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Some 2020 LG TVs have less than full-speed HDMI 2.1 ports, and apparently that's okay

Some LG 2020 TVs may have less than a full HDMI 2.1 spec. (Source: LG)
Some LG 2020 TVs may have less than a full HDMI 2.1 spec. (Source: LG)
A Forbes contributor has highlighted an issue in which some 2020 OLED 4K TVs from LG were found to lack the "full" HDMI 2.1 standard. This means that the devices' ports cannot transmit data at their highest possible speed of 48 gigabits per second (Gb/s). However, the OEM asserts that this is not a problem.
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LG marketed its 2019 TV line-up as having full-featured HDMI 2.1 ports, in response to some confusion caused by the possibility that other OEMs throttled the speed of the ports in question. However, this may not be the case in 2020.

The display standard in question is capable of delivering content of a 4K/120 hertz (Hz) nature that is uncompressed, 12-bit and has RGB 4:4:4 chroma sampling. However, the Forbes writer John Archer reports that this year's premium CX, GX and WX OLED TVs - some of which are of the ultra-high-end Wallpaper series - support uncompressed 4K/120Hz with the same coloring standard. However, this data is 10-bit, suggesting it needs an HDMI speed of 40Gb/s at the most.

This also holds true for some of the company's new NanoCell TVs (the NANO91, NANO90 and NANO86 models). The full 2.1 spec can support a 48Gb/s rate, which is necessary for the 12-bit aspect of the content in question. Therefore, it appears the HDMIs found in these TVs could be less powerful than those of their predecessors.

When asked for a response on this issue, LG highlighted the capabilities of its AI engine for these big screens, indicating that chipset resources had been reassigned to it rather than to supporting full HDMI 2.1 specifications. It also has what could be called a back-up excuse for this situation, namely that "real content that requires 48Gb/s is not available in the market".

Therefore, LG appears to believe that its 2020 AI for TVs can handle the reproduction of content just as well as dedicated hardware can.

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Deirdre O'Donnell
Deirdre O'Donnell - Senior Tech Writer - 3865 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
I became a professional writer and editor shortly after graduation. My degrees are in biomedical sciences; however, they led to some experience in the biotech area, which convinced me of its potential to revolutionize our health, environment and lives in general. This developed into an all-consuming interest in more aspects of tech over time: I can never write enough on the latest electronics, gadgets and innovations. My other interests include imaging, astronomy, and streaming all the things. Oh, and coffee.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 05 > Some 2020 LG TVs have less than full-speed HDMI 2.1 ports, and apparently that's okay
Deirdre O Donnell, 2020-05- 9 (Update: 2020-05- 9)