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Television Hardware Technology

Sources Say ITU Has Approved Ultra-High Definition TV Standard 341

Qedward writes with this excerpt from Techworld: "A new television format that has 16 times the resolution of current High Definition TV has been approved by an international standards body, Japanese sources said earlier today. UHDTV, or Ultra High Definition Television, allows for programming and broadcasts at resolutions of up to 7680 by 4320, along with frame refresh rates of up to 120Hz, double that of most current HDTV broadcasts. The format also calls for a broader palette of colours that can be displayed on screen. The video format was approved earlier this month by member nations of the International Telecommunication Union, a standards and regulatory body agency of the United Nations, according to an official at NHK, Japan's public broadcasting station, and another at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Both spoke on condition of anonymity."
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Sources Say ITU Has Approved Ultra-High Definition TV Standard

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  • Great! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:34AM (#41094115)

    Same old shit in high resolution! =D

    • for twice the cost and comes with twice the DRM, along with limited availability! enjoy!

    • I suspect ultra-high resolution will fail like Super Audio CD and DVD-Audio failed. People have no desire to upgrade to a higher standard if they can't hear (or see) any difference. For 99% of the population an SACD or DVD-A sounds no better than a CD, or else the difference is trivial, so they ignore the new standard. I expect the same to happen with UHDTV.

      • Re:Great! (Score:4, Informative)

        by Durrik ( 80651 ) < minus author> on Thursday August 23, 2012 @01:01PM (#41097657) Homepage

        There's a good link I usually pass out when people start to talk about noticing the difference between 720p and 1080p. []

        Now I don't know where the line for 4320p would be since the article is old, but if you look at the line for 1080p at a viewing distance of 5 feet you need a TV around 38 inches. For 1440p at the same distance you need a TV around 51 inches, a difference of 13 inches.

        1080p is 2,073,600 pixels
        1440p is 3,571,200 pixels
        4320p is 33,177,600 pixels

        1440 is 1.33... times bigger than 1080
        3,571,200 is 1.72... times bigger than 2,073,600
        4320 is 3 times bigger than 1440
        33,177,600 is 9.29 times bigger than 3,571,200

        Using simple linear approximation:
        If you take just a 3 times bigger standard 1440p -> 4320p you need 29 more inches, or a TV that is 67 inches, or 3,571,200 -> 33,177,600 you need 70 more inches, or a TV that is 109 inches wide at 5 feet to get the full benefit of 4320p.

        I don't know about you but sitting 5 feet away from 109 inches wouldn't work for me. 67 inches is doable, but that's still a huge TV to be only 5 feet away. I don't think you can follow all the action across the entire screen from that distance.

  • screw that (Score:5, Funny)

    by MickyTheIdiot ( 1032226 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:39AM (#41094207) Homepage Journal

    I am going to wait for CSUHDTV

    Crazy Super Ultra High Definition TV.

    • by Idbar ( 1034346 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:01AM (#41094659)
      And in other news, Comcast and AT&T said they will charge sh** loads of money for that service as well, and they will cap it (if you exceed 10GFrames per mo, they will only deliver at 5fps).
    • by nschubach ( 922175 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:03AM (#41094705) Journal

      I don't understand why they skipped Super HDTV ... anyone that grew up in the 80s knows that Super is before Ultra.

      • Re:screw that (Score:4, Informative)

        by hazydave ( 96747 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @11:58AM (#41096751)

        That's nominally 3840 x 2160, aka, "4K".. you get it, or something like it, at the better movie theaters these days. There are already camcorders shipping that do this, and televisions coming Real Soon Now ( YouTube already supports 4K video. HDMI 1.4 does, too, at least up to 24p.

        So if it's already real, it's hopefully not the subject of work on new standards. And the 4K stuff is coming on fast enough that it's all based on logical extensions to what already exists. TVs are smart enough to adapt to the input and reformat lower resolution video. Disc delivery doesn't matter as much as it used to, but just like 3D, if 4K is important in the home, a new Blu-ray profile will cover it (if you really want more storage, the existing BD-XL format might get employed).

        Starting out worrying about 8K video now, these guys will have the time to think about much larger changes in the video infrastructure.

  • by mister2au ( 1707664 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:41AM (#41094253)

    We have Bluray that can pump out 40 Mbps and a new High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) standard coming that support 4K/60Hz video at around 40 Mbps

    We also have a few 4K displays just starting to appear.

    And now a UHDTV 4K video standard (as well as 8K).

    So looking good for the new gen with broadcast, storage, encoding and display standards all sorted out .. bring it on !!!

    • by Miros ( 734652 )
      4k could end up getting skipped as a broadcast standard given how quickly 8k is growing up. It will be a lot easier to dedicate that much bandwidth to a single channel once we eliminate those which serve no useful purpose in the linear domain (those which carry only pre-recorded shows).
  • Expect to hear a lot of "but I just bought an HDTV" hand wringing but if you think about it, 1080P was barely if at all pushing the envelope when it went mainstream. I have CRTs that I bought second hand 10 years ago with 1600x1200 pixels and that is nothing special. This actually pushes display tech and pixel density forward and gets us close to the Hollywood OS ideal of photorealistic no-discernable pixel displays many of us have lusted after since seeing the main viewscreen on ST:TOS.
    • by Miros ( 734652 )
      And most TV in the US is not even produced at 1080p, but rather 720p.
      • Some shows are broadcast at 720p, but recorded on either 35 mm or 1080p/24 HDCAM.
        For Instance:

        Bones []

        • by Miros ( 734652 )
          sure, some shows are, but most shows are not. Interestingly enough, recording something at 1080p and then down-converting it to 720 usually yields a superior product to shooting in 720 naively.
          • by Miros ( 734652 )
            I should temper my statement a little. Live television is almost always produced at 720p rather than 1080. The penetration is higher in non-live production.
          • Perhaps it's your cable company that's to blame. Why have only one channel featuring crystal clear, pristine video when you can have five featuring an approximation of what was intended?

  • by Sponge Bath ( 413667 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:42AM (#41094267)
    The crabs on porn stars will look like invading sci-fi monsters.
  • by Miros ( 734652 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:42AM (#41094269)
    This is actually much more than 2x standard broadcasts in terms of resolution as far as the US market is concerned. In the US almost everything "HD" is 720 @ 60fps (or sometimes even 30!). This is 8k, which is 16x the resolution of 1080, and twice the frame rate.
  • Oh good... (Score:4, Funny)

    by wolrahnaes ( 632574 ) <.ofni.wolrahnaes. .ta. .naes.> on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:42AM (#41094273) Homepage Journal

    A new international television standard. How long until we in the US invent our own entirely incompatible system just so it can depend on patents owned by American companies?

    ATSC versus DVB-T, CDMA2000/EvDO vs. GSM/UMTS, etc.

    • Yeah, they can come up with whatever standard they want as long as handbrake and whatever I happen to be using as a settop box at the time supports the resolution without skipping frames. On a related note I wonder what the dollar amount of broadcast standard related patent royalties is rolled into the typical price of an HDTV vs. an equally resolution equipped computer monitor.
    • NTSC: Never Twice the Same Color
      SECAM: Something Essentially Contrary to the American Mode
      PAL: not really

    • Re:Oh good... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by n5vb ( 587569 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:36AM (#41095309)

      We've already got something like that with ATSC standards, at least in the RF modulation schemes -- broadcast used 8-VSB (time domain), and the alternatives considered were OFDM (frequency domain) and 256-QAM (phase domain). Well, the cable industry is using 256-QAM and broadcast is using 8-VSB, last I heard, and I think what edged 8-VSB ahead for broadcast was that it's not sensitive to the phase jitter in antique GEO satellite transponders. So with modulation, at least, yeah, we're already there. (The fortunate thing is that, unlike when NTSC rolled out, TV manufacturers aren't forced to design around just one demodulation standard, and it's not all that difficult to incorporate both 8-VSB and 256-QAM demodulation in modern receivers, even within a single demod chipset, so for the most part you never notice it.)

      I suspect as standards get more and more complex, we'll start seeing a lot more of this kind of thing, and it will help rather than hurt, as the TV manufacturers design more and more agile multi-standard receivers that can handle anything the standards folks throw at them. Note that most if not all of them will also still display analog NTSC-M VSB-modulated signals just fine .. because there are still a lot of cable providers offering analog basic cable tiers ..

      (<- still thinks the way NTSC-M avoided obsoleting the first-gen monochrome TV's was a cool hack, even if the chroma performance sucked most of the time)

  • by TheSkepticalOptimist ( 898384 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:46AM (#41094349)

    Maybe cable companies might finally get FULL HD content to display on our Ultra HD TV's.

    Another reason why cable companies need to be destroyed, because they don't even know how to provide state of the art, but feel inclined to comment on what the new standards should be.

    About the only thing UltraHD is going to introduce is a new optical disk format because broadband and content providers are incapable of creating and delivering UltraHD content without massive compression and inferior audio.

    • by Miros ( 734652 )
      Most of them can provide you with full HD, but the content typically is not being produced at full HD anyway (for regular television) and people seem to be giddy for lots of channels and internet bandwidth so they trade off quality for quantity. When some channels get eliminated you will get both higher internet bandwidth and higher quality video.
    • About the only thing UltraHD is going to introduce is a new optical disk format

      And a new format war! Oh, and new and "improved" DRM. I can't wait to see who cracks it first. I'll get the popcorn ready.

  • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:48AM (#41094389) Homepage Journal

    We have a couple of 720p (not 1080p, 720p) TVs in our house, a 32" LCD, and a 50" plasma (hey, 720p plasma's cheap.)

    How decent is 720p? Well, both TVs appear to be about the same quality as, or often a little higher than, watching a friggin' movie at the cinema, if the source is decent and relatively free of artifacts.

    I think, for the most part, we're talking diminishing returns at this point adding pixels. So I'm a little baffled by this announcement. Is it real? Is there a serious market for TV for people with super exceptional eyesight? Is video compression technology really going to improve so much over the next ten years that this'll be worth using - especially over the Internet, which, let's be honest, is where everything's going at the moment.

    I'm glad to see innovation, but I'm just finding it hard to believe that this improvement is significantly useful: arguably, like Blu-ray, it might actually hold back HD, rather than help it.

    • This. What exactly is it that you want to see with this much resolution?

      The thin wires that hold props and whatnot in place for movies? Look, it's supposed to be a suspension of belief. That's what's required for a work of fiction. Too high of a resolution ruins the effect. Not to mention who wants to see every pore of every actor's face?

      Even for documentaries: What's the point? Do you require this much resolution IRL? I'd venture to guess if you had an ultra-high resolution view of your pillow (including d

      • I can only imagine that it might help the image quality on say a football stadium sized screen. But then I wouldn't be able to see it all at once anyways so there really isn't a point in the tech.
      • Do you require this much resolution IRL? I'd venture to guess if you had an ultra-high resolution view of your pillow (including dust mites) you'd probably not be able to sleep.

        God yes ... human visual acuity is in the 100-500MP range depending on eye movement, field-of-view and interpolation assumptions. Even 8K video is only around 30MP in a static pattern.

        But also remember your taste in 'reality' may not be everyone else's taste - you (and I) have probably been trained that low resolution, grainy film is 'suspension of belief' just as the in 50s/60s the dodgy film colours (technicolor?) were part of the suspension or in the 30s/40s/50s with black-and-white doing that job or in

    • by Miros ( 734652 )
      Higher resolution content will look better on your new 90"+ TV
    • How decent is 720p? Well, both TVs appear to be about the same quality as, or often a little higher than, watching a friggin' movie at the cinema, if the source is decent and relatively free of artifacts.

      Wow - you really need access to a better cinema then ... I can assure you 720p (from a good source) is miles behind a good digital cinema ...

      I, for one, have a 85ft (110ft diagonal) 4K digital locally in addition to IMAX, film and 2K digital ... I was fortunate to see The Bourne Legacy recently in 4K digital and it was stunning compared to even 2K digital, let alone 1080p and 720p.

      If i can have a high-tech $1,000 4K 80" screen in 5 years or high-value $500 1080p 50" screen in 5 years .. hmmm ... easy decisi

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <> on Thursday August 23, 2012 @11:25AM (#41096159) Homepage Journal

      I was lucky enough to see a demo of Ultra High Definition a few years back when NHK was developing it. I didn't think you could get much better than 1080p, but it was actually noticeably better. What people forget is that it isn't simply the resolution that is higher, the colour is better and the frame rate has been bumped to a native 120fps. Everything looked hyper realistic and natural. Not the same level of improvement going from SD to HD, but the frame rate alone was enough to really set it apart.

      Having said that I was quite impressed by 4k and have not had an opportunity to compare 4k to Ultra HD. I'm kinda sceptical at how much improvement there would be over 4k/60p, but won't pass judgement until I have seen it. And of course it remains to be seen if 48 or 60 fps will take off for films.

      What I really can't understand is people who say they can't see any difference between SD and HD. Even if their eyesight is bad and they can't see the extra resolution they should still be able to see that the colour is better. Well, unless they have set their TV to be deliberately really low contrast, and I know one guy who does. 720p to 1080p is going to be more subtle because it is just a resolution bump, so really it depends on the size of your TV and your distance from it. I used to think a 50" TV was ridiculous, this year I bought one for less than a good 32" CRT set cost a decade ago...

  • Very disappointing (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 23, 2012 @09:51AM (#41094439)

    I'm sure it's very nice, but these types of things are simply diverting time and resources away from what the true goal should be: sexbots. Anime themed sexbots, porn star themed sexbots, weird fetish sexbots -- sexbots.

    Japan, why have you gone astray?

  • Cable and Satellite can barely handle HD as it is right now due to bandwidth constraints. Unless this also comes with some miracle new encoding that can give us all this extra picture quality without increasing bitrates at all, it's not going to fly. Internet transfer caps make it totally unsuitable for streaming. Optical media isn't exactly the way of the future.

    We're a *long* way off from this being available to home users in any kind of practical way.

    • by dywolf ( 2673597 )

      I dont see the need for it myself...but the average consumer doesnt think about that, they just see "BIGGER NUMBERS ARE BETTER!". And so they buy these things. And its too much for the current pipelines coming into the houses....

      and viola! Hardcore, cannot be ignored (like it is now) market pressure to upgrade cable/telco infrastructure and deliver more bandwidth! So for that reason, I support it.

    • by mister2au ( 1707664 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:54AM (#41095631)

      Certainly is work in that direction ... [] ... That gets you a 50% reduction in bit rates over MPEG-4/AVC - which in turn is 50% reduction over MPEG-2 used in many most digital TV standards

      So that's a 2-4x increase in efficiency + modulation improvements that are bound to happen = plenty of scope for 4K digital TV

      8K is a bit more a stretch at the moment

  • Get ready to swap your TV's again! Remember it's all good for the economy. That way you can watch re-runs of Friends and Home Improvement in ultra ultra high resolution.
  • I'd love to have all these lines just so the CRT video shaders in the future will start to look more convincing simulating vintage computing better preserving a history of analog signals for the rest of us retrofetishists.
  • Ok, so we have a Full HD standard at the moment which is pretty much the same quality as a better computer monitor from a generic brand. Why are the computer manufacturers lagging so far behind? Ok, Apple has launched their retina displays which do have a really good resolution but where's the rest of the industry? I myself have two laptops and they've both got pretty much the same resolution even though it's been six years between the times I bought them. IT-industry, get your heads out of your asses and s
    • by Miros ( 734652 )
      Remember that computer monitors are typically much smaller than televisions. Making a 50" 1080p display is a lot easier than making an 8" display of the same resolution. There are companies out there who are making 4k consumer displays, none of them are very small.
    • Ok, Apple has launched their retina displays which do have a really good resolution but where's the rest of the industry?

      Apple can get an actual economy of scale with a line of consumer laptops costing over 2 grand. Nobody else has been able to pull that off. Also, since Apple has direct control over their OS, they can customize it as needed for non-mainstream hardware like high dpi displays. Their competitors are stuck with whatever MS sells them.

  • This is just what we need!

    Instead of developing ultra-hd tv, they should be developing content that is actually worth watching.

  • Resolution is measured in pixels per inch (or mm), not per square inch
  • by chicane ( 38348 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:29AM (#41095183)

    The BBC and NHK collaborated to demonstrate this system during the olympics , broadcasting to 3 sites in UK , 2 in US and 2 in Japan.
    Further detail See []
    The opening/closing ceremony were broadcast live whereas during the rest of the week a daily hour long highlights package covering the opening ceremony and specific events package was compiled and broadcast on a daily basis.
    I was fortunate enough to experience the system at Bradford Museum of the Moving Image on a 15 metre square screen and a couple of megawatts of sound..
    With reputedly only 3 cameras in the world camera angles were somewhat limited, the opening ceremony coverage placed you in the heart of the stadium as if you were an audience member showing off the wide field of vision offered. I found the 22 channels of sound to be somewhat overwhelming in volume which I judged to be a bit of a cheap trick to impress. As with initial experience of Hidef the enhanced resolution can lead one to examine detail towards the edge of the field of vision. I was slightly disappointed that there was some blockiness at the edge. This may be due to focussing issues, focus is performed away from the camera.
    All in all I found it quite comparable to the Imax experience excepting lack of 3d.

  • Seriously, what is the point, when every "provider" compresses the signal to the point that you already have pixellated TV, with blocky regions of color in "HD".

    Consider any scene on TV in a smoke-filled room, where the actors are sitting around a table, and the light shines down from above, a blue spotlight.

    Now, back in the days of NTSC, there would be a smooth graduation from the light to dark, a million shades of blue, making the whole thing appear to be smooth and natural.

    Under HDTV and signal compressi

  • by residieu ( 577863 ) on Thursday August 23, 2012 @10:42AM (#41095389)

    Now throw out those old TVs in crappy old 3D HD and buy NEW TVs in UltraHD!! And now that cable companies have started giving out HD programming for free, rather than charge extra they get the option to charge for UltraHD content instead. Great for everyone!

    Oh, and if you sit at home and look at your TV screen with a microscope, I guess you can see a little more detail now.

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