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Crucial Things You Need to Know About 1440p Video Resolution

Things You Need to Know About 1440p Video Resolution
With the advent of HD, several display resolutions have sprouted, all vying to bathe in the glorious sunshine of popular acceptance. One such HD resolution is 1440p. In this Techspirited article, we find out what the 1440p resolution is, and how it compares to other modern-day resolutions. We also learn about the history of high-definition, which finally led to the evolution of 1440p.
Satyajeet Vispute
Last Updated: Mar 26, 2018
Did You Know?
Back in the 1980s, when President Ronald Reagan was first shown a high-definition display, he was so impressed by it that he declared that getting it to every home in America was a thing of national importance!
In today's day and age, people are inclined more and more towards extremism! Now don't get me wrong, I am talking only about our choice in entertainment. While we want our home displays to show us the largest possible pictures, we want our cable bills to be the smallest. Most of us are ready to explore any and all options to find the best quality display, expect, of course, the ones where shelling out large sums of money from our pockets is involved. Lucky for us though, there are many options out there worth exploring.

High-definition (HD) TVs became mainstream nearly a decade ago, and since that time there has been an insatiable lust among consumers for higher resolution displays. For some time, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p resolutions have satisfied our cravings. But now, display engineers have put out new candies in the market. One of the most alluring of these is the 1440p resolution. So what is 1440p and is it worth tasting?
Size Comparison
The following diagram displays how the 1440p compares in terms of picture size to other popular displays in the market today.
Display Resolutions
History of High-Definition
In the early 1960s, Japanese engineers first began experimenting with high-definition video. The research and development made by them led to the birth of the HighVision, a 1,125-line interlaced TV standard, also known as MUSE. It was the first ever true HD video standard. Sony and NHK separately presented their systems based on this standard at separate international conferences, and received a lot of acclaim.

In the 1980s, these high-definition technologies from Japan made their way to the American shores, where they received an enthusiastic welcome. President Ronald Reagan was among the first people to experience HD display, and his stamp of approval sparked a nationwide interest in this technology. However, the Federal Communications Commission, which is the governing body for radio and TV, was skeptical of it, and decided that its large bandwidth requirements made it impractical for broadcasting. Thus, FCC refused to approve it, and soon people lost interest.

The digital revolution in the early 1990s introduced new audio and video compression and decompression techniques, which when applied to HD video broadcast took care of the large bandwidth problem. Thus, HDTV broadcast started looking like a distinct possibility, and soon a standard was adopted for it. The original HDTV standard comprised two resolutions - 1080i and 1080p. However, there was another standard that was adopted by many broadcasters across the USA.

The now common 720p resolution was adopted by many networks, including Fox, ESPN, etc. It was considered as the ideal compromise between both, the 1080p and 1080i resolutions, in that, it used up much less bandwidth than 1080p, while at the same time, being progressive (p), it provided a more stable display which was ideal for broadcasting sporting events.

While most sports channels went for 720p, movie channels such as HBO chose 1080i, which being interlaced, required nearly the same bandwidth as 720p. The 1080p resolution remained in the back-burner, and only recently, thanks to increased efficiency and dropping prices of digital broadcasting equipment, has it started receiving popular demand.

1080p took the public by storm. A huge surge in the demand for HD-capable displays was seen, which resulted in many TV makers, including Sony, Samsung, and LG, bringing in highly advanced HDTVs into the market. Soon, the age-old CRT TVs were completely replaced by full HD LCDs, and later on LEDs.
Evolution of 1440p
Once HDTVs and the 1080p resolution standard became commonplace, the question on everyone's minds was what would come next? The answer was obvious. Once you go 'high', you can only go higher. And that's exactly what display engineers did. They brought forth an array of resolutions, all of which were higher than 1080p. One such resolution is 1440p.

1440p actually represents only half the resolution. Technically, the full resolution is 2560 × 1440. These numbers indicate that it has 1,440 pixels on the vertical axis and 2,560 pixels on the horizontal axis. Thus, each 1440p picture contains a total of 2,073,600 pixels. This resolution is used in conjunction with the standard display aspect ratio of 16:9. Compared to the now common 1280 × 720 resolution, it has 4 times as many pixels. Hence, it is also known as Quad HD.
Advantages and Disadvantages of 1440p
1440p is an up-gradation of the standard 1080p resolution, and in a 1440p vs. 1080p comparison, it is clearly the winner. It amounts to a larger number of pixels per picture, which on standard screen sizes provides higher pixel density. The resulting image has higher picture clarity and much greater detail. This is especially relevant in smaller displays, including those of smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc. They benefit immensely from the higher pixel density, which makes their displays much superior.

One of the disadvantages of 1440p is that it requires more bandwidth for its transmission and also takes up more storage space as compared to 1080p. However, advances made in modern electronics has made both these considerations meaningless. Hence, the only disadvantage worth considering while going for 1440p resolution would be that you would be missing out on the higher one, namely, the Ultra HD, or 4K, which is becoming more popular off late.
Future of 1440p
As mentioned above, already 1440p has been surpassed by a higher resolution - the 4K. It is called that because it offers a 3840 × 2160 resolution, which is 4 times more than 1080p, and more than twice the 1440p resolution. It is for this very reason that 1440p has been discarded by all the major display manufacturers, in favor of the 4K.

However, the 1440p resolution, like the 720p, is gaining popularity in the smaller display market where 4K isn't feasible. It is being increasingly adopted in laptop screens and the displays of the various modern hand-held electronic devices. Major smartphone manufacturers, including Samsung, LG, Nokia, etc., are planning on introducing this resolution in their smartphone displays. Also, major laptop and notebook makers such as Dell, Lenovo, HP, etc., have started using 1440p monitors as a standard on their latest models. Therefore, in the near future, one can expect it to completely take over the popular position that the 720p resolution enjoys today.
Thus, though 1440p resolution might not make it to the big screen, it will still find a place in smaller displays. It is definitely better than the 1080p resolution, but falls short of the higher 4K display. Therefore, it more likely to replace 720p in the future.