Different types of HDMI port and what they can do?

November 22, 2022

Different types of HDMI port and what they can do?

TV HDMI generally refers to HDMI high-definition video interface, which is used in set-top boxes, TVs, laptops, game consoles, integrated amplifiers, digital audio and other devices that can transmit both audio and video signals.

HDMI high-definition multimedia interface is a fully digital video and sound sending interface that can send uncompressed audio and video signals. It is mainly used for set-top boxes, DVD players, personal computers, TVs, game consoles, integrated amplifiers, digital audio and TVs, etc. It can send audio and video signals at the same time, which greatly simplifies the installation of system wiring as the audio and video signals are sent using the same cable.

When HDMI rose as the major digital interconnect for AV use, one of the things it offered was simplicity. One cable for HD video and sound, a massive upgrade from component video's five plugs just for stereo. The resolution was better than SCART, it was more convenient than DVI or VGA, and composite wasn't even in the same room.

If your users are reaching out to you if they can watch your content on their TV, you can either suggest the use of Airplay. However, if that's not an option for them, they can still watch your videos on their TV by directly connecting their laptop or phone to the TV with an HDMI cable. If they want to use their phone, they will need an HDMI adapter to connect the cable to their phone. 

To connect a laptop to a TV:

Locate the HDMI port on the laptop and the HDMI port on the TV

If the laptop does not have an HDMI port, then the user can always use an adapter for an HDMI cable that would connect to their laptop

Connect one end of the HDMI cable to the laptop

Connect the other end of the HDMI cable to the TV

Using your TV remote, switch the Input to HDMI and start streaming


To connect a phone to a TV:

Locate the HDMI port on the TV and grab the HDMI adapter for your phone

Connect the adaptor to your phone and then to one end of the HDMI cable

Connect the other end of the HDMI cable to the TV

Using your TV remote, switch the Input to HDMI and start streaming


Anything older than HDMI 1.4 is now obsolete, and only present on really old gear. HDMI 1.4 is good enough for 1080p SDR equipment, though it can do 4K/30, and you can still find it on small, cheap tellies today. It introduced the ARC audio-return channel, so you can hook up a soundbar easily, plus a 100Mbps Ethernet channel for sharing internet connectivity. It also has 1.4a and 1.4b sub types that only really add support for the 3D TVs that no one uses. 

The HDMI 2.0 standard, which increases speed to 18Gbps to enable things like 4K/60 and HDR, came along in 2013, and is still quite common today. Again, there are 2.0a and 2.0b sub types, which increase the number of HDR standards it can carry.

And then, in 2017, what appeared to be a point release added a whole lot of bandwidth to the standard. HDMI 2.1 increases the speed of the interface to 48Gbps. Enabling it to carry 8K video at 120Hz, or higher with display stream compression. This standard also enables the eARC sound connection and things like auto-low-latency and variable framerate that are useful to games. HDMI 2.1 comes with newly certified ultra high-speed cables which are necessary for its most bandwidth-heavy features, but if watching ‘normal’ 4K HDR video, any old HDMI cable should do.

HDMI has become one of the most prolific audio/video transfer standards, and there are many devices that optimize your system for HDMI, including switches, for example (our guide). The “High-Definition Multimedia Interface” is so embedded in the modern technology ecosystem that it’s hard to find a device that you want to stream content from that you can’t use some version of HDMI with. But some use cases require a smaller connector, which is where the mini HDMI and micro HDMI connectors come in.


Although Type-A, Type-C/Mini HDMI, and Type-D/Micro HDMI all have 19 pins and can transfer high definition audio and video, the Mini HDMI and Micro HDMI connectors take up 60% and 72% less area than the standard Type-A connector respectively.


The HDMI Type-A standard is the one that no doubt comes to your mind first. This ubiquitous cable comes packaged with most TVs, DVD Players, and other video equipment.


You likely have a few extras laying around, and if you go get one you can look in the end and see the HDMI standards defining feature: the 19 pins organized along the top and bottom of the connector.


This versatile connector not only helps all your devices communicate but there’s also a robust set of ancillary tools that allow you to do clever things with HDMI like using HDMI wirelessly and even extract the audio source  for odd situations.

Mini HDMI/Type-C

The Mini HDMI connector, also known as an HDMI Type-C connector takes up a much smaller footprint than the Type-A. At only 10.42 x 2.42mm, the Type-C connector takes up 60% less area than the Type-A connector, which makes it easier to use for small devices that don’t have enough room for the full-sized HDMI connector.

But DVD Players and Televisions have plenty of room. So what types of devices are we talking about? Mainly, the Type-C connector is used on DSLR cameras and camcorders. And the cables that come with these devices usually have a Type-A port on the other end of the cord, so that you can hook them up to larger screens.


You may even find a few tablets sporting Mini HDMI, although more mainstream tablets like the iPad will handle this problem with a dongle that converts to the Type-A port. However, Mini HDMI still has the same 19 pins and the same capabilities as HDMI Type-A. Just in a smaller form factor.


Micro HDMI/Type-D

Micro HDMI, or HDMI Type-D cables, take the space savings to the extreme. With a cross-sectional footprint of 6.4 x 2.8mm, the footprint of the Type-D connector is a whopping 72% smaller than the Type-A. And as incredible as it is to think, they were able to squeeze all 19 pins into this form factor, preserving all the abilities of HDMI in this puny package.


There was a phase in the early 2010s where some smartphones, notably the Droid X, had a micro HDMI port as part of the phones main I/O suite, but nowadays this shift towards standard USB Type-C connectors and the ubiquity of wireless streaming options like Airplay and Chromecast have put a stop to that.


But, there are still a few products in which the micro HDMI port makes the most sense. GoPro cameras have been using micro-HDMI for some time, though even they’re starting to give up this standard in favor of USB Type-C.


All in all, you’re probably unlikely to encounter a product that you need an HDMI Type-D connector for, and this is a good thing: it’s rare enough that if you need that cable, the device you’re using will no doubt have come with one.

TV tips: If users want to cast the phone to the TV, the operation method is also relatively simple, first of all, you can cast the screen operation through the phone's video player screen function.

Just let the TV and the phone in the same LAN environment, then open the phone's video player, enter the video landscape playback state and click the cast screen icon, and then click connect after searching the TV device.



Besides, users can also cast screen to TV through the wireless screen casting function that comes with the phone, make sure the phone and TV are in the same LAN environment, then click to open the wireless screen casting function, and then it will automatically search for TV devices, click to connect after searching for the device and you can use it.


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