Removal of Sharp display from Apple Store probably doesn’t mean Apple’s 4K display is imminent

The 'now you see it, now you don't' 4K Sharp display

The ‘now you see it, now you don’t’ Sharp PN-K321 4K display

When Apple started offering a Sharp 4K display in its European online Apple Store, then withdrew it shortly afterwards, some speculated that this might mean an Apple 4K display is about to be launched.

It’s possible, of course, but I strongly suspect not. As I argued in October, the launch of the Mac Pro would have been the obvious point at which to announce an Apple 4K display – and current MacBook Pros can’t drive 4K displays at decent frame-rates, so I can’t see Apple launching a display that would leave the bulk of Mac owners disappointed.

The far more likely explanation is that Apple plans to sell the Sharp displays alongside the Mac Pro once it launches – as I suggested it might in that same opinion piece in October. The displays were inadvertently made live on the store before the Pro was launched, and have been removed until the Pro is available …  Read more

Apple selling 4K Sharp 32-inch displays via international online stores

Screen Shot 2013-12-06 at 4.26.07 PM

Ahead of the next-generation Mac Pro launch later this month, Apple has begun selling Sharp’s 32-inch 4K HD LED Monitor via its online store. The pricy display, which we lusted after during a hands-on earlier this year, has a 32-inch diagonal panel at a resolution of 3840 x 2160. (you can currently pick this up at retailers like B&H in the US  or Amazon where it retails for $3200-3300 – price drops in cart).

With its 32-inch class (31.5-inch diagonal) screen size, 3840 x 2160 high definition resolution and energy efficient edge-lit LED backlight, the Sharp PN-K321 monitor is ideal for professional applications where it’s essential to view detailed information displayed with precision. This super-high resolution display allows you to view the content of four full HD screens on a single seamless display. It also features IGZO* technology, which supports increased pixel transparency and reduced current leakage, thereby making the monitor more energy efficient.

The recent MacBook Pro with Retina display models can drive a single 4K display, while the upcoming Mac Pro can support up to three 4K monitors. Sources say that Apple Stores in the United States will have these monitors available for order in the coming months.

It’s likely that Apple is selling this Sharp unit just to give new Mac Pro users something to use until its own 4K display, which is floating around the Cupertino labs, is ready to ship…

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ASUS launching a 4k 31.5-inch monitor – but don’t expect to hook it up to your Mac just yet …

PQ321Q_Side_650

Update: Pricing has just been announced, at $3,799. Pricey, but actually not bad value in a market that had five-figure pricing not so long ago.

ASUS today revealed that it will launch a 31.5-inch 4k monitor late next month, its 3840×2160 pixels allowing four 1080p HD videos to display full-size on the same screen without overlap. A 4k monitor in such a small package is made possible by using an IGZO panel, whose smaller transistors enable greater pixel density, and is likely to be in the same league (and possibly from the same manufacturer) as the 32-inch Sharp panel we saw at CES.

However, don’t rush out to buy one just yet: it’s unlikely that even a top-spec Mac from today’s line-up would be able to drive the resolution at a decent frame-rate. But the next-generation of Haswell-powered Macs almost certainly will. Indeed, as we mentioned earlier, it’s even possible that a next-generation MacBook Air could do so … Read more