A new frontier in digital cinema
Empire Cinema Complex has launched 4K high-resolution screening, offering cinema-goers the opportunity to enjoy film productions that are four times sharper than first- generation digital projectors.
The launch happened as part of the complex’s continuous drive towards complete digitalisation of its theatres.
Empire Cinema in Buġibba was the first cinema in Malta to project 3D films in digital format.
Three years down the line, and 15 years after the Empire’s opening in 1997, the cinema industry continues to evolve at a rapid pace, with the probable phasing out of 35mm and digital projectors that are now in their fourth generation. These are expected to be replaced with even higher resolution in the short term.
In the meantime, cinema-goers can enjoy the latest Christmas blockbuster, The Hobbit, in the new format, with a High Frame Rate of 48 frames per second. Frame rates refer to the number of images displayed by a projector in a second.
Currently, 35mm films are shot and projected at 24 frames per second. This means that every 1/24 of a second a new image is projected on the screen. On the other hand, with the new technology of High Frame Rates, at least 48 frames per second are shown.
High Frame Rates are being considered a reference for digital cinema projection for the coming years. The technique means that all projected images now have twice or more information per second, resulting in a net increase in the quality of the projected images. This is especially noticeable in the scenes of movement: the result is a smoother sharper picture, with an increased depth of field due to greater image accuracy, even in the background.
This effect becomes even more visible in the 3D projections.