Before The Screen: How Filmmakers Create Hi-Res Content
by Adrian Grahams
Your Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD Smart TV set or home theater system really comes into its own when you’re screening content that was filmed in the 4K format. With four times the resolution of regular high-definition pictures -- a staggering eight million pixels compared to the two million offered by a standard HD screen -- this superior digital technology has transformed the way movies are shot. It also delivers stunningly crisp, crystal clear, hi-res video to your Sharp 4K UHD panel that makes your viewing experience an immersive pleasure.
"The more of your field of vision a moving image occupies," says cinematographer Toby Heslop, "the more you’re able to suspend reality and become involved in the movie or TV program."
The final result is created using advanced digital cinema equipment that captures live action sequences in the finest detail. To achieve the highest fidelity picture, 4K digital movie cameras incorporate standard cinematic lenses with a sensor chip and color pattern filter that assigns color values to each screen pixel and digitizes the frame -- just like the high-end digital still cameras used by professional photographers.
This enhanced digital output reproduces even the smallest nuances on screen, allowing directors to push cinematic limits further than ever before. Packing a whopping 400MB of data into every second -- which equates to 1.44TB (terabytes) an hour -- video files taken with DALSA’s Origin camera are equivalent to 320 hours of standard-definition video and more than double the total storage capacity of the average laptop computer.
Benefits extend into 4K digital post-production as well, allowing greater flexibility in the processing and editing stages. Moderate zooming or cropping 4K footage is less noticeable when you down sample to 2K or lower, and studios can reproduce CGI special effects that are more convincing -- even in ultra high-definition on a big screen TV. The enhanced detail in the 4K footage makes CGI image-tracking easier and reduces aliasing (the blurry edges caused by pixel-based images).
This extra detail means you can’t spot the difference between live action footage and high-quality CGI special effects elements in a 4K movie, especially when viewing on your 4K UHD TV-- which is perfect when you really want to believe that your favorite action hero has just walked out of that huge explosion completely unharmed.
As impressive as all of that sounds,the technology is not brand new. Directors have been capturing images using 4K digital cinematography equipment since the early 2000s, and even remastering films to 4K quality that are decades older than that.
When projected in a theater setting, the quality of these films is superior, delivering a breathtakingly detailed image that fully engages the audience, whether seated up close to the big screen or watching from the last row of the top-most balcony.
This same technology is now being replicated in your home, with your Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD television bringing more power and more image fidelity to your living room entertainment center. Just like that theater experience, you can now sit as close or as far from your TV screen as you’d like, yet get the same seamless and incredibly detailed picture from any angle.
Check out our pro tips below to help make your transition to 4K Ultra HD smoothless:
Tip #1: The move to 4K.
The first 4K ultra high-definition movie camera with a standard 35mm lens was introduced back in 2003. The high initial cost of equipping movie studios with 4K cameras and digital editing and processing facilities has resulted in relatively slow but gradual uptake of the new technology. However, increasing sales of 4K UHD TV sets and home theater systems is driving demand for more 4K content. Several big entertainment studios have responded by producing more new movies in the 4K format, and some are also releasing classic movies in remastered formats, so you can enjoy your old favorites again in magnificent clarity and detail on your Sharp 4K panel.
Tip #2: There’s no optimal viewing distance.
With your Sharp AQUOS 4K UHD TV, you’ll get a phenomenal picture from anywhere in the room, whether you prefer watching from the back of the room or want a much more intimate experience than a traditional HD TV. Regardless of vantage point, the picture will be comfortably in your field of vision so you don’t miss any of the details and nuances on screen.
Tip #3: Super-sized screen resolution.
4K digital cinema resolution differs slightly from the 4K ultra high-definition resolution on your TV screen. The digital cinema 4K standard is 4,096 x 2,160 screen pixels, while the 4K ultra HD standard resolution for TV sets is 3,840 x 2,160 screen pixels. One of the main reasons for this slight reduction is to give TV screens the true 16:9 aspect ratio necessary for viewing widescreen content. Several movie and entertainment studios are releasing 4K content for viewing on hi-res ultra HD TV sets. A “mastered in 4K” movie is a standard HD movie upscaled to 4K during playback, while a “true 4K” movie is produced and viewed in native 4K resolution. Both look great on a 4K TV screen!
Tip #4: Watch great 4K content.
Video-on-demand services are producing 4K content, with Netflix making the 2014 seasons of “Breaking Bad” and “House of Cards” in the ultra HD format. Consumers will also be able to enjoy their own 4K content through filming it on a 4K Production Camera or a GoPro HERO3+ Black Edition. All can be viewed at home on a 4K Ultra HD TV.