LED TV screens are made up of pixels. Think of them as very tiny dots of ink. These dots of different colours are what make up a picture – the more dots there are, the more detail or ‘resolution’ the picture has.
The vast majority of new TVs with screen sizes over 40 inches carry a 4K resolution. This means that the screen is made up of 3840x2160 pixels, nearly 4K across and a total of c. 8.3 million. Compare this with high definition (less than 850,000 pixels in total) and Full HD (c. 2 million), and it's easy to see what the fuss is about. We are now seeing 8K screens coming onto the market, some at surprisingly reasonable prices, and these have double the number of pixels across than 4K TVs, with nearly 34 million in total.
These are exciting times for TV technology, but what does this mean for viewers? It means that your TV will have previously unimaginably bright and vivid displays with super clear, pin-sharp images and eye-popping colours.
Some manufacturers use lighting to illuminate pixels from behind, while others will light them from the side. Many manufacturers also have their own unique technology to offer improvements in viewing angles, colour accuracy and shadow detail too, for example. TVs have never looked so good.
You may see terms like ‘UHD’, ‘Ultra HD’, ‘4K UHD’ floating around. These can vary between different manufacturers and, while there are some small technical differences, they essentially all mean Ultra High Definition, or 4K.