Scott went to the CEDIA convention last week and he's seeing more 4K projectors out there. Most of them are 1080p, but will accept a 4K signal that is a faux 4K because they "wiggle the pixels" (called Wobulation). There are a few true 4K projectors, but they're over $30,000. Scott also says there's no point in waiting for full 4K because it's going to be awhile before they are affordable, and by then, it'll be something completely different. Has projection seen better days? Scott doesn't think so. It's still the best way to get that cinematic immersive experience.
Scott is at CEDIA in San Diego to look at the latest in home theater products. Both 4K and HDR are becoming more commonplace and coming down in price. Sony has a 4K HDR projector for under $5,000: VPL-VW285ES. The next big thing in color standards is Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG), intended for live broadcasts. Scott says when 4K UHD broadcast becomes live, it will have a huge impact.
Scott is getting ready to go to the annual CIDIA show for home theater, and this year, it's going to have a huge presence for the so-called "Internet of things," where just about every device you have is smart and connected to the internet. Scott says that voice command is really starting to get popular in home theater equipment and accessories. We'll probably see major home theater devices with voice command built in. Apple is going to be announcing a new Apple TV in the next few weeks, plus updates to the upcoming Apple HomePod.
Scott joins us with news that Apple is going to invest a billion dollars into original programming, having hired away several executives from Sony and WGN Cable. Facebook is also getting into their own original programming, and of course YouTube has YouTube Red and is offering their own live TV streaming service. Netflix is also going to spend upwards of seven billion, making it larger than HBO. Disney is also leaving Netflix to start their own streaming service(s) as well. So the streaming industry has blown up in the last few months.
Is it worth waiting for a Dolby Vision TV? Scott says that some support HDR10 and some are starting to support Dolby Vision. HDR10 is open source, while Dolby Vision is licensed. But Dolby is much better in its high dynamic range because it uses more data. How do you get it? Scott says that only one external streaming device supports Dolby Vision at the moment and that's the Chromecast Ultra. The LG B6 OLED is also Dolby Vision capable.
Today, Scott joins Leo to talk about Dynamic Range, which is known as the difference in the deepest blacks and the brightest whites. It's all about brightness. OLED, for instance, can achieve zero nits on their blacks, and then the highest nits in brightness for its brights (called Candellas).
This week was the Flat Panel Shoot Out for HDTVs, and Scott has the results. This year, the shootout took place in association with CE week and featured mostly flagship TVs in a head to head evaluation. All TVs were professionally calibrated and fed the same TV feed. Then professional colorists made the determination of what TVs were best. There was also a Sony 30" OLED Broadcast video monitor which was used as the standard to compare to.
Scott went to see Dunkirk in both 70mm IMAX and Dolby Cinema. He preferred 70mm though. Not a lot of deep blacks, but ultimately IMAX is best because that's how director Christopher Nolan shot it. And he shot it on the same beach in Dunkirk, Belgium with original aircraft and boats. The important point is that all the shots are framed within IMAX's square aspect ratio of 8x6. It makes it very immersive. Leo says it's a great movie, beautifully done. Scott agrees. And quite historic in its depiction.
Yesterday was "cut the cord day." Started by TV maker TCL, it's the day to commemorate canceling your cable or satellite subscription in favor of streaming video online. But Scott says that while cord cutting is extremely popular, the options we're getting is really just another spin on the cable model. He hopes that someday we'll get true ala carte programming where you just pay for what you want. But currently, Sling, YouTube, Hulu, and DirecTV Now are all just "cable lite." And in many ways, you end up paying more or the same amount by cord cutting. That may be the whole idea.
Leo and Scott talk about cleaning out and organizing the "techno spaghetti factory" that is wiring coming from all home theater stuff. There was also a lot of dust built up and Scott says it's a good idea to clean out that cruft at least once a year and use IEC standard power cables to keep everything consistent. Leo likes banana plugs, and Scott agrees, but many people don't like them because they tend to be easier to disconnect. They make it easy to swap out other tech, though.