eARC with HDMI 2.1, Enhanced Audio Return Channel at up to 40mbit/s

Posted by Charbax – February 10, 2018

eARC in HDMI 2.1 simplifies connectivity and supports the most advanced audio formats such as object-based audio, such as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, highest audio quality, and ensures compatibility between audio devices and upcoming HDMI 2.1 products, enabling to deliver those formats via an eARC-enabled HDMI port on a future HDMI 2.1 TV. eARC also provides support for the TV’s over-the-air tuner, streaming apps received by the TV, and audio from HDMI sources connected to the TV.

A key advantage of eARC is that it enables a TV-centric living room or home theater configuration that can provide a more seamless experience. Today, an AV receiver—or a similar repeater device—is necessary to extract high quality audio from an HDMI link, while the video is processed and passed through to the TV. The user may have to switch inputs on both the TV and an audio device to find the source of their content, and content sourced within the TV and from TV inputs is frequently limited to stereo or, in the best case, one of a very small number of compressed formats.

With eARC, it will be possible to connect all sources through the TV and send audio to the sound system completely uncompromised. Furthermore, eARC will make possible a new breed of audio-only receivers that will yield greater value and ease-of-use by eliminating a video subsystem. So, in theory anyway, overall video and audio performance will improve with eARC.