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Canon's 4K display prototype hands-on: this might be your next TV

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Canon's showing off a 4K display prototype at NAB, and it looks good.

Canon 4K prototype
Canon 4K prototype

We've seen 4K cameras and 4K projectors here at NAB, but most of it isn't exactly consumer-friendly yet. Canon's remembering the common folk, though, showing off the latest version of its prototype 4K displays in the form of 30-inch TVs. We were escorted into a dark room to watch 4K footage on the smaller displays — the same two shorts used last night to demonstrate the C500 and 1D C's capabilities — and while it's not quite as breathtaking as it was on a movie theater-sized screen, footage still looked incredible. One scene we watched showed a cityscape, and tiny cars on the 4K display were incredibly clear and detailed, allowing you to see two distinct headlights on the ant-sized vehicle.

Canon clearly knows that part of driving 4K adoption is going to be giving consumers a way to watch the footage in all its high-res glory. The company's not known for making displays, but creating a prototype and reference design could go a long way toward convincing people to buy 4K TVs — which reps said will likely be a challenge similar to getting people to switch to HDTVs several years ago. As was the case with HD, though, a few minutes of watching 4K footage is enough to make you not want to go back.

Reps didn't have a timeline for when the display would be more than a prototype, or how much it might cost, but given how many other companies are jumping on the 4K bandwagon, your living room could be due for an upgrade in the very near future.