As the Borg used to say, “resistance is futile.” There really is no other way to sum up our current and eventual transition to UltraHD/4K than that. Fighting the changeover to UltraHD/4K is akin to trying to reverse the direction of a cyclone by blowing at it through a drinking straw. It isn’t going to happen. How do I know, I’m one of those who used to rally against UltraHD/4K.

It’s not that I’m a “blind” lover of all things UltraHD/4K -I’m not -but I’m also not in denial about the reality of the situation. I understand, like most of you, that many of UltraHD/4K’s claims, specifically with regards to the consumer market, are dubious at best and outright confusing at worst. But what does heaping so much vitriol and hyperbole at the “problem” get anyone? Nothing. Nor will it stop or change the roll out of what’s to come. We’re not going to “save HD” and turn back the UltraHD/4K invaders with so-called truths or heightened emotional opinion. In reality, we only stand to drive a wedge further into the discussion and create for grater confusion that has the potential to drive would-be enthusiasts away.

If a consumer wishes to buy an UltraHD/4K display, for better or worse, it’s our job as educators to ensure they get the most from their experience. I’m not suggesting all UltraHD/4K displays should get a “pass,” but damning them all because it’s some folks’ cross to bear is absurd.  Moreover, these early sets make a case for other features that many of these same people have been saying consumers need or should have -features such as better 4K upscaling. Yet if all UltraHD/4K sets are but a waste of space, what does that say about their endorsement of products that aim to support these same displays?

The greater point being that while UltraHD/4K may not be perfect now, or even in the future, it is still our future. So rather than waste another breath on trying to convince consumers why they shouldn’t care, let’s figure out how to shape the conversation so that they understand the pros and cons objectively, while helping manufacturers get it “right” for future UltraHD/4K products. Remember, there is still no standard, which means this whole thing is up for grabs. The lack of a standard shouldn’t be a rally cry for the format’s demise, but rather an invitation to enact positive and worthwhile change. And even if that change doesn’t come, and UltraHD/4K turns out to be but a variation of what we already have in HD, then we still must make the best of it. Either way, it’s time to put down our drinking straws and save our breath for UltraHD/4K is here.

As always I thank  you for reading and until next time, take care and stay tuned…


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  • Mark Shaheen

    I have to agree with you on this one, but like 3D, they can force us to buy it… but not use it. How many own a 3D TV and never once used the 3D part of it?

  • Andrew Robinson

    Respectfully, comparing 4K to 3D isn’t really fair as one is a feature whereas the other is simply going to be our future resolution (and hopefully more). Eventually when shopping for a new display will you have but one choice in 4K? Yes, eventually and sooner than some may think. This is why I say it’s silly and not helpful to rally against or create the false “hope” that this will all someday go away.

  • ly121688

    When I saw Cnet’s review of the sony 84 inch 4ktv I felt they never gave it a chance, they came with an attitude that it was going to be pointless, and looked from a further distance, isn’t the point of higher resolution so that you can sit closer or watch a bigger screen in the same room size? I have seen the sony 65inch 4k tv and the 84inch and lg 84inch and while I agree the led’s do lack contrast compared to plasma, this is likely more to do with bright showroom conditions, I was most impressed with the 65inch sony, but the increase in resolution is no doubt visible. Even in a 15inch retina macbook pro, 4k video is a stunning leap over 1080p.

    I remember when they use to say you can’t tell the difference between 720p and 1080p on a screen smaller than 50inches, now that we have 1080p smartphones which is overkill, but on an imac the difference between 1080 and 720 is day and night.

    I wonder if 8k is the holy grail or if it’ll ever take off, I think they say in colour our eyes perceive around 5 mega pixels although in monochrome the eye can perceive far higher.

  • Andrew Robinson

    I thank you for sharing! I am now in possession of Seiki’s sub $1,500 UltraHD/4K display and am already finding some of the criticisms to be unfounded -though some are not. Details to follow! Thanks for reading!

  • ly121688

    look forward to your review!

  • Robert Heiblim

    Thanks Andrew. i think the point needs to be to push the makers to do things that are relevant both for the public as well as themselves. The results for 3D are not encouraging as they now have to embed a cost but give it away which certainly won’t move the meter for art or performance for consumers. On the other hand, here is a chance to thoughtfully point out what is needed and what will benefit consumers. As Joe Clayton put it when he got his Digital Patriot Award, giving the customer what they want is a radical, but successful business model. So, tell them what we want and need as well as what we do not and it can help. As you put well, they are going to do this anyway, may as well be good.

  • Darryl Miller

    There is a great interview between Scott Wilkinson and Joe Kane, CEO of video essentials, on Home Theater Geeks, about the world of 4K. A little dry but very interesting.