Sony Confirms “Mastered in 4K” Blu-ray Titles – Sony has released ten titles as “4K” Blu-rays in the U.S. with five more to follow shortly. They are not really 4K but UHD, the consumer version of professional theater 4K, and can be played on Sony’s 55-inch and 65-inch Ultra HD TVs and its 4K Media Player and Video Unlimited 4K download service. They are being promoted as “Maximum Picture; Expanded Color.” The movies were supposedly shot in 4K (or using film) but have been downscaled to 2K (1080p) to fit on a standard Blu-ray and designed to look best on a UHD TV. (Because Blu-ray doesn’t have nearly enough space for real UHD files.) The ten titles are Total Recall (2012), Amazing Spiderman, Ghostbusters, Battle Los Angeles, The Karate Kid (2010), Taxi Driver, Angels & Demons, Glory, The Other Guys, and Spider-Man (2002). The Video Unlimited 4K download service will deliver features and TV shows in UHD to rent or buy, prices starting at $7.99 per film. Sony showed off its new “4K” Projector, the VPL-VW600ES at the recent CEDIA, as well as two other models. It will be $15,000, plus another $1000 for adding a UHD media player.
Yamaha Hi-Res Desktop System – Yamaha’s new CRX-N560 is a desktop audio system with CD player, FM tuner, and stereo amp that plays WAV/FLAC files up to 192K/24-bit. It has DLNA 1.5 network audio built-in, plus AirPlay and Internet Radio. A smartphone or table can be used at the remote control. The speakers are 2-way bass reflex type bookshelves with 30mm dome tweeter, 10mm cone woofer, and are 6 ohms impedance.
Limited Edition of Sondek LP12 Turntable – In celebration of Linn’s 40th Anniversary, they have joined forces with Scotland’s Highland Park Whisky to create 40 Limited Edition Linn Sondek LP12 turntables encased in whisky wood made from the solid oak casks in which Highland Whisky was matured. Each turntable comes with a bottle of 40-year-old single malt Highland Park. Price? = £25,000. The LP12 has been popular with audiophiles and reviewers around the world since 1972; its design has not been fundamentally revisited, but there have been improvements over the years using advances in material science.
DTS and Deezer to Offer Pop Music Subscription Service – Deezer, the popular global music service, will be integrated into the DTS Play-Fi app for Android devices. Deezer’s four million paying subscribers will then be able to stream their favorite music from Android, iOS and Windows PC devices to Play-Fi-enabled products, all using a standard Wi-Fi network. The Phorus PS1 Speaker, and PR1 Receiver, and the Wren V5PF Speaker all offer Play-Fi. Deezer users will benefit from the high quality audio expected from DTS.
Home Audio Myths – are explored in a common sense CNET article that is worth reading. Such as the myths of amp wattage and speaker wattage. The only part I had to disagree with was the advice that all HDMI cables are the same. See this review.