SEIKI SE50UY04 50-in 4K 3840x2160 TV Unboxing and Preview

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards, Displays | April 18, 2013 - 05:52 PM |
Tagged: video, seiki, se50UY04, hdtv, hdmi 1.4, displays, 4k, 3840x2160

This just in!  We have a 4K TV in the PC Perspective Offices!

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While we are still working on the ability to test graphics card performance at this resolution with our Frame Rating capture system, we decided to do a live stream earlier today as we unboxed, almost dropped and then eventually configured our new 4K TV. 

The TV in question?  A brand new SEIKI SE50UY04 50-in 3840x2160 ready display.  Haven't heard of it?  Neither have we.  I picked it up over the weekend from TigerDirect for $1299, though it actually a bit higher now at $1499.

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The TV itself is pretty unassuming and other than looking for the 4K label on the box you'd be hard pressed to discern it from other displays.  It DID come with a blue, braided UHD-ready HDMI cable, so there's that.

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One point worth noting is that the stand on the TV is pretty flimsy; there was definitely wobble after installation and setup.

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Connecting the TV to our test system was pretty easy - only a single HDMI cable was required and the GeForce GTX 680s in SLI we happened to have on our test bed recognized it as a 3840x2160 capable display.  Keep in mind that you are limited to a refresh rate of 30 Hz though due to current limitations of HDMI 1.4.  The desktop was clear and sharper and if you like screen real estate...this has it. 

The first thing we wanted to try was some 4K video playback and we tried YouTube videos, some downloaded clips we found scattered across the Internet and a couple of specific examples I had been saving.  Isn't that puppy cute?  It was by far the best picture I had seen on a TV that close up - no other way to say it.

We did have issues with video playback in some cases due to high bit rates.  In one case we had a YUV uncompressed file that was hitting our SSD so hard on read speeds that we saw choppiness.  H.265 save us!

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And of course we demoed some games as well - Battlefield 3, Crysis 3, Skyrim and Tomb Raider.  Each was able to run at 3840x2160 without any complaints or INI hacks.  They all looked BEAUTIFUL when in a still position but we did notice some flickering on the TV that might be the result of the 120 Hz interpolation and possibly the "dynamic luminance control" feature that SEIKI has. 

We'll definitely test some more on this in the coming days to see if we can find a solution as I know many PC gamers are going to be excited about the possibility of using this as a gaming display!  We are working on a collection of benchmarks on some of the higher end graphics solutions like the GeForce TITAN, GTX 680s, HD 7990 and HD 7970s!

If you want to check out the full experience of our unboxing and first testing, check out the full live stream archived below!!

 

April 19, 2013 | 02:41 AM - Posted by Nirvi

Video rocked

April 19, 2013 | 06:31 AM - Posted by John H (not verified)

Even with the 30hz limitation, this is still exciting due to the price. Look forward to hearing PC Perspective's take on 4K resolution and gaming going forward..

.. Do games actually scale with this resolution? (only recently do games really seem to scale from 1080p-1600p due to texture quality)
.. Is the panel quality compromised vs. an IPS 1440p/1600p display to meet the pricing?
.. How does 1440p/1600p content scale up? (or other resolutions. I guess playing a game at 1920x1080 still looks great due to 2:1 scaling?)
.. etc.

Keep up the great work PCPer!

April 19, 2013 | 07:10 AM - Posted by NickBen (not verified)

Nice video.

Are you seeing any benefit to using the Nvidia Quadro 10bit output for 1 Billion colors?

or- are you getting 10 bit over HDMI?

April 19, 2013 | 10:34 AM - Posted by Jun (not verified)

Could the shimmering/flickering on the details could be due to the sharpness setting? When you chose the dynamic preset it got bumped up to 65 which might be too high.

April 19, 2013 | 12:45 PM - Posted by Fishbait

Very awesome video, I hope you can fix the flicker cause it would be a shame if you couldn't as the panel looks (as far as the video I saw) perfect

April 19, 2013 | 12:55 PM - Posted by Danne (not verified)

DP>Hdmi adapter should work with this. 3-way titan sli with 3 of these badboys would be cool tho

June 18, 2013 | 12:43 PM - Posted by NijaFetus (not verified)

that's exactly what I intend to do.

April 19, 2013 | 07:35 PM - Posted by robert (not verified)

Which cards support 4k at 60hz over display port? Is there a way to use a HDMI Y splitter like the manual said to push two HDMI's at once to get full 4k at 60Hz? Can you guys play a little with that and see if you get the monitor to work with that? thanks

April 19, 2013 | 11:10 PM - Posted by undermined

no single HDMI 1.4 port can do 3840x2160 @60hz.. ever

Single port is exclusive to DisplayPort 1.2

HDMI 2.0 might do it in 2014 but talk is it might take until mid 2014 not early.

6G-SDI is spec'd to handle 4K too but that will be for broadcast displays and is just getting announced.

All the LG 84", the Sony 84", 65", 55" and the Samsung 85" are 30hz only too for HDMI inputs since that is the HDMI 1.4 standard.

The only 4096x2160 or 3840x2160 displays that might do 60hz are the Sharp 32" Igzo over DisplayPort and the 3 Ezio models.

I don't have any info about the Sony OLED reference screens yet but I'd guess they'll have 6G-SDI but still 30hz over HDMI.

On top of all that is 2 cable chaining is normally Quadro or FirePro exclusive and doesn't work for gaming or even desktop ATM unless the display has extra hardware like the $36,000 USD Ezio DuraView.

Hands on so far over at reduser forums says 1080p looks like junk but PC driven content is fine, kinda like 1080p was for a long time but someAVR's out since last year or before will pass 3840x2160 or upconvert to "4K" so this seiki might be a good deal still if you research your setup, and someone can get into the service menu and see if you can calibrate it.

Otherwise it would be a lot better to wait until 2nd or 3rd gen or at least until Sony, LG and Samsung react to this models pricing and at least move under $4,000 USD for a 55" or until Amazon starts shipping them too after the 25th of April in case you get a lemon.

April 20, 2013 | 01:23 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

On January 8, 2013, HDMI Licensing, LLC announced that the next HDMI version is being worked on by the 83 members of the HDMI Forum and that it is expected to be released in the first half of 2013.

April 20, 2013 | 01:23 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

On January 8, 2013, HDMI Licensing, LLC announced that the next HDMI version is being worked on by the 83 members of the HDMI Forum and that it is expected to be released in the first half of 2013.

April 20, 2013 | 01:48 AM - Posted by Danne (not verified)

Theres also the Sony 4k projector with dp

What is the reason they dont fit dp1.2 on these tvs ?

April 20, 2013 | 08:05 AM - Posted by NickBen (not verified)

http://www.reduser.net/forum/showthread.php?98027-1299-Seiki-UHDTV-50-qu...

Red's president commented on this seiki set yesterday

"Obviously first thing we did was hook it up to REDRAY and it looked pretty good."

Since they work with Red content on 4K sets and projectors from $25,000 to over $100,000, it's encouraging that at this price a set can look OK today.

Just as with anything, 2nd and 3rd gen sets will always have better features, as they are still releasing HDTV sets with new features long after a decade, so as always, buy what's good for you at your budget and timing...

April 20, 2013 | 08:09 AM - Posted by NickBen (not verified)

http://www.reduser.net/forum/showthread.php?98027-1299-Seiki-UHDTV-50-qu...

Red's president commented on this seiki set yesterday

"Obviously first thing we did was hook it up to REDRAY and it looked pretty good."

Since they work with Red content on 4K sets and projectors from $25,000 to over $100,000, it's encouraging that this set looks OK today.

Just as with anything, 2nd and 3rd gen sets will always have MORE features, as they are still releasing HDTV sets with more features long after a decade, so as always, buy what's good for you at your budget and timing...

April 20, 2013 | 06:46 AM - Posted by Michael (not verified)

the reflections look really strong on the pics. can you say how this screen compares to displays of the established manufacturers? also, does this display have an anti-reflective coating at all? or was this dropped due to price concerns?

April 20, 2013 | 07:55 AM - Posted by NickBen (not verified)

Red confirmed the Redray player is compatible with this Seiki set, which is very good news as they have the deepest library of 4K content on the planet from Red Camera users and movies shot on Red cameras like the Hobbit and Spiderman

http://www.reduser.net/forum/showthread.php?98027-1299-Seiki-UHDTV-50-qu...

Have you found any way to drive it with 4K at 60hz or above?

April 20, 2013 | 09:00 PM - Posted by Tony (not verified)

Thanks for the nice review on this SeiKi TV.

I wonder will you able to measure the power consumption at 20%, 50% and 80% brightness.

Is the text sharp? If small font text can be seen clearly, then this SeiKi TV can be used as desktop monitor especially if the power consumption is low at 50% brightness.

April 21, 2013 | 02:34 AM - Posted by Mountainlifter

Why doesn't it have a Dual Link Dvi input implemented to capitalize on the 120hz panel refresh rate? Why be limited by 30Hz Hdmi?
Am I missing something? Or will even the Dvi be limited for such high resolutions?

June 17, 2013 | 08:33 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Pretty sure Dual Link DVI is limitted to ~30Hz at 4k too.

April 21, 2013 | 04:35 AM - Posted by awgamer (not verified)

With the 30Hz limitation, I think a lot of people would be interested in hearing it's scaling ability, specifically whether it can scale 2560x1440/1600@60Hz(or options being limited to 720/1080p?) and how well.

April 21, 2013 | 04:43 AM - Posted by FernanDK (not verified)

I'm assuming the 30 hertz limitation is a locked to the display not with the I/O. Cuz if the display was capable of 4k@60hertz they would simply put a displayport1.2 that can handle 4k@60hz and the problem would be solved...

but this is all assumption, do you have any concrete data about the display?

April 21, 2013 | 10:02 AM - Posted by robert (not verified)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6T7pdrOipuI

There is a link to a youtube video where they used the sharp 32k with a radeon to get to 60HZ by joining to inputs at 30Hz. At least that is what I got from the video. Can you guys try something like this? I would love for this to be my next monitor but that is the only requirement (60Hz for gaming). Also need to follow up on that flicker thing you were talking about.

April 21, 2013 | 03:34 PM - Posted by robert (not verified)

so double checked and they did a single display port with a radeon and it work but had to use eyefinity setting on computer for monitor to recognize it. Can you do the same thing... 2 hdmi to tv on eyefinity and do side by side screen setting for full 60Hz? thanks

April 21, 2013 | 04:07 PM - Posted by Spawn (not verified)

I received mine on Friday along with a Onkyo TX-NR616 7.2-Channel THX receiver for 4K upscaling of PS3\360\SAT. I hooked it up as my primary moniter driven by 2x GTX660 SC SLI. I was very happy to see it had a semi glossy screen which produces nice contrast. I ran some full 4K files including Timescapes and Sintel which looked Amazing. I was able to run a few games at full rez but the framerate was a little to low, so I setup a custom res of 2560x1440 at 31Hz which runs all my games at minimun 30fps. Playing Bioshock Infinite at that resolution was mindblowing coming from 1920x1080. The Onkyo receiver does a good job of upconverting my Sat (1080i) and PS3 (1080p) to full 4K. I am using it as my daily PC monitor at 2560x1440 from about 3ft away,everything I run from the PC looks great on it.The only thing I wish it had is 3D, hope this information helps.

April 21, 2013 | 05:58 PM - Posted by awgamer (not verified)

How did you setup a custom res and why only 31 instead of 60hz?

April 21, 2013 | 06:19 PM - Posted by Spawn (not verified)

That resolution seems like a sweet spot as far as day to day use for me and yes it's scaled but at 3840x2160 everything was just too small.

April 21, 2013 | 06:19 PM - Posted by Spawn (not verified)

That resolution seems like a sweet spot as far as day to day use for me and yes it's scaled but at 3840x2160 everything was just too small.

April 21, 2013 | 05:59 PM - Posted by awgamer (not verified)

Also, the 2560x1440 scaled to full screen?

April 21, 2013 | 05:59 PM - Posted by awgamer (not verified)

Also, the 2560x1440 scaled to full screen?

April 21, 2013 | 06:21 PM - Posted by Robert (not verified)

Can someone confirm or rule out a side by side picture function on this tv? This would allow a 60hz full resolution game with eyefinity or sli.

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