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VESA completes DVI successor

DisplayPort 1.0 finalised

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The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) has unwrapped the final version of DisplayPort, the monitor interconnect it hopes will succeed DVI by adding HD audio as well as picture signals, and support for higher resolutions and refresh rates than are available today.

DisplayPort is designed to support both internal and external display connections - VESA is hoping notebook vendors will use it not only for supporting separate monitors but to connect the LCD to the motherboard, facilitating easier upgrades. The slimline DisplayPort connector was designed for slimline notebooks, VESA said, and to allow graphics cards to include multiple ports.

However, like HDMI, DisplayPort's equivalent in the consumer electronics space, DisplayPort is capable of supporting its own copy protection data encoded into HD video data - content is 128-bit AES encrypted. Indeed, VESA clearly has its eye on the CE market - it was quick to mention DisplayPort's suitability for connectiving TVs, DVD players and so on.

vesa displayport connector

The DisplayPort 1.0 specification supports a single, uni-directional four-lane link capable of shunting data at a rate of 10.8Gbps, enough for one uncompressed video stream and associated audio. It supports 8-bit and 10-bit colour. Alongside this Main Link is a bi-directional 1Mbps Auxilliary Channel for device control.

VESA said data is transmitted across the DisplayPort interface using a "micro-packetised" format the better, it claimed, to future-proof the interface. The spec is extendible too, allowing further features to be added over time, the organisation said.

VESA revealed it was working on DisplayPort a year ago. Not long after, a separate consortium proposed the Unified Display Interface (UDI), designed to be compatible with both HDMI and DVI - a feature DisplayPort lacks. It supports the HDCP anti-piracy system used with HDMI, but like DVI and unlike HDMI and DisplayPort, it lacks audio capabilities.

UDI backers include Intel, Apple and LG. Rooting for DisplayPort are the likes of Dell, HP, Lenovo and ATI, but a number of UDI backers also support the DisplayPort initiative, including Nvidia and Samsung. ®

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