Ultra HD ‘Premium’ Is For New, HDR-Capable 4K TVs

Ultra HD ‘Premium’ Is For New, HDR-Capable 4K TVs

There’s a new standard for high-end Ultra HD TVs, setting clear definitions for picture quality in terms of maximum and minimum brightness, colour depth and input resolution. This might seem boring, but it’s the kind of thing that will set a benchmark in quality for the TVs that we buy in 2016 and beyond.

Developed by the UHD Alliance, the working group composed of companies like Samsung, Sony, LG, Dolby and Netflix, Ultra HD Premium is a standard for 3840x2160pixel video, and the devices that capture and display it. It’s more concrete and demanding than the original Ultra HD standard, which was little more than a specification for resolution, aspect ratio and bitrate.

The biggest feature of Ultra HD Premium is the mandatory inclusion of high dynamic range, the standard by which new TVs are able to simultaneously display excellent detail in both extremely bright and extremely dark areas of video. Notations for peak luminance and minimum black level are also incuded.

This kind of standardisation is great; such a concrete definition means that only compatible TVs will be able to sport the Ultra HD Premium sticker, and that will serve as a genuine assurance of a cetain level of quality in colour, contrast and overall image clarity. [UHD Alliance]

The UHDA’s ULTRA HD PREMIUM logo is reserved for products and services that comply with performance metrics for resolution, high dynamic range (HDR), peak luminance, black levels and wide color gamut among others. The specifications also make recommendations for immersive audio and other features. These advances in resolution, contrast, brightness, color and audio will enable certified displays and content to replicate the richness of life’s sights and sounds and allow in-home viewers to more fully and accurately experience the content creator’s vision.

You can read the abridged set of standards for Ultra HD Premium below.

UHD Alliance Technical Specifications Overview


The UHD Alliance supports various display technologies and consequently, have defined combinations of parameters to ensure a premium experience across a wide range of devices. In order to receive the UHD Alliance Premium Logo, the device must meet or exceed the following specifications: 

Image Resolution: 3840×2160 
Color Bit Depth: 10-bit signal 
Color Palette (Wide Color Gamut) 
Signal Input: BT.2020 color representation 
Display Reproduction: More than 90% of P3 colors 
High Dynamic Range 
A combination of peak brightness and black level either: 
More than 1000 nits peak brightness and less than 0.05 nits black level 
More than 540 nits peak brightness and less than 0.0005 nits black level 


Any distribution channel delivering the UHD Alliance content must support 

Image Resolution: 3840×2160 
Color Bit Depth: Minimum 10-bit signal 
Color: BT.2020 color representation 
High Dynamic Range: SMPTE ST2084 EOTF 

Content Master 

The UHD Alliance Content Master must meet the following requirements: 
Image Resolution: 3840×2160 
Color Bit Depth: Minimum 10-bit signal 
Color: BT.2020 color representation 
High Dynamic Range: SMPTE ST2084 EOTF 
The UHD Alliance recommends the following mastering display specifications: 

Display Reproduction: Minimum 100% of P3 colors 
Peak Brightness: More than 1000 nits 
Black Level: Less than 0.03 nits 
The UHD Alliance technical specifications prioritize image quality and recommend support for next-generation audio.