If NAB is any indication, the latest workstations and related gear will be ready to support your ventures into 4K/UHD, 8K, VR, and hi-res streaming. Yet the core goals remain the same: boosting raw speeds, facilitating creativity, and streamlining workflows. Both HP and Dell were showing their newest innovations at their booths in the lower South Hall.
HP had its latest ZBook entry: the HP ZBook 14u. With its 14-inch diagonal FHD display and 3.61-pound starting weight, it’s the smallest and lightest HP mobile workstation. It’s also the thinnest ZBook ever at just 22.1mm. Despite its scaled-down dimensions and weight, the ZBook 14u has impressive specs. You can equip it with the latest 7th generation Intel Core processors. Graphics are handled by an AMD FirePro 3D with 2GB of video memory. And it can have as much as 32GB of system RAM and 2TB of storage. HP rates the internal 51-Whr battery at 12 hours (they use MobileMark to measure battery life). And you can quick-charge the battery to its 50-percent capacity in just 30 minutes. Pricing and availability for the HP ZBook 14u won’t be announced until this Summer.
And there’s good news for those who prefer larger, more powerful mobile workstations. HP is upgrading its other ZBooks with the latest Intel Core processors and the fast-charge capability.
Also at the booth, HP had two new DreamColor monitors that were announced just prior to the show’s opening. The new 31-inch HP DreamColor Z31x Studio Display supports the Cinema 4K resolution and aspect ratio. It has a True 2K mode that lets you work with 1920×1080 content without the soft image you can experience when viewing HD on a native 4K monitor. The Z31x uses a new 10-bit IPS panel with over 1 billion colors. HP says that this latest IPS panel has deeper blacks and richer shadow detail. It has the widest color gamut of any DreamColor monitor, covering 99 percent of the DCI-P3 spec. And the unit features built-in calibration with an integrated colorimeter that drops down from the top bezel. The DreamColor Z31x will be available this fall for $3,999. By contrast, the new 24-inch HP DreamColor Z24x G2 Display will sell for just $559. It supports up to a billion colors with a 1920×1200 resolution, using a color gamut that’s rated for 99 percent of the less rigorous Adobe RGB spec. It will be available in June.
At its booth, Dell featured its innovative Dell Canvas, which the company announced back in January. It’s a horizontal 27-inch secondary display that functions as a touch-sensitive work surface. It could be especially useful for applications where drawing, stretching, pulling, pinching, or twisting operations are relevant to the creative process. Dell had one connected to its Dell Precision 5720 27 All-in-One workstation, where a totem dial was placed directly on the Canvas to allow a user to dial-in settings with a more tactile movement. Both Adobe and Autodesk had their latest software running on Canvas systems at the booth, and Avid is supporting it, as well. Look for it to start shipping this summer.
Dell also demoed its new Dell UltraSharp 27 4K HDR Monitor (the UP2718Q). This one is UHD Alliance Premium-certified for compatibility with HDR10 content. It’s unusually bright for a 4K monitor, with a peak brightness of 1,000 nits. And it covers 97.7 percent of the DCI-P3 spec and 76.9 percent of the Rec. 2020 spec. The Dell UltraSharp 27 4K HDR Monitor will ship on May 23 and cost $1,995.
Finally, you could see the previously announced Dell UltraSharp 32 8K monitor at the Dell booth. The company is billing it as the world’s first 8K monitor. It’s already shipping and costs $4,995.
The first batch of Dell’s 8K monitors is already sold out, which could indicate a strong interest in creating, editing, and viewing 8K content.