CES 2016 TV tech: 4K yawns, high dynamic range dawns

Every few years on the huge Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the world will get launched to a brand new buzzword in tv know-how. Not too way back it was 3D, then it was OLED, then it was 4K and Ultra High Definition.
This story is a part of CES 2016, Our editors convey you full CES 2016 protection and scour the showroom ground for the most well liked new tech devices round.
In January 2016, I’m betting the buzzword most uttered within the presence of 100-inch flat panels on the present ground might be “HDR,” which stands for high dynamic range.TV reviewers — people like me who strive that can assist you resolve what’s truly value shopping for — take a look at HDR as a probably extra necessary enchancment than 3D or 4K. Its advantages may be extra seen than 4K and extra broadly interesting than 3D. And since 4K TVs at the moment are mainly mainstream, with dirt-cheap costs and correspondingly skinny revenue margins, the voracious capitalist beast of technological progress wants its subsequent shiny new object. Something increased, in each worth and ambition. And that is why TV producers, those who spend tens of millions to energy reveals like CES, take a look at HDR as one thing that may persuade you to spend extra money on an even bigger and higher flat-panel. HDR on the suitable, just isn’t “brighter” only for the sake of being brighter. Highlights and colours may be brighter because of a better dynamic range. The addition of large shade gamut makes the colours richer and extra life like, too. Geoffrey Morrison/CNETNot simply extra pixels, however higher pixelsFirst off, TV HDR just isn’t the identical as picture HDR. The “HDR” choice in your cellphone or digicam combines just a few footage at completely different exposures to compensate for the restricted capabilities of the sensor. The high dynamic range we’re speaking about, and the one you will hear about at CES this 12 months, is a catch-all time period for brand new, improved content material, specifically TV reveals and flicks, and the brand-new televisions that may show it. The most concise pitch I’ve heard is “not simply extra pixels, however higher pixels.”While common 4K decision will increase solely the pixel count–the bodily variety of the little dots that make up a picture — HDR considerably expands the range of distinction and shade that these pixels can present. Bright elements of the picture can get a lot brighter, so the picture appears to have extra “depth.” Colors get expanded to point out extra shiny blues, greens, reds and every part in between. Just such as you wanted a brand new TV to look at a film in 3D or 4K decision, you will want a brand new TV to look at HDR. We anticipate most TV makers to introduce quite a few TVs that may deal with HDR content material in 2016. But how nicely will they be capable of deal with it? In our evaluate of one of many least costly HDR TVs from 2015, the Samsung UNJS8500, it did not present a lot enchancment. On the opposite hand, the extraordinarily costly Samsung UNJS9500 delivered the HDR items properly. Sarah Tew/CNETHDR is neither low-cost nor straightforward to implement nicely on a TV, and requires further capabilities past mere 4K decision (all HDR I’ve seen proposed can be in 4K). On the content material facet it requires cooperation from a broad range of trade pursuits — together with Hollywood studios, distributors/producers like Netflix and Amazon Instant Video and TV makers themselves. As a end result, precise HDR content material is probably going stay uncommon for awhile. It will certainly be much less frequent for the foreseeable future than 3D and 4K content material, for instance. At its greatest HDR can look spectacular, and you may in all probability examine fairly just a few spectacular demos from the present ground this 12 months. How nicely these will translate into the lounge stays to be seen.For far more try What is HDR for TVs and why must you care. Panasonic’s first OLED TV was launched on the IFA commerce present in Berlin. Luke Westaway/CNETOther CES TV traits to watchHDR is the most recent and probably most fun of the bunch, but it surely’s not alone. Here’s just a few extra.The ubiquity of 4K TVs: Nearly all the TVs launched on the present may have 4K decision, and you may hear virtually nothing about decrease resolutions like 1080p. 4K TVs are low-cost, plentiful and (lastly) completely value shopping for for a lot of TV consumers as of late.The sluggish introduction of 4K content material: It’s not strictly a TV {hardware} development, however the official debut of 4K Blu-rays will occur on the present. The Samsung UBD-K8500, first launched at IFA in September, ought to ship in early 2016, and we would not be stunned to see one other participant or two introduced. The first disc titles can even see the sunshine of day, additionally arriving early 2016 from Sony and others. And if we’re fortunate, maybe somebody can even announce extra 4K streaming content material (word that YouTube and Netflix each have keynote addresses on the 2016 CES present).LG OLED TVs vs. Samsung LCD TVs: LG loved an unprecedented run in 2015 on the high of CNET’s Best TVs for Picture high quality listing, because of its monopoly on OLED TV know-how. We do not anticipate a serious competitor like Samsung to announce OLED TVs, however possibly a model like Panasonic, which sells an OLED TV in Europe, will enter the O ring worldwide. In the meantime anticipate extra messaging from firms like Samsung touting some great benefits of LCD over OLED, specifically improved gentle output, particularly with HDR sources. Will Roku be constructed into much more TV manufacturers in 2016? Sarah Tew/CNETThe platformization of Smart TV: Last 12 months noticed the primary introduction of official Android TVs (from Sony and Sharp) and an enlargement of Roku TV manufacturers (together with Sharp, Insignia and LG). Will platform-based Smart TV techniques change the in-house software program frequent right this moment? Don’t depend on it from Samsung and LG, which have vital investments in Tizen and Web OS respectively, however a smaller producer would possibly resolve to go along with a platform like Android or Roku for its Smarts.The proliferation of curved and magnificence: As a lot as Samsung is a trend-setter basically, we do not anticipate many different TV makers — other than LG with just a few OLED fashions, and possibly Hisense — to leap on the curved TV bandwagon. But TV type will proceed to be talked about, whether or not within the type of supplies like glass or steel, ever-slimmer designs, and even smaller frames across the image. Ouch! Can TVs get any slimmer in 2016? Sarah Tew/CNETThe advertising and marketing of minibrands: TV makers have all the time tried to distinguish their choices with mini-brands — assume Sony Trinitron and Panasonic Viera. Last 12 months Samsung introduced again the minibrand with a vengeance when it launched SUHD, an LCD TV marketed as one thing extra. Will one other producer attempt to emulate its success?The marginalization of main manufacturers: Making TVs is a troublesome enterprise, and solely Samsung, LG and Vizio (which does not exhibit at CES) appear to get pleasure from robust mainstream success. Panasonic and Sony have confronted hassle in recent times and pared down their choices considerably (though Sony has improved considerably after spinning off its TV enterprise as a subsidiary) whereas Sharp has simply been devoured up by Hisense. Meanwhile that Chinese big, together with fellow China-based model TCL, make inroads worldwide.Big screens might be bigMaybe TVs haven’t got the tech development cachet of drones or Internet of Things or digital actuality, however they will nonetheless be in every single place at CES. It’s nonetheless largely (no pun meant) a TV present (severely, not meant!) and we’ll be there, standing subsequent to the largest ones, to inform you about all the newest and biggest show know-how. We might or might not make use of gratuitous exclamation factors.So what do you need to see this 12 months when it comes to TV {hardware} and software program?

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