Somehow, you’ve owned a 4K TV since it first became available. Possibly you just upgraded, or perhaps you’re still streaming on a 1080p television. Whatever your current screen resolution is, you’ve most likely heard about what comes after 4K. Yes, it’s 8K.
8K resolution is the next great step in television resolution. Moreover, like with 4K, the change implies the development of new technologies.
In this article, we will explain everything you need to know about 8k resolution, and if its worth the money. Let’s get started.
History of 8K
Since display screens had been revealed before, Sharp introduced its first true 8K TV at CES 2013 with an amazing 85-inch model, just as 4K TVs were starting to take hold. Sharp would also be the first company to offer an 8K TV in 2015, a $133,000 85-inch behemoth.
Several firms began to display their own 8K TV prototypes in the following years, finally releasing them to the market but at a high price. Only in the last several years have 8K displays been more widely accessible and at costs comparable to some higher-end 4K TVs.
What is 8K Resolution?
8K TVs are the latest high-resolution UHD (ultrahigh-definition) TVs to be introduced. But how much better can it go than 4K? About four times the pixels of a 4K screen, 8K TVs produce clearer and more realistic images. This is due to the pixels on 8K TVs being so tiny that they cannot be separated.
8K Televisions have screens with 7,680 horizontal and 4,320 vertical pixels and a total of 33 million pixels. The letter “K” in 8K refers to Kilo (1000). An 8K TV contains around 8000 horizontal lines (7680 to be exact).
The 8K resolution is so sharp that viewing a world cup or NBA match may make you feel like you’re in the stadium with your favorite team.
Note: 8K resolution is often stated as 7680 x 4320.
Benefits of 8K Resolution
The nicest thing about 8K televisions and monitors, based on our testing, is that they boost visual clarity. When you use one of these screens, you will notice that the images are far sharper than any of those seen on 4K Televisions and screens.
While viewing information at 8K quality, you might see details in your photographs or movies that were previously invisible. You will be able to see wrinkles on people’s faces or minute details in your creations or artwork.
What About 8K Resolution Gaming?
With the release of the PS5 and Xbox Series X, many will wonder if 8K games are on the horizon, considering that the systems’ HDMI 2.1 interfaces officially support 8K/60Hz pass through.
Microsoft has also hinted that the Xbox Series X will support 8K resolution. Yet, we have to see any material supporting either platform at this level.
8K isn’t always the ultimate objective in gaming. Most would argue that a high refresh rate (120Hz) is vital for guaranteeing smooth gaming and preventing the image from being cut or torn during hectic graphics.
How Much Does an 8K TV Cost?
Samsung’s Q900R was previously offered for $15,000 for the 85-inch variant. Given how new the technology is, this was not surprising. It is expected that 8K Televisions will become more affordable over time, similar to how 4K OLED TVs have grown more affordable. Samsung’s second-generation Q950R followed the same rationale, with a £10,000 RRP at launch. However, the price dropped dramatically a few months later.
Are Any Movies or TV Shows in 8K?
While many programs have yet to make the transition to 4K, certain movies are now being broadcast in 8K, but not all. Black Panther, for example, was one of the first films to be presented in 8K quality. There are also a few more TV series released in 8K.
Frequently, these are exceptional events that are televised in 8K. Japan, for example, performed 8K trial broadcasts on its public TV station NHK in 2016 before launching a dedicated 8K TV channel in late 2018. Brazil screened footage from the 2018 World Cup in 8K resolution at Rio de Janeiro’s Museum of the Future.
Apart from that, 8K is now mostly utilized by businesses to promote their products. If you buy an 8K TV, you’ll almost certainly have to use upscaling to watch the video at that resolution.
What Kind of HDMI Cable Do You Need for 8K?
We’ve already dealt out the physical connection issue in case any 8K media streamers hit the market or if they’re required for the PS5, and Xbox Series X. HDMI 2.1 supports resolutions up to 8K and beyond.
Nevertheless, before you go out and buy HDMI 2.1-compatible connections, keep in mind that a new standard will almost definitely emerge between now and the widespread adoption of 8K. Hence, despite their present futuristic appearance, those wires may be outmoded.
All of the major 8K TV manufacturers claim that their models include HDMI 2.1 connections that can handle the 48Mbps bandwidth necessary for the greatest resolution and frame-rate combinations (8K and 60 frames per second and 4K at 120 fps).
Is It Worth Buying an 8K TV?
There’s no disputing that 8K technology is fantastic, but with little viewable 8K content available; we’re also many, many years away from ubiquitous 8K programming. It’s just not worth it right now.
For now, at least, you’re better off investing your cash in a 4K TV. Nonetheless, keep an eye on 8K since the technology is expected to become more affordable in the coming years.
There’s no assurance that these early 8K televisions will work with any eventual 8K standard. Many 4K televisions are unable to play any existing 4K media material.
Finally, even if costs continue to fall, as they did with the $2,200 TCL 8K 6-series, you’re almost likely better off with a 4K TV for the same money. It provides greater overall image quality and just misses out the bragging rights of having more pixels than your neighbor or relative. But if that’s your thing, go ahead and get an 8K TV.