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What does 4K Resolution mean for video games – A quick explainer

What does 4K Resolution mean for video games – A quick explainer

With next-gen finally upon us, let's take a look at what 4k resolution is all about.

What does 4K Resolution mean for video games – A quick explainer

It's not a new topic, but 4K resolution has slowly seeped its way into the mainstream. Just like HD before it, 4K is a better, new way to watch TV, movies, and video games. What is it exactly?

4K refers to the number of horizontal pixels on a screen, numbering 3,840. The number of vertical pixels is 2,160, meaning there is are actually about 8 million pixels on the screen. It might sound confusing, but 8K has twice as many pixels.

Pixels make up the picture. The more pixels, the clearer the picture. The old benchmark was HD, which was 780p (about a million pixels), or 1080p (about two million). 4K and Ultra HD are basically synonymous.

When referring to video games, both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series One X support 4K gaming, but it's all about a smooth picture and frames per second (FPS).

The PS5 and Xbox Series X both boast the ability to render 4K video at 120 FPS, although there is usually a trade-off in resolution. The old standard was 60 FPS.

Here are the caveats: Just because these settings exist, doesn't mean they'll work. Equipment specifically made to handle 4K is required. Also, a game isn't always made to run at 120 FPS. That's up to the developers. Research products before purchasing to make sure they meet your standards.

Things move quickly in the technology world, as 8K TVs are already on the market, although they're new and fairly expensive. Expect some time before the industry really takes advantage of them.

Image Source: Sony

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Jon Silman
Jon Silman

Jon SIlman is a freelance writer based in Florida. His favorite Zelda game is A Link To The Past.

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