HDMI cables are widely used to connect various digital devices to TVs and monitors. The cable is capable of transmitting digital audio and video from a source to a device, i.e from a laptop to a monitor. At the time of writing, there are many versions of the HDMI cable available in the market, such as 1.0, 1.2, and so on. And today, we will be talking about how to tell if an HDMI cable is 2.0 or not.
How To Tell If An HDMI Cable Is 2.0
The quickest way to tell if an HDMI cable is 2.0 or not is by taking a look at the connector at the end of the cable. If it’s 2.0, there will be a label that will confirm it. Alternatively, you can try looking at the packaging of your HDMI cable as it usually has such information printed on it.
All HDMI Versions
As mentioned before, there are multiple versions of the HDMI cable available for you to use. The earliest version is HDMI 1.0 and the latest one is 2.1. You can find out about each version in detail below.
HDMI 1.0 and 1.1
These were the first two HDMI versions. Both supported 720p and 1080p resolutions at 60Hz. However, these versions weren’t considered as something groundbreaking, considering the VGA cables of their time also supported the same resolution at the same refresh rate.
HDMI 1.2 is what changed how things worked. Right off the bat, it supported 720p resolution at 120Hz and also offered support for 1440p. However, the latter was only supported with 30Hz, but this was still a major improvement from the previous versions.
HDMI 1.3 and 1.4
Both HDMI 1.3 and 1.4 became instantly popular shortly after they became available in the market as they were the first two versions to offer support for 4k resolution at 30HZ. Because of this reason, their demand was sky-high. Both versions are still used today. Furthermore, they also pumped up support for 1080p all the way to 120Hz, while 1440p could run at 60Hz thanks to them.
The HDMI first became available in September 2013, and it is still widely used today. This is mainly due to the fact that it can support 1080p at 120Hz, 1440p at 12Hz, and 4K at a solid 60Hz. Furthermore, it can also support 5K resolution at 30Hz. As you can judge for yourself, HDMI 2.0 is capable of supporting all major resolutions.
HDMI 2.0a and HDMI 2.0b
HDMI 2.0a and HDMI 2.0b are the updated versions of HDMI 2.0. The first one offers support for HDR, while the second one comes with HLG technology. Other than this, there isn’t any major improvement in them.
This is the bad boy among all the other versions of the HDMI cable. It can support 4k at 120Hz and 8k at 60Hz. However, the reason why it isn’t as popular as HDMI 2.0 is because most people don’t own displays that offer these resolutions with such a high refresh rate. Due to this, people opt for HDMI 2.0 instead of 2.1 as it can do the job just fine.
Different Types of HDMI Cables
Along with versions, there are also different types of HDMI cables available in the market, with each one having a different purpose. It is important to learn about all of them, especially if you’re someone who uses them a lot.
The Standard HDMI cables are the alternatives to the 1.0, 1.1, and 1.2 versions. This means that these cables can support 720p and 1080p resolutions at 60Hz. This is the most basic type of HDMI cable as it is mostly used for satellite TV and other older electronic devices, such as DVD players and early gaming consoles.
The High-Speed HDMI cables are better than the standard ones, as they are meant for 1.3 and 1.4 HDMI versions. While the above-mentioned type offers transfer speeds up to 5 GBps, this one offers double speed, i.e 10 GBps. High-Speed HDMI cables can support 1080p at 120Hz and 4k at Hz. This makes it the most standard HDMI cable available in the market.
Premium High-Speed HDMI
This is where things get a little serious. Premium High-Speed HDMI Cables are a replacement for HDMI 2.0, and you will find them almost everywhere. They have a transfer speed of 18GBs, and they can support resolutions up to 4k at 60Hz. It is a combination of HDMI 2.0, 2.0a, and 2.0b, meaning that it also offers support for HDR and HLG. This type of cable is perfect for solid gaming builds and previous generation consoles, such as the PS4 and Xbox One.
Now, coming down to the best type of HDMI cable available in the market, the Ultra-High-Speed HDMI cable. Just by reading its name, you’ll be able to tell that this cable can handle almost anything. Its transfer speed is 48 GBps a,d it supports everything that the 2.1 version does. The Ultra-High-Speed HDMI cable is mostly used with high-end gaming rigs that are packed with the latest hardware or the latest gaming consoles such as the PS5 and Xbox Series X. It supports 4k at 120Hz and 80K at 60Hz. After you get this cable, you won’t’ have to worry about getting another for a few years.
Different Ways To Find Out If an HDMI is 2.0 Or Not
There can be times when you might have purchased an HDMI cable from someone without packaging. Or, you went ahead and purchased an HDMI cable from a store without knowing about the versions. If you just found out about them, don’t panic as there are some ways through which you can tell whether your HDMI is 2.0 or not. Keep in mind that if your device requires HDMI 2.0 or only supports this version, you won’t be able to get the optimal results if you use the previous versions. However, you will be fine if you use the 2.1 version.
Check The Connectors
The first and quickest method of finding out whether your HDMI cable is 2.0 or not is by looking at the cable. On each end, there will be a connector. On the connector, there will be a label that says “HDMI 1.1” or “HDMI 1.4” or whichever version it is. If the cable is 2.0, it will be written there.
Check The Packaging
If you purchased a brand new cable online or from a store, then its version will be written on its packaging. Most of the time, the information is written on the front of the packaging. But if you don’t see it at the front, try looking for it at the back. Sometimes, the HDMI cable also comes with a piece of paper and it also contains all the information about it, including its version.
Go To The Manufacturer’s Website
If you purchased a used cable and it didn’t come with its packaging, you can try going to the website of the manufacturer. The website will have all the information related to your HDMI cable on it, including the data transfer speed, whether it supports HDR or not, and so on.
Connect It With Your Device
If you are unable to find out about the version of your HDMI cable through any of the above-mentioned methods, then your final option is to connect it directly to your device. For instance, if your PC supports HDMI 2.0 cable, you can try connecting it to the monitor using the cable you have. If everything is running smoothly, the cable is 2.0. But if you’re noticing anything odd on the screen, then it means that you’re using a previous version of the HDMI. In this case, you will need to go to the store and purchase a new HDMI 2.0 cable.
Should I Get HDMI 2.1 Instead of 2.0?
If your device supports HDMI 2.0, you should be fine with an HDMI 2.0 cable. There is no need for you to get an HDMI 2.1 cable, until and unless you’re planning to upgrade to a monitor that features 8k resolution. HDMI 2.1 is only used with devices that either support 4K at 120Hz or 8K at 60Hz. The latest generation consoles, the PS5 and Xbox Series X also support HDMI 2.1, but you won’t be able to benefit from it until and unless you have a display that supports it as well. Otherwise, you’re just fine with using HDMI 2.0.
This was all you needed to know about how to tell if an HDMI cable is 2.0 or not. As you can see, there are four methods through which you can learn about it. However, in most cases, you’ll be able to find out the version directly through the cable or its packaging. This is because just like how a power supply has a label on it, most cables come with the label of the version to make things easier for the users.
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