YouTube Starts Supporting 4K x 2K Resolution Content

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News Posted: Sat, Jul 10 2010 8:17 PM
So you probably know about 1080p by now. It's "Full HD" resolution, and it's the highest resolution that you can reasonable buy on an HDTV right now. But if you think 1080p is dense, you should have a look at 4K. 4K is short for 4K x 2K, which is an extreme high resolution that is generally only used when making a film. RED is probably the most famous camcorder company that produces 4K cameras, and a number of major films have been shot (and are being shot) on 4K cameras. Select high-end cinemas across the world have huge 4K projectors, which are unreasonably large and extremely expensive.

In other words, 4K is the format of the future, and it's a long, long way from being useful and affordable in the home. But that's not stopping YouTube from moving forward and staying one step ahead of the adoption curve. This week at the VidCon 2010 conference, YouTube announced support for videos shot in 4K resolution. There's obviously going to be a severe shortage of 4K displays and projectors, but having the ability to view 4K content from a web portal is still a monumental move forward.


So now, if you happen to grab a RED camera or some other 4K camcorder, you can upload that raw footage to YouTube and it'll support it. It'll take an awful long time to upload, but at least it'll be in 4K once it all gets to the server. There's even a few 4K samples on YouTube for users to view right now, but you'll need a killer broadband connection and a crazy high-res monitor to really enjoy it.
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AKwyn replied on Sun, Jul 11 2010 1:08 PM

I tried it and while I think it's amazing that YouTube is ahead of the curb. I don't think my computer can handle it. The video I loaded up was very choppy in it's original resolution and this is coming from a guy who owns an ATI Radeon HD 4890.

 

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slugbug replied on Sun, Jul 11 2010 2:16 PM

Imagine how much bandwidth you could use if you watched a bunch of videos in that resolution. Here in Canada many of the major ISP's set monthly bandwidth limits and you could easily exceed your limit just by watching Youtube videos.

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acarzt replied on Sun, Jul 11 2010 4:32 PM

I went and watched a few of the vids. Not bad looking... but it did look pixelated. I'm sure it would look better on a 4k screen.

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werty316 replied on Sun, Jul 11 2010 10:17 PM

Quality is not bad but it'd look better if it was played on a standalone player or HTPC.

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Inspector replied on Mon, Jul 12 2010 12:27 AM

... I can not even handle 720... it takes me forever just to load it! Dam i need faster internet... But this is nice news to those supercomputer owners out there :)

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realneil replied on Mon, Jul 12 2010 9:00 AM

I watched all of them in native resolution and they were cool. I don't think that my screen can really display 4K content properly, but what I was seeing is very detailed and smooth. (good connection I guess)

They'll never stop improving this technology, and we'll keep buying whatever we can afford too.

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digitaldd replied on Mon, Jul 12 2010 2:08 PM

If they use the current HD specs as a basis wouldn't these be 2Kp resolution not 4K resolution? I mean 480p is 720x40, 720p is 1280x720, 1080p is 1920x1080. yawn..

 

And how much does a screen that can reproduce 4K video properly cost $10K, $20K, etc?

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Jul 14 2010 11:01 PM

digitaldd:

If they use the current HD specs as a basis wouldn't these be 2Kp resolution not 4K resolution? I mean 480p is 720x40, 720p is 1280x720, 1080p is 1920x1080. yawn..

 

And how much does a screen that can reproduce 4K video properly cost $10K, $20K, etc?

A lot, but you can probably get by with a screen that has a native resolution of 2500x1600 or bigger. And those are slowly declining in price, not rapidly but slowly.

 

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acarzt replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 5:13 AM

Do screens with those resolutions even exist?

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digitaldd replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 11:46 AM

acarzt:

Do screens with those resolutions even exist?

Yup they run in the $50-100K range

 

example.

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acarzt replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 7:00 PM

WOW! That is expensive!

The Conrast ratio on that set is horrible!

And with all those pixels and no content to display on it... it's not even cose to being worth the price!

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digitaldd replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 11:11 AM

acarzt:

WOW! That is expensive!

The Conrast ratio on that set is horrible!

And with all those pixels and no content to display on it... it's not even cose to being worth the price!

I imagine a projector that does 4K resolution would be much more cost effective.. then you buy a screen or project onto a bedsheet or specially painted walls.

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