What are Super Hi-Vision, Ultra HD, 4K and 8K TV?

​​Latest news for Super Hi-Vision and Ultra HD, 4K and 8KWhen the progress of technology seems to march on unstoppably, it's good to know there's a limit to High Definition 2D TV. It's called 8K, or Super Hi-Vision, and you can see it today.

Super Hi-Vision, also known as Ultra High Definition TV (UHD TV), is a 2D television format created by the Japanese state broadcaster, NHK. It is 16 times more detailed than current Full HD, with 33 million pixels compared to 2 million.

It’s designed to be superior to the human visual system, so that no pixels are visible to the eye, and shoots at twice the rate of normal video so that movement is smooth and realistic.

The Super Hi-Vision image is about 8,000 pixels wide (compared to around 2,000 for Full HD), so it's known outside Japan as 8K Ultra HD. That's to distinguish it from the a digital cinema standard also known as Ultra HD, which is 4,000 pixels wide, so it's called 4K Ultra HD.

NHK has targeted the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games for the worldwide launch of 8K Ultra HD, and 2014's FIFA World Cup in Brazil will be covered in 4K, with 4K TVs already on sale (if you have deep pockets).

What are Super Hi-Vision, Ultra HD, 4K and 8K TV?
Ultra HD in comparison to other TV formats

From Full HD to 8K Ultra HD

Unlike 4K and 8K, which are purely visual standards, the Super Hi-Vision system also has three-dimensional 22.2 surround sound, with three vertical layers of front speakers, two layers of surround speakers, and two subwoofers for bass frequencies.

Conventional home cinema systems are 5.1, with three front and two surround speakers, although we're now seeing 7.1 audio with four surround speakers, and simple three-dimensional speaker options for the home.

Here's how Super Hi-Vision/8K Ultra HD lines up against 4K Ultra HD and Full HD.

Super Hi Vision vs Full HD

  Super Hi Vision / 8K Ultra HD 4K Ultra HD Full HD
Resolution (pixels) 7680 wide x 4320 high 3,840 wide x 2,160 high 1920 wide x 1080 high
Total pixels 33 million 8 million 2 million
Frame rate 120 frames per second 50 or 60 frames per second 50 or 60 frames per second
Standard viewing distance 0.75 x screen height 3 x screen height 3 x screen height
Standard viewing angle 100° 60° 60°
Audio channels 22.2 5.1 5.1

What does Recombu think of Super Hi-Vision?

“It is the best moving video experience I have ever seen,” says Recombu Digital editor, Alex Lane. “The sheer level of detail, smoothness, the sharpness and colour are completely lifelike, and on occasions create an almost three-dimensional image.

“Scenes in low light are also incredibly well-rendered, while the surround sound follows motion around the screen and will make you look over your shoulder to see what’s going on.”


Panasonic 145in Super Hi-Vision plasma display
Panasonic 145in Super Hi-Vision plasma display

NHK uses the Super Hi-Vision brand, but the rest of the world uses the term Ultra High Definition for technology better than 1080p Full HD.

The International Telecommunications Union, which sets standards for broadcasters worldwide, has agreed on a two-stage introduction of Ultra HD.

It's also decided to adopt the digital cinema convention of referring to screen resolutions by the number of horizontal pixels, instead of the vertical resolution (e.g. 1080p).

The first stage of Ultra HD will be 4K, with 3,840 x 2,160 pixels like the Sony and LG TV's above. The second and final stage will be 8K, the full resolution of Super Hi-Vision at 7,680 x 4,320 pixels, like the Panasonic TV above. See how they compare in Jacked episode 1: from HD to Super Hi-Vision.

Where can I see Super Hi-Vision?

During the 2012 London Olympic Games, members of the public could attend daily free screenings in Super Hi-Vision, showing highlights from the Opening Ceremony and the Olympic Stadium, Velodrome, Aquatic Centre and Basketball Arena.

Screenings were held at the BBC Radio Theatre in London, the National Media Museum in Bradford, and BBC Glasgow’s Pacific Quay.

The Olympic screenings are a collaboration between the BBC, NHK and Olympic Broadcast Services.

What technology has been developed to create Super Hi-Vision?

NHK has worked with numerous Japanese technology companies to develop the technology to achieve Super Hi-Vision.

These include cameras and recording equipment to capture and store a 24Gigabit-per-second video stream, live switchers and slow motion systems. The 22.2 surround sound has required new 3D mixing systems, microphones, headphone systems and 3D reverberators. There are new transmission systems to develop and both TV and projector technology.

In particular, Ikegami and Hitachi have created portable SHV cameras weighing just 4lg, compared to the 20kg models used to film the Olympics and 80kg for the first SHV camera in 2001. The BBC also helped to develop a 22.2 single-point microphone for live recordings.

Sharp has developed an 85in LCD TV with Super Hi-Vision resolution, Panasonic has made a 145in SHV plasma display and JVC has built the SHV projectors. There is ongoing work to integrate speakers into displays to enable SHV’s full 3D surround sound.

HItachi's new Super Hi-Vision camera
HItachi's new Super Hi-Vision camera

When will Super Hi-Vision launch?

NHK’s original goal was to begin Super Hi-Vision test transmissions in 2020. However, speaking to Recombu Digital in July 2012, Dr Keiichi Kubota said that the ‘incredible rate of progress’ on technology like the new cameras and displays means that it could now be a viable format to begin test broadcasts in Japan as early as 2016.

This will give time for Japanese viewers to start buying Super Hi-Vision screens, ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, which are being targeted as a landmark date for the ultimate 2D TV format. Hopefully, there will be some 8K screens elsewhere as well, and at least a trial satellite service in the UK.

Although the BBC has been involved in NHK’s technology development, there are no plans yet for broadcasting Super Hi-Vision in the UK. However, it is rumoured that Sky could start tests of a half-way ‘4K’ format at 3840 x 2160 pixels around 2015.

How will Super Hi-Vision be broadcast?

The Olympic Games demonstrations are being transmitted over high capacity academic fibre-optic networks such as JANET in the UK, with international streams managed by NKK of Japan, to Washington DC, Tokyo and Fukushima.

However, Dr Kubota of NHK expects that 100Mbps Super Hi-Vision data streams will cause congestion for IP networks, and predicts that broadcasters will opt for satellite at first, followed by terrestrial UHF. NHK is working on satellite technology using the 21GHz band, and has tested a new type of terrestrial TV modulation scheme in the laboratory.

The MPEG Forum is also working on a new MPEG-4 High Efficiency Video Coding system for real-time decoding, which will halve the bit-rate of an SHV stream from 200Mbps with MPEG-4 H.264 today. Thefirst HEVC kit is expected to be available next year, with trials of 4K streams at 20Mbps. That's the same bit-rate which was achieved for HD TV when commercial test started in 2005.

Can I buy a Super Hi-Vision TV?

Not yet, but Dr Kubota of NHK hopes that test transmissions will begin as early as 2016. This will hopefully be a catalyst for TV manufacturers to put SHV screens into production, although Super Hi-Vision is unlikely to become the dominant TV format until at least a decade afterwards.

What will come after Super Hi-Vision?

NHK views Super Hi-Vision as the final word in 2D TV, since there’s no point increasing pixel density any further, because no-one will be able to see the difference. Beyond Super Hi-Vision, says Dr Kubota, lies ‘real’ 3D TV at ultra high-definition resolutions without glasses. 



News stories about Super Hi-Vision, Ultra HD, 4K and 8K

Japan to broadcast 4K TV in 2014

What is Super Hi-Vision & Ultra HD? Japan to broadcast 4K TV in 2014​Japan will begin broadcasting TV in Ultra HD (4K) as of July 2014, roughly two years earlier than expected.

According to a report in the Asahi Shimbun, 4K TV will be live in Japan in time for the World Cup in Brazil. Originally, 4K broadcasts in Japan weren’t thought to be live until 2016.

As well as this, the report says that Japan may well see Super Hi Vision (8K) broadcasts in 2016 (again earlier by two years) and in time for the Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro.

The report mentions flatlining TV sales in the wake of Japan’s own digital switchover which was completed in March 2013. While international sporting events seem like the ideal opportunities to broadcast in higher resolutions while testing out new technology, we can’t see many consumers shelling out for 4K sets if they’re going to be effectively outmoded within two years.

Given the current costs of 4K sets over here, if you fancy getting hold of an 8K set in 2016, you might want to start putting some cash away right now.

January 30, 2013

BBC to shoot meerkats in 4K for Survival nature documentary

What is Super Hi-Vision & Ultra HD? BBC to shoot meerkats in 4K for Survival nature documentary​The BBC is shooting its next big nature documentary in 4K (aka Ultra HD) with meerkats as the subject matter.

One episode of the Survival doc will follow the lives of a colony of the impossibly cute/annoying mammals and a pair of caracara birds, which are native to the Falkland Islands, according to The Independent.

While this is great news for fans of the BBC’s well received nature docs including current favourite Africa, the full Ultra HD majesty of the meerkats will only be available to those deep-pocketed individuals who can afford it.

Right now, the LG 84LM960V is going for £22,499 and the Sony KD-84X9005 is priced a little higher at £25,000. So unless you’re a lottery winner, an oil baron or a high-earning A-list comedian on a K2 tax scheme, one of these probably won’t be sitting in your living room by the time Survival is ready for broadcast.

This isn’t the first time the BBC has filmed in next-gen HD - in partnership with Japanese broadcaster NHK, the BBC shot footage from last year’s Olympic Games in 8K - aka Super Hi Vision.

Image credit: Flickr user trishhartmann

January 29, 2013

NASA’s got a ‘better than 4K’ treasure trove

Ultra HD 4K TVs were centre-stage at CES 2013, but no-one could disguise the lack of stuff to watch - now NASA’s revealed it’s got millions of images.

The US space agency’s Solar Dynamics Observatory keeps an eye on space weather to warn of solar flares which could endanger satellites and create stunning auroral displays at the North and South Poles.

It’s also got one of the highest-resolution cameras on any spacecraft, collecting imagery at 4,096 x 4,096 pixels - comfortably big enough for 4K TVs with 3,840 x 2,160-pixel displays.

NASA’s got a ‘better than 4K’ treasure trove
Is that enough pixels for you?
Is that enough pixels for you?

Never shy of a publicity angle, NASA’s Goddard Space Centre has calculated that it’s captured 100 million images of solar activity.

Put them together, and at 30 frames per second you could watch eight hours of Ultra High Definition video a day for four months.

Right now, you’ll have to download individual images and stitch them together, such as this set of a Coronal Mass Ejection from August 31, 2012, which even has a 2GB 4K video, and the latest SDO events here, or you can create your own from the SDO archive

January 17, 2013

Eutelsat puts world’s first 4K demo channel live over Europe 

Satellite operator Eutelsat has launched the world’s first 4K Ultra HD demo channel - live and free over Europe if you have the kit.

The channel has been launched to help European TV production companies, pay-TV operators, rights owners and TV set manufacturers gain experience in working with 4K.

Eutelsat puts world’s first 4K demo channel live over Europe

Jean-François Leprince-Ringuet, Eutelsat’s commercial director, said: “This new step towards 4K continues Eutelsat’s longstanding commitment to achieving new broadcast milestones that over the last 20 years have included digital TV, HDTV and 3D.

“Early and close collaboration between all players in the broadcast chain will be a key success factor for this new revolution. We are delighted to propose this first Ultra HD platform for Europe.”

The demo channel is not encrypted, but you’ll need some specialised equipment to enjoy it, starting with an 80cm satellite dish aimed at the Eutelsat 10A satellite at 10 degrees East (for non-experts, that’s 10 degrees East of due South from the Greenwich meridian - a Sky dish won’t do this).

It’s transmitted in the same DVB-S2 format as most HD satellite receivers, but the 40Mbps stream is actually broken into four standard 1080p/50 Full HD images compressed in MPEG-4 H.264 - in theory you could tune any HD receiver into just one to get a quarter of the picture.

To get the full 4K picture, you’ll need a very powerful PC with four DVB-S2 satellite receivers, capable of decoding the four Full HD 10Mbps streams simultaneously, and the software to stitch them together.

If you’ve got all that, you might be satellite enthusiast crazycat, who posted the capture above on a Ricks Satellite Wildfeed and Backhaul Forum.

Finally, you’ll need a 4K TV, monitor or projector to take the output of your PC and enjoy the demo stream in its full glory - there were a few on show at CES 2013 this week if you have several thousand pounds burning a hole in your back pocket.

The tuning parameters are:

  • Frequency: 11304 MHz
  • Polarization: Horizontal
  • Symbol rate: 27500
  • DVB-S2
  • 8PSK
  • FEC 2/3
  • Pilot ON

January 11, 2013 

CES 2013 Panasonic and Sony test printing tech for affordable 4K OLED

Panasonic already has an 8K Super Hi-Vision display, but CES 2013 saw its first 4K display, using a ‘printable’ OLED technology that could be easy to put into production.

The 55in prototype screen is 8.9mm thick - pretty standard for today’s flat screens - but it weighs just 12kg, which is astounding for a TV of that size.

 CES 2013 Panasonic and Sony test printing tech for affordable OLED

In techie terms, it has a brightness of 500 candlepower, and a contrast ratio of 3 million to 1, which means incredibly deep blacks and bright whites, even in daylight.

But the key breakthrough is a ‘printable’ technology for the Organic LED displays, which have confounded TV makers for years by being hard to mass-produce at large sizes.

OLED is something of a Holy Grail for the TV brands because it’s incredibly light and thin, uses a fraction of the power of LCD or plasma, and each pixel produces its own light so it boasts very high contrast, brightness and refresh speed.

According to TechRadar, Panasonic and Sony have collaborated on the OLED printing technology, with Sony focussed on a spray system, while Panasonic is hoping inkjet technology will deliver cheap mass production.

Perhaps then, they can get back to making big screens at margins that will deliver a profit before the Sun sets on Japanese TV tech.

January 9, 2013

CES 2013 sees LG, Samsung, Sharp and Sony expand 4K and 8K UHD choices 

Samsung launched its first 4K TV as LG, Sharp and Sony expanded their Ultra High Definition ranges in the new screen resolution battle at International CES 2013.

A deafening silence over the subject of 4K content from all but Sony USA didn’t stop Japan and South Korea locking horns with 3,840x2,160-pixel screens.

So who’s got great screens with nothing to watch? (find out after this picture of LG's CES 2013 4K TVs)

CES 2013 sees LG, Samsung, Sharp and Sony expand 4K and 8K UHD choices

  • LG: The headline 84LM960V with 84in screen is joined by 55in (55LM960V) and 65in (65LM960V) models, all boasting the Triple XD Engine and Resolution Upscaler Plus to make Full HD content look better across the extra pixels. Pricetag on the new models? Around £6,000.
  • Samsung: The S9000 (below) hits the same 85in zone as other 4K TVs, with an upscaling engine to cover the content gap, but it’s the daring deck-chair style mount which really stands out.

CES 2013 sees LG, Samsung, Sharp and Sony expand 4K and 8K UHD choices

  • Sharp: A two-pronged attack at Ultra HD saw a sensible move into professional LCD monitors, plus TVs with both 4K and 8K resolution. The 32in monitors use Sharp’s IGZO LCD, for applications like CAD and video editing. The iCC Purios (below) is a 60in 4K TV which will go on sale in Japan this summer at around £20k, while Sharp’s Aquos Quattron range will gain a 60in 4K TV in 2014, featuring a screen technology called Moth Eye, which it says ‘virtually eliminates glare while preserving color vibrancy’. Finally, the 85in 8K screen tech seen in 2012 is now a full TV, though with no on-sale date.

CES 2013 sees LG, Samsung, Sharp and Sony expand 4K and 8K UHD choices

  • Sony: The Bravia TV brand gained two 4K LED models at 55in and 65in in the new X9000A series. As with the flagship Bravia KD-84X9005, they carry 4K X-Reality PRO and the latest X-Reality PRO to upscale Full HD films, and have Triluminos screens, which sounds like a desperate way to rekindle the Trinitron vibe of the 1980s. Sony USA 4K TV owners will also have options on its unique 4K film player to watch something more than short YouTube clips.

CES 2013 sees LG, Samsung, Sharp and Sony expand 4K and 8K UHD choices

Panasonic seems quiet on 4K, having launched an 8K TV for the 2012 Olympics, but we'll update after its conference later today.

January 8, 2013

Sony adds 4K photos to PS3 with PlayMemories Studio 2

British Sony 4K TV owners may not be getting a free box-full of Ultra HD films like its American owners, but they will be able to see 4K photos via the PlayStation 3.

The Sony Bravia KD-84X9005 is due to go on sale in the UK this Spring, and the PS3’s PlayMemories Studio app is being upgraded to support 4K output over HDMI.

Sony adds 4K photos to PS3 with PlayMemories Studio 2

PlayMemories Studio 2.00 can display images at up to 3,840 x 2,160 pixels Ultra High Definition, has enhanced editing features and can save photos and videos at 720p HD.

Users can access images from cameras, network storage, USB or the PS3 itself, with filtering by date, smiles, favourites and GPS.

The app costs £12.17, with a 30-day free trial, but it’s free to PlayStation Plus subscribers and to buyers of new Sony digital cameras in the α, Cyber-Shot and Handycam models.

It includes a licence to use online cloud sharing and storage, and apps for PC, Mac, PS3, Android, iOS and to upgrade Sony digital cameras with new features. The PS3 version will also work with any 4K TV, not just Sony. 

January 4, 2013

LG 84LM960V will get 4K Ultra HD TV downloads from YouTube

LG is banking on YouTube to supply content to the UK’s first 4K Ultra HD TV, which went on sale today.

The £22,499.99 LG 84LM960V will be able to download a selection of Ultra High Definition short films from YouTube.

There are currently five 4K videos on YouTube, totalling just under 25 minutes of content, but there’s also LG Resolution Upscaler Plus on board to boost the quality of your existing HD sources.

LG 84LM960V will get 4K Ultra HD TV downloads from YouTube

The 84in TV is the first 4K Ultra High Definition TV to arrive in British retail - that’s 3,840 x 2,160 pixels or roughly four times today’s ‘Full HD’ 1080p.

As well as 4K YouTube downloads, it comes with LG’s full Smart TV suite, featuring Lovefilm, Acetrax, Netflix, Blinkbox and Knowhow movies as well as catch up TV from BBC iPlayer.

Other notable features include embedded 2D-to-3D conversion, Smart Share Plus for accessing content on portable devices, Dual Play for full-screen head-to-head gaming on one screen, five pairs of 3D glasses, WiFi, a dual-core processor, Freeview HD, and four HDMI ports.

The TV will be on sale in three shops before Christmas - John Lewis Sloane Square, Bentalls Kingston, Richer Sounds Southampton - with more in 2013.

It will be sent on a tour of UK shopping centres over the next four weekends, starting today with The Gadget Show at London Excel, then Birmingham Bullring, Westfield Stratford London, and Manchester’s Trafford Centre.

The price includes delivery, survey and standard installation, but seriously LG - what’s with the “99p” supermarket pricetag? It’s the price of a car and you think buyers will care about a penny off £22.5K?

November 30, 2012

Sony promises 10 free UHD movies with 4K XBR-84X900 TV

Sony XBR-84X9000 4K Ultra HD TVSony’s first 4K ultra HD TV will come with 10 full-length features including The Amazing Spiderman, Battle Los Angeles, Taxi Driver and The Bridge On The River Kwai.

The Sony XBR-84X900 will come with the world’s first consumer 4K Ultra HD Video Player, filled with a ‘gallery’ of other 4K content including short films from Red Bull and others.

The 10 4K titles are completed with Total Recall (2012), Bad Teacher, The Karate Kid (2010), Salt, Battle Los Angeles, The Other Guys and That’s My Boy.

But that’s not all, as Sony USA’s head of PR added: “Two things: 1) Sony’s solution is designed to be updated periodically with additional, new content, and 2) This is just the first step, as you have to wait and see what we have to show you at CES in January.”

We suspect that means downloaded content, which could take a while unless you’ve got a fat broadband pipe, although at £25k per TV, Sony could probably just courier a new hard disc to each customer.

Sadly, Sony’s UK PR told Inside CI’s Steve May that the owners of the UK model (Sony KD-84X9005) won’t get any 4K content to enjoy.

November 29, 2012

Sony to bundle 4K movies with TVs - in USA

Sony has told its American customers they’ll get the world’s first 4K Ultra HD player with pre-loaded feature-length Hollywood movies when they buy its first 4K Ultra HD TV.

The 84in Sony XBR-84X900 (known here as the Sony KD-84X9005) will ship to the first customers in the USA by the end of November.

It’s a stunning TV with a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, but the only 4K material available today comes courtesy of Sony’s own 4K upscaling Blu-ray player, the BDP-S790.

Writing on the Sony USA blog, public relations manager Ray Hartjen revealed: “As an extra bonus, included free with the purchase will be the world’s first 4K Ultra HD delivery solution, complete with pre-loaded, native 4K entertainment.

“Not some goofy 4K content shot as a demo. I’m talking full length feature Hollywood productions.”

More details of the offer will be revealed after Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 22, but Sony UK told What Hi-Fi? they had no information on any content for buyers of the UK product.

Recent Sony Pictures releases include LooperResident Evil: Retribution, and a little film called Skyfall. It not a promising catalogue for exclusive 4K releases.

We'd also suspect that a 'delivery system' means something networked, although anyone who fancies downloading a 4K film of 250GB is going to need a seriously fast FTTH or cable connection with unlimited usage, or a lot of patience.

Who says there's no demand for faster broadband connections?

November 20, 2012 

CEA confuses Ultra HD with 4K

America’s Consumer Electronics Association has fixed Ultra HD at 4K instead of the 8K standard targeted by Europe and Japan.

The CEA has decided that displays with a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels (with a 16:9 aspect ratio) will be able to carry the Ultra High Definition or Ultra HD, also known as 4K.

That’s despite both European and Japanese broadcasters using Ultra HD and Super Hi-Vision to describe displays at 7,680 x 4,320, or 8K.

LG, Samsung and Sony have launched 4K TVs, which they’ve called ‘Super HD’, and the CEA expects most manufacturers to have 4K TVs at International CES in Las Vegas in January 2013. Sharp and Panasonic both have prototype 8K screens.

The International Telecommunications Union has further confused matters by tagging both 4K and 8K as Ultra HD, predicting a two-stage rollout.

“Ultra HD is the next natural step forward in display technologies, offering consumers an incredibly immersive viewing experience with outstanding new levels of picture quality,” Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the CEA, said.

“This new terminology and the recommended attributes will help consumers navigate the marketplace to find the TV that best meets their needs.”

October 22, 2012

Sky test films Arsenal Champions League game in 4K

Sky has test-filmed a football match in 4K to see how the new technology would work for a future Sky Sports service.

Last week’s Arsenal-Olympiakos Champions League game was filmed using a Canon C500 and a pair of Sony F65 cameras linked by a ‘picture stitching application’ according to Broadcast [paywall].

While 8K aka Super Hi-Vision is the ultimate goal, 4K will be the next format adopted by broadcasters as we make our way up the resolution evolution tree. So it makes sense that Sky would be testing 4K out now at a football match, and how to get around broadcasting that.

Sky test filmed Arsenal Champions League game in 4K

Sky director of operations Darren Long said the results suffered from too much blur when players were running.

“We feel 120 frames a second is the right speed. We’re liaising with standards bodies and working with manufacturers to understand the camera’s capabilities and to improve the technology.”

“We’re constantly working with manufacturers to test new products so that we have a good understanding of their capabilities once they become available.”

The current Sky+HD box won’t be compatible with 4K broadcasts and unless you’re a deep pocketed early adopter, you’ll need to get a new TV set to enjoy 4K games. It’s obviously early days yet, but encouraging signs that Sky is getting ready for the next generation of TV.

October 11, 2012

Sony and SES trial 4K Ultra HD via satellite

Sony and satellite operator SES are running the world's first 4K satellite broadcast to a home-style TV system, showing Quad Full HD pictures on Sony's 84in KD-84X9005 TV.

The demonstration feed - half the resolution of Super Hi-Vision - is being beamed from SES's offices in Luxembourg to the Sony and SES stands at the IBC 2012 TV technology show in Amsterdam, which closes tomorrow.

It was routed via the Astra 3B satellite in a 50Mbps stream, but Thomas Wrede of SES said he expects to reduce the bit-rate to 20Mbps in 2013 using the new HEVC codec - similar to HDTV transmissions in 2006.

"This is what the consumer expects as the next step in home delivery," Wrede added. "We have the whole chain now and we are going to bring 4K into the home much sooner than many people think."

September 10, 2012

Toshiba unveils 84-inch 4K Ultra HD TV

Toshiba unveils 84-inch 4K Ultra HD TV

Toshiba has taken the wraps off of an 84-inch monster that its Toshiba’s latest 4K Ultra HD (or ‘Quad Full HD’ as they call it) TV set.

This huge LCD set has yet to be named but is the follow up to the 55ZL2, Toshiba’s first 4K TV set. Coming with Toshiba’s own Cevo Engine technology, this set should upscale 1080p HD video to the full 4K resolution.

4K works out to four times the resolution of 1080p, giving us an idea of exactly how eye-watering this will be.

No word on price or UK availability yet - we’ll update once we know. Given the US cost of the LG 84LM9600 (which works out at £7,400) we’re expecting it to set you back a pretty penny.

August 30, 2012

Sony 4K KD-84X9005 gets half-way to Ultra HD

Sony has taken a step towards Super Hi-Vision, unveiling an 84in 4K display (3,840 x 2,160 pixels) that's half the resolution of ultra HD.

The KD-84X9005 has 8.29 million pixels and a viewing distance of just 1.75 the screen height, and uses Sony's 4K X-Reality Pro technology to upscale Full HD images to 4K.

There are optional 10-speaker sound bars at either side, and PlayStation 3 owners will be able to view still photos in 4K with PlayMemories Studio software later this year. The display also comes with the Sony Entertainment Network smart TV system.

August 29, 2012

Sony Bravia KD-84X9005 at IFA 2012

LG's 84LM9600 4K TV to reach US shops in September 2012

LG will put a 3,840 x 2,160-pixel 'Ultra Definition' 84in display on sale worldwide in September, with a US pricetag of $11,700 (£7,400).

The 84LM9600 is four-times the resolution of Full HD and just half that of Super Hi-Vision, has 2.2-channel audio and LG's Cinema3D UD Engine to upscale and 3D-ify your Blu-ray collection.

LG Plans to make Ultra Definition video available via download to its Smart TV portal with a 'storybook feature with: "Carefully selected world classic literature and classical music, harmonizing various UD content."

Click the image for a full-size picture.

August 22, 2012


NHK debuts portable Hitachi Super Hi-Vision UHD camera

NHK debuts new lightweight prototype Hitachi SHV camera at SHV screenings of the 2012 London Olympic Games. The new cameras weigh just 4kg, compared to 20kg for the models being used to film Olympic events, and 80kg for the original SHV camera, made in 2001.

Panasonic demonstrates 145in Super Hi-Vision plasma display at the International Broadcast Centre at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Visitors to the London SHV screenings at the BBC Radio Theatre can see a prototype 85in LCD Super Hi-Vision screen.

Dr Keiichi Kubota, NHK’s managing director and executive director-general of engineering, announces that the new camera and screen technology make SHV more likley as a viable domestic broadcasting format in the near future.

Speaking to Recombu Digital, Dr Kubota predicts that SHV public test transmissions could begin in Japan as early as 2016.

July 31, 2012

Free Super Hi-Vision Olympic screenings start today

Free daily Super Hi-Vision screenings including the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony and Games highlights begin in London, Bradford and Glasgow. The screenings will run until the end of the Olympic Games.

July 28, 2012

(You can find a full-length video of our interview at the end of this feature)