What’s the difference between UHD and 4K?

TV is one of the fastest evolving technologies in the world. With seemingly endless technical innovations occurring year on year, it’s hard to keep up with all the changes and know what the difference is between HD, Ultra HD and 4K TV. Is there any difference at all? More importantly, is it all hype, or are the innovations in 4K resolution compared to HD resolution worth parting with our money to own the latest generation TV? We aim to help shed some light on questions our customers ask us daily.  

Digital TV is one of the best technical innovations of our time. HD resolution TV has been groundbreakingly providing us with an entirely new perspective of colour, depth of image and sound clarity. It offers us a truly cinematic experience from the comfort of our homes. So why does the industry keep on rapidly evolving and bringing out new technologies? And what is 4K TV?

4K Explained

4K is a term that has originated from the cinematic industry. When selecting large screen resolutions on a new TV, the reference to 4K is often 4K Cinematic. 4K refers to a horizontal picture resolution of 4096 Pixels; 4,000 pixels hence the name or abbreviation of 4K. Sometimes 4K may even be referred to as 4K2K. Why? Because 2160 pixels are running along the vertical axis of the TV. 

A 4K Smart TV offers a picture quality considerably more intense than watching a blockbuster movie on Blu Ray. Blu Ray movie resolutions are between 1280 x 720, 1440 x 1080, 1920 x 1080, with a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray disk resolution runs at 3840 X 2160. What does this all mean? It means 4K has the highest pixel resolution of any TV currently available on the market. 

What does UHD mean?

UHD is an abbreviation for Ultra High Definition and is the next generation on from HD. An Ultra HD TV offers a screen resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels, which is four times higher than the previous HD format. UHD is typically the resolution that Netflix, Amazon and NOW TV streams, and although strictly speaking it isn’t technically 4K, the human eye cannot distinguish UHD from 4K, as there is very little difference in the number of pixels, comparatively speaking. Most UHD vs 4K TVs have an almost identical picture quality, and most UHD TVs advertised are sold as 4K TVs. 

Is it worth buying 4K TV over a UHD TV?

So is it worth purchasing 4K vs UHD? Technically speaking, no. Unless you’re buying a 4K TV for a similar price of a UHD TV, there is hardly any difference in picture quality that it isn’t noticeable to the human eye. There isn’t enough of a noticeable difference to part with your hard-earned money. UHD 4K TVs offer just as incredibly sharp a picture quality as 4K and provide the same level of an immersive viewing experience. Our advice is to save a few hundred plus pounds and go for a UHD 4K compatible TV. You’ll get the same viewing experience, plus save some money for a rainy day.

Is it worth buying an 8K TV?

The simple answer is no. Unless you have ample funds available to spend on the latest technology, it isn’t worth splashing out on an 8K TV right now. Also, the fact is most streaming service providers don’t broadcast in 8K so even if your TV is 8K, the broadcast is in UHD. You’re better off waiting until streaming is in full 8K, which will take some time. Right now, data centres have enough trouble storing 4K data streams. The current internet infrastructure is some time away from being able to host vast amounts of 8K content. But maybe further down the line, it’ll be worth purchasing an 8K TV. 

So what’s our verdict?

Our verdict is to go ahead and purchase the latest generation 4K UHD TV from one of the major brands. The best value for money UHD TV manufacture in our opinion is LG. Most TV manufacturers source parts directly from LG, and they provide such excellent quality TVs for such exceptional value for money, it’s hard to justify why you’d spend your money on anything other than LG. If LG isn’t your preferred brand for whatever reason (maybe you previously had a bad experience), then we highly recommend Samsung as they also offer excellent value for money for the latest generation 4K UHD TVs. As long as it’s the newest generation 4K UHD LG or Samsung TV, then sit back and enjoy TV as you’ve never seen it before!

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