HD and 4K photography and videography for Estate Agency.

Our blog this month is aimed at those with a general interest in HD and 4K photography and videography, but those that are not necessarily in the profession and simply looking for a bit of clarity on the subject. Clarity of course being the operative word, though no pun was intended!

So firstly a little bit of background on 4K.  Whilst the terms ‘4K’, ‘UHD’ and ‘Ultra HD’ may be new to many, believe it or not 4K is not ‘new’ by a long shot!  In fact many would be surprised to learn that 4K has in fact been around sine the movie camera was invented, its just got a lot more affordable quite recently.  Within the last decade 4K was something only utilised by the movie industry due to cost.  Nowadays Joe Public can enjoy 4K photography and videography at a far more reasonable price.

So what is 4K exactly?  Here’s the mathematical bit….

4K in its simplest terms refers to the number of vertical lines there are in the resolution of an image. 

An Ultra HD TV (4K) displays at least 8 million active pixels with a low resolution boundary of at least 3840 x 2160.  This is twice the resolution of standard HD TV which has 1920 x 1080.  (1920 x  2 and 1080 x 2 = 3840 by 2160).

Importantly 4K has four times the number of pixels compared to HD screens, but the resolution is twice as good – this causes great confusion for many.  If you multiply the vertical lines by the horizontal you get the total number of pixels, very broadly speaking, hence 4K (8294400) is four times HD or 2K (2073600).

So can these improvements cause problems for amateur photographers using 4K cameras?  Well yes and no.  If you are looking to take a shot of something with intricate detail and you allow a blur between two or more pixels, the knock on effect will result in a very slightly blurred image which is then 2K or worse.  The solution is fairly simple, ensure you buy a camera with either a full-time focus-puller or one with a smaller sensor! 

We are already producing property videos for Estate Agents, Property Developers and those selling their homes privately online who have used both HD & 4K camera’s for us to create their video.  The results speak for themselves, crystal clear images can transform the look and feel of any home.  Some may argue that with the 4K files being so large they can create a bottle neck effect when uploading the movie. My answer to this issue is simple, firstly – the average property video shouldn’t be any longer than two minutes, in fact a minute to a minute and a half is plenty, and secondly, both YouTube and Vimeo have provided support to combat any potential issues, with other sites to follow suit shortly.  The reality being your property videos and home movies can be enjoyed by the masses effortlessly.

As a final thought, with technology continually improving what can we expect next?  Is 4K as good as it gets?  Of course not! Whilst HD and Ultra HD are fantastic the Japanese are already working on an 8K digital TV which is due out by 2020.  8K which is also referred to as SHV (Super Hi-Vision) is the next generation in broadcast media.  The Japanese are confident that their 8K digital TV’s will be sharper and better than IMAX that we currently view in the cinemas – time will tell and best of luck to them!

In the meantime, Joe Public and friends should definitely take advantage of treating themselves to a new camera for Christmas – with Black Friday only days away, there really is no better time to pick up a deal!

Happy hunting!

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