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Super Hi-Vision 8K TV Standard Approved

by August 26, 2012
Super Hi-Vision 8K Television

Super Hi-Vision 8K Television

OK, just stop it already, will ya? We love technology advancements, but have we not learned anything from the failed "OMG 3D IS SO AWESOME YA GOTZ TA HAZ IT!!!" debacle of the past few years? 3D was pitched to consumers as the latest and greatest thing since HDTV and manufacturers scrambled like wild to get them into their sets. Now, the technology has simply resulted in higher manufacturer costs and a feature that is a throwaway - unused by most consumers. So what's that have to do with 8K? Everything. 4K isn't even out, but a recent editorial at the BBC News states that the United Nations ITU communication standards setting agency has just approved Super Hi-Vision 8K as a standard.

A standard for what, you ask? We have no idea. Except for NASA and some gleeful photographers, we have no idea what you'd use that kind of resolution for, save getting an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records. You certainly wouldn't want to pay for it in a television - not anytime in the next 20 years anyway. 8K is essentially 7,680 x 4,320 pixels in resolution... That's 4x the resolution of 4K and 16x the resolution of 1080p HDTV. NHK, a Japanese broadcaster, showed off a demo of the new 8K Super Hi-Vision display technology at the London Olympics thanks to a partnership with Panasonic. The display was a 145" diagonal model and footage was shot with one of only three Super Hi-Vision cameras in existence.

NHK Super Hi-Vision 8K 

So how did this become a standard? Apparently if you send the UN International Telecommunication Union (ITU) a new standard so outrageous that everyone else is struck completely dumb by the ridiculousness of it, they'll discussed it in committee. When no one files any objections (largely because they are too busy laughing at the proposal) the ITU will confirm it.

To put into perspective how obscenely out of place this proposal is, LG just unveiled the largest 4K television in existence in advance of the 2012 CEDIA Expo. It's an 84" screen and costs over $22,000. A BBC consultant told the broadcaster that they don't believe consumers will see any 8K televisions under $10,000 until at least 2025.

I suppose if you want to observe your photographs in ridiculously high resolution, this is one way to do it. As for motion pictures, it will be amazing to see 4K hit consumer televisions, let alone 8K. Had the industry not jumped on James Cameron's bandwagon (hey, James, thanks by the way, for waiting over 3 years to release an actual 3D Blu-ray of Avatar. It's so exciting that it will finally be out in time for Christmas 2012... OK that parenthetical was too long, so let me start it over...  Had the industry not jumped on James Cameron's bandwagon of 3D being "the next big thing", they might have actually had some money to push 4K to consumers. As it stands now, manufacturers are gun shy - and, as a result, much slower to market with formats and standards that haven't been widely adopted. With respect to 4K, much like early 3D, there's simply no delivery medium.

So are you excited about 4K? How about 8K? And if so, where does it end? Will you buy a 4K television when you are mostly upconverting content, or will you wait for actual 4K film transfers to actually hit streaming servers like Amazon VOD or iTunes first? Let us know by commenting in our forums (link below) or commenting on our Facebook page.

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Clint Deboer was terminated from Audioholics for misconduct on April 4th, 2014. He no longer represents Audioholics in any fashion.

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