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4K Gaming: How To Avoid Mistakes When Buying A 4K TV On Black Friday

By Jupiter Isidro , Nov 24, 2016 04:15 AM EST
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It's Black Friday once again and 4K TVs will be have a spot on hot items. When spending on this event, you can either get a great deal or spend for something that you don't really need. (Photo : YouTube / THE RED DRAGON)

The new era has arrived in a form of 4K console gaming wars. PS4 Pro fires the first shots as it got rolled out this month, a perfect timing for an upcoming price drop event. It's that time of the year when people go nuts over stuff that are scheduled on an annual price drop event called Black Friday. For gamers, it usually means cheaper games, especially those that are already a year old and a bunch of new items like a 4K TV to upgrade gaming experience. 

It is important to note, though, that you can't experience 4K with PS4 Pro without a 4K capable TV. Here are some information you need before you decide to choose what to buy during Black Friday. Take a pen and paper, or jot it down on your phone, I bet you'll be needing these notes when walking down the electronics aisle.

Understanding 4K Resolution

4K simply means that your pixels on display measure 3840 x 2160, if you round up 3840, you'll end up with 4000, so that's why it's called 4K. 4K is more than doubled the previous standard: 1920 x 1080 (1080p), which we consider now as HD. Take note that what you are currently and will be watching for the Xbox One S and PS4 Pro will still be 1080p but the consoles will convert the signal to 4K which makes it look better.

There are certain TVs that claim they can do 4K but they really don't. Some of it, especially the cheaper ones, do not do well when converting 1080p to 4K. As of this point you need to thoroughly check you target TV's performance by comparing it to expensive brands, that's your best way to check when in the mall. Demos for each brand will surely be showcased, so why not spend some time testing them by merely standing some distance in front of each unit.

Understanding HDR

To simplify this feature, HDR is the ability for a TV to display its darkest and brightest. Combined with a range of colors, this feature has very noticeable improvements compared to upgrading to 4K. There are TVs that can do this, and again, TV's that just can't cut it. To check for this feature, simply ask the sales guy to play some movie with mostly dark scenes. Then notice the black areas of the scene, if you spot some white or grey 'clouds', no deal, look for another unit. Comparing to top brands also help just like what is tipped on the previous paragraph.

A bit of a warning though, as some HDR TVs, despite their awesome display, may have lag problems. This means that there may be a delay on the TV's end to process the image taken from your gaming console. There is no other way to test this but to ask the TV guy to put on some HDR enabled games to the desired TV and test for responsiveness. If you do find lag, try 'game mode' on the TV's settings, this will sacrifice some quality so test it if it still works for you.

Getting Help Online

Before you run towards your favorite store for Black Friday, be sure to have researched all the specs for your target TVs, this way, you will have a shorter visit to the store as you have already filtered out your prospects. Going to online stores and reading reviews about them help a lot. Also there's this post by CNet listing the best deals if price is a bit of an issue.

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