The i.MX8 cannot be deblobbed? (NXP-signed HDMI firmware)


According to this blog, it would not be possible to use the i.MX8M processor and HDMI without a proprietary blobs :

  • The i.MX8(M) boot ROM searches for an NXP-signed HDMI firmware image before even attempting to boot the main cores. If it does not find this image, or it is not signed, the HDMI block will be locked until next reset.
  • Therefore, it is impossible to ever replace the HDMI blob used by this device. The device could be used without this blob, but you then forego use of the HDMI (or DisplayPort) functionality.

Is this true?



Would this matter if the phone would not have a hdmi port but would use the usb-c to connect to a docking station with e.g. hdmi? (please forgive my ignorance)


I don’t know to which extent this is true.
Maybe it is only needed for DRM?
Or, it is needed, but secondary processors like GPU are counted differently (regarding RYF)?
I would be surprised if Purism had overlooked it:


@nicole.faerber any official response on this topic, the concern here is quite important imo


Dose this include the displayport output? I read something about it in the nxp docs (this 1000 page pdf one with all kinds if details), but can‘t remember. Could have said its the same chip which either dose hdmi or DP as well as that they are different chips.
And i didn‘t quiet undersstand if one can initialise the hdmi chip without things like hdcp or not. Because i can understand, as in see why they do it profit wise not aproving it, to hold back these keys for content protection.

I ask because i think the usb-c dp-altmode will be used for the phone.
As the dev-kit uses an hdmi port, is this blob present in the current dev-kit images?

So just looked at the link again an saw there is a signes-dp-somthing in there also. So DP seams to make no difference


We certainly haven’t overlooked this. We’re tracking this topic internally, and because I don’t want to lie, I’m not going to say much until we have this 100% worked out.


That’s fair, et us know when you have news.
If this closed blob is needed for convergence/external monitor only give apply a kind of non free repos like debian, so it will be not inside the shipped phone but if someone need it could download


I can live just fine with Micro USB 2.0 Socket 5 Pin (Type B) and HDMI (output) Micro Connector (Type D). Just one step back might make me happy like it is shown here:
By the way, this camera is one of the best money can buy right now and it doesn’t need USB 3.1 Gen 2, Socket 24 Pins, Type C. And, even though I am far away of being an expert, Debian (with Wayland) progress on i.MX8 is also not questionable, isn’t that correct? Still, if other Librem 5 backers insist on (need) USB-C (with a USB3.1 specification) coupled with i.MX8 please let me know, as I would like to understand this (if there’s no working Ubiquiti USB-C to HDMI adapter). Are USB 3.1 Micro-B + HDMI Type D (supporting up to 1080p) plugs an option? As minimum providing Superspeed USB 3.0 Type-A male to USB 3.0 Micro-B male cable would be necessary but providing HDMI Micro (Type D) to HDMI (Type A) cable should stay optional. Note: USB Type-C are just connectors and can run in any specification even USB 2.0.


Did i miss something? I thought this has nothing to do with connection types. Just that the i.MX8 is not able to do HDMI or DP (as protocol not as conecctor) with out these blobs. So if this data than is put through usb-c or any thing else seams totally unrelated and off topic hear to me.

Althought this wouldn’t mean it should be discussed , even if i think usb-c as a connector is set for some time.