The Scientific Reason Why 'After Earth' Is Different

The Scientific Reason Why 'After Earth' Is Different
Los Angeles — Sony Corp. is taking a deeper dive into ultrahigh-definition video as it comes out Friday with "After Earth," the first of Sony's three movies this year both shot and presented in the emerging 4K digital format. At a screening for journalists, I got a close-up look at even the pores on Will Smith's face as details were rendered with greater clarity on the big screen.

Sony and other consumer electronics makers are betting that 4K images will become the new standard, prompting consumers to buy fancier TVs just as they did when high definition, or HD, rolled out over the past decade. It could also entice more people to buy movie tickets to see for themselves what the super-clear format is like.

But the more detailed images present a host of problems. They use four times the number of pixels as the current HD standard, which results in larger data files.
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