HDMI Vs. ColorStream

By Mike Wallace

High-definition television features enhanced clarity and more detailed images. To take full advantage of high-definition televisions and video players, you must use the correct interfaces to transmit audio and video data. Two high-definition interfaces found in video equipment is ColorStream and High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI). There are several differences that set these interfaces apart.

Resolution Support

ColorStream was designed for 480p signals. This corresponds to a resolution of 640 by 480 pixels. HDMI can support a signal with a resolution up to 1080p, which corresponds to a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. It can also support lower resolutions, such as 480p and 720p.


ColorStream cables have three connectors on each end. Each connector is responsible for transmitting one color channel. The three color channels are red, green, and blue. An HDMI cable has one connector on each end. This connector has many individual pins inside it, allowing multiple channels of information to be transmitted through the HDMI cable.


The HDMI interface can be used to transmit audio information along with the video information. This allows you to use one cable to connect two devices. The ColorStream interface transmits only video information, requiring you to use separate cables to connect the audio portion of a device. However, some brands of cables feature stereo audio cables that are attached to the ColorStream cables.

Brand of Televisions and DVD Players

The ColorStream interface is only found in Toshiba brand televisions and DVD players. Other brands produce devices that have other formats, including HDMI. If you do not have at least two ColorStream-capable television devices, you cannot use the interface. On the other hand, since HDMI is a standard adopted industry-wide, many devices include this interface. You do not need two devices of the same brand to use HDMI. You need only two devices that have an HDMI interface.