3D, 4k2k and some hopes and warnings - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 02-06-2010, 10:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi, we all know that the recent CES in January was largely about 3D, both for TV's and projectors, but that has disguised the fact that another change is occurring which has substantial implications, especially for projectors.
Firstly, everything I say here is only my opinion and that needs to be kept in mind.
As I am currently in the process of buying a JVC HD 550 and a 120" scope screen that has tended to concentrate my rather old and somewhat confused mind on what is the best equipment to purchase, both for now and the immediate future.
Being a real newbie as far as projectors go (computers are more my thing), I have been reading the different forums here and on other projector sites to try and work out what to get.
It seems to me that not only is 3D about to burst upon us but that a substantial increase in 2D resolution, and presumably picture quality, is also about to hit.
Now personally I am not that interested in 3D but an increase in projector resolution and picture quality is of real interest.
It seems to me that the drive by TV and projector manufactures to "upgrade" to 3D has also created an accompanying push to increase (especially) projector 2D resolution and 2D picture quality.
This change has been largely overlooked due to the very understandable focus on 3D.
Let me try and explain.
Recently we have read about the changes from HDMI 1.3 to 1.4 and how HDMI 1.4 supports resolutions of up to 4096 x 2160 and higher transfer speeds. Those v1.4 cables are now starting to become available to purchase.
Also, the displayport specification has just been upgraded from 1.1 to 1.2 and this will also allow higher resolutions and speeds but the cables etc will not be available till nearer the end of this year.
These changes are necesssary to allow 3D to work well but in addition they allow higher resolution 2D displays and projectors.
Add to this the Epson announcement on the 4k HTPS LCD display panel and TI's announcement on their 4k technology and the bits are starting to fall into place. (please excuse the rather poor pun. )
In addition, there is this Arcsoft announcement:
"ArcSoft, Inc., ....... announced today that its well-known in-house upscaling technology, SimHD, now supports super resolution, turning Full-HD (1080p) videos into four times higher resolution."
http://www.arcsoft.com/en-us/press_detail.asp?prID=429
SimHD is an plugin for their blu-ray / dvd player software, but hardware based upscaling products (1080p > 4k2k) are bound to follow, at least in my opinion.
If you follow the link you will see that AMD already have the ATI Eyefinity software which allows their currently available HD5800 graphics cards to enable resolutions of (7680 x 1600) or (5760 x 1200) or (5760 x 2400) across multiple displays, including multiple projectors.
http://www.amd.com/us/products/techn...eyefinity.aspx
You will have to click on the "Related Videos" to see the multiple projectors in action and to hear the announcer mention the (5760x2400) resolution.
Now whilst these videos are all gaming related the same technology can be used in home theatre, using a HTPC or similar.
Nvidia is coming out with a similar product with their fermi based GTX480 and 470 cards due in March/April.
In addition, we have the announcement by Sony that they are going to increase the capacity of the blu-ray disc and that they are going to start releasing "old classics" in 3D on these new blu-ray discs.

http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2010/02...ic_conversion/

http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2010/01/07/blu_ray_33_4gb/

Now all these announcements point to the very strong likelihood that we are going to be able to watch 4k2k 2D material on new projectors that could/should be available within the next 18 months.
Yes, that will be upscaled material and I presume/hope that the projectors will be LED based but native 4k2k material will follow.
Those projectors will need to be reasonably priced because if they are not we, the punters, will not buy them in enough numbers to make the changes worthwhile.
Which is why the 3D projectors which have already been announced and are available are in the lower price range.
Now for the warnings in the title of this rather convoluted thread.
To take advantage of these changes we are obviously going to need to upgrade much of our equipment (projectors,tv's,amps, blu-ray players and cables) to the higher specifications.
Presumably the 3D enabled blu-ray players which all the manufacturers have announced will be HDMI 1.4, not HDMI 1.3.
If they are not they will have limitations which may well affect their ability to deliver "reasonable" and/or "best quality" 3D.
Also, because the 4K display panel used by Epson and certainly JVC in its current 4k projector is larger than a 1080p panel it may mean that anamorphic lenses may need to be enlarged to encompass the bigger light source.
I say "may" because this is speculation on my part, as are other matters concerning the future.
Anyway, it seems to me that there are considerably more possibilities awaiting us in the near term than we could have believed prior to January's CES and they could involve a substantial increase in 2D projector resolution and picture quality at a mainstream price.
Time will tell, as always.
Cheers, catonic.
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post #2 of 23 Old 02-07-2010, 08:24 AM
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I too am looking forward to higher resolution 4K2K projectors...so 1080p projection will see reduced prices!
After looking at viewing distance/resolution data, I understand the benefit from upgrading from 720p to 1080p. For normal viewing distances, I am unaware of any significant benefit of higher than 1080p resolution.
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post #3 of 23 Old 02-07-2010, 08:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homecinemaquest View Post

I too am looking forward to higher resolution 4K2K projectors...so 1080p projection will see reduced prices!
After looking at viewing distance/resolution data, I understand the benefit from upgrading from 720p to 1080p. For normal viewing distances, I am unaware of any significant benefit of higher than 1080p resolution.

ridiculous. there's always benefit from improving ANYTHING.

although the human eye generally can only resolve 1 arc second, that says nothing about moving pictures. if you only saw 1080p out your eyes you would realize your vision was significantly impaired.

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post #4 of 23 Old 02-07-2010, 08:57 AM
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you can say it very easy.

if you sit over 1.75 times the screen wide in distance you can see
maximum arround 1920 pixels horizontally so full hd is enough.

this 20/20 vision or 1 arc second called number was true more or less.

so for many people a 4k pr. will make no sense at all if the
are not increase screen size or shrink the viewdistance.

for me as i sit about 1.0 times the screen size in distance 4k will be
a huge improve.

but beside this pixel counting more at least as importent is how good
you show the pixels.
for sample when i compare Digital Cinema Content with BD there is
a huge difference in color as consumer ist 8 bit DCI is 12 Bit with
a wider color triangle.

lets hope that the upcomming ti 4k cinema dlp will do in the
beginning 4k in 3d and not only in 2k.
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post #5 of 23 Old 02-07-2010, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by W.Mayer View Post

you can say it very easy.

if you sit over 1.75 times the screen wide in distance you can see
maximum arround 1920 pixels horizontally so full hd is enough.

this 20/20 vision or 1 arc second called number was true more or less.

so for many people a 4k pr. will make no sense at all if the
are not increase screen size or shrink the viewdistance.

for me as i sit about 1.0 times the screen size in distance 4k will be
a huge improve.

but beside this pixel counting more at least as importent is how good
you show the pixels.
for sample when i compare Digital Cinema Content with BD there is
a huge difference in color as consumer ist 8 bit DCI is 12 Bit with
a wider color triangle.

lets hope that the upcoming ti 4k cinema dlp will do in the
beginning 4k in 3d and not only in 2k.

I see 3-D as a motivator for hardware and software manufacturers, but not for consumers. Why didn't they push the bit color passed 8 bit. I think increased color depth would add more dimension to the picture without having to resort to glasses and imperfect 3-D technologies. LED is becoming more prevalent which holds the capability to handle the expanded color gammet and bit depth would be a good combination to motivate consumers to purchase not only new tvs, but invest in Blu Ray. A consumer that sees a 12 bit color depth tv next to an 8 bit would be drawn towards the 12 bit. Also, the only way the consumer could get the picture quality would be through Blu Ray. Physical disk could have legs for quite some time if they could do increased bit depth and resolution for this reason.

I know space could be an issue, but as it has been stated capacity has been talked about with Blu Ray and possibly increasing. Plus, I say take all the extras out and trailers and use the space for THE MOVIE. Put the rest in their BD Live..
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post #6 of 23 Old 02-10-2010, 09:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Panasonic's new 3D capable blu-ray players are reported to have both HDMI 1.3 and 1.4 outputs.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1225726

That is a very sensible move by Panasonic and presumably Sony etc. will do likewise.

For those interested in the quality of a 4k2k projector image (and if it is perceivable / meaningful) the following link is instructive.

http://www.avforums.com/forums/avfor...vc-stands.html
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post #7 of 23 Old 02-10-2010, 11:18 PM
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Added resolution would have much more of a noticeable impact in the projector world over a TV.

If we get added resolution my hopes would be that contrast doesn't take a drop on early units (then again the early units probably won't be in my price range anyways :P).

With 3D, there are a lot of ifs right now as to how much we'll have to upgrade. There are a lot of IF's right now in electronic buying for someone contemplating upgrading that doesn't have the extra money to burn.
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post #8 of 23 Old 02-10-2010, 11:59 PM
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Content will be driven by the mass market appeal, so 4k has no real future as of yet. Blu rays are just catching on and HDTV is still relatively compressed. There isn't the infastructure in place for 4k HDTV in the home, nor the need due to smaller screen sizes.

1080p is enough resolution for 99% of PJ setups as well. There is no market driving the development of 4k content. So I think this is going to remain a niche high end thing.

The future of PJ's is longer lasting more stable light sources at a cheaper price. A good thing!


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post #9 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 12:30 AM
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"there's always benefit from improving ANYTHING. "

Not if it's imperceptible, leaving aside those who want it just because they know it's better.

"although the human eye generally can only resolve 1 arc second, that says nothing about moving pictures. if you only saw 1080p out your eyes you would realize your vision was significantly impaired.[/quote]

Perceived resolution is much lower with images that move relative to the eyes.

Even w/static images, the highest resolution is only available for a small central portion of the visual field.

Noah
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post #10 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 03:20 AM
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There is a huge untapped marked for 4K displays with an enormous amount of material; The PC display marked for photographers, Pros and amateurs alike!

Many of the photo camera manufacturers are also display manufacturers. All of them have been selling cameras with well above 4K resolution for a decade, and now it is hardly possible to buy a camera under 4K resolution.
Just look at the sales figures of DSRL with several new models every year with higher resolution. Canon just announced a new enterylevel model, the 550D/T2i with 18 megapixel sensor (and 1080p video).

The frustration; when shooting with these nice high resolution cameras at lets say 15 mpx; you throw away 13 million pixels to watch your picture resolved with barely 2 million pixels. And at this low visual pixel level we also attempt to adjust our pictures on a PC.
This is of course a ridiculous situation.

Give us 4K~9 megapixel displays so we have the possibility to see more than half of the original resolution when its debayered and downsampled /oversampled!!

Then only way for a photographer ~ pro and amateur alike ~ to see their pictures large in full resolution is to shoot on Positive Film and watch it on a "good ol' " slide-projector or print large and expensive.

Why the camera manufacturers have not tapped into this marked for displays yet must be that they have unbelievable good margins on what they serve us now and want to squeeze it dry before they move on.

Ask yourselves; if you are shopping for a new camera or camera phone and the salesman try to sell you a 2 megapixel camera; Would you buy it??

So why should we accept monitors and projectors at the ridiculous low resolution of 2 megapixel?
And moving images need even more resolution to look good than stills images!

The camera manufacturers have created this marked with their high resolution reasonably priced cameras, now they have the responsibility to fill the marked with matching (resolution, color quality, price) displays.
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post #11 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 03:28 AM
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If not resolution, what about 12 bit color? I would think this would be compatible with many of the current displays and would look better on new LED based TVs/projectors.
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post #12 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 03:42 PM
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hey slow down Rocket man

Coolscan although I agree with you 100% and I am using a 30" 2560x1600 monitor in every PC I can (4mp) you have to realize something that I am confident you already know.


Apart from CRTs you know that LCDs do not look that good when not run in their native resolution and this is one problem with 4K panels. Yet, even on a PC environment it takes a lot of processing power to play video at 4K res or even work with 3D at such a high resolution. That and the fact that not even 30" monitors are cheap right now makes one believe that 4K panels would be even more difficult to sell and much more expensive.

They will come but as with everything it takes time to hit critical mass and drop down in price to enable more content be made for them.
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post #13 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 04:02 PM
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Even though we can resolve 1080 from under 1.8 screen widths (for 16:9), we need to be closer than 1.5 screen widths before we can even begin to be able to perceive the differences between 720 and 1080 - assuming the Athens experiment is accurate for example (no one in that room could see a difference).

If that's the case, then the chances are we won't be able to see a difference between 2k and 4k unless we're sitting at something like 0.8 sw. I think that's where 4k becomes clearly visible but further back the difference will be imperceptible.

Of course, the higher res will be useful for things like panel alignment in the digital domain (for three chip projectors), and perhaps for better scaling, but I think we need to see it compared to 1080 in an ABX style test to see if we can tell a difference before we buy into it.

Things like 12bit colour will be an improvement though I think so that might make it worth having.

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post #14 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
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This issue of how much difference going from 1080p to 4k2k will actually be visible on a say 100" projector screen (assuming 100" is roughly the median for HT) is an interesting one, in a number of senses.
After all, we do have some relevant past experiences to go by as we have seen with our own eyes the effect of going from NTSC / PAL quality to 720P to 1080P.
Most HT projector users have decided that it is worth upgrading from 720P to 1080P.
And as the following diagram shows, the jump from 720P to 1080P is small compared to the jump from 1080P to 4k2k.



Hence one would logically assume that the improvement in going from 1080P to 4k2k is going to be much greater than going from 720P to 1080P. At the moment there is little 4k2k material available but due to Red digital cameras that is about to change.
One of the interesting things here is how some people claim that they see very little difference when viewing a 4k projector compared with a 2k projector.
For example:
"Jack Kline, Christie's president and COO, says, The industry told us they could see no difference between 2K and 4K projection on screens of 40 feet and smaller, the standard in exhibition. But - in some cases - exhibitors said they would prefer higher resolution. We listened to our customers.
"

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1156374&page=2

Of course the quote does not tell us if they were viewing 4k2k material on the 4k projector or not.
Using the same non 4k2k material on both projectors would indeed result in very little difference but I would have thought that was stating the bleeding obvious.
As far as I am aware, those who have actually seen 4k2k material on a 4k projector say that it is a huge improvement that is very clearly visible, from any practical viewing distance.
In terms of upscaling 1080P material to 4k2k standard it needs to be kept in mind that digital upscaling (both hardware and software based) is a very recent innovation and what the manufacturers have learnt from their 720P to 1080P experiences should enable them to improve even further when they are faced with the 1080P to 4k2k hurdle.
Anyway, it certainly looks as though it is not going to be long before we find out.
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post #15 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 10:05 PM
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Several posters on this thread have posited a very incorrect value for the eye's resolving power. The nominal resolution of the human eye with 20:20 vision is not "1 arc-second", but rather 1.2 ARC-MINUTES per line pair. At a viewing distance of 5 meters, 1.2 arc-minutes (or better, 350 microradians) corresponds to a pair of lines that are 1.75 mm apart. On a 100" diagonal screen, 1080P pixels are separated by 1.15 mm, and a pair of white, one pixel wide lines with a single dark one pixel line in between would measure 2.30 mm center to center. Technically, this does give a modest but technically perceivable edge for resolutions above 1080P, and this advantage does grow as the screen size increases, and as you sit closer. On the other hand, this is with a full contrast test chart, which is very different from continuous tone cinematic content, and it also assumes that you have both 20:20 vision, and content beyond Blu-Ray. When you factor in real world cinematic content, real-world and aging eyes, a vast 100K titles at 480P, and significant disincentives for the studios to upend Blu-ray, the notion of moving beyond 1080P seems more like a geeky, tech-obsessive hang-up then an important and inevitable next step.

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post #16 of 23 Old 02-11-2010, 11:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Kevin, "....a geeky, tech-obsessive hang-up ..."
Ahh, music to my ears, especially being 57 years old.
Thanks for the compliment.
And it's all about to come true too!
Life IS Good.
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post #17 of 23 Old 02-12-2010, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin McCarthy View Post

Several posters on this thread have posited a very incorrect value for the eye's resolving power. The nominal resolution of the human eye with 20:20 vision is not "1 arc-second", but rather 1.2 ARC-MINUTES per line pair. At a viewing distance of 5 meters, 1.2 arc-minutes (or better, 350 microradians) corresponds to a pair of lines that are 1.75 mm apart. On a 100" diagonal screen, 1080P pixels are separated by 1.15 mm, and a pair of white, one pixel wide lines with a single dark one pixel line in between would measure 2.30 mm center to center. Technically, this does give a modest but technically perceivable edge for resolutions above 1080P, and this advantage does grow as the screen size increases, and as you sit closer. On the other hand, this is with a full contrast test chart, which is very different from continuous tone cinematic content, and it also assumes that you have both 20:20 vision, and content beyond Blu-Ray. When you factor in real world cinematic content, real-world and aging eyes, a vast 100K titles at 480P, and significant disincentives for the studios to upend Blu-ray, the notion of moving beyond 1080P seems more like a geeky, tech-obsessive hang-up then an important and inevitable next step.

Kevin McCarthy

Are you basing your conclusions on a 5 meter viewing distance (=197") for a 100" diag screen (= 87" W)? This is a viewing distance of ~ 2.3 SW's, whereas about half that (1.0 to 1.5) is more relevant for projection systems. What is your conclusion in this case?
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post #18 of 23 Old 02-12-2010, 12:37 PM
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As I wrote, the case for higher resolution becomes better as the screen size grows and you sit closer, but given the other aspects (continuous, not test pattern content, 90K films that will never even make it to Blu-ray, no studio support, etc), the likelihood that projection fans wanting it will cause it to happen is debatable, and probably low. Greater bit depth would also be nice, but probably won't happen. Color gamut, greyscale, and gamma, however, are things we can nail, and without any massive studio investment.
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post #19 of 23 Old 02-13-2010, 04:16 AM
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Interesting diagram catonic, thanks for posting.

I think the other aspect we have to consider is that if most movies now go through a 2K digital intermediate, a 4K projector isn't going to offer any benefits other than scaling, pixel visibility, bit depth etc. Not many use 4k in the industry for scanning film due to the cost of working in the 4k domain as well as the storage costs of the larger size, and when large production runs producing film for theaters reduces the resolution that we get to see in there further, it makes you wonder if there is currently any benefit to 4k commercially either - maybe 4k projectors there will improve pixel visibility for those who sit closer than 2.4 image heights distance.

As has been said, theory and practice are two very different things, so seeing will be believing ultimately - I personally haven't seen 4k to compare so I'm open minded until then. It also doesn't help that there is very little 4k source material available right now though.

I'm more interested in full scope panels rather than 4k at the moment, but it seems that both could be tied together since one will allow the other.

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Originally Posted by elmalloc
Who says Cameron is "right" and why do we care about him so much - lol!

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post #20 of 23 Old 02-13-2010, 05:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Lightfoot View Post

Not many use 4k in the industry for scanning film due to the cost of working in the 4k domain as well as the storage costs of the larger size, and when large production runs producing film for theaters reduces the resolution that we get to see in there further, it makes you wonder if there is currently any benefit to 4k commercially either - maybe 4k projectors there will improve pixel visibility for those who sit closer than 2.4 image heights distance.

Is there really a capacity problem today? And if there is how long do you think it will remain?

4K should logically not take more than 4 times the space of 2K, right? Think how fast computer processing power and storage capacity increases and how rapidly the prices fall. How can this be a problem for long?

Today you can buy a small USB memory with 128 gigabyte storage capacity for about 300 bucks. Or a portable 1 terabyte hardrive for less than a hundred. (Just do a quick search on amazon.) I don't think there will be a problem of storing a full length 4K movie on either. And the prices will fall and the storage capacity will increase... rapidly...

I know that you need a lot more when processing the movie, but still, do you really think it's a big hurdle?

I don't see any reason not to start develop and market 4K projectors already today. I believe the projectors and digital cameras are the bottlenecks technologically speaking. If they get these out on the market at acceptable prices the content can be here soon without any real extra cost.
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post #21 of 23 Old 02-13-2010, 05:54 AM
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It might not be a problem as time goes on, but this article was an interesting read:

http://www.digitalcinemasociety.com/...yKsDoINeed.pdf

Gary

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Originally Posted by elmalloc
Who says Cameron is "right" and why do we care about him so much - lol!

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post #22 of 23 Old 02-13-2010, 06:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Lightfoot View Post

It might not be a problem as time goes on, but this article was an interesting read:

http://www.digitalcinemasociety.com/...yKsDoINeed.pdf

Gary

Thanks for the read Gary.

However, the article is 3 years old. If it requires 4 times the processing power and storage space to go 4K, that equals 2 doublings of hardware capacity. According to Moore's law we see a doubling every 18 months. Two doublings gives 36 months. That is 3 years... We should already be able to do 4K as fast and as cheap as they did 2K when they wrote the article (with respect to processing power and storage capacity).

The price gap 4K-2K will soon be insignificant, if it's not already. If there's any quality advantage to be gained by using 4K, it will replace 2K everywhere as soon as 4K projectors are common. There will really be no point in not doing it, just like there's no point of doing heavy compression of music files nowadays. There's ample space anyway.

Well that's my belief at least.

(Just to be clear; I'm talking about cinema projectors. To get 4K in the home we have a distribution problem. There's limited bandwidth available and it's not easy nor cheap to change storage medium from Bluray to something new. The cost for new BD players, recievers, HDMI specs and the added confusion won't be easy to get through to the public who mostly sits far away from smallish tv-sets anyway.)
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post #23 of 23 Old 02-13-2010, 09:13 AM
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I really doubt there is going to be any real increase in resolution of source material for at least 4 more years. The current standard of 1080 is just taking root now. They might make projectors with higher resolution that might be good for pc gaming but other than that you will be throwing money away because the source material won't support it for the near future.

3-D could be a driver of a new generation of televisions but I don't see resolution moving up yet.

Hopefully I'm wrong.
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