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By now, most of you have heard words like 4K and Ultra HD buzzing around. Let me start off by saying I’m one of those people who likes to see or experience something in order to believe what I am told when it comes to the ultra high-end marketplace. However, I do try to keep up on all respective articles within our industry in effort to obtain an understanding on what is supposed to be so special about new technologies and groundbreaking products so that I might advise and point my customers in the right direction. So of course the new super high resolution TVs were no exception. And quite frankly I wasn’t sure what to make of it. Thinking like any typical consumer, I wondered what the hype was surrounding this ‘HD resolution revolution’. This post is about what I found.

First, in order to really understand what 4K and Ultra HD is all about, one has to understand where we stood from an HD perspective for some time — 1080p. In case you are not aware, the “p” in 1080p stands for progressive scan, and when I say 1080, I mean we were working with a maximum of 1,920 horizontal pixels x 1,080 vertical pixels. This is the standard pixel density on most HD television panels that are being sold today. For those who are still thinking, “what the heck is this guy talking about, I just want my TV to be pretty, why does resolution matter?” Let me shed some light, figuratively. The TVs we used to consider large, (i.e. your old 40-inch Sony Trinitron that weighed 400 lbs.) are now considered small and are found in high-end bathrooms and kitchens. I know, it’s crazy right? In order to be considered large these days, a TV must now be even bigger, like a 70, 80, or 90+ inch television screen.

1Now pay attention here, this is where the resolution issues really come into play. Key point: You have the same number of pixels whether you have a 40-inch screen or a 90-inch screen. Think about it, the pixels now have to cover a much larger area in order to fill up the space of these larger televisions. As a result you get an image that is less crisp, and when viewed from the same distance as a 40” set it can actually seem blurry. So now what? 4K and Ultra HD to the rescue! Ok, you hear the Superman theme music, but what does it all mean? Well, to clear up some confusion, 4K and UHD are technically two different things. Ultra HD offers a resolution of 3,840 horizontal pixels x 2,160 vertical pixels, that’s double the pixels in width and twice as many in height, too. (A true 4K display ups the ante to 4096×2160). Depending on how good you are at math, that’s 4 times the pixels of your junky old 1080p TV. Yep, standard definition was about 300,000 pixels, HDTV was about 2,000,000 and now UHD is over 8,000,000 pixels. So now for larger TV screens, the pixels aren’t all spread out to fill the entire screen.

2In fact, you have to squint to see them. Yes, you heard me right, the pixels on 4K TV’s are so small, that on a 55” UHD TV you can’t see them from more than a foot away! That means you can now put your couch 3 feet away from the biggest 85” UHD TV screens available if you feel like it and enjoy the sharpest HD image you have ever seen. You say, “well Mr. Advisor that seems nice, 4K TVs have more pixels, but is the difference enough to justify upgrading my current HD Television?” Well information seeker, I can promise you this; the colors and image on a UHD TV are much more vivid and intense than anything you have ever experienced. Seriously, I thought this was going to be just a bunch of marketing fluff to sell more expensive TVs, but as it turns out 4K is pretty awesome! In this case, seeing truly is believing. I invite you to visit our retail showroom today and experience 4K Ultra HDTV today and we will personally give you a full demonstration of this exciting new technology!

1The Sony curved TV range are equipped with UltraHD Triluminos display with “X-tended dynamic range” for better blacks. Together with active 3D, advanced 4K-to-HD upscaling to view those older movies and angled speakers and subwoofers with 4.2 surround sound. Sony explains in today press release :

“TRILUMINOS Display expresses the emotion of every scene with richly opulent reds, greens and blues. X-tended Dynamic Range™ intelligently boosts contrast for sparkling highlights and deep blacks. And you’ll discover a new world of detail with Sony’s 4K X-Reality PRO technology that upscales regular TVbroadcasts and Blu-ray movies to four times the number of pixel of Full HD. The picture quality on the S90 is the same as you’ll find on the critically-acclaimed Sony X9 4K TV.”

The new Sony curved TV sound systems also for the first time includes Sony’s 4.2 channel Multi-angle Live Speaker system, that uses separate drive units to direct left, right front and surround channels via perfectly controlled angles from its speakers.

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