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Understanding 4K Monitors

Learn a little more about 4K monitors and the advantages they bring.

| General Photography

4K monitors are something which are slowly creeping into the world of the consumer but what exactly is 4K and what advantages does it bring for photographers?


What is 4K?

The title of '4K' is actually used to define two high definition resolution types. The term is used most commonly to describe Ultra High Definition' displays which are 3840 x 2160 pixels.

You may be wondering why they're grouped under the term 4K if they're missing 160 pixels that takes them to 4000 but that's because manufactures decided to round the figure up; after all, it's pretty close. Any way, the second set of displays under the 4K heading actually do have more than 4,000 horizontal pixels, making them four times that of full HD (1920 x 1080). The ColorEdge CG318-4K is one of the monitors which fits the second category as it actually displays the DCI 4K standard (4096 x 2160).


Understanding 4K Monitors:


Before we continue discussing what 4K is it's worth noting that for previous resolutions we looked at the number of vertical pixels in a display but for 4K, the pixels on the horizontal line are counted instead. Now, back to the discussion....


What are the benefits of 4K?

To put it simply, they make images look better. You only have to look at HD TVs or compare an old iPad screen with that of a newer generation which features a retina display to see how much of a difference more pixels can make.

The higher resolution results in a larger work surface without you losing out on pixels-per-inch (the CG318-4K monitor, for example, has a dense 149 ppi).


What kind of computer would I need to use a 4K monitor?

This question was actually asked in our forums and EIZO's Victor Aberdeen gave this response: “Let's work backwards from the monitor, the first item you need is a capable video card and this should support either DisplayPort version 1.2 or HDMI that supports 4K. The computer needs to be able to support the video card and the type of content you want to display, that includes the disk subsystem which needs to deliver a continuous 8 megapixel image to the monitor.

Simply, the more performance you purchase the more you will be able to do with the 4K! Editing photographs will not be very strenuous on the system and you’ll be able to use an up-to-date tower system with the right video card. However, if you going to be shooting video or creating animations for example then you’ll be needing more horsepower.”


Understanding 4K Monitors:


How much do 4K monitors cost?

A decent 4K monitor would currently be a serious investment as they aren't what you would call cheap. You can find less expensive 4K models but the panels inside them are generally of a lower quality meaning colours aren't as great and the viewing angle is smaller.

There's no pricing information currently available for the ColorEdge CG318-4K monitor which hits the shops this April but do keep an eye out for our review of this piece of kit.


Visit the EIZO website for more information. 

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View Directory Page : EIZO Limited

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