Share the latest technology trends or photos of gadgets you love.

Understanding a 4K Resolution TV

Still thinking about buying a 1080p HD television? How about the latest 4K televisions that come with a mind-boggling resolution that can reach even as high as 4096 × 2160 pixels? Techspirited tells you more about these awesome TV sets...
Bindu swetha
4K Video Player for $699!
Sony shipped the first lot of 4K Ultra HD Media Players in 2013, with 10 pre-loaded 4K motion pictures.

One of the most important features that is considered while buying a TV set nowadays is the screen resolution. From 720p to 1080p, screen resolution has come a long way. The latest among the lot is Ultra HD, i.e., 4K. Full HD televisions present images of about 2 megapixels, while these new sets produce images in 8 megapixels. With improved resolution and higher pixel rates, 4K televisions are surely creating a lot of curiosity in the market.
What is 4K?

4K refers to a 4096 x 2160 display resolution, which is almost four times higher than the full HD resolution of 1920 × 1080. However, this resolution is too high to fit in the 16:9 aspect ratio. Thus, the resolution has been altered to 3840 × 2160, which is also about four times higher than full HD. 4K refers to the horizontal resolution instead of vertical, and the formats in this resolution are of the order of 4000 pixels. The development of 4K was targeted towards the ever-increasing screen sizes. 1080p has been observed to work properly in screen sizes that reach 80 inches, but for screens larger than that, 4K is the resolution that's needed. The resolution was formerly known as Quad Full HD, because it is around four times that of HDTV resolution.
Image Quality

In case you are tempted to buy a 4K television set, you should be aware of its working and benefits. With 4K, the picture quality is sure to improve, due to the increased number of pixels. There are about 8 million pixels that are used by this resolution, as opposed to the 2 million pixels in 1080p displays. These extra pixels not only enhance viewing on large screens, but also enable high picture quality when you sit really close to the television set. Sony claims that, to watch a 4K resolution TV, you can sit about 5 - 6 ft away from a 55" or 65" 4K television set. 3D content is claimed to be viewable without the glasses, in this new resolution.
4K Content

4K doesn't have enough content as yet, as was the case with 3D when it was initially launched. This resolution, being relatively new, has only a few 4K source material options. Regardless of the type of resolution, the input should also be provided in the same resolution as the output needs to display. You cannot display 1080p in 720p output resolution, and expect the same output quality. Here are some of the developments on 4K content.
✒ Eutelsat Communications launched the first Ultra HD channel in 2013 in Europe on their Eutelsat 10A satellite. This channel started transmitting 4K-filmed content from 8 January, 2013.
✒ BBC is filming the new season of Survival show in Ultra HD, i.e., 4K resolution.
✒ The 2014 World Cup Final from Brazil will be shown in Ultra HD to viewers in Japan.
✒ Sony announced that their Sony Video Unlimited 4K will be the first of its kind library of 4K films and TV shows, which can even be downloaded. There are many more plans that are yet to surface in this market segment. But the good news is that, most industry players have already started developing content for 4K resolution.

The 4K blu-ray isn't 4K resolution at all! Confused? The 'supposed' 4K blu-ray discs are actually movies that are filmed in 4K, scanned in 4K, but are converted to 2K, so as to fit them in a standard blu-ray disc. Also, blu-ray disc players that are available in the market cannot play native 4K content.
Should You Buy It?

4K television is gaining popularity in the consumer market, no doubt, and there already are Hollywood films being made in this resolution. Despite the development, the basic point to evaluate is that whether you should buy one or not? When the resolution changed from 720p to 1080p, we could hardly notice any difference, unless you were a hardcore electronics freak. The only difference that could be made out was the viewing angle improvement when sitting close to the TV set. Apart from this, there was hardly any noticeable difference. Today, there isn't too much content that can be displayed on 4K TV sets. Also, it is not compatible with existing Blu-ray and media players, which means you will have to spend extra money to buy these.
With the amount of development that is going on around 4K, it is sure that this resolution is here to stay. However, it is advisable to wait for this television technology to mature, before going in to buy a 4K television.