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What Is 4K (Ultra HD) Resolution?

Oct 26, 2018

It feels like just yesterday that everyone was excited about high-definition content. The tangible difference in the quality of HD content was a game-changer that every consumer could see and marvel at. Lucky for us, that visual revolution has happened again with 4K Ultra HD! While it sounds intriguing, many people don’t know exactly what 4K Ultra HD means or exactly how it is revolutionizing the quality of content. Today we’re going to take a closer look at what 4K Ultra HD is and why you, as a tech-savvy consumer, should care about it. 

As a refresher, high-definition (HD) content was better than the standard definition (SD) content because it was able to display significantly more pixels on the screen. 4K Ultra HD content operates on that same principle. 4K Ultra HD (4K UHD) screens arecapable of displaying four times the number of pixels than an HD screen is. This means the images are four times sharper, four times more detailed, and four times more realistic! The difference is immediately clear if you put an HD screen next to a 4K UHD screen. 4K UHD screens simply provide the clearest picture available for consumers. 

We realize that talking about pixels won’t be relatable to most people, so we’ll simplify things a bit more. Think of your television screen as a grid made up of various numbers of rows and columns. For a normal HD image, there are 1080 rows and 1920 columns. A 4K UHD image doubles both of those numbers, which results in four times as many pixels available on the screen. That jump in size creates an image that is more realistic than anything most people have ever viewed before on their own devices at home! 

When discussing 4K Ultra HD, it’s important to not leave out mention of High Dynamic Range (HDR). 4K UHD on its own is a desirable feature. However, if you seek out a screen (and content!) that carries the Ultra HD Premium™ logo, you’ll truly get the best visual experience available today because you’ll be getting the benefits of both 4K UHD resolution and HDR working together, as they are designed to do.

Think of it like this: 4K describes the total number of pixels on the screen—what is known as the pixel density—while HDR describes the quality of those pixels. HDR enables a greater range of contrast in an image or video, yielding the visual drama of the deepest darks meeting up with the most brilliant white for gorgeous contrast and greater visual detail. When a device has has both of these technological features working together, the end result is a stunningly realistic, dramatically immersive premium viewing experience.

It’s important to point out that having a 4K UHD-capable screen does not guarantee that you are enjoying a true 4K experience. The content you display on your screen must also have 4K on the label. In other words, in order to enjoy the true 4K experience you need both a 4K-capable screen and 4K content. Luckily, as consumers begin adopting an increasing number of 4K displays throughout the world, more 4K content is being made. You may have already noticed 4K content being offered on Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube, and many others, with new 4K titles being added over time.

The proliferation of 4K in both display devices and content makes it easier than ever before to enjoy the best that technology has to offer when it comes to enjoying media in the comfort of your own home. Of course, there is more to a home-media setup than just the screen! That’s why consumers should always keep an eye out for the Ultra HD Premium™ and Mobile HDR Premium™ logos when shopping for both hardware components and content. Let the logo simply lead you to premium features worth seeking out!If a product has the Ultra HD Premium™ or the Mobile HDR Premium™ featured on it, you can feel confident that you are purchasing a product that is up to the highest standards available for the audiovisual world.