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ITU 8K Line Resolution Standard Finalised – NHK Confirms Test Filming

Earlier this year we reported that several display manufacturers had exhibited both 4,000 & 8,000 line resolution ‘sample’ displays. Currently, 1080P resolution is the maximum resolution being broadcast, this of course has 1080 lines of pixels (picture elements). Until now, it’s been a ‘chicken or egg’ situation, do the hardware manufacturers develop the hardware or do the broadcasters start filming in the new super-high resolution first? Without a ‘fixed’ standard then each manufacturer or broadcaster is forced to use their own designs, hence there’s likely to be compatibility problems.

Clearly a universal standard for the new 8000 line resolution is needed. Thankfully the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has done just this, releasing a worldwide standard for both the broadcasters and manufacturers to adhere to.

The new 8K resolutions is as follows :-

8K UHDTV has a resolution of 7680 × 4320 and has 16 times the number of pixels of the existing 1080P displays, this brings it close to the details displayed on IMAX projections.

Japanese broadcaster NHK is the first to confirm that it will start to product programming and content at this new resolution. Although NHK are starting trials, it does not expect to actually broadcast 8K transmissions until 2020.

So, what are the real commercial implication is this? will the already much-touted 4K be skipped by manufacturers and broadcasters?

This is the way we see it :-

For domestic TVs, then the real benefits of the 8K resolution may not be perceivable,  certainly on displays with a screen size up to 60”. Where the real benefits of 8K may be received would be on much larger projected images.

The introduction of both 4K and 8K may actually give the Home Cinema projection market a boost. Over the last few years, as flat panel display sizes have increased and their relative costs have reduced, it has become more difficult for projectors to compete. In the future, projectors may well be able to offer real resolution benefits over their flat panel counterparts.

There will always be customers who demand the very best resolution possible, however  can a 42” screen really show the benefits of 8K resolution over 4K. Apart from very specialist applications, such as those in the design or medical fields, then how much detail can be perceived from 3~4 metres away? Without doubt, exceptionally high resolutions allow the viewer to view the screen from a closer position, without seeing individual pixels.

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This entry was posted on August 29, 2012 by in AV News and tagged , , .

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