Last Updated on February 2, 2024 by Markeyus Franks
Advancement in the overall performance of computers is directly synonymous with better display and visuals. The earlier computers would feature the DOS operating system with minimal UI and graphics. With the introduction of the Windows OS, visuals were developing at an exponential rate. With better visuals came a multitude of opportunities for app developers and media channels. Soon, we could see visually stunning video games and engaging movies and clips on modern computers.
As media gradually became better in quality, so did display technology. The first significant upgrade in computer displays was from the CRT monitor to the LCD. Not only did this allow for laptops to become a reality, but it also took display quality to HD resolutions. But the yearning for better visuals didn’t end here; today, we find ourselves surrounded by Ultra-HD and super vivid displays, with countless methods of media streaming.
Display ports like HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C are the backbone of high-quality media, and DisplayPort is one of the best ones in the market. If your PC does not have a DisplayPort, the article below is tailored to you perfectly!
A DisplayPort is a display interface just like the VGA and HDMI ports that came before it. But unlike the analog DVI, VGA, and Component systems, the DisplayPort was based on a digital system that was much more efficient. The DisplayPort is primarily made for the transmission of video signals, but its digital nature allows you to transfer audio, USBs, and other forms of data as well.
The DisplayPorts bests all other display interfaces in many ways. The first one is support for higher display resolutions and frames, as it can support up to 144Hz of display frequency and 16k at 60 Hz. The second salient feature is its wide color range, where it even bests the HDMI port, making it ideal for photo and video editing. Some DisplayPort cables are capable of carrying up to 100 watts of power and can power your monitor.
The DisplayPort allows you to connect multiple monitors to a single computer, making it the ideal port for computer gamers, designers, and professionals in the graphics niche, too!
The HDMI port has become a standard because of how common it is. It gives you a decent range of resolution, colors, and frequency, leaving significantly less to be desired. While HDMI is clearly more popular, the DisplayPort is the primary choice of gamers, graphic designers, and developers. Here is a comparison of the two ports on different aspects;
Three main factors can determine the overall quality of a display: color gamut, resolution, and refresh rate. The DisplayPort is a clear winner in all three categories. The DisplayPort can handle 16k resolution while 8k is the maximum for HDMI yet. Furthermore, the DisplayPort supports daisy-chaining, which connects multiple displays in a series. DisplayPort offers adaptive synchronization features like G-Sync and FreeSync, making the gaming experience even smoother. While HDMI is decent enough if you are a casual gamer or user, DisplayPort is the clear winner for professionals who focus on graphics-oriented usage.
HDMI is the standard port on most modern computers, TVs, monitors, gaming consoles, and projectors. The DisplayPort is uncommon on regular devices but can be found on high-end TVs, computers, and gaming monitors. Based on the availability, the user base is already narrowed down. Another feature that comes standard with the HDMI is audio and video transmission through one cable.
The DisplayPort comes with a specific adapter; most DP ports also feature a latching mechanism for a more secure connection. HDMI, being the more popular interface, is easier to find, and there is no latching mechanism, so all cables are designed on a set standard.
Displays with HDMI ports require an external power supply or battery to power them. Some DisplayPort cables are rated for up to 100 watts of power transmission. This allows users to power their displays through the DisplayPort instead of an additional supply, reducing clutter.
If you need the best refresh rates, color range, and display resolution, then DisplayPort is the better option. If you need compatibility and audio transmission to the display as well, then go with the safer option: HDMI.
While HDMI was the standard before the DisplayPort was released, manufacturers are now increasingly adding support for the DisplayPort. At times, modern laptops have the DisplayPort instead of HDMI, but this is rare. There are several factors that you may have to consider before you can deduce whether or not a laptop has the DisplayPort;
Gaming and business laptops may include DisplayPort because both these tasks require the advanced features that DisplayPort offers. Gamers prefer the highest refresh rates and best resolution with low-latency features, all of which are provided by DisplayPort. Business laptops are primarily used for high-end business analytics. A higher color gamut and multi-monitor support are perfect for monitoring the stocks and shares of a business, amongst other analytics.
There are several reasons why manufacturers exclude DisplayPorts from their machines. One reason may be the form factor of the device. While DisplayPort offers better features, the port is slightly bulkier than the HDMI Port. Manufacturers may swap out the DisplayPort for the HDMI in order to save space. The second reason why a manufacturer may not install a DisplayPort is budget. If you plan to buy a budget machine, it may come with an HDMI port instead of a DisplayPort. This improves the compatibility of the device while reducing costs simultaneously.
The model year of your laptop can also play an essential role in whether or not it has a DisplayPort. Newer laptops are more likely to have the DisplayPort because of the increased compatibility and range of features it has over other display interfaces. The DisplayPort is becoming mainstream with time, especially in high-end machines.
If, unfortunately, your device does not have the DisplayPort, there are only a few options in your hand: use an alternative port or look for a way to add the DisplayPort to your device through adapters or docking stations. Below is an elaboration on each of those options;
If you are ready to settle for other options instead of DisplayPort, you have very promising alternatives that are better in some cases. Two of the best and most common alternative ports are the USB type-C and the HDMI port.
The HDMI port is easily the most common and widely compatible display interface in modern computers and laptops. If your laptop does not have a DisplayPort, it most likely has the HDMI. HDMI offers superb quality and crisp visuals at high refresh rates. Most users rarely need to display quality better than HDMI; chances are that you won’t miss the DisplayPort at all.
The USB type-C is gaining popularity faster than the DisplayPort, and it offers features way beyond the DisplayPort or HDMI. It is the successor of the USB type-A, which was a non-reversible rectangular connector. If you have a modern, thinner laptop, you may only have the type-C port. The type-C has gained respect in the eyes of the gaming community for the DisplayPort Alt Mode. While the USB-C is not as compatible as the HDMI, it offers a decent 8k resolution at 60 Hz.
Here is an adapter and docking station that may help you out;
UGREEN DisplayPort to USB-C Adapter
This is an adapter that plugs into your USB-C port and gives you a DisplayPort socket on the other end. Unlike passive adapters that can only offer you 1080p resolution, the UGREEN adapter provides you with 4k @ 60Hz compatibility, offering you superb display quality and frequency for graphics-heavy tasks. If you have a sleek modern laptop like a MacBook or Ultrabook, this adapter will efficiently serve your purpose.
CalDigit TS4 Thunderbolt 4 Dock
Docking stations are amongst the best accessories you can get for your laptops, especially if you do most of your work on them. A dock converts your laptop into a complete workstation, attaching additional displays and providing you with countless extra ports all through one cable. The CalDigit TS4 offers you two additional DisplayPort 1.4 options capable of 4k resolution at 60Hz. You get ten additional ports with this dock, excluding the DisplayPorts, making it suitable for the techiest of users.
The DisplayPort offers exceptional display features like adaptive syncing, unmatched display resolution, and very low latency. All these features make it a favorite for graphic-intensive users like gamers and designers. The ability to connect multiple displays appeals to most, if not all users. All these features make the DisplayPort extremely desirable. But if you do not have the luxury of a DisplayPort, some fantastic options will offer you performance close to, if not equal to, the DisplayPort. If a DisplayPort is necessary, make sure you check the specifications of your laptop carefully before you buy it!