Not so very long ago, the big buzzword in display technology was HD – with TVs packing in more pixels, blu rays kicking your favourite movies to 1080 resolution and games reaching beyond 720p.
Now it’s time for the next step in that evolution, with the arrival of 2K and even 4K displays, towering TV titans which offer many times the detail and resolution of the technology a few years back. While it’s all well and good to get a fabulous new screen, it’s also important to have appropriate content for it, which is where Ultra HD blu ray comes in.
These blu ray disks have a much higher capacity than those we currently use, allowing them to output video at a staggering resolution of 3840 x 2160 million pixels. That’s Ultra HD, which is a phrase you’re going to be seeing a lot of in the years to come.
The disks will operate just like those which have come before but there are a couple of other things which you’ll need to step into the Ultra HD future.
1 – Ultra HD blu ray disk
Firstly you’ll need to purchase the disk itself, and that’s not so simple right now, mostly because there are none on the market. The first titles are set to arrive from studios like Sony in early 2016, including the likes of Chappie and The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
You’ll have a limited amount of movies to choose from at the start while people get ready to adopt the technology, which just gives you a chance to purchase another super detailed version of your favourite film!
2 – Ultra HD blu ray player
Ultra HD disks won’t play on a regular blu ray player so you’ll have invest in some new technology. Again, these machines aren’t on the market yet but they should be increasingly easy to obtain by the middle of 2016.
The best news is that the manufacturers have said they’ll be cheaper than DVD or blu ray players were at launch, so early adopters who really want to try out the format won’t have to pay to high of a premium. Expect more affordable options by the end of 2016.
3 – Ultra HD compatible TV
4K TVs are finally available to consumers, and with all the major manufacturers involved pricing is already competitive. You’ll need an Ultra HD display in order to be able to view the new blu ray disks at their native resolution, and to really show off all the details.
This Panasonic 40 inch LED is one of the most affordable ways to get 4K in your home, right now.
This part is incredibly important. While you’ve got some incredible technology available in the Ultra HD player and 4K TV, it’s all for nothing with the latest HDMI cable.
The latest version of this tech massively increases bandwidth up to 18Gbps – that means fast data transfer to handle all the information coming from the disk to your screen. You get 4K video at up to 60 frames per second, as many as 32 audio channels and the ability to deliver two video streams simultaneously.
Not all TVs are HDMI 2.0 compliant, so take this into account when purchasing and don’t worry, all your older HDMI 1.4 devices will still work with the new ports.
Ultra HD blu ray is coming, are you ready?