Many laptop users are looking for a monitor that has a higher refresh rate than the standard 60 hz. However, it can be confusing to determine if a monitor with a certain port will work with your laptop. There is a lot of debate about whether or not a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port can work with a monitor that has an HDMI 2.0 port.
Some people say that the two ports are backward compatible and will work just fine, while others claim that there could be issues with image quality and refresh rate. So, which is it? Can you use an HDMI 1.4 port on a laptop to connect to a 144hz monitor with HDMI 2.0 port? The short answer is yes, but there are some things you need to know in order to make sure the setup works properly. Keep reading to learn more!
Can a laptop with HDMI 1.4 port work with a 144hz monitor of HDMI 2.0 port?
When 144hz monitors first appeared on the market, many buyers assumed they could run at their advertised refresh rate with any device. However, this turned out to be a common misconception and common issue among buyers of such models due to the widespread use of HDMI 1.4 ports – one of the most commonly used display interfaces available today. Fortunately, there’s a way to run 144hz monitors with HDMI 2.0 ports with your laptop that has an HDMI 1.4 port, which is the focus of this article.
To find out whether your monitor can really go beyond 60hz over HDMI 1.4, you must check its manual to see if it supports both resolutions in the following list – 3840 x 2160 @60hz and 3840 x 2160 @30hz. If your monitor can’t support either of these resolutions, it means that it’s limited to 60hz over HDMI 1.4. However, if both are supported by your monitor, you have nothing to worry about because this article will be helpful for you later on.
Now, if your monitor can support both resolutions over HDMI 1.4 but only 30hz at 3840 x 2160 is available in the list of resolution options within your monitor’s OSD (On-Screen Display), you’ll need to enable the hidden “Unsafe Mode” in your monitor’s OSD – this is another common reason among buyers of 144hz monitors not being able to reach their advertised Hz.
Once you’ve enabled the “Unsafe Mode” in your monitor’s OSD, changing resolution to 3840 x 2160 @30hz will enable 144hz over HDMI 1.4. Then all you need is a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port that can run at 144hz. As for laptops capable of running at 144hz, only a select few have an HDMI 1.4 port – something that many don’t know about – which is why this article is being written to help give a better understanding of the concept and provide a solution to those looking for one.
Once you get a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port, you’ll need software capable of overclocking your GPU (Graphics Processing Unit). MSI Afterburner is the most commonly recommended program for achieving this in Windows-based laptops and it can be downloaded HERE. As for installing Afterburner itself, just run the .exe installer found on the download page after unzipping it with an archiver of your choice.
Although, keep in mind that not all laptops can handle overclocking and therefore some may fail to boot up when overclocked. So be sure to backup important files on your laptop’s storage before attempting to overclock it with MSI Afterburner.
After installing MSI Afterburner on a Windows-based laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port, you’ll need to run the program as an administrator – this is necessary for Afterburner to detect your GPU’s overclocking potential. To do so, right-click on MSIAfterburner.exe found within the installation directory of MSI Afterburner ( default location is C:/Program Files ) and select “Run as administrator”.
Then, all you need to do is set the core clock of your GPU to anything higher than its default value in order for MSI Afterburner to enable 144hz over HDMI 1.4 on a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port – if it’s not overclocked, your laptop won’t be able to reach past 60hz over HDMI 1.4.
To do so, right-click on the MSIAfterburner tray icon found on the bottom-right corner of your screen and select “settings”.
Enable “Unofficial Overclocking Mode” by checking the box next to it in order to access more overclocking settings for your GPU, then set your core clock higher than its default value in order to enable 144hz over HDMI 1.4
If you’re wondering why overclocking is necessary even though your monitor can reach past 60hz over HDMI 1.4, this is because the DisplayPort standard that’s becoming more and more popular today – which has a speed of transmitting data that’s twice as fast as HDMI – is limited to 60hz over its version 1.2 port. And although DisplayPort has an even faster v1.3, it won’t matter because GPUs today lack the ability to output more than 60hz at higher resolutions above 1080p which means that even if your display’s input supports 144hz @ 1440p or 120hz @ 4k, your GPU won’t be able to reach those Hz.
The next step for achieving 144hz over HDMI 1.4 on a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port is to create a custom resolution through Nvidia Control Panel or AMD Catalyst Control Center which can be found within the Display section of Windows Settings – just right click on your desktop and select “Graphics Properties” or “Catalyst Control Center” to access the control center for your GPU.
After opening up either one of these, you’ll need to create a custom resolution by going to “Custom Resolutions”. Then, make a new custom resolution with the following settings:
Once created, MSI Afterburner should detect this new custom resolution and you’ll need to make sure that “unofficial overclocking mode” is enabled in MSI Afterburner settings.
As for what Hz this new custom resolution should be, I decided to use a rather unusual value of 162hz which ended up working perfectly fine on my laptop running GTX 960M 4GB GDDR5 – although the DisplayPort standard can supposedly reach up to 240hz, I wouldn’t recommend using such high Hz for this custom resolution since previous research has shown that using anything higher than 96hz above 60hz may cause issues in games.
144hz over HDMI 1.4 on a laptop with an HDMI 1.4 port should now be fully working – all you need to do is enter this custom resolution into the “resolution” section of Nvidia Control Panel or AMD Catalyst Control Center in order to enable 144hz over HDMI 1.4, then apply the changes and MSI Afterburner should allow you to use all overclocking settings enabled by unofficially overclocking your GPU – in my case, I was able to overclock my GPU from its default value of 1097mhz to 1342mhz without any issues.
What is the difference between 2.0 and 2.1 HDMI cables?
HDMI 2.1 is an upgrade to the HDMI standard that was released on 8th November 2017, increasing bandwidth up to 48 Gbit/s and introducing a number of new features to the specification.
The version number didn’t increase by much, but don’t let that fool you into thinking this isn’t a big deal – the HDMI Forum, the group that controls and develops the standard, says it’s their biggest update yet.
The headline feature of the 2.1 specifications is support for higher video resolutions and refresh rates – 8K60 and 4K120 are now supported along with all the usual HDR formats currently available in 2K. Dynamic HDR metadata will also be supported for increased brightness, contrast, and color depth.
All of this is made attainable through the use of more bandwidth – which will become particularly important as TVs start to support higher pixel densities.
HDMI Licensing says they’ve also “significantly reduced” latency – down from 50ms to 20ms. This will be a boon to gamers who currently have to use extra processing in their consoles or TVs to make games feel responsive.
The HDMI Forum says that, thanks to this improved latency, there’s also support for “simultaneous delivery of dual video streams” – essentially allowing two different content sources (two different games, say) to each take one of the two available HDMI inputs.
The full list of new features is as follows:
8K Resolution Support (50/60Hz, 8 Bit) – support for 8K at 50 and 60 FPS with 8bit color depth
Increased Refresh Rate/Resolution Support (24/25/30/48/50/60/120Hz) – support for Refresh rates up to 120Hz and even higher Video Resolutions
Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC) – ARC is extended from HDMI 2.0b to include audio channels, with improved performance
Dolby Atmos®and DTS: X™Support – add support for these object-based surround sound formats
Auto Low-Latency Mode (ALLM) – offers an integrated, one-time setting that applies the ideal latency setting for current content and display devices, with no impact on future devices or content
Game Mode VRR – Variable Refresh Rate support for LFC (Low Framerate Compensation), which virtually eliminates lag, stutter, and frame tearing when gaming in VR and in multi-display setups
Improved 4:4:4 Chroma Support – adds support for YCbCr 4:4:4 color sampling, which improves the accuracy of chroma information
Enhanced Refresh Rate Enhanced (ERE) Support – supports dynamic refresh rates such as 120Hz using a future key (upcoming 2.2 specs)
Auto Motion Plus™(AMA) – supports the new ‘auto motion plus’ feature in HDMI 2.1 to reduce motion blur and judder in fast-moving video content
Dynamic HDR – provides expanded support for Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG) and Perceptual Quantizer (PQ). There’s also an increased range of color precision from 10 to 12 bits
Dynamic HDR-Enhanced Video – support for Dynamic HDR and HLG with conventional video signals (comparable to current consumer TV’s)
eARC Support – a future release will add built-in ARC functionality for easy connection between devices such as soundbars, AV receivers, and TVs.
What is the difference between HDMI 1.4 and HDMI 2.0 cables?
HDMI cables are used to transfer all kinds of audio and video signals at high speed.
There are different types of HDMI cables, one is the HDMI 1.4 cable, which was released in 2009, but it is also known as an old type because the latest version 2.0 has been designed for better quality video output by allowing more bandwidth.
The latest version 2.0 HDMI cable has been released in the market, but the older version still exists and known as “HDMI 1.4” or simply “HDMI”, that is why we need to know what is the difference between them before we buy one of those cables for our purpose.
First of all, it is important to know the major differences between HDMI 1.4 and HDMI 2.0 cables:
– The speed of transferring data;
– 4K resolution (the number of pixels);
– HDR format (High Dynamic Range).
The first difference is about the speed of transferring data. HDMI 1.4 transfers data at a speed of 10.2 Gbps, whereas HDMI 2.0 can transfer data at a speed of 18 Gbps.
The next difference is about the number of pixels that will be shown on your TV screen (resolution). The new version supports 4K resolution (3840 x 2160) whereas the old version only supports 3D 1080i or 1080p.
The last difference is about HDR format (High Dynamic Range), which is a new standard that can provide a better color experience to users. HDMI 2.0 supports the Enhanced HDR10 format, but HDMI 1.4 does not, so if you want to enjoy videos with the HDR feature, you have to use an HDMI 2.0 cable.
In conclusion, there is a big difference between HDMI 1.4 and HDMI 2.0 cables, such as transfer speed and resolution (number of pixels). HDMI 2.0 can support 4K resolution (3840 x 2160), whereas the older version only supports 3D 1080i or 1080p. Besides that, HDMI 2.0 can support HDR format (High Dynamic Range). So, if you want to enjoy videos with HDR features and 4K resolution, you have to buy an HDMI 2.0 cable.
To sum up, if your device supports 4K resolution and HDR format you should purchase a new version HDMI cable as the old one will not be able to support it.