4K

Scott Wilkinson and NAB in 4K

Episode 1071

Scott Wilkinson

Scott is heading to NAB this week to see what the professionals are doing with 4K. Scott is interested because it will largely impact the standards of ultra high definition moving forward, and that will greatly drive the consumer market. But how will content be graded by pros to take advantage of the new standard? That hasn't been determined yet and Scott will see where it's going at NAB. There's also trends in high dynamic range and color gamut, which are going to provide a broader range of colors with ultra high definition.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1059

Scott Wilkinson

Scott is back with questions about how 4K will affect 3D and what glasses would be best. Sony uses both, but Samsung and LG both use passive technology. Vizio went with the passive glasses in 2013, but this year they dumped 3D altogether. Scott says he likes passive glasses because they're lighter and the TVs are more affordable. Passive is brighter, but even then it only lets in 50% of the light. Active glasses lets in only 30% of the light, and you have to recharge them or change the batteries. Scott also says the one good thing is that 4K offers 1080p in each eye for 3D.

How will higher screen resolutions affect gaming in the future?

Anthony from Houston, TX

Episode 1047

Anthony is wondering what will happen for gaming with screens that are surpassing even the retina display resolutions. Leo says that the more resolution there is, the more power it will need to process it. So it makes sense that if there's four times more work, the computer will need more power to push it. Leo says that for gaming, from the perspective of the user, higher resolutions won't necessarily look any better. So it's likely that gaming will stay at 1080p for awhile.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1047

Scott Wilkinson

Scott is back from CES, and he actually walked over 24 miles looking at the latest gadgets and HDTVs. He saw a lot of 4K, and TVs with curved screens. Leo says there's no real benefit from a curved screen, and Scott says that's especially true at the smaller 50" sizes. But for a bigger 105" TV, it may help.

CES: Much Ado About Nothing

Episode 1047

Although Leo sent a crew to Las Vegas for CES, he avoided it and watched it from afar. He says that we didn't really miss anything. The Chinese TV manufactuers like HiSense and TCL announced some interesting 4K TVs, including one with Roku incorporated in it, called the "RokuTV." The better news is that content is finally arriving with deals for streaming by Netflix, Sony, and others. But who's going to be able to watch it with bandwidth caps on the Internet? Should you go out and buy a 4K TV? Leo says there's no real need right now. Wait until things settle down in the market.

Should I get a 4K TV?

Dave from Northridge, CA

Episode 1026

Dave wants to know if he should get a 4K TV right now. Leo says no. There's no 4K content right now, nor any easy way to get it. UHD is just not ready for primetime yet. So he can go ahead and get another HDTV. TV manufactures are just trying to get people to buy it because HD sales have plateaued.

Will Ultra High Definition be worth getting?

Hamit from Denbury, CT

Episode 1015

Hamit is blind, but he's interested in getting a 4K UHD TV. Hamit got Blu-ray for the audio, and he wonders if he'll need to use UHD. Leo says that with 4 times the resolution, he'd get 4 times the data. With UHD, more dots equal more data and the content will come down via streaming or a new disc that will handle 4 times the data. Leo suspects that compression will get better and better and storage will get better as well. All those things will meet in the middle and once UHD is mainstream, the workflow will be there to support it.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1011

Scott says that this week at the IFA show, LG introduced a 77" OLED UHD TV and they're going to make them ever larger. Some people call them 4K TVs, but that's somewhat of a misnomer. It's got higher resolution, but it's not strictly 4k. Leo wonders if he'll regret spending so much on an HD TV with UHD coming out now, but Scott says that at those sizes, Leo really won't see the difference. There isn't really any native UHD content yet. Sony, however, is launching a UHD service but their UHD boxes will only work Sony UHD TVs.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1001

Home Theater Geeks

Scott says that for the very first time this month, an internet content provider called OdeMax downloaded an Ultra HD short film at 3GB. The short is called "The Ballad of Danko Jones," and is a 23-minute short starring Elijah Wood, Jena Malone, and Ralph Macchio and directed by the Diamond Brothers. It was compressed using REDs new compression codec and the RED Ray Player. You can read more from Scott's post at AVS Forum.

Is physical media really dying?

Louis from Hollywood, CA

Episode 1001

Louis wants to know why Leo is in favor of streaming media over physical media. Leo says he isn't. He just says that the trend shows that physical media is dying as people are adopting streaming options. Louis says that the downside of streaming media is the lack of special features. Leo says that special features were only to prevent users from pirating the movie by giving users added value. Now streaming is far more efficient. Leo does think we're in a transitional period, though, and he suspects that special features may return, or as much as the studios are willing to offer them.