Blustream – Why Do We Need HDMI Over IP?

Increase In Video Bandwidth

With the demands of some 4K UHD content, HDR enabled display devices and higher resolution audio formats, the bandwidth requirements of HDMI are ever increasing. Current HDMI cable technologies struggle to transmit this high bandwidth over even modest distances without large signal losses. Technology is therefore required to distribute HDMI signals up to 100 meters. Utilising robust network infrastructure, CAT cabling and traditional IP and Multicast protocols allows convenient and cost effective distribution of HDMI signals.

FORMAT

RESOLUTION

FRAMES/SEC

CLOCK

VBLANK

HBLANK

COLOUR

DATA RATE

720p

1280×720

60

74.25 MHz

30

370

8-bit 4:2:0

2.22 Gbps

1080i

1920×1080

60i

74.25 MHz

45

280

8-bit 4:2:0

2.22 Gbps

1080p/24

1920×1080

24

74.25 MHz

45

830

8-bit 4:2:0

2.22 Gbps

1080p/60

1920×1080

60

148.5 MHz

45

280

8-bit 4:2:0

4.45 Gbps

1080p/24 3D

1920×1080

24 (x2)

148.5 MHz

45

830

8-bit 4:2:0

4.45 Gbps

2160p/24

3840×2160

24

297 MHz

90

1660

8-bit 4:2:0

8.91 Gbps

2160p/30

3840×2160

30

297 MHz

90

560

8-bit 4:4:4

8.91 Gbps

2160p/60

3840×2160

60

297 MHz

90

560

8-bit 4:2:0

8.91 Gbps

2160p/60

3840×2160

60

148.5MHz

90

560

10-bit 4:2:0

11.14 Gbps

2160p/60

3840×2160

60

148.5MHz

90

560

12-bit 4:2:0

13.37 Gbps

2160p/60

3840×2160

60

148.5 MHz

90

1120

8-bit 4:4:4

17.82 Gbps

The above chart shows the bandwidth requirements for sending HDMI signals without any compression. The bandwidth requirements are the same whether using HDMI or CAT cables for signal distribution.
High-speed HDMI cables will support full 4K 8-bit 4:4:4 (18 Gbps) up to distances of approx 7m. Longer cables are not capable of transmitting higher bandwidths without electronic components present inside the cable. HDBaseT can support up to 4K 60Hz 8-bit 4:2:0 and 4K 30Hz 8-bit 4:4:4. HDBaseT will not support 4K 60Hz 10-bit 4:4:4 (18 Gbps). HDBaseT signal is only point-to-point.

Blustream Multicast distribution supports 4K 60Hz 10-bit 4:2:0 and 4K 30Hz 8-bit 4:4:4 but the video uses advanced compression technology meaning that cable bandwidth requirements are less than 1Gbps!

System Size

Utilising network hardware removes many limitations of traditional matrix configurations. No longer are you limited in system size due to the number of inputs/outputs imposed by traditional matrices, rather the network infrastructure dictates the maximum number of inputs/outputs, with an imposed limit of 64,516 devices (IP address limitations).

Cabling Distance Limitations

Alternate methods of HDMI distribution using CAT cables are limited to 100m, but a network infrastructure allows multiple network switches to be joined using fibre cable links. With fibre cable distribution it is now possible to distribute 4K HDMI over kilometers.

Hardware Cost

Previous methods of HDMI distribution become expensive when system sizes grow larger than 8x sources and 8x displays. The Blustream Multicast solution is a cost effective solution, especially when quoting large commercial applications.