News Feature | March 30, 2017

Samsung Unveils 4K HDR Display For the Silver Screen

By Jof Enriquez,
Follow me on Twitter @jofenriq

Image courtesy of Samsung

Samsung Electronics has unveiled what it claims as the world's first High Dynamic Range LED theater display at the CinemaCon 2017 conference in Las Vegas.

In recent years, companies like Samsung have quickly developed and commercialized advanced panels for home theater systems and streaming services that threaten cinemas which use older technologies. But Sang Kim, VP of Samsung Electronics America, said in a statement that "theaters must reposition themselves as a destination for an incomparable viewing experience that consumers simply cannot encounter anywhere else."

The company says its new Cinema Screen can bring a truly immersive experience to the viewer, with the 34-foot display featuring LED picture quality at 4K (4,096 x 2,160) resolution with High Dynamic Range (HDR), which is considered the next big thing in display technology. HDR expands contrast and color, and makes "whiter whites" and "blacker blacks."

Samsung also claims the display is up to ten times brighter than what standard cinema projectors and screens offer, and may be packaged with an audio solution, produced by the recently acquired Harman Professional Solutions’ Cinema Group and Samsung’s Audio Lab, reports Digital Trends.

“Harman is excited to continue its collaboration with the Samsung Cinema Screen team and the Samsung Audio Lab. With our expertise in cinema sound systems, we look forward to helping to extend Samsung’s leadership in Visual Display solutions into the theater,” said Brian Divine, VP of Tour and Cinema Solutions Group.

The Verge, however, notes that Samsung’s 34-foot display is still smaller than most movie theater screens, which typically are between 45 and 65 feet wide, whereas IMAX theaters typically feature a 72-foot-wide screen. But Samsung says movie theaters today are being used for a wider range of entertainment purposes beyond movies, such as corporate events, concert and sports event viewing, and gaming competitions, and their Cinema Screen can serve multiple needs.

“The launch of our cinema LED display is merely the latest step toward our vision for a complete end-to-end theater experience powered by digital signage,” said Seog-gi Kim, Senior VP of Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “Through modern technologies ranging from touch-screen self-ticketing kiosks to digital concession menu boards and interactive movie posters, Samsung already is helping theaters improve customer engagement and boost operational efficiency. We look forward to continuing to serve as a total solutions provider for the theater industry and finding new and exciting ways to improve the customer experience.”

Samsung has not announced the likely expensive price tag for the Cinema Screen. For comparison, one of the company's latest TV products, the 88-inch Q9 QLED monitor announced at CES in January, will reportedly retail for around $30,000, according to Engadget.