Here I am sat on my miserly 1080p / 60Hz display, while over in Japan electronics specialist Sharp has been showing off a 27” 8K monitor. It doesn’t end there either, because it’s also running with a 120Hz refresh rate and is HDR-capable. Good job I’m wearing a bib writing about this.
The no doubt horrendously expensive monitor was on display at CEATEC Japan 2016. Running at 8K means it’ll require a graphics card capable of 7680 x 4320 resolution (four times the number of pixels as 4K), so it’s probably a little out of reach unless you’re packing some quad-SLI monster or fancy playing some Pong.
The screen itself is an IGZO IPS panel. That’s a new one to me but it’s apparently the materials used to construct the panel - indium, gallium, zinc and oxygen, so there you go. The whole thing looks pretty slick from the front but you can see from the image below that one's quite a chunky fella, necessary to house the hardware needed to power an 8K display.
I have to say I’m impressed this display manages to pump out at 120Hz refresh rate at such a ridiculous resolution. Actually being able to take advantage of that is a different matter entirely though. Considering there’s basically no monitors out there with HDR support it’s nice to see that creep in as well. That’s definitely likely to be a more prominent feature in PC monitors going forward, particularly as demand for the feature rises.
Actually playing a game on this thing is a pipe dream right now. Getting hold of the monitor is one thing (this one is unlikely to be made commercially available), but getting the necessary computing power is another thing entirely. As a taste of things to come though, it’s certainly whetted our appetite for 8K displays.