Archive for August, 2020

#4 Next Wave / OLED IOLED Contrast Ratio

Sunday, August 30th, 2020

Part 4 of 4

Goodbye LCD

Your video source defines potential possible performance.  Connected AV components and interconnecting cable must allow the video to pass unaltered.  Your TV determines the ultimate result.  


The organic light-emitting diode’s contrast ratio has led OLED TV to the high-performance leader.  Advanced inorganic light-emitting diode technology, IOLED, is coming.  Both consist of single-pixel points of light that range from full-on brightness to full-off. 

Nit Picking Difference   

A Nit is a measure of brightness.  For reference, the noonday sun measures around 1,600,000,000 nits.  The night sky around 0.001 nits.  UHD LCD TVs currently achieve a brightness level of 1500 nits.  OLED screens measure 540 nits. 

Whoa, LCD is far brighter than OLED.  Yes, but LCD TV can only achieve a black level of 0.05 nit, while current OLED screens achieve a black level of 0.0005 nit.  High dynamic range lies in the contrast difference. 

It’s a Difference of Ratios.  

The dynamic range of video is the difference between the darkest black level and the brightness white.  The ratio of the black level to the brightest level equals the contrast ratio. 

LCD TVs have achieved contrast ratios of 30,000:1.  Current OLED models approach 1,000,000:1.  OLED contrast ratio is the HDR gateway to a more lifelike natural colors.

LEDs and Q-Dots

Current OLED TVs border the DCI P3 color standard.  But the future lies in the REC.2020 color specification.  Steps toward that goal have begun. 

Samsung plans to ship its new QD-OLED televisions in 2021 or 2022.  The Q corresponds to quantum-dot.  The quantum dot is a molecular semiconducting particle that produces light when struct by UV or blue LED light.  Samsung uses blue LEDs to stimulate and create red and green quantum-dot sub-pixels of light.  Their remaining blue LEDs produced the blue sub-pixels.  Their QD-OLED TVs will further improve contrast and color gamut. 

They have also announced the future release of QNED TVs.  Again the Q corresponds to the quantum dot.  But the organic LEDs are replaced with inorganic LEDs.  Inorganic light-emitting diodes are substantially brighter, which further extends the contrast ratio.  QNED TVs should approach 12bit REC.2020 color.

Don’t get caught up in the numbers and acronyms.  The salient UHD HDR point — all real LED pixel-based displays can turn a pixel off while an adjacent pixel is full-on.

OLED and IOLED contrast ratio, and its expanded color gamut, plus advanced manufacturing development has led Samsung to announce their planned discontinuation of LCD production.  Say goodbye to LCD.

Pothole Warning   Avoid bumps in the AV road.  Confirm the essential specifications of all connected electronics and interconnecting cables.  For example, if a TV does not explicitly specify a list of HDR formats, then assume it does not support HDR at all.  A ULTRAHD Premium logo confirms support for Premium Alliance specs.  The best UltraHD products exceed their standards with support for HDMI 2.1, Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and HGL.  

Catch the Wave

A new era of AV magic lies in your AV professional hands.  It’s a mix of nits, contrast ratio, color gamut, light-emitting diodes, wide-bandwidth Internet access, audio/video streaming, and off-air antennas.  It’s a new wave of profitable opportunities.


Additional Note: 

Web Search Confusion – A web search did not easily reveal QNED as inorganic technology.  The ‘N’ in QNED stands for nanorod LED.  Inorganic tech is hidden in nanorod LED illustrations.  Look closely at the labeling.  GaN is gallium nitride.  Gallium nitride is an inorganic material.  Therefore, a nanorod LED is an inorganic LED.  And QNED is IOLED TV.

Web Search Correction – A web search produced many Samsung QNED stories that incorrectly identified quantum dots as color filters.  Quantum dots are not filters.  Quantum dots are points of illuminating light.  

Check out my website Ed’s AV Handbook & business site SandTrapAudio.







#3 Next Wave / UltraHD (UHD), 8K UHD, HDR

Sunday, August 30th, 2020

Part 3 of 4

UltraHD (referred to as 4K) quadruples video resolution from about two million HDTV pixels to more than eight million pixels.  That’s good.  Pixel count is easy to explain, but difficult to see. 

8K UltraHD doubles UltraHD (UHD) resolution, which quadruples the number of UHD pixels.   Again, the pixel-count is easy to explain.  Yet even more difficult to see. 

HDTV            1080 lines x 1920 pixels/line = 2,073,600 pixels

UltraHD          2130 lines x 3840 pixels/line = 8,294,400 pixels  

8K UltraHD    4320 lines x 7680 pixels/line = 33,177,600 pixels

As the early days of HDTV, 8K UHD video sources will be in short supply for some time.  The current resolution benefit of 8K, with the assistance of AI-upscale software, is primarily focused on wall-sized screens. 

The Viewable Difference  

High Dynamic Range is more complicated to explain but easy to see.  HDR expands the difference between the darkest black and brightest white pixel.  It creates an expansive grayscale that produces more detailed side-by-side simultaneous dark-bright light.  This extended broader grayscale also increases color gamut.  This may be the most significant difference since the introduction of color. 


The C.I.E. is the international committee of color standards.  Their C.I.E. color chart defines the visible range of color and sets video standards.  UltraHD HDR employs two C.I.E. color standard options,  DCI P3 and REC.2020.

Digital Cinema Initiative P-3 represents 45.5% of the C.I.E. color chart.  REC.2020 equals 75.8% of the color chart.  For reference, HDTV REC.709 equals 35.9% of the chart. 

DCI P-3 satisfies current UHD standards.  REC.2020 is the future objective.  In either case, both support more lifelike natural colors that are considerably more visible than UHD  pixels. 

HDR  Caveat  

HDR utilizes competing formats.  Your choice of video sources dictates the format.  The TV must decode the format.  Front running formats include HDR10, Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and HGL. 

HDR10 is the baseline default format for all HDR sources and TVs. 

Dolby Vision has become the high-performance option.

HDR10+ is an alternative to Dolby Vision.

HGL is the NextGenTV broadcast format.

HDMI Caveat

HDR formats are dependent on HDMI specifications.  Non-compliant interconnecting cable or AV components produce blank screens or downgrade the video to standard dynamic range. 

HDMI 2.0a supports HDR10. 

HDMI 2.0b adds support for HGL. 

HDMI 2.1 adds support for 10bit HDR10+ and 12bit Dolby Vision. 


The UltraHD Premium Alliance, an association of manufacturers, studios, and others, established baseline UltraHD HDR specifications. 

3840 x 2160 video resolution. 

LCD 0.05nit to 1000 nit brightness. 

OLED 0.0005nit to 540 nit brightness. 

10bit Color. 

90% of the DCI P3 color gamut. 

The UltraHD Premium logo validates product meets their standards. 


Continue to part #4 “OLED, IOLED, Contrast Ratio”

Visit my website Ed’s AV Handbook  & business site SandTrapAudio.








#2 Next Wave / Channels Of Distribution

Sunday, August 30th, 2020

Part 2 of 4

I travel a strip of historic US40 almost daily.  Long ago, the interstate highway system drove the old highway off the road map as an obscure alternate route.  Remnants of its past still lie in the trees and brush at the side of the old road — the foundation of a gas station, bent rusty motel sign, a worn and dated bridge.  

It’s an age-old story.  US40 shelved the old Lincoln Highway.  The Lincoln Highway ended the Union Pacifics’ near-monopoly of an east-west US trade route. The railroad ended east-west ship-by-sea via Cape Horn’s dominance of commerce.   It was also a welcome alternative to travel by horse-drawn wagon. 

Each new channel of distribution stunted the economic clout of the existing primary channel.  Each created a new profitable opportunity.  And 5G cellular networks and NextGenTV are primed to do much the same as they accelerate cable and satellite cord-cutting.  

5G Networks 

5G is a new and improved 5th generation cellular network.  It is also a nationwide Internet hotspot that enhances wireless Internet access.  5G broadcasts via three radio bands — mmWave, Mid-band Sub6, and low-band.  Each has a distance, speed, or signal obstruction advantage. 

mmWave 24GHz to 90GHz

mmWave provides tremendous data speeds.  But mmWave is short on range and has trouble penetrating windows and walls. 

Mid-band Sub6 3GHz to 4GHz

Mid-band Sub6 lies between 4G-LTE and WiFi.  It has fewer solid obstacle issues but still boosts data speeds.  Plus, it provides coverage in densely populated areas. 

Low-band 700MHz 

Low-band forms the backbone of 5G.  It offers reliable coverage via existing 4G-LTE sites.  Low-band data speeds are marginally better than 4G-LTE but more than sufficient for most needs. 

5G’s mobile “Wi-Fi hotspots” offer more convenience than being anchored to home-based WiFi.  5G offers more security than public WiFi.  Plus, 5G’s multiple bands allow users and providers to individually manage bandwidth and coverage needs. 


Internet protocol-based over-the-air NextGenTV has launched in many US markets.  NextGen provides two sources of UltraHD HDR video  — local broadcast channels, and Intenet streaming access.  It is poised to become a cord-cutter’s primary source of UltraHD HDR video. 

NextGenTV broadcasts cover greater distances and extend deeper into buildings than HDTV.  Local NextGen UHD broadcasts are free.  Cable and satellite cord-cutting savings should more than cover the cost of streaming services, antennas, and installation.    It may also connect to mobile devices — cell phones, tablets, laptops — with included tuners. 

TV manufacturers can integrate a NextGen tuner or offer a set-top box.  The tuners include an off-air RG-6 antenna jack, plus WiFi and a hard-wire RJ-45 jack that provide connection and distribution to home router networks. 

Rooftop Antennas  

A TV picture is only as good as its input signal — garbage in garbage out.  The antenna is the NextGenTV portal.  A quality rooftop antenna produces RF signal gain.

Targeted RF gain improves the signal-to-noise ratio.  A high signal-to-noise ratio produces a clean picture. 

Rooftop antenna pricing ranges from about $80.00 to $300.00.  Add the cost of a mast, mounting hardware, and quad shield RG-6 coax.  You may also need a preamplifier, distribution amp, antenna rotator, splitter, combiner, filter, additional antenna, plus installation, which adds up to a profitable opportunity. 

If you’re new to the antenna category, then get kick-started with the following websites.

FCC DTV Reception Map

The FCC website offers broadcast data based on specific channels.

  • Distance from your location to broadcast tower.
  • Signal strength
  • Repack status of VHF channel numbers to a UHF frequency

Consumer Electronics Association Antenna Selection

The CEA partnered with Channel Master to assist antenna selection.

Continue to part #3 “UltraHDTV HDR”

Visit my website Ed’s AV Handbook & business site SandTrapAudio.



#1 The Next Wave

Sunday, August 30th, 2020

(1st of 4 parts)

Virtual events, trade-mags, and web-search cannot replace personal meetings with friends and reps.  Trade shows, product seminars, and distributor events, and our sales reps are primary sources of industry news and first-hand product information.  I count on their hands-on experience to separate noise from meaningful information.  This hands-on exchange of information is even more important this year. 

New channels of distribution plus communication and television technologies are transforming our AV landscape.  5G cellular networks offer a flood of Internet-based services — video conferencing, Internet of things, augmented & virtual reality, plus easier-access wide-bandwidth wireless streaming.

NextGenTV, based on Internet protocol, provides free over-the-air UltraHD HDR broadcast plus another access-point to AV streaming. 

UltraHD doubles HDTV resolution.  UHD-8K doubles UltraHD resolution.  More significantly, both pave the way for High Dynamic Range video.  HDR offers the potential to more than double color-gamut. 

And HDR’s potential shines on near infinite contrast ratio OLED and advancing IOLED television technology.  Individually each is a game-changer.  Collectively, they spearhead a new wave of AV magic and profitable opportunity. 

However, the magic disappears in the wrong interconnect, missing HDMI 2.1 support, an absent HDR format, and insufficient specification.  At worst, the picture is lost.  At best, the video downgrades to standard-dynamic-range. 

This 4 part blog aims to stand in until you resume hands-on conversation with your custom AV peers.

Next Part #2 NextWave Channels of Distribution


Visit my website Ed’s AV Handbook & business site SandTrapAudio.