High Definition Multi….what?
HDMI is a rather new concept. Since the coming of blu-ray and HD-dvd.
It stands for Hight Definition Multimedia Interface. To put it short, it is an interface which allows transmitting or uncompressed digital data (in the form of video and audio).
I realize this sounds very fancy and spectacular but this is actually nothing more than a digital alternative to analog standards (coax, s-video, scart, …).
What I experience as the biggest advantage is that this interface allows you to transfer audio data as well. DVI cables (which is one of the most commonly used cables to connect a computer screen) and a DVI interface can be used to connect your computer for instance to the television. But this does not allow you to pass on any sound. You’ll need an extra set of cables for this.
And ofcourse, not too forget, it can handle high resolutions and high resolution screens. To give you a technical summary (I just know you were waiting for this): HDMI version 1.3 has a maximum pixel clock rate of 340 Mhz which allows a maximum resolution of 2560×1600 over a single data link. If I’m not mistaking there is a version 1.4 by now but I don’t know any specific details about this. Some quick googling thought me the maximum resolution is 4096×2160. Which is… quite impressive to be honest.
In case you wondered if this is a lot… Well… Yes it is! If you take an older CRT-TV with a scart cable/connector the maximum resolution is 1024×576. How about that!
The moral of this little story. If you like movies or gaming, by all means get yourself a plasma, lcd or LED tv and HDMI. You’ll love it