Saturday, March 17, 2018

Displayport to HDMI Conversion at 4K

Subtitle: Workstation connect multiple 4K HDMI Displays 

This article attempts to answer the question of How do I connect multiple 4K HDMI Screens to my computer.

For over 15 years Marcus has used a multiple display workstation. In previous times the Computer connected to each Computer Grade display over a Dual Link DVI interface

But in 2018 the professional grade displays and adapters use Displayport.

Just one thing though, Professional Grade Displays are expensive. Something like the Philips BDM4065UC/00 4K monitor retails at about 2K GBP. Ouch!

Wouldn't it be friendlier if you could use a Regular 4K Television and drive the HDMI input?  Sure, and I wrote about doing that here

The Problem

The issue is that if you want to drive multiple displays you will find out that your graphics Adapter only has 1 HDMI 4K port and the rest will be DisplayPort.   Because vendors like Gigabyte  think you will drive via that interface.

I'm testing a DisplayPort to 4K HDMI converter.   Yes, this way around, not the more trivial HDMI to Displayport.  To re-iterate, this is DisplayPort from your Graphics Adapter, entering the converter at 4K resolution and exiting on the HDMI interface at 4K resolution to a 4K Television or Monitor with a 4K HDMI interface.

 So really my Samsung TV is now full of 4 HDMI inputs, one is being driven from the Displayport to HDMI converter

You can't see much of the detail except that below the 4 port Ethernet is the Graphics adapter and one of the DisplayPorts feeds the converter and then to the screen


So the Nvidia card thinks it is driving DisplayPort at 4K

A pictures of the actual adapter.

Quality Test
Agata and Marcus took a 4K Movie, I mean something larger than 2Gigabytes in size and played it using VLC media player splitting the window between a Samsung 4K TV and my 4K Iiyama monitor.

Result.   Via the Displayport to HDMI interface the Samsung screen actually looked better than the native Displayport driven Iiyama.   I know!

I Want One!

Follow this link to order one for under 20GBP.  I know, just bonkers.

I can't believe it works so well

Active adapter enables you to connect a DisplayPort video output from your laptop, desktop, or tablet PC to HDMI-equiped displays, TVs, and projectors
Supports resolutions up to 3840×2160 (4k) Ultra-HD@60Hz. 1080p displays supported at 120Hz
VESA (DisplayPort) certified to ensure maximum compatibility and performance
Compliant with VESA Dual-Mode DisplayPort 1.2, High Bit Rate 2 (HBR2), and HDMI 2.0 standards
Compatible with the Plugable UGA-4KDP USB 3.0 DisplayPort graphics adapter
AMD Eyefinity compatible for 3+ displays
Supports 8-channel LPCM and HBR audio up to 192kHz sample rate
Complies with HDCP content protection

Requires no driver installation or external power supply

Modern powerful graphics cards have multiple DisplayPort outputs but typically 0 - 1 HDMI 4K Ports.

I've shown that you can use a DisplayPort, then a inexpensive Display to HDMI 4K active adapter to connect to a 4K TV with HDMI 2.0 ports

Using a 4K TV is a lot cheaper than buying an equivalently sized  (normally 40") Computer Grade Monitor.

(NB: It's tempting because 40" TV's become very hard to find, but anything larger for example 43" and I think this is too large to use as a Computer Monitor, especially if you stack multiple monitors together.  Really, go for 40" max)

So using this converter technique I can use multiple 4K TV's which in testing seemed to actually have a superior display to my actual 4K 40" Computer Grade Monitor.   

It is all good!