A product listing for a new computer display touting HDMI 2.1 ports onboard has spurred tech media sites to remind consumers of the intricacies of the newest HDMI standard. Specifically: Just because a TV or monitor boasts HDMI 2.1 ports onboard, that doesn’t necessarily mean it also supports all (or even some) of the features the new standard enables, like Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) or Variable Refresh Rate (VRR).
The recent hubbub all started after the appearance of a product listing for the Xiaomi Fast LCD Monitor 24.5-inch 240Hz version. When TFT Central dug into the specs, it noticed mentions of HDMI 2.1 ports onboard, but a lack of many of the features often associated with the new standard.
The site reached out to HDMI.org for some clarification on what it means for a product to boast HDMI 2.1 support and were reportedly told that all the new features 2.1 allows for, like ALLM, VRR, or Quick Frame Transport, are optional. Beyond that, any device claiming to support HDMI 2.1 needs to state which, if any, of those newfangled features the product actually supports.
To be clear, these requirements aren’t technically new — the recent news coverage was spurred on by the appearance of products boasting HDMI 2.1 ports without the headline features onboard.
But it does serve as a timely reminder, especially as more and more devices start entering the market with the new standard in mind. So if you’re shopping for an HDMI 2.1-complaint TV or display, be sure to double check the spec sheets to ensure it supports any specific features you’re interested in.