Meet the New Sharp THX 4K-Certified Ultra HD TVs that are going on sale
by Stephan Jukic – October 30th, 2014
Sharp is one of the major players in the 4K Ultra HD TV market and though they don’t generate the same media attention as Samsung, LG and Sony, whatever they do put serious effort into building well usually turns out to be excellent.
This is the case with the latest lineup of 4K flagship TVs from the company. Because Sharp wanted to really create something that had quality built into it, the effort has taken a while but finally, the company has made its formal unveiling of its new Aquos UD27 line of 4K Ultra HD TVs.
These are promising to be some top notch 4K sets and a strong piece of evidence for that quality is the THX seal of approval they come with. Getting THX Certification for authentic picture and color performance is not only very difficult, it’s also quite time consuming.
The prototypes for the new Aquos line of TVs have already been shown here and there at various trade shows such as CES in Las Vegas and the IFA show in Berlin in September of this year and in all cases, most viewers of the TVs were quite impressed with the quality they saw.
Thus, the anticipation for the new sharp 4K TVs has actually been quite high. Furthermore, in a surprising decision, Shaper has priced its new sets remarkably well considering their features and top-shelf branding.
The 60 inch LC-60UD27U will retail for just $3,200 and the 70 inch LC-70UD27U will go for a fairly decent $4,400 USD. This latter set is also claimed to be the largest THX certified TV in the world.
And even these prices are only suggest retail markups. The real street prices are considerably more competitive still. The 60 inch model is already available on Amazon for just $2,300 and the 70 inch set is retailing there for an incredible $3,000.
Given the average prices of the latest Sony, Panasonic and LG 4K models of comparable size, the new Sharp line is selling for what amounts to a very, very reasonable price.
Of course, the new Vizio 4K TVs, which share the same size range and many of the same high-end features are selling for at least $500 less but then again they don’t have the THX certification and quite the same brand reputation as Sharp.
In terms of internal features, the new Aquos sets both come with 4K HMDI ports, internal upscaling engines for making even HD content look much better than it normally would and are fully HEVC (H.265) compatible for decoding of streaming 4K feeds from Netflix, Amazon and other online 4K content providers.
One of the disappointing aspects of the TVs, even with their affordable retail prices is the backlighting of the screens. Instead of full-array direct backlighting such as that found in the most advanced 4K TV models, Sharp has installed an edge-lit LED array in both TV screens. This is distinctly inferior to Full-array direct backlighting and particularly disappointing considering that even Vizio’s considerably cheaper UHD TVs come with a full-array LED setup.
The THX certification is also worth mentioning. It’s not something that THX hands out lightly and when it’s found on a TV, it really does count as a sign of quality instead of an empty label.
Sharp had to pass through over 400 picture quality tests in order to gain the certification and the people at THX only offer their seal of approval to TVs whose screens can almost perfectly match the original image and color quality intended by film makers as they were producing their movies in THX.
The Sharp Aquos TVs are already being delivered to resellers throughout the US and official launch events will be held as of November 6th.
Story by 4k.com