updated 10:00 am EDT, Tue August 15, 2006
HDMI Deep Color Hardware
Conventional CRT displays may still deliver the best subjective color accuracy for most viewers, but the gap between this and flat-panel technology is quickly narrowing. One technique for improving the color output is known as "deep color:" instead of the 16.7 million colors we see in current 24-bit output, deep color allows for billions of colors onscreen at anywhere from 30-bit to 48-bit quality. Silicon Image today announced new receivers and transmitters for HDMI 1.3, the first video cable format that explicitly supports deep color. The increased accuracy means that even LCDs, which have habitually poor black reproduction and occasional instances of color banding (where color changes are abrupt when they should be subtle), should display a more accurate picture if they and their source have deep color hardware. Sony's PlayStation 3, which includes HDMI 1.3, should take advantage of not just the extra color accuracy but also better frame rates, even at a full 1080p resolution. Other media players and HDTVs using Silicon Image's hardware are expected to ship by the end of the year.