Tech UPTechnologyIs an 8K screen better than a 4k? We...

Is an 8K screen better than a 4k? We explain why you should not buy one

8K TVs are already here. They have four times the resolution of standard 4K Ultra HD TVs , and you can buy models in different sizes from various brands, including Samsung, Sony, LG, and TCL. As you would expect from cutting-edge technology with over 30 million pixels, the prices are quite steep. In most cases, 8K TVs cost more than a high-end and perhaps higher-quality 4K TV.

So should you consider getting an 8K TV? Are they the best TVs out there? In a word: No. In two words: Not yet. You’re better off getting a high-quality 4K TV for a lot less money, and it’ll probably look better. That said, 8K is here and it’s here to stay, so it’s worth taking a closer look at this technology.

What is 8K and why is it worse than a 4K TV?

A traditional HDTV from a few years ago has a resolution of 1080p , which means it has 1,920 pixels horizontally and 1,080 vertically. Many digital cinema projectors, the ones found in movie theaters, have a resolution of 2048 x 1080. Because it’s common in movie theater jargon to refer only to horizontal resolution, they call it “2K,” but it’s basically the same as the 1080p HDTV you have in your home.

The term 4K also comes from digital cinema, with a horizontal resolution of 4,096, thus 4K. However, on the TV side, manufacturing efficiencies meant we got twice the horizontal and vertical resolutions of 1080p HDTV, ie 3,840×2,160 pixels. Everyone colloquially calls it 4K, even though the technical term is Ultra HD. It has four times more pixels than 1080p HD.

Which brings us to 8K. This is double the horizontal and vertical resolution of 4K, for a whopping 7,680×4,320 and 33,177,600 pixels in total. Not only is it four times the resolution of 4K, it’s an incredible 16 times more pixels than 1080p . Or to put it another way, you can put 16 full-resolution 1080p videos on an 8K screen at the same time without any loss of quality.

The human eye has a limit

One thing to look for in new 8K TVs: official logo and specs clearly visible. This goes beyond raw pixel count to help you find TVs that work with at least some guarantees.

With 4K TVs there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to resolution. The human eye can only see a limited amount of detail, and the extra pixels beyond what it can process are basically wasted. To get higher resolutions with proportionally smaller pixels, you need to sit closer, buy a bigger TV, or both.

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