Ultra high resolution television (UHDV) prototype
Posted on 29/09/03 11:32 by Se├ín Byrne                             
Ultra high resolution television (UHDV) prototype

Japanese engineers have been testing out a prototype of ultra high definition video (UHDV) which has 16 times greater image resolution than today's best standard HDTV.  UHDV uses 4,000 horizontal scanning lines, which is 4 times that of HDTV and over 6 times that of regular TV PAL broadcasts. 


As no existing equipment could handle such as resolution, they had to make a custom built camera, storage and projection system using arrays of existing components in order test a prototype. To even store just 18 minutes of UHDV footage, they had used 16 HDTV recorders (likely a 4 x 4 array) with a capacity of 3.5 terabytes ;)  3 minutes of footage was recorded from the custom made camera mounted to a vehicle and then driven about the streets.


The footage was later projected on a 4 x 7 metre screen for public demonstration and the public were astonished. As the visual effect of the footage travelling down a road was so realistic, some viewers even experienced nausea as a side effect of seeing ultra realistic motion, but not physically feeling the motion. It's like the opposite of seasickness where you can feel movement, but cannot see it while in an enclosed section.

A prototype digital video system producing images of such high quality that the human eye struggles to distinguish them from reality has been developed by Japanese engineers.
The system, called ultra high definition video (UHDV), achieves image resolution 16 times greater than even the most advanced video broadcasting technologies now available.
Its developers at the Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK) said the system could be used to provide an ultra realistic 'immersive' viewing experience when, for example, showing sporting events.
UHDV displays images with 4,000 horizontal scanning lines, compared to the 1,000 offered by the current state-of-the-art high definition television (HDTV) technology and just 625 for standard TV broadcasts. When horizontal and vertical scanning are both taken into account a UHDV picture contains 16 times the number of pixels ? individual image components - of HDTV.
NHK, which unveiled details of UHDV for the first time at broadcast technology conference IBC in Amsterdam, said its engineers had to custom-design a video camera, data-storage device and projection system, as no standard broadcasting equipment could cope with their extreme demands.
The camera was built by aligning four 2.5in charge coupled device (CCD) image-capture panels. The projector system uses four liquid crystal-on-silicon panels, two of which process green light while the other two each handle red and blue. These must be aligned to an accuracy of within 0.5 of a pixel - there are 33 million pixels on display - to achieve ultra high definition results.
Recording the massive amounts of data needed to produce UHDV definition also posed a problem for NHK. Its engineers were originally only able to make 34 seconds' worth of recording. They have now built a disc recorder system made up of 16 HDTV recorder units with a capacity of about 3.5 terabytes, allowing them to shoot 18 minutes of UHDV footage.
NHK researcher Dr. Kohji Mitani said the project team had shot a three-minute demonstration video by attaching the camera to the front of a vehicle and driving it around the streets.
The footage was then shown to members of the public on a 4x7m wide-angle screen provoking, according to Mitani, gasps of astonishment. Some viewers even experienced nausea because of the ultra realistic visual effect of speed without the usual physical sensation of movement.
Mitani said the system was still at a basic stage of development, but he claimed it had proved that image qualities so realistic that they approximated to actually being at the recorded event were possible.
NHK will now attempt to reduce the size of the camera and look at the possibility of developing transmission systems that could broadcast UHDV footage.
Dr. Nicolas Lodge of UK broadcast technology specialist Pro-Vision Communications, who chaired the IBC session at which UHDV was presented, said the NHK work was 'amazing stuff. They are on the way to creating an experience that mimics actually being there. It is an exciting area of research'.

With all the advancement in optical disc developments, there has to be something to make use of these ultra high capacity discs before they can become a commercial success. At the moment, HDTV is only starting to come into American homes and many other continents don't even sell HDTV sets in most stores let alone have any HDTV broadcasting. I remember when HDTV was considered the maximum optical resolution an eye can perceive, but going by this UHDV prototype, it looks like HDTV may not be quite that superior.

Source: E4engineering.com

Discuss this article with your fellow community members! We appreciate your valuable input, but please keep the reaction policy in mind and make sure your reaction is constructive.
By alienooze, Mon 29 Sep 2003 15:05
HDTV has not even been emplemented to the full and the few channels they do have they CHARGE u for it! L wait to they have all the channels HDTV and they are free, just like what we have know on TV.
By Jim Kiler, Mon 29 Sep 2003 18:17
This is prettty cool, but since HD has already been agreed upon this will not make it into public viewing anytime soon, 30 years or more. This is cool for simulation rides and such at amusement parks.
By kwkard, Tue 30 Sep 2003 06:45
kwkardA solution is needed for recording... Didnt i read an article on violet lasers somewhere??
By Yen-Chih Lin (guest), Wed 22 Aug 2007 22:30
There is a solution, they should try to use holographic memory (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_memory / http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/hvd.htm), which can easily handle such capacity and data transfers, that won't be a problem anymore to cope with such capacities. I'm still waiting for technologies to come, that are from the future - *sigh* I live in the wrong century...
By Kache (guest), Sun 26 Aug 2007 19:56
Well, if u always wait for new tecnologies, u will always live in the wrong century, no matter when. :P
By booby suck it harder (guest), Thu 22 Nov 2007 22:47
UHDV takes up 4 Terrabytes for 18 mins of video a film would take 25 terrabytes, space is getting bigger and so are tvs, by the time UHDV is common kinda like HDTV is today (2007) they would require rather large screens to fit 7680x4320 lines thats 33,177,600 pixels (a frame) im suprise they are at FPS like 25.
By penis (guest), Sun 24 Feb 2008 04:20
"im suprise they are at FPS like 25." they are even at a framerate of 60, so there are 1990 million pixels per second waiting to be processed. they even managed to get 22.2 ultra surround sound. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UHDV
By God Bless (guest), Thu 24 Apr 2008 17:26
Definitely this world is changing too fast. These technologies are really awesome... 22.2 audio channels, and all that video power is amazing. Where are we going to store those UHDTV movies??? on a PCD (protein-coated disc)??? These developers are really beyond their time.
By Ben Feltham (guest), Tue 15 Jul 2008 20:41

This would be nice to have in our local cinema's. I do believe i read up a long time ago that the russian experimented many years ago and put it on display. Its been done before but i think they should put it into our cinema's for the time being. I 100% disagree on so many speakers needed as we only have 2 ears and 2 proper speakers can create the whole enviroment perfectly by illusion - I have heard a working protatype producing full 3d sound everywhere like its been wired to your brain and that was at least 20 years ago. None of this technology is actually new but it would be nice for them to produce it for us. For years people have been riped off with purposely out of frequency balanced stereo's. Im glad the companys cant sell music and everyone downloads it because they deserve to lose out for the true fact they have cheated everyone about sound quality. They can build them to perfection and there is no point in any improvements because us humans cant tell the difference at all. Its all about the arrival times and frequency its at in comparison to others. Some will say that it cant be done but what do they know, only what they have been lead to believe. I can tell you by fact that perfect can be done with just 2 speakers. Correctly designed ones with the system designed to work together in harmony. Harmony is what is wrong with 99% of systems sold today. Wrongly designed on purpose. Simple. There is nothing better than listening to REAL STEREO on 2 speakers. The point is that it has to be right in order to be able to hear it and the illusion is out of this world hearing a what is perceived to be real sound comeing from a position where there is no speakers.  From between them, close to you to your side or behind you, up in the air and it dont matter where you sit, it will sound the same. I find that current cinema surround is either at one speaker or another and never exactly in position like a proper 2 speaker stereo can acheive. Its so dam difficult to be able to encode and set up so many speakers to get it to sound right. With real 2 speaker stereo the frequency can work out to be the actual distance. The position of the sound is heard precisely where as the current cinema ones are jumpy in position and never got the correct distance due to other speakers contantly altering the distance by altering the arrival times of interfered frequencys. They have to acount for this on set up and thats why 24 speakers are so hard to set up. I have to admit its easier for them to get aproximate direction using this method but its dam hard to equal a properly set up 2 speaker system. Most have never heard one, In actual fact some of the older systems are capable of achieveing real stereo but need someone who is patient and know what to listen for when adjusting an equalizer. This was top of the range old stuff and you cant just get any old parts and get it working. Well apart from my big sound issue, I cant wait till they release it so i can see it for myself.

By Ben Feltham (guest), Tue 15 Jul 2008 21:14

O just one more thought that i had and i hope that they try it and maybe demonstrate it in all countrys. I was bored sitting on my pc and thinking about 3d stereo after my big long write up. I thought about 3d UHDTV using polarizing 3d glasses. OMG just imagine haveing lots of cinemas running UHDTV films with polarizing 3d glasses. The ultimate realism. Imagine how scarey horror films could become. I just wish they would add real 2 speaker stereo to go with it. Right im going to make some 3d anaglyth art for fun.

By Anon (guest), Thu 17 Jul 2008 01:05

Hello Ben,

No one cares.



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