# Is there any modern video connector you can use royalties free?

I would like to make several hundreds of a device with video out. It seems every video connector involves huge fees for licensing - is there anyway around this?

• Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't DP royalty-free? – Hearth Aug 21 at 16:01
• VGA is as well, but that might be a little less modern than you want. – Hearth Aug 21 at 16:06
• @Hearth free as in "just buy the connectors" and use them free? – user733606 Aug 21 at 16:07
• As far as I'm aware, as long as you're not using HDCP (which you shouldn't be anyway (I have strong feelings about the ethicality of DRM, namely that it isn't)) you can use it free of charge, just buy the physical connectors. – Hearth Aug 21 at 16:08
• I thought you had to license the codecs – Voltage Spike Aug 21 at 16:14

Besides HDCP, HDMI has a ‘Logo License’ that costs serious money. DP doesn’t, though MPEG LA wants to charge a (disputed) $0.20 per unit royalty fee. DVI doesn’t have an HDCP requirement, it’s optional, and it has no fees. This might be a reasonable choice that’s still supported in the marketplace, and it’s supported as a legacy mode in HDMI with a passive adapter. (Yes I’m aware of TMDS patents. As a practical matter those are rolled up in the source/sink device, not the connector itself.) An HDMI source however can choose not to send DRM-enforced content over DVI, or it can down-res it to 480p. This applies to any device that it can’t identify as HDCP compliant, including DisplayPort that isn’t HDCP enabled. Where would this come up? Pretty much any playback of copyrighted material, including streaming and packaged media. DRM sucks. And I say that as someone whose signature is on an HDCP license. • Really? I always thought DP was completly free from this licencing stuff. – jusaca Aug 21 at 16:59 • It depends on the material you want to send. If it has DRM enforcement then you need HDCP. DVI, being a legacy format, has no explicit restriction, though a source could refuse to send a DRM-protected source, or down-res it to 480p. – hacktastical Aug 21 at 17:05 • But yes, there’s no license required for DP. There is a small royalty of$0.20/unit payable to MPEG LA. – hacktastical Aug 21 at 17:07