4k UHD TVs worth it?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
hightower
Posts: 468
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2016 2:28 am

4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by hightower » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am

I don't know if I'm just bored or what, but lately I've been looking into buying a new TV even though we don't "need" one. We have a 6-7 year old Samsung LCD 1080P TV now. I'm amazed at how cheap the new 4k UHD TVs are right now and it's tempting me to upgrade, especially now that all the streaming services are offering 4k resolution. The one I would buy is a Samsung 49" for $699 and very highly rated on consumer reports.

Obviously the frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! LOL Opinions? :sharebeer

NYC_Guy
Posts: 224
Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 2:23 pm
Location: New York

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by NYC_Guy » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:04 am

Maybe worth it if you stream 4k contact and have a big screen. I wouldn’t rush to upgrade a 49” screen, though. You really should wait for OLED to come down in price. OLED is much more of an upgrade than 4k (at the moment).

pochax
Posts: 1315
Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:40 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by pochax » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:06 am

if you are looking at a 49" i don't think it's worth it. if you are going for 65" or greater it could be worth it but remember that 4k content is sparse to come by and when it is available it is almost always more expensive than regular full HD (1080p) content (eg. renting/buying movies). if you game with a high-end console (PS4 pro or X Box One X) then it may be worth it as well.

at 49" i am not sure you will notice too much difference and you also need to make sure you have available internet speed bandwidth (>20 Mbps) because streaming such content with dominate your usage.

Blueskies123
Posts: 319
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 7:18 pm
Location: South Florida

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Blueskies123 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:07 am

No. There is no free content. You have to buy special DVD's or pay extra to Netflix. My 91 year old dad bought one a year ago, I tried to talk him out of it but he would not listen, he kept saying it was 4 times better. So he bought it anyway and the other day when I was over there he told me he regretted it because he could not find anything to watch.
PS, he got the one month free 4K Netflix subscription and I watched a few nature programs with him. You could see a difference but it is not 4 times better. After a month he cancelled because he is too cheap to pay the extra surcharge for 4K content.

onourway
Posts: 1100
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by onourway » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:09 am

I would focus more on overall picture quality than resolution and price.

User avatar
Alexa9
Posts: 1335
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Alexa9 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:12 am

Like a trusty old car, I would wait until it's broken. Apple's Retina Display means the eye can't tell if there are any more pixels. I think this comes into play with 4K and 1080p. I honestly can't tell much difference between 4K and 1080. 4K resolution is 3840 x 2160 pixels, whilst 1080P consists of 1920 x 1080 pixels. Yes it is better, but not worth upgrading to me. OLED is a different story but they are pricy right now. If you watch a lot of sports and/or movies, I might consider it. Otherwise, I would wait.

User avatar
hand
Posts: 1148
Joined: Sun May 17, 2009 8:42 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by hand » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:16 am

Before upgrading, be sure that your entire video chain supports 4k (HDCP 2.2).
Depending on your setup, this may include 1) source content, 2) Source (DVD player, streaming device), 3) AV Reciever, 4) TV 5) TV size vs. viewing distance.

If any of these don't support 4k and requisite copy protection, you won't get the full 4k UHD experience.

If I was buying today, I would pay the minor up-charge for 4k UHD, but with a working TV, would hold off until OLED affordable enough to warrant upgrading the entire chain. If you can wait, tomorrow's TVs will undoubtedly be better and cheaper.

User avatar
oldcomputerguy
Posts: 2951
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:50 am
Location: In the middle of five acres of woods

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by oldcomputerguy » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:20 am

This is one of the issues I continually shake my head over. Back near the start of the century, when TV broadcasters rolled out digital over-the-air and HD, one could frequently tell the difference between NTSC standard-definition resolution and HD resolution. (In fact, my wife, who saw no need at the time for a "new TV", stood one day in the TV section of one of the local electronics retailers watching a demo, after which she turned to me and said "OK, now I get it.") The higher resolution of the demo material used in those stores sold a lot of TVs, but when consumers got their new TVs home and connected their existing program streams to them only to find that SD on their new TV looked tons worse than the demo did, the TV stations (*not* the electronics stores) received a lot of phone calls (I took several), complaining that they had just spent thousands of dollars on a new TV and wanting to know what was "wrong" with our programming that it looked so bad. Bear in mind that this was the same exact programming they had been happy watching before, and in fact was noticeably higher in quality at the receive point due to the digital transmission method versus the old fade- and static-prone analog transmission method; but by golly, they had a brand-new TV set that looked great in the store, and so it had to be our fault!!

Just buying a new 4K-capable TV, without having 4K programming to feed it, won't be all that great. And even so, unless the programming itself is shot in native 4k and processed thus throughout the production chain, you won't see all that much difference.

My advice: give it a year or two. Wait for 4k programming to become widely available. In the meantime, keep the existing set.

(What I really think is crazy, by the way, is people clamoring for 4k programming, while watching their video programming on their phones. :oops: )
It’s taken me a lot of years, but I’ve come around to this: If you’re dumb, surround yourself with smart people. And if you’re smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you.

cashmoney
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:15 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by cashmoney » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:21 am

hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am
I don't know if I'm just bored or what, but lately I've been looking into buying a new TV even though we don't "need" one. We have a 6-7 year old Samsung LCD 1080P TV now. I'm amazed at how cheap the new 4k UHD TVs are right now and it's tempting me to upgrade, especially now that all the streaming services are offering 4k resolution. The one I would buy is a Samsung 49" for $699 and very highly rated on consumer reports.

Obviously the frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! LOL Opinions? :sharebeer



I would consider looking at the new Sony X900E line. https://www.rtings.com/tv/reviews/sony/x900e I didnt get it for the 4K capability as much as for the ability of the TV to upscale the typical cable signal and bluray .It cost more but it is is a true upgrade compared to an entry line Samsung.The only reason IMHO to go OLED over this would be if you primarily stream or play 4K content.

hightower
Posts: 468
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2016 2:28 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by hightower » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:21 am

Well, I'm certainly glad I asked. It sounds like most of you don't think they are worth it. I did go and look at these TVs yesterday and I could definitely tell there was a fairly big difference in picture quality compared to my current TV, but it wasn't "shocking." The OLED TVs were pretty darn impressive though.

As far as size goes, this is for the TV we keep in our living room which we generally don't need to be any bigger than 50". We have a home theater with a projector (120" screen) and surround sound when we want to watch movies (it's standard 1080P). This TV would just be for streaming Netflix/HBO/Hulu TV shows mostly. I don't currently play games on a console, but I have in the past and wouldn't mind getting back into it someday, but right now I don't.

Sounds like it wouldn't really be worth it. I guess I'll wait and see where the price of OLED goes in the next couple of years. That might be worth it and maybe by then there will be more 4k content available as the new standard?

onourway
Posts: 1100
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by onourway » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:29 am

Keep in mind that viewing tv's in the showroom is a completely different experience than at home. They show carefully selected content designed to show off the resolution. All screens are turned up to maximum brightness and over-saturated. This is a big reason why plasma lost out to the in many ways inferior LCD. In the showroom plasma looked dim and dull. At home it looks great with a much more natural picture - even when the content is not optimized.

I would wait for OLED.

adamthesmythe
Posts: 2027
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:47 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by adamthesmythe » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:34 am

> 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Wrong question. You will see very little in the stores that is not 4K. So if you are buying a new TV you are buying 4K.

The question is whether you want/ need a new TV.

By the way, there is more improvement in picture quality due to HDR (high dynamic range) than high resolution. And as far as I know HDR is only on newer 4K televisions.

User avatar
tcassette
Posts: 140
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2015 12:20 pm
Location: Southeast Tennessee

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by tcassette » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:34 am

hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:21 am
Well, I'm certainly glad I asked. It sounds like most of you don't think they are worth it. I did go and look at these TVs yesterday and I could definitely tell there was a fairly big difference in picture quality compared to my current TV, but it wasn't "shocking." The OLED TVs were pretty darn impressive though.

As far as size goes, this is for the TV we keep in our living room which we generally don't need to be any bigger than 50". We have a home theater with a projector (120" screen) and surround sound when we want to watch movies (it's standard 1080P). This TV would just be for streaming Netflix/HBO/Hulu TV shows mostly. I don't currently play games on a console, but I have in the past and wouldn't mind getting back into it someday, but right now I don't.

Sounds like it wouldn't really be worth it. I guess I'll wait and see where the price of OLED goes in the next couple of years. That might be worth it and maybe by then there will be more 4k content available as the new standard?
If you have the itch to upgrade, I would look into a 4K projector for your home theater. If you include suitable upscaling and source equipment, you will definitely notice the difference.

Snezz1e
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:48 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Snezz1e » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:36 am

For a 50 inch TV to even notice a difference from 4k you would have to be sitting at 6.3 feet from screen and to maximize benefit it should be 4.2 feet. Even a 65 inch will require 8.1 feet to see difference and 5.4 feet to maximize benefit.

User avatar
unclescrooge
Posts: 2148
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:00 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by unclescrooge » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:38 am

Blueskies123 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:07 am
No. There is no free content. You have to buy special DVD's or pay extra to Netflix. My 91 year old dad bought one a year ago, I tried to talk him out of it but he would not listen, he kept saying it was 4 times better. So he bought it anyway and the other day when I was over there he told me he regretted it because he could not find anything to watch.
PS, he got the one month free 4K Netflix subscription and I watched a few nature programs with him. You could see a difference but it is not 4 times better. After a month he cancelled because he is too cheap to pay the extra surcharge for 4K content.
LOL, this will probably be me in another 50 years. Too cheap to spend an extra $12/month when I'm 90. :mrgreen:

ny_knicks
Posts: 193
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:20 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by ny_knicks » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:39 am

Recently purchased 65" OLED. Upgraded from an old plasma. OLED makes a huge difference even on regular HD content. We were in the market for new TV and figured we'd pay a premium since everything is likely to go to OLED in the future. Not disappointed in the decision at all.

Wouldn't upgrade just for 4K

TravelGeek
Posts: 1927
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2014 3:23 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by TravelGeek » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:53 am

Blueskies123 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:07 am
No. There is no free content. You have to buy special DVD's or pay extra to Netflix.
In my experience, Amazon Prime includes 4K content at no extra charge. Not everything, but a lot.

https://hd-report.com/list-of-4k-ultra- ... zon-video/

I bought 4K TVs when we upgraded our TVs a couple of years ago from ancient projection TV (living room) and also-ancient 42” bedroom 720p LCD. The price differential compared to regular HD at the time was a bit higher than today, but I was and still am expecting that we won’t replace these TVs for 10+ years.

If I had a reasonably modern HDTV today, I probably would not bother to upgrade at this time just for 4K.

Jags4186
Posts: 2119
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Jags4186 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:04 pm

When my 1080P Plasma TV breaks I will replace with 4K. TVs are so cheap and so much better than they used to be I just don’t see the need to upgrade ever. When I was a kid we were astonished by the Sony “big screen” 36” tv my parents bought. Probably cost $1000 1990 dollars. Piece of junk.

DanMahowny
Posts: 298
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by DanMahowny » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:08 pm

Before football season, I bought 3 of them. 75" 65" and 55". Paid around $5k total, I think.

They are fabulous. You will get a much improved picture watching regular HD content, and 4k is amazing.

puissant
Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2012 2:27 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by puissant » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:20 pm

I recently purchased a second TV because of a renovation and the improved quality between my ~5-year-old TV and my new TV was significant despite both being about the same price at the time of purchase. The newer TV was also larger and added in decent "Smart TV" features such as Netflix, Amazon etc. Now, when I look at the older TV, I am amazed at how quickly I notice the lack of quality in a few ways.

That said, the new TV doesn't make bad movies good and the old TV didn't make good movies bad. I don't think it would have been worth the upgrade (since I already had an Apple TV for Smart TVv needs) alone had I not had another user for the older TV. But that's me being cheap.

In terms of technology, my understanding is that it's not the 4K that is really the next step in picture quality at most sizes. It's HDR (high dynamic range.) To be honest, I don't see a huge change between 4K content and 1080P content on my new 4K TV. The picture is better, but whether that's the 4K part is questionable. I've heard HDR can be a big deal, but the TV I went for doesn't seem to fully support it. HDR is coming down in price and is on the higher-end not crazy priced TVs. I would not upgrade your TV unless your budget gets you full HDR support.

markcoop
Posts: 761
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 8:36 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by markcoop » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:07 pm

I recently got a 55" 4K TV to replace my 10 year old 42" Plasma. To be honest, I only see a small quality difference, but the bigger screen size is very noticeable. I did have an issue connecting the new TV to my old surround sound Dolby Pro-logic system because there was only an optical out. I eventually found a cheap solution - bought a digital to analog converter that seems to work with my sound system.
Mark

Afty
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:31 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Afty » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:15 pm

I can't imagine you would be able to tell the difference in resolution between 1080p and 4k on a 49" TV at any reasonable viewing distance. HDR is supposed to be a much more noticeable improvement, but there are several competing standards and I'm not sure how it's going to shake out.

Blueskies123
Posts: 319
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 7:18 pm
Location: South Florida

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Blueskies123 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:27 pm

Afty wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:15 pm
I can't imagine you would be able to tell the difference in resolution between 1080p and 4k on a 49" TV at any reasonable viewing distance. HDR is supposed to be a much more noticeable improvement, but there are several competing standards and I'm not sure how it's going to shake out.
Like I said earlier there was not a big difference but when I was watching a NatGo program I could definitely see the difference in colorful wildlife scenes with a lot of action but I would not go out and buy a new TV. There were certain scenes where the color was brighter and the depth seemed deeper, almost a but 3D like. Most TV is just a few people talking in a room.

PFInterest
Posts: 1392
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by PFInterest » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:39 pm

hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am
I don't know if I'm just bored or what, but lately I've been looking into buying a new TV even though we don't "need" one. We have a 6-7 year old Samsung LCD 1080P TV now. I'm amazed at how cheap the new 4k UHD TVs are right now and it's tempting me to upgrade, especially now that all the streaming services are offering 4k resolution. The one I would buy is a Samsung 49" for $699 and very highly rated on consumer reports.

Obviously the frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! LOL Opinions? :sharebeer
wait until the HDR thing gets ironed out. will make 4k that much more useful!

DrGoogle2017
Posts: 1322
Joined: Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:31 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by DrGoogle2017 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:55 pm

I will upgrade at the end of the year. Maybe Black Friday. I’m now keeping track of the prices from Costco.

randomguy
Posts: 5640
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:00 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by randomguy » Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:06 pm

Snezz1e wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:36 am
For a 50 inch TV to even notice a difference from 4k you would have to be sitting at 6.3 feet from screen and to maximize benefit it should be 4.2 feet. Even a 65 inch will require 8.1 feet to see difference and 5.4 feet to maximize benefit.

That measurement isn't an exact number as peoples eyes are different. And in reality a new TV is likely to have better color reproduction and general processing than a 6 year old one so even if you don't notice a difference from the higher resolution, you will likely notice a better picture. As it is you can't really get a good 1080p tv (LG OLeds were the last of the high end 1080p sets)

The big question is does it remotely matter to you? If the blacks are 20% darker, the motion 10% less jitter, the colors more accurate and so on will your life in anyway be better? As always the question is really what else could you do with the 700 bucks and would that make you happier.

katzmandu
Posts: 137
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2013 8:39 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by katzmandu » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:38 pm

I just picked up a new 55" Samsung 8000 series. Its amazing and you'd be hard pressed to see some humongous difference between that and the Quantum Dot (highest) series. There isn't much 4k content I know of outside of Netflix and some test videos you can get your hands on. Even the 4k YouTube videos aren't true 4k. They are now working on 8k TV's but at some point they are going to hit the limits of what the human eye can register both color-wise and sharpness-wise. you will be more than fine with one of these for a while unless you are a crazy videophile who will have a gnawing ache knowing he just didn't spend than extra $2000 for the best of the best of the best. Otherwise, you'll be fine.

harrington
Posts: 124
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:09 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by harrington » Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:44 pm

I'm never giving up my Plasma's. The reason all those panels look great in the stores is because they turn the brightness up all the way.

harrington
Posts: 124
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:09 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by harrington » Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:00 pm

Jags4186 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:04 pm
When my 1080P Plasma TV breaks I will replace with 4K. TVs are so cheap and so much better than they used to be I just don’t see the need to upgrade ever. When I was a kid we were astonished by the Sony “big screen” 36” tv my parents bought. Probably cost $1000 1990 dollars. Piece of junk.
And it took 4 guys to carry it out. I couldn't give mine away. :oops:

jwaxjwax
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 05, 2017 3:46 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by jwaxjwax » Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:15 pm

I was just thinking about this issue because Netflix is already offering 4k content and Comcast is rolling out their 4k boxes. I'm looking at 65". I went to Best Buy and researched the TVs and the mid-level ones selling for $1500-$2000 are good, but not nearly as nice as the OLED TVS, which are closer to $3000.

The employee said that in a few years, OLED will likely be the standard. So I'm in a bind in that I don't want to (1) pay $2000 for a TV that will be inferior and worth half that in 3 years, or (2) pay $3000+ for a really nice OLED TV.

So for now, I'm not making a move. I'll wait for the OLEDs to come down to a reasonable price. For what it's worth, Sonys are on sale right now for the next few days. The one I was looking at was the Sony 930e.
---
Also, I've read that on smaller TVs, you can't tell much difference between 1080p and 4k. I don't agree with that at all. My new computer has a 32" 4k monitor and watching 4k videos on youtube is amazing! Way better than watching them in 1080p. The difference is obvious. Maybe it's less so for a really cheap 4k screen though.
Afty wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:15 pm
I can't imagine you would be able to tell the difference in resolution between 1080p and 4k on a 49" TV at any reasonable viewing distance. HDR is supposed to be a much more noticeable improvement, but there are several competing standards and I'm not sure how it's going to shake out.

User avatar
Nicolas
Posts: 945
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:41 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Nicolas » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:17 pm

Might be worth it, time will tell.
Last edited by Nicolas on Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

rgs92
Posts: 1905
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 8:00 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by rgs92 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:28 pm

I'm not a cheap person, but to me, a regular LCD HDTV from say, Sony/Samsung/LG or some other reputable brand, is all you would ever want unless you are really obsessive. Regular old LCD HDTV looks beautiful to me, and I'm picky about monitors, natural color, ease of viewing, and a non-fatiguing image.

(I would avoid things like Vizio or no-name brands though. They look distorted to me from any non-direct angle and the colors look like crayola to me.)

Ha-ha, I use a nice Eizo monitor on my computer because I do a lot of reading on it, so I do appreciate good video, but for plain old TV watching, standard LCD is 100% fine.

By the way, my 2007 Sony 52-incher is going strong and looks amazing to me. I do wish it was thinner and less bulky and heavy though.
Last edited by rgs92 on Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:40 pm, edited 4 times in total.

golfCaddy
Posts: 504
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2018 10:02 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by golfCaddy » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:35 pm

randomguy wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:06 pm
Snezz1e wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:36 am
For a 50 inch TV to even notice a difference from 4k you would have to be sitting at 6.3 feet from screen and to maximize benefit it should be 4.2 feet. Even a 65 inch will require 8.1 feet to see difference and 5.4 feet to maximize benefit.

That measurement isn't an exact number as peoples eyes are different.
If those studies assume 20/20 vision, they almost certainly over-estimate the benefits the average person gets from a UHD TV.

Finridge
Posts: 365
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 7:27 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Finridge » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:58 pm

I have one that I use as a "supersize" computer monitor. Love it.

But if you get one to use as a monitor, get one that is chroma 4:4:4 capable and that has a vast response time. You need to research this.

Dottie57
Posts: 3446
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:08 am

I will be of no help.

I am debating about switching from 720p to 1080p. Behind the curve here.

gpburdell
Posts: 110
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:01 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by gpburdell » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:56 am

I upgraded to a 65" 4K HDR tv late 2016 and it's fantastic. You need to be sitting relatively close to get the full benefit of 4K resolution. However, imho HDR is more important than 4K and isn't affected by viewing distance. Watching stuff in HDR can be jaw dropping. There is now plenty of 4K content between Netflix, Amazon, and UHD Bluray. My tv will even simulate HDR on SDR material which does a decent job.

Also, it's hard to find a very good 1080p model anymore. I would love to have waited for OLED but it's still too pricey for me. I was an LCOS early adopter and learned my lesson there. You can get a really good 65" 4K HDR tv for ~1500 and enjoy the benefits now. When costs on OLED come down in a few years, you can upgrade again and have 2 very good tvs.

BTW, there is not a single HDR standard. The two main ones are HDR10 and Dolby Vision. Dolby Vision is superior, but there is more HDR10 content (HDR10 is required for all UHD Bluray). TVs that support Dolby Vision support HDR10 as well but not as many TVs have it. Also HDR10+ is coming which should be on par with Dolby Vision. The cool thing is that Samsung was able to add HDR10+ to my tv (KS8000) through firmware update a couple months ago.

You can keep waiting for the newest technology, but by the time it becomes relatively cheap something better will be available and you'll be in the waiting game again.
Last edited by gpburdell on Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:09 am, edited 3 times in total.

gpburdell
Posts: 110
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:01 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by gpburdell » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:02 am

FYI. This was released on UHD Bluray this past December. If this isn't enough a reason to upgrade I don't know what is. You can buy them individually too. I just got Interstellar this past weekend and it's glorious in 4K and HDR.

Image

iamlucky13
Posts: 859
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2017 5:28 pm
Location: Western Washington

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by iamlucky13 » Fri Jan 19, 2018 3:27 am

Meh.

One of the movies in my collection came with a DVD in addition to the Bluray when I bought it. That made it easy to compare, and we're not even talking about the difference between HD 1080 lines) and UHD 4K (2160 lines). We're talking SD (480 lines) vs HD (1080 lines).

On my 50" plasma, I can make out some differences in things like the texture of clothing or hair if I pay attention, and the colors due to the improved color space of Bluray. I think there's differences in the soundtracks, too, but I didn't pay as close of attention to that.

Again, that's only if I pay attention to those things.

If I watch the *movie* instead of the pixels, I almost never even think about DVD's inferior resolution. A little research and math on the capabilities of the human eye and screen sizes also don't indicate much if any incentive to bother with 4K unless you're viewing something like 72" or larger screen from a typical 10 foot distance. Of course, there is an increased emphasis in putting the 4k sets right next to the aisle at the store, next to a cheap HD set, because then you're close enough to see the pixels on the HD set and notice the difference more easily.

So frankly, I could care less about 4K. If anything other than death of my current TV is going to get me to eventually upgrade, it is the newer high dynamic range (HDR) screens, because limited shadow and highlight detail is something I have noticed in movies from time to time without paying attention (then again, sometimes that is due to the production team's editing choices). When that happens, I expect it will be a 4K set simply because they're ubiquitous now, not because it's a feature I prioritize.

https://www.cnet.com/news/what-is-hdr-f ... -you-care/

madbrain
Posts: 4930
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:06 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by madbrain » Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:23 am

gpburdell wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:02 am
FYI. This was released on UHD Bluray this past December. If this isn't enough a reason to upgrade I don't know what is. You can buy them individually too. I just got Interstellar this past weekend and it's glorious in 4K and HDR.

Image
Got Interstellar in UHD when it came out, it is indeed glorious. Watched it on my 106" screen on my 4K projector, Optoma UHD65.
My mom had a really hard time with the story.

IMO, the Ultra HD blu-ray are the main way to go at the moment for 4K content.

What I have seen of 4K content on my Netflix streaming trial month which is ending soon has been unimpressive in terms of picture; and acceptable in terms of sound. Much better than most of what passes for "HD" streaming , but still short of an HD blu-ray. You need higher bit rates than what's currently available on Netflix to truly take advantage of 4K.

Oh, and you need to sit close. I did some improvements to the home theater furniture and moved to a 12ft seating distance instead of 20ft previously. At 20ft it was nearly impossible to tell 4K apart from HD on my 106" screen. And I do have 20/20 vision.

My budget for the 4K discs is coming out of what was previously going to purchase public movie theater tickets. I'm no longer going there because the audiences have become insanely obnoxious with the use of their smartphones. It is no longer an enjoyable experience for me, and thus I just can't go anymore.

t3chiman
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2015 12:34 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by t3chiman » Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:56 am

hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am
... frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! ... :sharebeer
No fun at all.
I walked through Costco last week. They have you run a gauntlet of flat screens as you enter the store. I am not ordinarily a visual type. But the LG 65-inch OLED simply stunned me. And I am a die-hard Panasonic plasma guy. Yes, I know about 4k UHD content, and the alleged lack of it. But the creative types are, well, creative in remastering familiar classics (remember Barry Lyndon?), as well as the nifty new stuff. So I bought it, and donated the plasma to a grateful sister and brother-in-law.
Verdict : even plain old DVDs are amazing. The planet earth stuff just jumps out at you. With over the air signals, it's a mixed bag. Good quality studio work is fine (Spanish language stations look especially good. Too bad I don't speak the language.). Old 480 shows look bad, black and white oldies can be good or bad, depending. Sports are a marvel. If you like basketball, the courtside views are lifelike. Football is generally very good.
And 4K brings new improved audio, can be a factor.

Going 4K is not, in the end, economic. But it can improve the aesthetics of the video/audio experience. And that improvement can brighten your day, every day. Up to you.

HTH

Dottie57
Posts: 3446
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:24 pm

t3chiman wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:56 am
hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am
... frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! ... :sharebeer
No fun at all.
I walked through Costco last week. They have you run a gauntlet of flat screens as you enter the store. I am not ordinarily a visual type. But the LG 65-inch OLED simply stunned me. And I am a die-hard Panasonic plasma guy. Yes, I know about 4k UHD content, and the alleged lack of it. But the creative types are, well, creative in remastering familiar classics (remember Barry Lyndon?), as well as the nifty new stuff. So I bought it, and donated the plasma to a grateful sister and brother-in-law.
Verdict : even plain old DVDs are amazing. The planet earth stuff just jumps out at you. With over the air signals, it's a mixed bag. Good quality studio work is fine (Spanish language stations look especially good. Too bad I don't speak the language.). Old 480 shows look bad, black and white oldies can be good or bad, depending. Sports are a marvel. If you like basketball, the courtside views are lifelike. Football is generally very good.
And 4K brings new improved audio, can be a factor.

Going 4K is not, in the end, economic. But it can improve the aesthetics of the video/audio experience. And that improvement can brighten your day, every day. Up to you.

HTH

Sigh, you make me want a larger home. So the tv would cost me 100k+ .

MPLSTCH
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:59 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by MPLSTCH » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:48 pm

recently bought the 55" LG OLED and love it. They can be had for under 1500.00. Buy it with your Citi Costco Visa and use the price rewind feature. I did just that and ended up paying about 1100.00 for the set. You are not locked in to COSTCO..... you can buy anywhere

stoptothink
Posts: 4142
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by stoptothink » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:48 pm

iamlucky13 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 3:27 am
Meh.

One of the movies in my collection came with a DVD in addition to the Bluray when I bought it. That made it easy to compare, and we're not even talking about the difference between HD 1080 lines) and UHD 4K (2160 lines). We're talking SD (480 lines) vs HD (1080 lines).

On my 50" plasma, I can make out some differences in things like the texture of clothing or hair if I pay attention, and the colors due to the improved color space of Bluray. I think there's differences in the soundtracks, too, but I didn't pay as close of attention to that.

Again, that's only if I pay attention to those things.

If I watch the *movie* instead of the pixels, I almost never even think about DVD's inferior resolution. A little research and math on the capabilities of the human eye and screen sizes also don't indicate much if any incentive to bother with 4K unless you're viewing something like 72" or larger screen from a typical 10 foot distance. Of course, there is an increased emphasis in putting the 4k sets right next to the aisle at the store, next to a cheap HD set, because then you're close enough to see the pixels on the HD set and notice the difference more easily.

So frankly, I could care less about 4K. If anything other than death of my current TV is going to get me to eventually upgrade, it is the newer high dynamic range (HDR) screens, because limited shadow and highlight detail is something I have noticed in movies from time to time without paying attention (then again, sometimes that is due to the production team's editing choices). When that happens, I expect it will be a 4K set simply because they're ubiquitous now, not because it's a feature I prioritize.

https://www.cnet.com/news/what-is-hdr-f ... -you-care/
This. And yes, I have 20/20 vision, last year replaced our 32' TV with a 55' 4k, and have a blu-ray player. Like anything else, sure there is a measurable difference, whether or not it is actually noticeable based upon the limitations of human senses is a totally different thing, as is how much you personally value that difference. My stepfather recently purchased a $3k+ OLED TV, I can't say watching a football game on it is noticeably different than watching it on my TV which was 1/6 the cost, and for that matter, the "experience" to me isn't "amazing" enough (even when compared to viewing entertainment on my old 32") to warrant the large delta in costs. That's just me though and sitting in front of a screen isn't a particularly large part of my life.

User avatar
Doom&Gloom
Posts: 1950
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 3:36 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Doom&Gloom » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:10 pm

t3chiman wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:56 am
hightower wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:01 am
... frugal thing to do is to use my current TV for the rest of my life or until it breaks, but what fun would that be! ... :sharebeer
No fun at all.
I walked through Costco last week. They have you run a gauntlet of flat screens as you enter the store. I am not ordinarily a visual type. But the LG 65-inch OLED simply stunned me. And I am a die-hard Panasonic plasma guy. Yes, I know about 4k UHD content, and the alleged lack of it. But the creative types are, well, creative in remastering familiar classics (remember Barry Lyndon?), as well as the nifty new stuff. So I bought it, and donated the plasma to a grateful sister and brother-in-law.
Verdict : even plain old DVDs are amazing. The planet earth stuff just jumps out at you. With over the air signals, it's a mixed bag. Good quality studio work is fine (Spanish language stations look especially good. Too bad I don't speak the language.). Old 480 shows look bad, black and white oldies can be good or bad, depending. Sports are a marvel. If you like basketball, the courtside views are lifelike. Football is generally very good.
And 4K brings new improved audio, can be a factor.

Going 4K is not, in the end, economic. But it can improve the aesthetics of the video/audio experience. And that improvement can brighten your day, every day. Up to you.

HTH
I have three Panasonic plasmas that I really, really like. As a result I have not even been tempted to explore 4k & HDR. I had decided the only reason I would move on would be a Panasonic death or an urge to upsize that I can't resist. Your post is the first I've read, including a bunch at the AVR forum, that is making me think, "What would it hurt to take a look?"

Please do not post any more on this subject :mrgreen:

offtheback
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:16 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by offtheback » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:39 pm

To the original poster - the latest HDR 4K sets are pretty nice screens, not quite to the level of the OLED sets as others have already mentioned. However, the current sets that have the latest HDR10 and/or Dolby Vision can be purchased for some incredible prices in 55" & 65" sizes (I have seen a decent 55" in the sub $500 range). We really enjoyed using a 65" E series Vizio at a rental condo over the holidays - it is the lowest end Vizio and it was much, much nicer than our 55" Panasonic 1080P TV.

We have a fairly large room and currently have a 55" 1080P LCD TV that is 6 years old. I will need at least a 75" TV to justify getting a 4K screen based on our sitting distance...With that in mind I am currently looking for a 75" HDR 4K TV :mrgreen: - this past holiday season the prices started to drop to an area that is closer to what I would be willing to spend (less than $1500).

I keep an eye on the slickdeals hot deals TV area to make sure I don't miss a good deal. Amazon had a price mistake back in November for a Sony 75" TV that I wished I had seen in time. Beyond that I am currently contemplating a TCL 75" TV at Costco - it briefly went on sale in December for $1399 and is now sitting at $1499.

The next 2 weeks are supposed to be the best time to buy a TV due to Super Bowl sales...

Bfwolf
Posts: 1740
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 11:19 am

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Bfwolf » Fri Jan 19, 2018 4:57 pm

I replaced my 2006 Panasonic Plasma 50" 720P TV with a LG 65" OLED last month. Watching UHD content from Amazon is very impressive. But regular TV from my satellite dish doesn't look any better. If anything, it looks worse because the same so-so resolution now has to go on a bigger screen. I got a screaming deal on the TV ($1,650 all in) and have really enjoyed watching the Marvelous Mrs Maisel on the big screen, so I don't exactly regret the purchase, but I really wish they would start providing UHD content for regular TV. But my understanding is that is years away.

Trev H
Posts: 1874
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 10:47 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by Trev H » Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:30 pm

We have a Sony Vizio 55" 4K UHD... think we have had it close to 2 years now, or a year and half... something like that.

Excellent picture quality, even when we don't get 4k (like when streaming Netflix or Hulu or Youtube) with our out in the country slower ATT DSL service. Or even with OTA antenna stuff... looks great. We do have a Sony Blue Ray player and wow... very pleased.

Our 15 year old JVC (36" huge tube) TV died when we bought this one. That thing weighed 88 lbs.

The new one was much easier to tote home, plus well it was the best one they had at our local Walmart, I had the cash, so it came home with me.

Trev H

WhiteMaxima
Posts: 1107
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:04 pm

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by WhiteMaxima » Fri Jan 19, 2018 6:29 pm

If you have 1080p TV under 55", you won't have too much of benefit with 4k. The only reason I would upgrade is the OLED HDR. By the time your 1080p died, 8k or 16K laser enhanced display would be available.

User avatar
jhfenton
Posts: 2945
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2015 11:17 am
Location: Ohio

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by jhfenton » Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:15 pm

iamlucky13 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 3:27 am
Meh.

One of the movies in my collection came with a DVD in addition to the Bluray when I bought it. That made it easy to compare, and we're not even talking about the difference between HD 1080 lines) and UHD 4K (2160 lines). We're talking SD (480 lines) vs HD (1080 lines).

On my 50" plasma, I can make out some differences in things like the texture of clothing or hair if I pay attention, and the colors due to the improved color space of Bluray. I think there's differences in the soundtracks, too, but I didn't pay as close of attention to that.
Wow. I'm far from a video/audio snob, but I the difference between DVDs at 480 and blu-rays at 1080 is striking. It is actually quite remarkable how bad some of the old DVDs look at this point in comparison.

At this point, I wouldn't recommend buying a main set (>50") in anything but 4K. There's just not enough price difference (if you can find a large 1080p set at all). We love ours, and it was a cheap 55" model.

Most of the available 4K content at this point is streaming, and 4K streaming is not really much better (if at all) from blu-ray 1080p. But 4K streaming looks better than 1080 streaming, so we feel like it's valuable. I hope they'll eventually start encoding alternate 4K streams at higher bandwidths than the 15-25Mbps they currently use. We have gigabit fiber, so there's a lot of wasted bandwidth.

madbrain
Posts: 4930
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:06 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: 4k UHD TVs worth it?

Post by madbrain » Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:34 pm

jhfenton wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:15 pm
Most of the available 4K content at this point is streaming, and 4K streaming is not really much better (if at all) from blu-ray 1080p. But 4K streaming looks better than 1080 streaming, so we feel like it's valuable.
Agree 100% with the above.
I hope they'll eventually start encoding alternate 4K streams at higher bandwidths than the 15-25Mbps they currently use. We have gigabit fiber, so there's a lot of wasted bandwidth.
Doubt they will unless the average broadband speed in the US goes way up, and the ridiculous data caps that cable companies have implemented go away. A 1TB data cap is equivalent to about 20 dual-layer blu-ray discs at 50GB each - and we are talking HD discs. The UHD 4K Blu-ray discs can go to triple-layer and be 100GB each, and top at 128 Mbps bit rate. With a 1TB data cap you could stream a whole 10 discs a month before hitting the cable company's typical data cap.

It's great that you can get fiber - I can't. Actually Comcast sells me 250 Mbps with data cap, and is only able to deliver about 98% uptime, which is horrible. Speed is irrelevant when everything goes down all the time. We can forget ever streaming anything at any bit rate ! I guess Comcast techs will keep coming to our house and giving us credit for non-working service until they upgrade about 2 miles worth of their cable network - we are all the way at the end. Can't wait for fiber to arrive ! How much are you paying for it ?

I'm afraid the whole backbone would have to be significantly upgraded to support more than 1 UHD 4K stream at >100 Mbps continuous. And even 1 stream is probably pushing it. I monitor my download speed every hour with automated speedtest on an Odroid XU4. It varies between 30 and 300 Mbps, but typically about 200, still short of the 250 promised. Smokeping also monitors my connection to a few internet sites, and all my LAN/WLAN devices so I know when anything goes down...

Anyway, to get back to movies, I think nothing beats the UHD blu-rays right now. You can get some relatively inexpensively if you watch for promotions - between $10 and $20 per disc. They are not more expensive than HD blu-ray discs when they first came out. The catalog is still limited. But I already have about 50 of those discs. Obviously much more expensive than streaming, but many are not available on streaming, or not in any comparable video and audio quality.

Post Reply