The Best 8K TVs 2020: 8K vs 4K Features and Differences - Rolling Stone
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The Best 8K TVs for a Professional Viewing Experience

These TVs put you in the middle of the action, with sharper, more colorful and more defined images like you haven’t seen before

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Amazon

This article is a part of RS Recommends, an editorial series reviewing products in music and entertainment. Items are independently selected; Penske Media may earn a commission from purchases made from our links.

4K just ain’t cutting it any more? Want to feel as though the movie is being shot in real-time? Then stepping up to an 8K TV is the necessary next step.

1080p. 4K. 8K. LED. ULED. QLED. Lots of numbers and letters, but what do they actually mean? The overly simplified answer is, it comes down to pixels and ratios. 4K is quadruple the number of pixels as 1080p and 8K is quadruple the pixels of 4K. All that to say, the more pixels, the clearer the picture. The clearer the picture the more lifelike. The more lifelike the more magnificent. But can it really even be called lifelike when the material being viewed is digitally influenced and adapted? Turns out, “lifelike” on an 8K TV may appear even more visually brilliant and stunning than actual real life.

The best 8K TVs are an exceptional way to bring Hollywood into the home. These television replicate a professional editing and production view. The pictures are spectacular, super finely detailed, and overall, mind blowingly real. These TVs have the capabilities to not just blanket upgrade the viewing experience of whatever may be on screen, they also have AI (artificial intelligence) processors which recognize specific items on screen and enhance their visual appearance, meaning scenes are even more realistic.

And while 4K (or even 6K TVs) will still hold most of the market share for now, there are a number of accessible 8K TVs entering the market already, delivering a ton of features for its pricepoint. They’re all manufactured by some of the leading names in home entertainment (think Sony and Samsung) and integrate seamlessly into any home theater setup, with smart home features and easy connectivity to your streaming apps, soundbars and the like.

Whether you’re watching a blockbuster movie, playing your favorite game or watching live sports, the best 8K TVs promise to put you right in the middle of the action, with sharper, more colorful and more defined images like you haven’t seen before.

  

1. Sony 85-Inch 8K TV

Sony is not only responsible for creating the content that plays on your TV (through their Sony Pictures studios), they are also responsible for engineering the TVs on which their content is played. The XBR-85Z9G is basically hand and glove. This 8K masterpiece is a stunning viewing unit that is sure to bring anything from nature documentaries to children’s classics to superhero flicks to life.

The amount of technological horsepower in the XBR-85Z9G is staggering. Stunning whites and nearly perfect blacks mean that every other color is as sublime as imaginable. Your images are more richly detailed and you see more of the scene, picking out tiny details that might otherwise have been hidden in the shadows on less capable TV sets.

PROS: A special “Netflix Calibrated Mode” allows viewers to experience the same picture quality as Netflix producers would see on their professional monitors.

CONS: This particular unit is a bit more on the professional end than the recreational end.

Sony 8k

Courtesy of Amazon

  

2. Samsung 82-Inch QLED 8K TV

The Samsung Q900 series uses its proprietary QLED technology to bring breathtaking realism to viewers. Samsung introduced the world to Quantum LED technology and since then, has allowed other manufacturers to license the process, which promises aesthetic purity at its finest.

According to Samsung, “The Quantum Processor 8K enables today’s content to be remastered into stunning 8K detail. It also optimizes sound for each scene, adjusts brightness to the room’s environment and customizes content recommendations.” In other words: you’re getting upscaled content that transforms a regular image into something with brighter colors, deeper contrasts and fuller sound.

Professional grade video equipment with a value driven approach is what makes this Samsung 8K TV a true contender.

PROS: AppleTV app is easy and intuitive, plus the smart home functionality make this a TV from the future.

CONS: For the best viewing experience, you may want to add a soundbar or home theater system.

Samsung 8K TV

Courtesy of Amazon

  

3. Elite Screens CineGrey 5D 150″ 8K Screen

Want to feel like going to the movies, without actually going to the movies? Hang the 150″ Elite Screen and you’ll feel as if the living room is a personal Alamo Draft House.

Elite Screens’ CineGrey 5D is engineered from a special material perfect for rooms that may be subject to incidental light. The 5D is a multi layer screen which nearly perfectly accepts and reflects the light from the source projector while deterring ambient light from the viewer’s field of view. This combination of materials produces a superior viewing experience compared to other 8K screens.

PROS: Ambient light deflection works well, images are clean and crisp in a variety of viewing situations.

CONS: This product is a suited to larger viewing spaces and can require professional installation and setup. Note: this isn’t an 8K TV but rather a projector screen that can display your 8K content.

Elite Screens 8K

Courtesy of Amazon

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