Source: ExtremeTech

Image resolution has reached a new high and TV tech is supporting all sorts of new numbers. In this article I will talk about the 8K, what resolution really means and what you should expect.

Digital media has been the pinnacle of modern entertainment for a very long while, and therefore image quality has always played a huge role in how people assessed and appreciated content that would come their way via a TV or monitor. Today, we have the opportunity of watching content on 4K screens, which is amazing considering that some of us remember the days when having a 720p monitor was a really big deal.

With that in mind, there are plenty of reasons to get excited. While the 4K generation is still fresh and new, manufacturers and tech developers are already pushing the envelope. They are looking to push image quality to 8K resolutions, which would obviously be an insane jump. Basically, we would be looking at a resolution that’s double in quality vs. 4K, which is four times as good as your regular 1080p Full HD resolution. In this article you will find anchor points that will guide you towards appreciating the situation, and what 8K means for regular consumers, from an efficient perspective.

When is 8K coming?

While TV enthusiasts are already seeing a glimpse of 8K technology in the far distance, it’s safe to assume that it will be a while before we get to see 8K TVs as a standard offering in stores, the way we see 4K TVs right now. This is due to multiple reasons. The first one is that the 4K wave is still relatively fresh, as mentioned earlier. In fact, if you want to get a better idea of how varied 4K is right now, you can check out this review to see the best 40 inches TV options. In other words, it wouldn’t be a very profitable move to already close up shop on the 4K generation. Even if 8K technology was ready to be shipped out to all consumers, which it’s not, most manufacturers would probably agree to keep that kind of tech under wraps for a while longer. If you have a 4K TV or plan on getting one, you should be safe for quite a long period of time before any thoughts of upgrading to 8K would emerge.

When is it too much?

Obviously, the main point of having an 8K TV, and upgrading from the would-be standard 4K option is quality. You get a far superior resolution and thus you enjoy a much higher quality for your content, right?  Well, it might not be as easy as that. As you know, our bodies have limitations. We’re not cats or hawks, and our eyesight isn’t exactly the best in the animal kingdom. Having an 8K resolution is something that most would consider testing our limits.  In order to better grasp this idea, we’re going to refer to some simple questions.

  • What is a resolution?

The resolution of a screen represents the total number of pixels that form up the full image seen on screen. TVs use lines of pixels in order to display images. For example, a 1080p resolution TV will have 1080 lines of pixels across the display. As I’ve reviewed on my blog, a 4K TV has a resolution of 3840 x 2160, meaning that we’re looking at 2160 lines of pixels at every moment on screen.

  • What would 8K resolution mean?

A TV with an 8K resolution would imply that it has a resolution that’s double what 4K TVs offer. Given that the latter has a resolution of 3849 x 2160, upping that to 8K would be quite a baffling number.  It would certainly qualify for a level of detail worthy of being called challenging for the human eye. So in other words, 8K might just be too much for us to even notice, completely negating the benefits of such an upgrade.

Would it matter?

Let’s not forget that a TV, no matter what resolution it has, does very little on its own. It is mainly a receiver for content which comes from another source. In order to enjoy content at the highest support resolution, you need to make sure that you are getting that kind of quality in the first place. A TV program isn’t 4K unless it’s offered in a 4K format by the service provider, i.e. cable.

Now, watching content is one thing, but actually creating it and rendering it is another thing. Do you have a machine that runs and supports 4K? If the answer is no, that shiny new 4K TV you want to buy or have already bought won’t make nearly as much noise as you would hope. You won’t be able to experience a movie in its 4K glory unless the movie itself was rendered in 4K, regardless of what TV you have.

That brings about the question, will 8K really matter? It will still be a while before you can see 8K TVs on store shelves, but it will take an even longer time for 8K content to be made available. As is the case for many branches of 4K right now, such as console gaming, there simply isn’t enough content to justify upgrading to 4K right away. We’re still living in times where 1080p is totally fine, given the nature of current tech.

Preparing for the 8K revolution

The bottom line is that it will take a long time before talk of 8K will be anywhere near relevant for realistic purchases. If you’re concerned about falling behind on the latest tech or not being part of the latest revolution, you don’t have to worry. Buying a 4K or even 1080p TV right now is a perfectly fine move, and there’s no reason why you should hold back. While it’s uncertain just how beneficial an upgrade to 8Kwould actually be, it’s clear that in order for it to work, you would need to make a massive investment and completely upgrade your entire setup, be it gaming setup, movie watching setup or anything else.