While Nvidia is killing off VirtualLink (opens in new tab), AMD is seemingly implementing the USB-C port on some Big Navi (opens in new tab) models, which will probably compete with the best gaming graphics cards (opens in new tab) that are on the market.
One eagle-eyed Redditor spotted (opens in new tab) a new patch (opens in new tab) for AMD's open-source AMDGPU driver for Linux that adds support for the USB-C interface. The patch mentions Sienna Cichlid (opens in new tab), which is the rumored codename for AMD's Navi 21-based graphics card. It's not like it's the first time that AMD is incorporating USB-C on a graphics card either. The Radeon Pro W5700, which is powered by Navi 10, comes equipped with a USB-C port. However, this might be the first time that the chipmaker is putting one on a gaming graphics card.
Despite popular belief, the USB-C port on Nvidia's previous GeForce RTX 20-series (opens in new tab) (codename Turing) graphics cards wasn't some specialized interface for VirtualLink. It was just your everyday USB-C interface that Nvidia conveniently adopted to support VR headsets, a feature that never took off. In fact, you could use it like any other USB-C port to connect your headphones, external SSD enclosures or USB 3.0 hubs, charge your Android smartphone, etc.
AMD's reasons for embracing USB-C on Big Navi are unknown for the moment. With the proliferation of USB-C monitors in the last couple of years, the most obvious explanation would be to accommodate the new wave of monitors. Nevertheless, AMD will likely give us the low-down real soon on October 28 (opens in new tab), which is when chipmaker has scheduled its Radeon RX 6000 announcement.
AMD's higher VRAM amount and USB-C support has really diminished my excitement for what Nvidia released. I expect graphics cards to go a minimum of 4 years, so forward-looking specifications are important to me.
Its eDP though just using the USB-C port as Intel has been pushing heavily to unify the standards. In fact I think if Intel had their way everything would use Type-C and Thunderbolt.
I guess we will see what AMDs plans are for it. Not sure I see much benefit in it other than what NVidia had planned but didn't pan out.
I've been running 1080p at 60fps since 2012. I've been waiting to upgrade to 4k at 120fps and HDR10 color depth - and, I'll need DisplayPort 2.0 to do that.
I assume DisplayPort 2.0 will start shipping at the end of this year - but, Nvidia's newest GeForce RTX 3080 is not powerful enough to support DisplayPort 2.0
I'm hoping that Nvidia's newest cards in 2021 will support DisplayPort 2.0
Also full HDMI 2.1 at 48gps (total max speed and not the actual usable speed) and CVT-RB monitor timings can support 4K HDR10 at 144hz at 4:4:4 without DSC. Even HDMI 2.0 or DP 1.4a can do that if you're willing to accept DSC or chroma subsampling.
It would be funny if USB-C did become a standard on graphics cards in the future though, and Nvidia ended up including again on their next-generation cards.