Ultra HDTV

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If there is something that is dynamic in this world, it has to be technology. On a daily basis, there seems to be a new gadget released on the market. The main objective for all technological advancements is to make life easier and more interesting- to experience life at a new and better level. Take for instance, ultra HD televisions. These are truly remarkable devices- or rather, they are regarded as highly powerful televisions. The height of entertainment for just about all gadget gurus across the globe is the high definition television. In order to understand why people are itching in anticipation for ultra-high definition televisions, here is a brief look at it.

The Beginning of High Definition Televisions

High definition televisions came into being slowly; but really there was nothing so humble about how they hit the markets. People stumbled upon each other in the rush to get themselves one of these gadgets. Had it not been for the incredibly high prices, everyone would have had an HD television during the first year when they were released. Of course, the prices have fallen with time and a sizable proportion of the world population has been able to get one. High definition TV has been given a tremendously huge push in countries such as the USA where broadcasting standards have been transformed from digital and analog signals, to entirely digital signals. This does not mean that HDTVs cannot receive analog signals. The high definition televisions can receive both signals, but if you are looking for better quality, then digital is the way to go.

Scientists across the globe are striving hard to bring HDTV to a better level. It is a process that is still going on and this is where the ultra HD television come into play. The ultra-high definition television is still in its early stages of the conception-prototype. The brilliant engineers at NHK Science and Technical Research Laboratories are the ones who pioneered it, calling it the super hi-vision television (SHV). Technology has just too many abbreviations for the same thing- SHV and the UHDTV are basically the same thing.

The Main Goal of UHDTVs

As aforementioned, the main goal of technology is to create a better life or experience for the human race. The HD televisions and the UHDs are no exception, with their main objective being to create a vivid and immersive television-viewing experience. The only difference with the UHD televisions is that they make the difference between realism and television very small. The reason why people are so excited about this television is just as the manufacturers describe it- people will feel as if they are a part of the scene when they watch the ultra-high definition TV.

The Development of Ultra-High Definition

The fact that most people are not scientists, particularly the engineers at NHK, leads them to think they have the best technology yet. This is a fallacy because the technology being used in the world right now, has been used by the scientists long before it was unleashed onto the market. For instance, the HDTVs went to market in the late 1990's.

What a majority of the world population does not know is that the first prototype of the HDTV was made as early as 1964. Some three decades later that is when NHK started thinking about UHDTVS. It was in 2002 when a public demonstration of a prototype ultra-high definition video system was released by the NHK engineers. You have to understand that ultra HD televisions are being built from scratch. The research being put into them is immense. Since 2002, when the first ultra HD video was shown, researchers have worked tirelessly to improve on the quality of the software, equipment and UHDTV system. The product that will be released around 2025, will be one extremely powerful one.

Some of the research being done is all about perfecting the appearance of images and heightening the speed signal transfer rates. NHK plans to begin satellite broadcasts for experimental purposes as early as 2015 and to have the technology in the Japanese market by the beginning of 2025. They have already done several demonstrations and installations as well as live relay experiments. One great relay experiment they have done is the one from Kamogawa Sea World to the NHK labs.

The Almost Impossible Challenges

To develop the ultra HD televisions successfully, there are several things that are required. If you picture the television as a projector, it means that there must first be an image. This is not just any kind of image, it is an ultra-high definition image. To get such an image for projection, it must be created using a certain device, which is most definitely not the video cameras that are available in retail stores today. The first challenge was to create a camera and other equipment that will capture, record and process the UHD video images. Transmission is the other challenge. With ultra HD, the video signal in question here is laden with data. These large volumes of information being transferred required development of equipment and programs that can encode and compress these vast amounts of data either for storage purposes, as in the case of movies, or for immediate viewing as in the case of live TV.

What the Future Holds

In summary, we are looking forward to an experience like no other. Currently, HDTVs rule the television industry. They have great resolution and an excellent aspect ratio. However, with the ultra HD televisions, you are looking at 16 times the resolution of any HD you have come across recently. The projected images will be packed full of some 32 million pixels, which is clearly richer than the current HDs, which have only 2 million.

To view these outstanding rich images, a larger screen will be necessary and the sizes in question here are in the brackets of 100 and 200 inches. Basically, the main difference between the UHDTVs and the current HDTVs is the image quality that you will experience. It cannot be said enough; the viewing experience will be one of a kind; when you may not be able to tell the difference between the television and your environment.

About Ultra HDTVs

Ultra HDTV is also known as Ultra High Definition Television, and commonly abbreviated as UHDTV or UHD. The ITU (International Telecommunication Union) through NHK Science and Technology Laboratories defines and approves the digital video formats. Currently, there are only two digital video formats; 8K UHD (4320p) and 4K UHD (2160p). On October 2012, the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association) ruled that “Ultra HD” or “Ultra High Definition” displays adopt a 16:9 aspect ratio and a minimum of one digital input cable that would yield a minimum of 3,840 X 2,160 pixels resolution.

As of 2012, in the consumer electronics market, the 4K was the common term adopted by companies and clients, a term coined during the International CES. The term had changed to Ultra HD during the International CES, 2013. Note that the terms 4K and UHD are used interchangeably to mean source devices, TVs, content or accessories by the manufacturers.

UHDTV Evolution, 2003-2014

The first UHDTV prototype was manufactured by the NHK in 2003. This was a camera with 3840 by 2048 pixel resolution. The first UHDTV fiber optic TV relay was done successfully in 2006. The test achieved 24Gbit/s speed with 19 different wavelengths. In 2008, Aptina Imaging designed the first of its kind, a CMOS image sensor specifically meant for streaming in the NHK project UHDTV. In the same year, during the Japan IBC, Sharp Corporation, Samsung, SONY, NHK, Panasonic and other partners demonstrated to the world the first public UHDTV live streaming.

NHK, in 2010, designed “The Charlatans” in UHDTV format and then streamed it live in the UK; the video was later streamed via internet to Japan. The first LCD, Super High Vision, direct view was released in 2011, a collaboration between Sharp and NHK.

2013-2014 have witnessed lots of development in the technology ranging from the first satellite broadcasts, first Ultra HD Channel by Eutelsat and many other live streaming events.

The General TV Industry

There are a number of TV technologies in the electronic markets. Some of the common names include: LED, LCD, 3D TV, OLED, Soap Opera Effect, 120Hz, and plasma. The 4K TV is basically a new HDTV that went to the retail market in 2013. Manufacturers are therefore aligning themselves towards producing products compatible to 4K new array in the near future.

Understanding 4K vs. 8K UHDTV Resolutions

4K Ultra HD TV: 4k is simply stated as 2160p. It is 8.3 megapixels meaning 3840 by 2160 pixels width and length respectively. This resolution is four times stronger than the 2.1 megapixels, which is 1920 by 1080

8K Ultra HD TV: 8k is simply stated as 4320p. It is 33.2 megapixels meaning 7680 by 4320 pixels width and length respectively. 8k is 16 times stronger than the 1080p HDTV, this is said to be closer to 15/70 mm IMAX. NHK supports the 8K format, recommending Super 555 HI Vision, a 22.2 surround sound.

Electronic Technology and the Electronic Consumer Market

The OLED TVs and have failed in their recent attempts. The television manufacturers are currently more interested in only the high end, more responsive technologies. Market research has shown that the mainstream customers will, in the near future, be more declined to the viable new technology, Ultra HD. The technology renders high quality production, sharp images at inexpensive prices. It is expected that the manufacturers will also incline towards TVs that sends the customers back to the stores on a regular basis to buy the devices. Currently, the normal household buys a TV every 7 years.

According to the International CES 2014, the Ultra HD is the only technology fuelled by internet video-streaming. Ultra HD TVs have screens that enable them to project high pixels as compared to the regular HD TVs.

The 3-D TVs are known to bring some visual challenges hence the need for the customers to buy some special glasses.

Ultra High Definition TVs contents are streamed through standard high speed internet connections getting rid of the Blu-ray disc format. The Ultra HD TVs are crispier as compared to the regular HD. Yielding finer details, richer skin texture, and with less pixilation. The high resolution is therefore essential in getting rid of the need to magnify the images, but instead invest in bigger screens.

Ultra HDTV 2014

Ultra HDTV technology is still at a very early stage. Whatever hit the market in the recent years since 2011, were just the beginning and only testing the waters. 2013 only saw the sale of about 60,000 units of the TVs. It is expected that the sales will increase to more than 500,000 in 2014, according to the Consumer Electronic Association. The UHDTVs currently on the market are high-priced and are expected to get lower and closer to price of HDTVs as production increases.

Ultra HD TV Content

The very first full length 4K movie available for purchase and download was, The Timescape by Tom Lowe, in 2012. There have since been a number of 4K content productions by various companies.

2014 CES saw entrants announcing to release more content into the market, including: Sony/Netflix and Samsung/Amazon. The companies have specifically announced to release more TV compatible 4K content.

The industry strongly comes up with the new broadcasting standards to deliver better resolutions, the H.265 or HEVC. These are the codecs identified by the manufacturers to economically deliver 4K compressed content to consumers. The HEVC compressed TV channels mean that consumers will have to buy new codecs. The 2014 CEA exhibition TVs had all included the UHDTV component in the devices to remain relevant and compatible in the years ahead.

Conclusion

It is the time of UHDTV. The technology promises to make movies look better than they were before. This will depend fully on the format of the original movie. The 4k screens are pushing their way into people's homes, and it is only expected that as the technology becomes greater, almost every home will feature this special device. Before buying a new TV, it is wise to consider Ultra HDTVs before going the traditional route because things change so fast with technology. May be two years from now, the HDTVs will be non-functional and all the movies will be produced in the new 4k format. The manufacturers only respond to the market. They are always ready to market and sell newer and better technologies. This time around will not be different, since it only makes economical sense. Think Ultra HDTV; get high resolution, high quality picture, on a widescreen with more effects.

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