Scott has discovered that DirecTV will be broadcasting the Masters Golf Tournament in 4K on April 7-10th. It will be their first UHD broadcast. Leo wonders how much that signal will be compressed. Scott contacted DirecTV and found that they will be using AGVC as the codec. But he also found out that DirecTV won't say what the bitrate is. Leo says it's like Netflix doing the same thing, and it ends up being awfully compressed and leaves people with an inaccurate and negative impression of what 4K really is. Scott also says that high dynamic range will be missing as well.
Today we're talking about hi resolution audio, with the Pono Player and the Revealer firmware. The Revealer is a firmware update which enables to improve the quality of audio.
Scott got to go backstage at the Grammy's this week. Each stage has 56 mics going into a mixer plus other audio sources, and it's all mixed live. All the performances are live. No lipsyncs. The audio is in Dolby 5.1, although CBS only broadcasts in 1080i. This week on Home Theater Geeks, Scott is going to have the head sound guy for the Grammy's, so tune in!
Over at AVS Forum, Scott has posted an article on "Ten Terrific TVs for Super Bowl Sunday." He advises to avoid "house brands" like Element, Insignia, Sceptre, etc. If you need a value label, Vizio is the way to go. Leo agrees and says that Vizio's software is excellent. There's also LG, Samsung, and Sony.
Scott Wilkinson is back from CES and put 26 miles on his feet. There, he saw a new backlighting technology for LCD TVs. Instead of a white LED backlight, they use blue LEDs and a film emdedded with tiny spheres, called quantum dots, which absorb the blue photos and re-emit another color with precision. The result is the combination of red/green/blue, which equals white. It's almost as accurate as laser.
Scott is at CES for the latest in Home Theater and all the TV manufacturers are introducing new models of high dynamic range 4K TVs. There's finally a standard from the UHD Alliance called "Ultra HD Premium." But there's also a competing standard. Scott says that even though we have a budding format war, this time, they are largely interoperable. The 4K Blu-Ray players coming out are a lot cheaper as well, starting at $400. The first Blu-ray player was $1,000. So we're getting better at that and Leo says that by next year, they'll be under $100.
Scott hasn't seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens yet, but he has heard nothing but good things. It seems that most people are writing reviews just saying that they like it, and not giving any plot details. Leo says that it's on track to be the highest grossing opening film of all time. As for 3D, there's really nothing in the movie that takes advantage of it. It was largely invisible. Scott says that's why he's going to see it at the El Capitan in Dolby Vision with Dolby Cinema High Dynamic Range.
Scott is back, talking about this weekend's Tuba Christmas! It's Scott's annual Christmas concert where he plays with hundreds of other Tuba players. Also, being the holidays, he's posted several home theater buyer's guides at AVS Forum. He's got guides for speakers, Blu-ray players, A/V receivers, and more.
Black Friday is coming this week and Scott says there's going to be some amazing deals on Samsung TVs. And you don't have to wait in line to get them, you can shop online. Scott is seeing deals of up to 60% off really good JS UHD models that have high dynamic range. Scott says it's likely to clear out inventory to make room for the 2016 models which will come out in the Spring. Leo says that the deals are unbelievable, especially coming directly from Samsung. Sony is going to have some deals as well, but we haven't seen details yet.
Scott took a call from a guy next week about headphones with surround sound. Subsequently, he's heard about Sony's MDR-DS7500. They're wireless headphones that you can hear surround sound with. Not cheap at $300, but an option. Also, Scott heard that Sennheiser is bringing back the Orpheus headphones, which are $55,000! WHAT?! They're electrostatic and have transistors built into the cans themselves. Sure, they're probably the best headphones in the world, but for that cost, give me a break. Can you really hear the difference, objectively?