CES 2014: Whats new in 4K TVs and HDTVs
Many of the TV manufacturers were showing advanced technology, including OLED displays and 4K HDTVs (also referred to as UHD (3840×2160) Ultra High Definition). 2014 will be the year of the big TV, as Sharp, LG, Samsung and others were showing giant LED HDTVs in the 70, 75, 80, 84-inch sizes. We are also seeing more Curved Screen TVs being introduced. Smart TVs were on display at many of the manufacturers as internet and device connected TVs are becoming more common, including interfacing with Smartphones and tablets. Dual Core and Quad Core Processors are becoming more common in 2014 models to speed up Smart TV operations. The biggest push by manufacturers though was coming from the advent of 4K Ultra HD TVs.
***Our CES 2015 TVs section will be coming soon…
Samsung TVs For 2014:
Samsung has launched a new flagship line of Full HD 1080p TVs, called the H8000 Series, with a curved screen. This model has a slight curve in the screen, giving you better viewing angles, contrast, and a more immersive feel than its flat screen counterparts. We felt it had an excellent clear picture at different viewing angles. This model also has the Precision Black Local Dimming that we loved on last years F8000 LED Series. Other new LED 1080p models for 2014 include the H7150 Series (Samsung’s best flat Full HD screen), the affordable H6400 Series, and the H6350 Series. Samsung is going big on 4K Ultra HD TVs for 2014 with the HU9000 4K Series (Curved Screen), and the HU8550 4K Series (Flat Screen). Samsung 2014 Upgrades: **All of Samsung’s 2014 LED TV line from the H6350 Series and higher have been upgraded to Quad Core Processors, which was previously only available on high end TVs. In the past many of the Smart TVs were sluggish. A multi-core processor will greatly enhance the speed. Samsung has also introduced a new Smart TV interface for all their Smart TVs. Another upgraded feature is SmartView 2.0 which allows you to share what is on your TV with your smartphone or tablet using a free APP provided by Samsung available on the H6350 and higher. Samsung 1080p LED TVs 2014: At the high end is the top of the line H8000 LED 3D Series, Curved TV series. The curved screen gives a more immersive experience, better viewing angles, and contrast. The Samsung F7150 LED 3D Series is the best flat screen regular 1080p HD TV, with a beautiful picuture, but at mid-range prices. Both of these models have a Quad Core Processor for super fast Smart TV and voice control functions. Both have Samsung’s new Smart TV interface, Content, Smart Apps, Smart Interactions, and other unique ways to interact with your HDTV. This includes facial recognition, voice control, gestures, and motion control. Samsung has an app store to add to apps to your TV (hundreds to choose from). These Smart TVs also have a full web browser, and a remote control with a touchpad for easy navigation. Samsung’s Lower Cost LED TVs: Cost conscience consumers will look toward the Samsung H6350 LED Series which is Samsung’s best Full HD TV without 3D and the Samsung H6400 LED Series which is the lowest priced TV with 3D. The H6400 Series has also inherited the Micro-Dimming technology previously only seen on higher end sets. The H6400 Series also includes a Smart Touch Remote with a touchpad, and a microphone. This allows voice commands, and better internet and Smart TV operation. Both of these sets have received high praise from consumer reviews. Both of these models have been upgraded with Quad Core Processors for maximum speed and functionality. Samsung’s New 4K Ultra HD TVs: One of our highlights of the show, was the new top-of-the-line 4K TVs introduced by Samsung. Samsung has introduced two new lines, the HU9000 Series Curved 4K TV, and the lower priced Samsung HU8550 Series Flat Screen 4K TV. The pictures from either set was stunning, and these TVs have the best Samsung has to offer, including the fantastic Precision Black Local Dimming, Quad Core Processor+, 4x the resolution of HD, the latest HDMI 2.0 and HEVC (h.265) decoding, and MHL 3.0. They can upscale normal HD to near 4K, and these TVs are future proofed to keep up to date with the latest 4K standards as they arrive.
Samsung 2014 TV lineup at CES 2014
Sharp Aquos Quattron TVs 2014: For CES 2014 Sharp is going all in with 4K Ultra HD TVs. They also have introduced a whole new technology and display. This is the Sharp Quattron+ line of TVs, including the Sharp EQ15 Series. This is a Full HD TV with 10 million more subpixels than normal HDTVs. This gives it the ability to upscale Full HD (like Blu-ray), to near 4K quality, and to display native 4K directly on the TV. Its the only Full HD TVs on the market that can do this. We call them 4K Ready. They are much lower in price than a true 4K TV, but allow you to enjoy 4K like picture quality when 4K content arrives. Sharp for 2014 only produces large screen TVs, 60-inches and up.
Sharp 1080p Aquos Quattron TVs 2014: Sharp for 2014 is introducing only one line of regular Full HD TVs this year the Sharp Aquos EQ10 1080p 240Hz Series TVs. It comes fully loaded with the latest features such as 240Hz Refresh Rate, Quattron technology gives you a fourth yellow subpixel, with 2 million more subpixels than normal HDTVs. It has a Dual Core Processor, Full Smart TV functions, Miracast, MHL® Compatible, and is DLNA Certified.
Sharp 1080p Aquos Quattron+ TVs 2014: Sharp has introduced a whole new line and technology called Quattron+ with Revelation™ 4K Upscaler Engine. There are two models, the Sharp Aquos Quattron+ SQ15 Series and the SQ17 series. Both of these lines are what we call, 4K Ready. They both have 10 million subpixels more than regular Full HD TVs, giving them the ability to upscale normal Full HD to near 4K image quality. They also are the only normal HDTVs that can display native 4K Ultra HD content directly on the screen with their HDMI 2.0 inputs. Although not a true 4K TV, they are much lower in price, and will future proof your TV when 4K content arrives. And you can enjoy upconverted regular HD today. Both Series are 3D Ready.Sharp Aquos 4K Ultra HD TVs 2014: Sharp has one line of 4K Ultra HD TVs, the Sharp Aquos LC-70UD1U 4K Series which currently comes only in the 70-inch size (a 60-inch version will be introduced in 2014). As an Ultra HD TV, it can display video with 4 times the resolution of Full HD. Its Revelation™ 4K Upscaler Engine can upscale regular HD to near 4K image quality. It is currently the only 4K TV that is THX 4K Certified, meeting the highest standards in picture performance. This is Sharp’s top of the line model for 2014.
Sharp 2014 TV lineup and technology at CES 2014
Panasonic Viera TVs 2014: Panasonic has discontinued its plasma line of tvs, and is now primarily concentrating on 4K Ultra HD TVs. Panasonic will introduce their new AX900 Series that is claimed to match Plasma type picture quality. The 4K TVs Panasonic display were stunning, and they have a new Smart TV interface called Life+. As far as regular HD TVs, Panasonic has yet to release them for sale as of now. We will review and update this article once the Panasonic models are released for sale.
Panasonic 2014 4K TV lineup at CES 2014
LG TVs For 2014: LG was displaying their latest prototype OLED and 4K HDTVs, including a 77-Inch Flexible OLED 4K TV. This prototype was stunning and the best picture at the show. It used both OLED and 4K technologies. The screen can be either flat or by using the remote control, can curve for a more immersive viewing experience. It will be a long time before this technology gets inexpensive enough for most of us. This TV won the most CES awards at the show.
LG 2014 Full LED HD TVs: The new 2014 LB6300 120Hz LED Series are LG’s Smart TVs (without 3D). It replaces the LA6200 series and now includes LG’s new Magic Remote which can take voice commands and act as a mouse/pointer. We are still waiting for more of the LG line to be released.
LG 2014 4K TV lineup at CES 2014
Sony TVs 2014: Sony in 2014 is going all in with 4K Ultra Definition TVs. They have committed to the technology by introducing three lines of 4K TVs (see below). Sony has also changed its styling. Introducing sleek wedge shaped TVs that can now hold larger speakers for better sound, and the wedge shape looks great too. The wedge is available in both Full HD sets, and 4K TVs as well.
Sony’s 1080p LED TV Lineup 2014: Sony has introduced a new design of 1080p TVs with a wedge design. The Wedge allows the bottom of the TV to hold larger speakers for better design. It is a nice sleek design. One of the 1080p models is the W850B 1080p LED Series which we previewed at CES. The W850B Series comes in 60-inch and 70-inch sizes. It is a Smart LED TV with Dynamic Edge Backlighting, X-Reality™ PRO image processor, Built-in WiFi, and 3D Ready (with Glasses).
Sony’s 4K TV Lineup 2014: Sony is introducing its second generation 4K TVs in 2014. The lineup includes the Sony XBR X950B 4K Series, the Sony XBR X900B 4K Series, and Sony XBR X850B 4K Series. Sony is committing most of its resources to 4K TVs, as it sees this as the future of HDTVs. All of these TVs come Triluminos Color, Bigger speakers, HEVC (H.265) decoder, and HDMI 2.0, the latest standard. They all are 3D Ready. The X950B Series sets itself apart with Xtended Dynamic Range Pro for best brightness. The 4K TV can display with 4x the number of pixels (8 megapixels) versus (2 megapixels) on a standard 1080p HDTV. Even 1080p content will look better when upconverted onto these sets, as we saw at CES 2014. And they will be ready for native 4K content as it becomes available. The detail on these TVs is amazing. All of these TVs have the 4K X-Reality™ PRO image processor, which makes regular HD and Blu-rays look spectacular on these high resolution screens. Sony is a leader and pioneer in 4K. Movie theaters are now using 4K projectors, of which almost all of them are Sony.
Sony’s 2014 XBR X900B Series 4K TVs
2014 HDTV Technology Summary: So to wrap up this article, 2014 has seen some incremental improvements to the 2013 models, but the new technologies including OLED, 4K Ultra HD, will be the buzzwords for 2014-2015, as will be the advent of giant sized TVs. The big push this year will be on 4K Ultra HD TVs. These display video at 4x the resolution of HD for a crystal clear picture, and allows you to sit close, or buy a bigger TV, giving you a movie theater type experience. There are some breakthroughs in technology that will allow 4K broadcasts and streaming video to occur. One is that Google is starting to install gigbit cable systems in the country, that will have a large pipe of data to allow this to become a reality. The other is a new video compression called HEVC H.265 which will replace the mpeg 4 H.264 and compress video down to less than half the current size, allowing a lot of higher resolution video to hit cable and the airwaves. Most 2014 4K TVs have this built-in. Netflix, Amazon, Xfinity (Comcast), Youtube, and DirecTV have all announced native 4K content availability in 2014, so things are moving fast. We believe that 4K TVs will be common in homes in a couple of years, just as 1080p sets are now.
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