PS4 Pro Update Disables HDMI 1.4 4K Support
John Williamson / 3 years ago
The HDMI 2.0 standard is commonly perceived as a requirement to deliver 4K 60 frames-per-second content because of the bandwidth limitations on HDMI 1.4. Despite this, an investigation into the PS4 Pro’s connectivity protocols by Digital Foundry found that the HDMI 1.4 format was suitable for delivering the full 60Hz signal, albeit with some issues:
“2160p YUV420 is interesting in that this allows PS4 Pro to connect to older 4K screens that lack the full HDMI 2.0 implementation. By reducing chroma information, the required bandwidth drops down in half, allowing HDMI 1.4 screens to get a full 60Hz signal.
The compromise is that hard reds, blues and greens can show low resolution artefacting. However, in our tests, we’ve found that it’s not an issue in a typical living room environment. 2160p RGB doubles the bandwidth requirement, meaning HDMI 2.0 is a must, and sends the framebuffer through losslessly to the 4K screen.”
Interestingly, the YUV240 mode which made 4K 60Hz a possibility over HDMI 1.4 has been removed in the firmware version 4.05. Anyone who owns a TV and uses the HDMI 1.4 standard will no longer be able to select this option. Already, there’s a huge thread on the PlayStation Europe forums discussing this issue and apparently, Sony is working on a fix. Perhaps, they were concerned that the artefacts might result in people seeking a console RMA or returning the device to the original store. Given the PS4 Pro’s focus on 4K content, it’s important to allow users with older Televisions to access the highest resolution without settling for 30Hz. However, it’s unlikely any native 4K games will get anywhere near this figure and it’s probably more important for Netflix streaming or YouTube videos. Despite advancements in technology, the adoption rate for new Televisions is relatively slow and many still believe their existing 1080p set is more than ample.