When watching 8K TV – our eyes look but it’s our brain that sees
One big reason to consider purchasing a new 8K TV when they’re released in Australia next year – your brain will really appreciate it more than your eyes.
Even when the TV screen actually goes beyond our retinal capability – our brains can still perceive even greater depth and register emotions faster according to Dr Kyoung Min Lee, MD PhD from the Cognitive Science Institute of Seoul National University.
Tech Guide spoke to Dr Lee at Samsung’s headquarters in South Korea.
Mr Lee’s research is of particular interest to Samsung after the company unveiled its first 8K TVs at the recent IFA trade show in Berlin.
These new TVs, with four times the resolution of 4K, are already on sale in the US and Europe and are heading to Australia in 2019.
The increase in the sheer number of pixels will be of huge interest to customers and provide greater detail for the eye and easier depth perception and spatial recognition for our brain.
But the interesting part of Dr Lee’s observations was the fact that our brain can achieve greater depth perception with better resolution.
“Depth relies on cues beyond retinal perception,” Dr Lee told Tech Guide.
In other words our eyes can look but it is our brain that really sees.
Watching a super resolution display like an 8K TV, the brain actually has less work to do to.
Dr Lee says watching a lower resolution display with lots of artefacts and distortion requires a lot of effort from your brain to filter out the noise to make sense of the scene.
“That’s why you become fatigued or tired after watching poor pixelated display for a long time,” he said.
“With an 8K TV, your brain can spend more energy to get into the narrative and the story and enjoy the experience instead of filtering out the noise.”
Dr Lee says our brains need information to work out emotions from a human face on the screen but that becomes easier and faster to process when watching an 8K display.
“There was a claim that 2K (full high definition) was the appropriate level of resolution for retinal perception,” Dr Lee said.
“How the brain works is not limited by the resolution of the display.”
In fact Dr Lee says even going beyond 8K, our eyes might not be able to tell the difference but our brains have even more capacity than our eyes to detect and appreciate the added depth of the image and added visual information.
“There is no limit in the resolution that we should aim for,” he said.
“We need to envision 16K or 32K and beyond.”
* Stephen Fenech travelled to Seoul as a guest of Samsung