As good as HDTVs look, the latest Ultra High Definition TVs are at the center of a high-resolution revolution. These Ultra HD TVs have four times the picture resolution of regular "full HD" 1080p TVs, and can display much more detail. Ultra HD TVs are often referred to as "4K" TVs, because they have a horizontal resolution of around 4000 pixels.
You've probably seen a movie in 4K without even realizing it — today's best movie theaters use 4K digital projectors to display Hollywood’s latest hits with incredible detail and depth. Now, imagine how lifelike watching at home would be with that many pixels on a 55", 65", or 84" screen instead of a 30-foot theater screen. That's the reality of 4K Ultra High Definition TV.Shop all 4K Ultra HD TVs
4K Ultra HD TVs are still pretty new, and the amount of true 4K content available is limited, but starting to grow. The same thing happened with the introduction of DVD, HDTV, and Blu-ray – the hardware arrived first, followed by the content. Samsung and Sony have developed 4K media players – basically, hard drives that allow you to easily download, store, and play 4K movies.
Sony’s FMP-X1 media player works with their 2013 Ultra HD TVs, allowing you to download movies and shows from their Video Unlimited 4K online store. And Sony will soon release an updated player optimized for their 2014 UHD TV models.
Samsung's UHD Video Pack is a compact hard drive that comes pre-loaded with several full-length movies and nature documentaries, all in spectacular full 4K resolution. Once you plug it into the USB input on your 2014 Samsung Ultra HD TV, the player appears as another video source on the TV screen, and you can navigate and make selections using the TV remote. This is the way to make the most of your Samsung 4K TV.
"I love my Ultra HD TV, but what can I watch in 4K?"
We hear that question a lot. Ultra HD media players, like those described above, work great for movies, but once you’ve viewed the pre-loaded titles it can take several hours to download each new movie.
In April, Netflix launched "Ultra HD 4K" streaming for its House of Cards series, and a few nature documentaries. Subscribers with a 2014 4K Ultra HD TV and a fast Internet connection — Netflix recommends at least 20Mbps for optimum 4K picture quality — could enjoy a noticeably sharper, smoother picture than 1080p. Netflix has more 4K content on tap for later this year, including Breaking Bad.
All Ultra HD TVs include built-in 4K upscaling, which means that the TV upconverts the video from your Blu-ray player, satellite or cable TV box, or game console, to make these video sources match the higher screen resolution of a 4K TV.
For 2014, Samsung offers both flat-screen 4K TV models (HU8550 series) and curved-screen models (HU9000 series). All deliver the same flawless 8-million-pixel picture as other 4K TVs. What sets these models apart is their versatility and future-readiness. Samsung Smart Evolution technology lets you upgrade the TV's "brain" – its main processor, graphics processor, and memory – to support future Ultra HD standards and features as they become available. The HU9000-series TVs include a "One Connect Box," which has connections for all your source components, then plugs into the TV with one cable for a clean, uncluttered setup. If new connections or capabilities are required in the future, the One Connect Box can be replaced with a newer version.Shop Samsung 4K Ultra HD TVs
Sony has more 4K experience than any other TV maker, and their 2014 4K XBRs are the best TVs they've ever built. Sony's 4K expertise isn't limited to TVs – it extends from "lens to living room." They build professional 4K cameras and cinema projectors, and Sony Pictures has a bigger catalog of 4K films than any other studio. This end-to-end approach helps ensure a truly theater-like experience at home.Shop Sony 4K Ultra HD TVs
LG launched the world's first 4K Ultra HD TV at the end of 2012 – the astounding 84" 84LM9600. Their elegant LA9700 series boasts 4K pixel power, along with the company's most advanced backlight – the NANO Full LED full-array backlight with local dimming. Hundreds of blocks of LEDs are spread across the back of the panel, and can independently brighten and dim each segment of the screen. You'll see lifelike picture contrast with incredibly deep black levels and rich, natural colors, for a picture with pop and presence.Shop LG 4K Ultra HD TVs
Whether it's a TV, a tablet, or a smartphone, the more pixels a screen has, the more seamless and detailed the picture will look. The ideal is a screen where the "pixel structure" is invisible. You already find that on high-end tablets and phones like those with Apple's "Retina" display. The new 4K Ultra High Definition models take television a giant step in that direction — you have to stand right next to an Ultra HD TV to notice any pixels at all. Because the picture is so clear and sharp, you can sit closer to a 4K TV even if the screen is larger than your old TV. And that adds even more to the sense of immersion.