Within the video production community, there is a bit of an unsettling murmur about 4k video production and the logistical problems it brings. Some videographers within the industry keep asking “when is 4k video production going to come”, while others are much less optimistic about it. Why? Here are the 6 main challenges to 4k video production.
- Distribution Network: Until recently, bluray was the only way to get even 1080p video easily shared with others. Unfortunately, it is still relatively expensive and not everyone has a bluray player. Luckily, now as more consumers and businesses are moving towards web-based video, Youtube has already enabled 2.5k and “original” upload quality being an option for beyond 1080p video viewing.
- Internet speeds: That’s great right? Except who has fast enough internet to view full 1080p let alone 4k video on their current connection? Enter – fiber internet connection. Fiber internet connections are already hitting consumers in urban markets at very affordable rates and their reach is growing. Here in Minneapolis we have fiber connections being laid and parts of Minneapolis have 100mbps internet connection both down AND UP for under $50/mo. http://fiber.usinternet.com/plans-and-prices/
- Compression: Another huge innovation is the upcoming replacement of h264 to h265 video codec (it’s the way they compress the files for video). It is said to deliver twice the data bandwidth for video without compromising the quality at all and can handle up to 8k video. What this means is that the current infrastructure and internet connections will be able to handle twice the quality they are able to watch right now – without changing anything. Consumers will be able to watch better quality video on their phones, tv’s, tablets, computers without having to upgrade. As internet connections continue to improve (and 4g data connections on mobile devices continue to improve as well), speed will become a non-issue. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Efficiency_Video_Coding
- Cameras: This is a valid concern as 4k video cameras have previously been rather expensive ($15,000+). Now that technology has brought 4k video to devices as cheap as your phone (Samsung Galaxy Note 3) and with new dslr type cameras pushing the industry forward (aka Panasonic m4/3 GH 4k) camera coming out next year, and professional 4k cameras such as the Sony FS700 (which are currently the #1 camera used for slow motion booths across the country), the cameras are coming.
- Storage: Since 4k video takes about 4 times the data of 1080p, hard drives start filling up rather quickly! Apple has shown that professional computers (MacPro) of the future won’t be limited with internal drives. They are forcing you to be using something like a Drobo or external system for storage that has a blazing fast connection to edit your media. The space you need is a “consumable” part of your business now, and your computer itself is the brains / muscle. You will be easily able to add storage capacity to your computer and access or edit right from an external device
- Displays: All of the technology is great except but if you cannot see the difference then there is no point to it! Except, with devices as cheap as the $500 iPad retina already go beyond 1080p with their native display at 2,048 by 1,536. Your 15″ laptop now has 2880-by-1800 (Macbook at least). There are rumors of the next Apple Display to be ultra-HD at twice their current iMac resolution, and 4k LED televisions bringing ultra-hd video production right to your living room.
Despite these 6 main challenges to 4k video production, 4k video production is coming to the Minneapolis and national market faster than we may think and Provid Films is eagerly anticipating the innovation!