So you want a 4K TV, but 4K content is still woefully lacking, and the price points of the retina-roasting behemoths from the likes of Samsung and LG are still shocking enough to cure hiccups. What’s a savvy tech enthusiast to do? Sharp’s answer is its new hybrid between HD and 4K, the Q+, which just landed in stores.
The goal of the Q+ is to offer nearly all of the advantages of 4K, for around half the price of most upper tier models. The Q+ boasts around 10 million more subpixels than standard 1080p HD displays, and unlike any other TV below the 4K line, it can display native 4K content. The Q+ also come with Sharp’s Revelation Upscale, designed to boost 1080p content up to its higher resolution.
The Q+ come in two tiers: the standard SQ, and the premium UQ. Both versions come loaded with plenty of features including 4 HDMI inputs, a 240Hz panel, Bluetooth audio, and Sharp’s newly designed Smart Central 3.0 interface, which is packed with apps and also allows for control via iOS and Android devices.
Stepping up to the UQ will also procure a bit more elegance and performance, with design elements like a titanium-brushed aluminum bezel, and premium features like THX certification, a 15-watt subwoofer, and top-tier digital enhancements such as Sharp’s Aquomotion 960, and Super Bright Technology, which makes the screen, well, super bright.
We got a chance to check out the Q+ firsthand at CES in January, and feeding the TV 4K native content made for an impressive demonstration of precision and brilliance. While it obviously didn’t quite match the full 4K experience from the top offerings on display at the show, to our eyes the TV looked just as impressive or better than a lot of the low-end 4K models floating around the Las Vegas Convention Center halls.
Though pricing for the Q+ is still relatively high in comparison to the average 1080p TV, what you’re really gaining for your money in comparison to the rest of the Ultra HD landscape is size – which is Sharp’s specialty. The SQ Q+ comes in 60-inch and 70-inch versions for $2,400 and $3,400 respectively, while the UQ comes in 60, 70, and 80-inch models, running at $3,000, $4,000, and $6,000 respectively.
While six grand may sound like a lot of bread for a TV, compare the 80-inch UQ Q+ to, say, the $40,000 85-inch Samsung UN85S9 4K TV, and you’ll likely appreciate some serious savings.
Those looking for a little more than HD without pulling the kids out of college can find Sharp’s new SQ models in stores now, while the UQs should be arriving in mid-March.