Want to do gaming in 4K? Here is what you need
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4K gaming is the new buzzword in the gaming industry. Most of the new games support 4K resolution, which is basically the number of pixels in an image. So a 4K (3,840x2,160p) game offers twice the number of pixels in a Full HD (1,920x1080p) game, resulting in better image clarity and detailing.
In case you want to try out some of the new 4K games, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. For starters, you will need a TV with native 4K resolution and higher refresh rate. Also, TVs with higher refresh rate will handle the change in frames in the games more fluidly.
The other element to check while buying 4K TV is the HDMI standard it supports. Most of the low cost 4K TVs support HDMI 1.4, which can transfer data at speed of up to 10Gbps, while TVs with HDMI 2.0 can muster speeds of up to 18GBps, resulting in faster processing. Also, HDMI 1.4 standard supports 4K resolution at a refresh rate of 30fps at most. While that works for 4K movies, for 4K gaming HDMI 2.0 is more ideal as it supports 4K at 60fps.
To play 4K games on a TV, users will need a console that also supports true 4K gaming. Microsoft’s Xbox One X (Rs44,990) and Sony’s PlayStation 4 Pro (starts at Rs32,899) support native 4K resolution. The more affordable Xbox One S (Rs29,990) upscales Full HD games into 4K by stretching the pixels, so to say. While this makes the game look better than Full HD games, it lacks the clarity of native 4K.
Another advantage of the new Xbox One X and Sony PS4 consoles is that they support 4K HDR (High Dynamic Range), another video standard which can further improve the gaming experience. HDR offers a wider colour gamut and enhances the dynamic range (ratio between darkest and brightest parts on the screen) in a game, resulting in richer colours and better contrast. This is why bright areas look brighter and dark areas look darker in 4K HDR games compared to 4K games. To take full advantage of the feature, the TV and video game should also support 4K HDR. Square Enix’s Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, EA Sports’ FIFA 18 and Sony’s Gran Turismo Sport are some of the new games which support 4K HDR.
PC gamers can go for high-end gaming notebooks or gaming desktops which support 4K HDR gaming. HP Omen 17 (starts at Rs1,59,990) is one of the big screen notebooks with 4K resolution and which uses Nvidia’s powerful GeForce GTX 1070 (4GB) graphics. Among gaming desktops New Alienware Aurora (starts at Rs1,15, 990) which works with 4K HDR monitors and TVs and is powered by Nvidia’s top of the line GeForce GTX 1080 (8GB) graphics. A 4K monitor by LG or Samsung with a 24-inch screen will cost around Rs30,000.
4K gaming is likely to burn a hole in your pocket, as it is an expensive affair and requires users to upgrade their entire ecosystem of devices including 4K TVs, monitors, consoles and laptops, which cost more than Full HD ready devices. But for most, this will be worth the money spent.