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8K video launched on YouTube with films so high definition they break computers

‘Ghost Town’, filmed with special cameras and depicting an abandoned settlement in the countryside, is the first film to show it off

Andrew Griffin
Wednesday 10 June 2015 11:32 BST
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A still from the Ghost Towns film
A still from the Ghost Towns film

YouTube has launched support for 8K video, allowing people to watch films in such high resolutions that it breaks their computer.

The company announced that it would allow 8K videos in 2010, and added the label earlier this year. But the first video to make use of that super-high resolution has arrived, filmed on special cameras and put together using extra-powerful computers.

The film, ‘Ghost Towns’, is a smoothly-shot video of a person wandering through an abandoned settlement, featuring slowly panning views of houses and their contents. But the video is far less innovative than how it was made, using a special RED Epic Dragon 6K Camera and then stitched together to get the full 8K film.

The video should be able to run on Safari or Chrome, and can be watched within YouTube. But because of the processing power used to watch the film, computers almost always crash when watching it — and most people won’t be able to see all the pixels, anyway, since even 4K monitors are not especially widespread.

As with all YouTube videos, the site checks the internet connection and capabilities of the computer when playing the film. So the video can be watched in qualities all the way down to 144p, leaving a tiny and fuzzy video.

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