Getting the best high-definition picture quality for your gaming system involves many different variables. Typically, things, like having a great graphic card and pairing it with a high quality monitor, is important. Nevertheless, those are not the only things that influence video quality. Surprisingly, cable has a huge role to play. If you’ve got a basic audio-video cable, expect to receive a signal that is… well, basic.
There’s no shortage of advanced audio-video cables for gaming available. The most popular gaming cables are VGA, DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort. VGA and DVI cables are somewhat antiquated though you can still get a pretty good signal from them. DVI is familiar but has its limitation and VGA capability is on its way out, though either may be appropriate for a low-end video card. By far, when searching for the most advanced cable, you’ll want to go with either HDMI or DisplayPort. But, which one is better – that’s what we’re here to discuss.
The argument for HDMI
HDMI stands for “high definition multimedia interface” and is considered the most advanced home theater consumer cable today. HDMI cables can be used to connect gaming consoles, an A/V receiver, or streaming media box. For computer-based monitor systems, they will likely have HDMI inputs ready to go. The most advanced HDMI cable on the market today is HDMI 2.1, capturing up to 8K video when possible. Also, it maintains a 48 Gbps-bandwidth, impressive specifications supporting HDR, enhanced audio return channel functionality and more. Now, there are some HDMI 4K cables limited to a 30 Hz refresh rate. For gaming, that’s not great so you may wish to buy a more advanced HDMI cable or to seek out DisplayPort.
The argument for DisplayPort
Most modern video cards are equipped with DisplayPort connections. DisplayPorts are rarely found on contemporary flat-screens however they are present on computer monitors and similar setups. Depending on the refresh technology used, sometimes you may be forced to use a DisplayPort cable. For example, FreeSync requires an HDMI cable whereas Nvidia’s G-Sync requires DisplayPort. Though HDMI is portrayed as superior to DisplayPort, that’s not necessarily true. The latest update on DisplayPort includes 32.4Gbps of bandwidth and an impressive 3:1 lossless compression ratio which makes it perfect for some gaming setups.
Whether you choose HDMI or DisplayPort, there’s a lot to weigh. If you choice is not already preordained, do your research. HDMI supports higher maximum resolutions however one would have to have a massive system to accommodate its top end specifications. Arguably, a DisplayPort cable makes more sense for gamers, especially those on multiple monitors.
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