January 15, 2016
By “resolution,” we mean VIDEO resolution.
In our world of ever-changing technology, it is easy to get lost in all the numbers and abbreviations when it comes to video. We find one common area that can lead to confusion and cause delays is resolution.
So how does one avoid resolution confusion?
Knowing the end use of a video at the beginning of a project is the best way to avoid issues later. And that question usually has more than one answer. For example, a corporate customer may need one video to display on a large monitor in their lobby, for an off-site meeting at a resort, and also for the internet. And this is where resolution confusion sets in. Knowing the basics of resolution will help.
Resolution is a measure of how many pixels an image has. Pixels are tiny squares that make up a digital image. Each square is like a very small piece of a large puzzle. The individual pixels by themselves convey little information, but when combined with other pixels complete the whole picture.
Resolution is typically expressed as image length times height (in pixels). There are a dizzying number of resolutions for the various display options when you consider the internet, mobile devices, video monitors and televisions.
Here are a few common resolutions that you’ll find in the world of video:
- 720 x 480 — Standard Definition
- 1280 x 720 — High Definition or 720 HD
- 1290 x 1080 — Full HD (High Definition) or 1080 HD
- 2048 x 1080 — 2K
- 3840 x 2160 — UHD or Ultra High Definition (sometimes called 4K)
- 4096 x 2160 — 4K (as described by DCI — Digital Cinema Initiatives)
- 5120 x 2880 — 5K
- 7680 x 4320 — 8K
It’s common for people in the industry to refer to an image resolution only by its height. For example, when you may hear someone say “that video needs to be 720,” they are referring to the 1280 x 720 resolution.
Take a look these resolution videos by Lernert & Sander. They show the differences between each resolution in an easy to understand way. Check it out here.
So there you have it. Confused yet? The good news is that you don’t need to become a resolution expert. That’s our job. It’s always best to identify how
your new project is going to be displayed before you start, even if the answer is “I’m not sure”. That way you are assured of getting the highest quality
Let us take care of your video resolutions so you can get to work on your New Year’s resolutions.