full-size cable configurations. UHBR throughput via VESA-certified DP40 (supports max. 40 Gbps with four lanes cable length >2 meters) and DP80 (supports max. 80 Gbps with four lanes; cable length >1 meter) cables are now claimed not to decrease even with longer cable lengths. DP40 and DP80 operate at full performance, even at the specified cable lengths.

DP 2.1 uses VESA’s DSC codec and Panel Replay to decrease the amount of bandwidth needed for transmitting DisplayPort tunneling packets. This standard employs more rigorous requirements for DisplayPort cables, including Mini DisplayPort cables.

DP 2.1 doesn’t boost maximum throughput over DP 2.0.

Comparison: Displayport 2.1 vs 2.0 Specs

FeaturesDisplayPort 2.0DisplayPort 2.1
Max. Resolution16K @ 60 Hz16K @ 60 Hz
Max. Refresh Rate144 Hz240 Hz
Bandwidth80 Gbps80 Gbps
HDRSupportedSupported
DSCSupportedSupported
Daisy ChainSupportedSupported
G-Sync & Free-SyncSupportedSupported
Audio SupportSupportedSupported
Charging SupportSupportedSupported
Dolby AtmosNot SupportedNot Supported
Quick Frame TransportNot SupportedSupported
Auto Low Latency ModeNot SupportedSupported

More on DisplayPorts, Visit – DisplayPort.Org

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