New MacBook Pro models limited to HDMI 2.0

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited October 18
Apple's latest MacBook Pro models use an HDMI 2.0 port instead of the speedier HDMI 2.1 protocol, severely limiting throughput to external displays.

HDMI


For the first time in five years, Apple's MacBook Pro supports digital video output through an HDMI port, enabling connections to external displays, TVs and other equipment. Previously, such capability required one of Apple's infamous dongles.

As spotted by Tapbots developer Paul Haddad, however, the new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros rely on HDMI 2.0 and as such are only capable of supporting a single 4K display at a refresh rate of 60Hz. The more flexible HDMI 2.1 standard, released in 2017, can ferry data at up to 48 gigabits per second, enough to support 4K displays at up to 120Hz.

Why the higher bandwidth protocol was not included in Apple's latest flagship Macs is unclear, though some speculate that M1 Pro and M1 Max bus bandwidths are to blame. Along with the single HDMI port, 2021 MacBook Pros sport three Thunderbolt 4 ports that can be used for charging, DisplayPort and data transfer of up to 40Gb/s with compatible Thunderbolt 4 or USB 4 peripherals.

Supporting claims of a throughput bottleneck is the Apple TV 4K, which shipped earlier this year with an HDMI 2.1 port.

Despite the HDMI hardware shortcoming, Apple's M1 Pro chip can handle up to three external 6K displays at 60Hz simultaneously, while the M1 Max adds support for another 6K display and one 4K display at 60Hz. Both MacBook Pro models also support DVI output, though users will have to shell out for an HDMI to DVI adapter.

Apple's last MacBook Pro to offer HDMI ports debuted in 2015. The company switched to an all-Thunderbolt 3 design in 2016, a decision that required the purchase of separate adapters for certain video and data needs.

Read on AppleInsider
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 64
    netroxnetrox Posts: 1,096member
    HDMI should have never been put there. 
    XedseanjsphericKTRomasoucuriousrun8curtis hannah
  • Reply 2 of 64
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,200member
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    auxioMplsPavon b7muthuk_vanalingamGeorgeBMacelijahgllamawilliamlondonspock1234K!llSwitch
  • Reply 3 of 64
    Translation:  They are NOT SO PRO!  Spend all that money and still no 2.1 port...  *SMH*
    edited October 18 KTRcuriousrun8williamlondonjeffreytgilbert
  • Reply 4 of 64
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,200member
    I would point out that the SD slot is SDXC rather than the fastest SDUC. No doubt the HDMI and SD slot share  PCIE4 channels. Capability limited by bandwidth. It’s a first world problem though. 
    edited October 18 sphericGeorgeBMacllamacuriousrun8dewmespock1234jeffreytgilbertwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 64
    XedXed Posts: 1,111member
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Is this really a problem, especially for anyone that has been using the latest Mac notebooks since 2016?

    https://www.amazon.com/Thunderbolt-Compatible-MacBook-Samsung-Surface/dp/B07TLMZK6S/
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 64
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,401member
    Xed said:
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Is this really a problem, especially for anyone that has been using the latest Mac notebooks since 2016?

    https://www.amazon.com/Thunderbolt-Compatible-MacBook-Samsung-Surface/dp/B07TLMZK6S/
    It's truly incredible.  I've listened to so many people complain about needing dongles and adapters for Apple laptops over the past few years.  Now Apple creates a laptop which doesn't need them and people complain they shouldn't have done it.

    For myself personally, I can't count the number of times where having an HDMI port on my 2015 MBP has come in handy.  Sure I'm doing work on it 90% of the time, and I always take adapters on work trips.  But often I take it on vacation with me and don't bother to pack adapters since I figure I don't need them.  Then I end up wanting to show photos & videos to friends/family and simply need to hook it up to the TV in their living room (as opposed to having to pass my phone around the room).  It's not a "pro" use case, but it's a "real life" use case.

    edited October 18 MplsPtokyojimumuthuk_vanalingamentropysGeorgeBMaclkruppelijahgllamawilliamlondonspock1234
  • Reply 7 of 64
    sirlance99sirlance99 Posts: 1,278member
    netrox said:
    HDMI should have never been put there. 
    Everyone I know uses one when connecting to a tv for a presentation. All the pros are happy about this. In fact, show me one legitimate pro who says Apple should never have a HDMI and or SD card. 
    GeorgeBMacelijahgwilliamlondonjeffreytgilbert
  • Reply 8 of 64
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,401member
    netrox said:
    HDMI should have never been put there. 
    Everyone I know uses one when connecting to a tv for a presentation. All the pros are happy about this. In fact, show me one legitimate pro who says Apple should never have a HDMI and or SD card. 
    Funny enough, I'd argue against having the SD card slot.  Perhaps it's common for pro photography, but I personally prefer using USB drives (as do most people I know) since they tend to be more durable.  Not to mention that a lot of cameras can be hooked up via USB.

    sphericwilliamlondoncurtis hannahwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 64
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,441member
    auxio said:
    netrox said:
    HDMI should have never been put there. 
    Everyone I know uses one when connecting to a tv for a presentation. All the pros are happy about this. In fact, show me one legitimate pro who says Apple should never have a HDMI and or SD card. 
    Funny enough, I'd argue against having the SD card slot.  Perhaps it's common for pro photography, but I personally prefer using USB drives (as do most people I know) since they tend to be more durable.  Not to mention that a lot of cameras can be hooked up via USB.

    Except popping the SD card out of the camera and putting it in the computer is many times more convenient and doesn’t require an extra cord. 

    The HDMI port is a welcome addition to anyone who’s ever needed to do a presentation with their MBP. It’s disappointing that Apple only made it v2.0, but if it was a compromise d/t sharing with the SD slot then it’s not an unreasonable one. Very few projectors and TVs are better than 4K 60Hz. For desktop applications an adapter is not as much of an issue. 
    muthuk_vanalingamentropyselijahgllamawilliamlondonspock1234FileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 64
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 5,823member
    HDMI 2.1 had a bandwidth speed of 48gb/s.  Thunderbolt tops out at 40gb/s.  The MBP most likely has four Thunderbolt/PCIe lanes and one of those lanes is used to share between the HDMI port and SD-Card port.  So it makes perfect sense why it's limited to HDMI 2.0

    People whined and complained about getting back ports, and now that they do they still complain.

    I can see people primarily using that port to connect to projectors, and TV's on a TEMPORARY basis.  Quite whining on a feature you may very likely never use on a laptop. 

    entropysllamarusswwilliamlondonspock1234FileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 64
    I guess it was a missed opportunity. However, for presentations and the like, how much does 4K @120Hz matter? I am assuming that most projectors would currently max out at HD resolution.
    entropysIreneWlkruppllamawilliamlondonspock1234FileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 64
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,330member
    Translation:  They are NOT SO PRO!  Spend all that money and still no 2.1 port...  *SMH*
    Because what makes a laptop pro is the version of the fucking HDMI port, which didn’t even exist for several years prior?

    This machines wipes the floor with the competition in all areas that matter. Performance, efficiency, battery life, display, audio, build quality, etc. Even a chronic troll like you should be able to acknowledge  that. 
    DetnatorllamawilliamlondonStrangeDaysspock1234watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 64
    I will go out on a limb here and be branded a bit apologist perhaps.

    In the multi-monitor part of the presentation. Three Pro XDR displays are shown, one doing colour correction, one editing, one with waveforms (setup like an edit suite). The HDMI output is then represented by a large "TV" class screen above them, in the "client" position as per an edit suite.

    That setup kind of speaks to Apple's intentions. The HDMI is for showing a broadcast output to a consumer display not a professional display. Yes there are 120hz large displays. Yes all of them are pitched at gaming consoles. They are hardly mainstream.

    Not saying its right, just saying Apple seems to have shown what they were intending and why.
    JWSCMplsPstompyllamawilliamlondonspock1234FileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 64
    eCareCar Posts: 2member
    Xed said:
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Is this really a problem, especially for anyone that has been using the latest Mac notebooks since 2016?

    https://www.amazon.com/Thunderbolt-Compatible-MacBook-Samsung-Surface/dp/B07TLMZK6S/
    It is. That adapter (and every other) doesn’t support 4k @120 from a Mac…. HDMI 2.1 does. So if you have an LG OLED C1, and want to also use it as a Mac Monitor there is no way to connect it and not be hobbled. Not a huge deal to me right now, but a new MacBook Pro should last many many years. Sucks to start it off with an HDMI port from years ago. 
    avon b7williamlondon
  • Reply 15 of 64
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,657member
    auxio said:
    netrox said:
    HDMI should have never been put there. 
    Everyone I know uses one when connecting to a tv for a presentation. All the pros are happy about this. In fact, show me one legitimate pro who says Apple should never have a HDMI and or SD card. 
    Funny enough, I'd argue against having the SD card slot.  Perhaps it's common for pro photography, but I personally prefer using USB drives (as do most people I know) since they tend to be more durable.  Not to mention that a lot of cameras can be hooked up via USB.

    Funnily enough, the correct words there are "funnily enough."
    auxiospock1234watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 64
    eCareCar Posts: 2member
    sflocal said:
    HDMI 2.1 had a bandwidth speed of 48gb/s.  Thunderbolt tops out at 40gb/s.  The MBP most likely has four Thunderbolt/PCIe lanes and one of those lanes is used to share between the HDMI port and SD-Card port.  So it makes perfect sense why it's limited to HDMI 2.0

    People whined and complained about getting back ports, and now that they do they still complain.

    I can see people primarily using that port to connect to projectors, and TV's on a TEMPORARY basis.  Quite whining on a feature you may very likely never use on a laptop. 

    I wouldn’t have whined. I’d be SO happy with a TB dongle that could fully support HDMI 2.1… but they don’t exist (for a Mac…yet)
    omasouwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 64
    seanjseanj Posts: 265member
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Who on Earth has projectors in this day and age?
    Never use HDMI ports, DP is so superior.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 18 of 64
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,200member
    Many small businesses that cannot afford fancy Wifi presentation set ups.
    GeorgeBMacwilliamlondonspock1234watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 64
    IreneWIreneW Posts: 277member
    seanj said:
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Who on Earth has projectors in this day and age?.
    Like, everyone?
    GeorgeBMacMplsPmike1elijahgmuthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondonspock1234
  • Reply 20 of 64
    crowleycrowley Posts: 9,124member
    seanj said:
    entropys said:
    Yes it should. Hardly anyone has USBc projectors. But they all have hdmi.
    Who on Earth has projectors in this day and age?
    Never use HDMI ports, DP is so superior.
    I've only once gone into a conference room and hooked up a projector via DP (mini-DP actually). Every other time it has been HDMI.  And I do this a lot (admittedly less so in the past 18 months).

    And there are many reason why HDMI is the preferable port to DisplayPort: ubiquity for one, sound for two, and TV compatibility as the cherry.
    GeorgeBMacMplsPmike1elijahgmuthuk_vanalingamspock1234FileMakerFeller
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