Gear News

The latest news on all things 4k Ultra HD, Blu-ray and Gear.
Blu-ray & 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Release Guide - June 13-19, 2021

What to say, what to do. It's kind of one of those in between weeks that a lot is business as usual. Begin Volume 2 Episode 4 of our weekly release guide.

4K Ultra HD Blu-ray/Digital Releases-

First let's talk imports, which means a Monday street date. Paul Verhoeven’s classic 1992 erotic thriller BASIC INSTINCT. Available as a standard release and as a Zavvi Exclusive SteelBook. It is a StudioCanal project so who knows if a U.S. distributor might not pick it up. I'd bet on Shout Select if it were to happen.

Now for North America releases, which have a regular Tuesday release date...

Getting the double-dips first, Gattaca comes out now in a standard package instead of a SteelBook. Also from Sony, Last Action Hero, the same way, a standard release instead of the SteelBook. And just the opposite from LionsGate, Sicario as a Best Buy Exclusive SteelBook, previously released in a standard edition.

For fresh content, Clint Eastwood's action/thriller In the Line of Fire.

 

Delayed from last week, LionsGate releases Voyagers. This title breaks the norm in that it does NOT have Dolby Atmos or Dolby Vision. Probably a good reason for that.

Last but not least, Godzilla vs. Kong, just like the previous two Godzilla movies, available as a standard edition and as a Best Buy Exclusive SteelBook. These new movies remind me of the reinvention of Batman under Christopher Nolan. Edgy, gritty and good. And the effects budget certainly helps!

 

HD Blu-ray/Digital releases-

For Blu-ray releases this week looks to be average.

First, Godzilla vs. Kong, available as a standard release blu-ray, a 3D blu-ray combo, and as a trilogy of the new franchise.

Shout Factory's various labels this week will release The Awakening, Kindred and Sphinx.

Michelle Pfeiffer's latest film, French Exit comes this week from Sony.

 

Spine Number 18 from Paramount Presents is available this week, titled Last Train from Gun Hill.

 

LionsGate also releases Voyagers on Blu-ray. Other entries from this week also include SAS: Red Notice and Rock Dog 2.

Mill Creek releases Ultra Galaxy Mega Monster Battle and Ultraman Zero Chronicles this week.

Anime has a very slow week. Highlights are One Piece - Collection 26, Queen's Blade Rebel Warriors Collection and To Love Ru Darkness: Season 3: Complete Collection.

 

From Universal, the hit TV series Parks and Recreation: The Complete Series.

Criterion Collection's release of the week is Streetwise / Tiny: The Life of Erin Blackwell.

Friday releases are the norm, music/arts releases.

Notable announcements from last week:

Paramount has been busy this past week. The Paramount Presents label has three titles slated for August, Bugsy Malone, Nashville and A Place in the Sun. Bugsy Malone is set to release 8/31 while the other two are for 8/10. They've sent info to retailers that their next batch of Miramax reissues will be coming in July. There looks to be about 25 (and growing) of them, and just like last time, some of these titles went out of print so get ready to buy them again for a more reasonable price. All of them are likely the exact same discs as before so don't expect audio upgrades on the lossy audio ones.

Criterion will be announcing its next batch of titles soon, for now they just added Melvin Van Peebles: Four Films for release on September 28. They usually announce one title, then a week later the next batch.

Discotek has got the next batch in the works as well, all due on August 31st. Titles include Future Robot Daltanious, Grimm's Fairy Tale Classics - Season 2, Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple - The Complete First Season, Lupin the 3rd Part III: The Pink Jacket Adventures and Mitchiri Neko.

4K Release Calendar

2K/BD Release Calendar

Which titles are you buying this week? Which ones are on your wishlist, be it to buy as an impulse buy or to wait for the right price?



First Look: Optoma's New Cinema X P2 Short Throw Projector

Optoma has just announced and unveiled the first look for the brand new Cinema X P2 Short Throw Projector which should be available soon. Retail is $4999.99, but will most likely sell at online retailers for $3299.99. There are quite a few upgrades from the recent Cinema X P1 that are detailed below.

Via the press release:

Optoma, the number-one selling home theater projector brand in retail and the leading brand worldwide in 4K UHD projection technology, launched today its next-generation true 4K UHD cinema experience with the CinemaX P2. Featuring 3,000 lumens of brightness, premium laser technology, and an ultra-short-throw lens, the CinemaX P2 delivers breathtaking images and stunning picture quality from only inches away from the screen. 

Leveraging customer feedback on its award-winning CinemaX P1, Optoma engineered the CinemaX P2 to deliver 25% more contrast and vibrant color performance than its top-selling predecessor, an integrated Enhanced Gaming Mode, and a state-of-the-art digital exhibit feature – all encompassed in a sleek, white, space-saving design.

Optoma’s CinemaX P2 brings the cinematic experience home with a wide color gamut and six-segment RGBRGB color wheel for accurate color reproduction to deliver rich, detailed, and true-to-life pictures for movies, TV and games the way directors envisioned. With a built-in premium 40W Dolby Digital 2.0 soundbar, as well as an impressive ultra-short-throw glass lens that casts up to 120-inch images from only inches away, this smart true 4K UHD laser projector is an ideal option for any home entertainment activity: home theater, sports, photo sharing, gaming, distance learning and even work-from-home (WFH). 

The CinemaX P2 features smart tech integration features throughout. Kids and parents alike can turn the CinemaX P2 into a productivity tool for distance learning and WFH with the Tap Cast app and screen mirroring. The built-in SmartFit app ensures hassle-free image alignment through users’ smartphones, and the powerhouse projector also delivers seamless integration into smart homes with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT support via Smart+ technology. 

Users can also bring incredible creative expression to their homes by turning the CinemaX P2 into an art-exhibiting masterpiece, that’s brought to life with curated artworks from renowned digital artists, by FRAMED – a digital art showcasing platform. 

Optoma CinemaX P2 Smart 4K UHD Laser Features: 

  • ●  Resolution: 4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160)
  • ●  Lumens: 3,000 ANSI lumens
  • ●  Contrast: 2,000,000:1 with 3 Dynamic Black Dimming Modes
  • ●  Color: REC.709, DCI-P3 wide color gamut
  • ●  HDR10 compatible
  • ●  Color Wheel: 6 Segment RGBRGB
  • ●  Integrated 4K Media Player and popular video streaming apps available from Optoma
    Marketplace
  • ●  Smart+ Technology: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and IFTTT integration 
The High-Def Digest Forums Are No More - They Have Ceased To Be

"E's kicked the bucket, 'e's shuffled off 'is mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible!! THIS IS AN EX-FORUMS!!"

Due to a slew of factors - namely costs to make the forums compliant with new privacy regulations on top of dwindling activity - the High-Def Digest forums are no more. While we hate to see them go, this enables our little website to maintain a measure of profitability so we can pay our writers and website admin team whilst providing you fine folks with new disc reviews, news updates (as best we can), and the occasional funny bit of fan reflection. Currently, the "Forums" button is in our navigation headers and footers but that too will soon be disappearing. 

What to do if you want to commentate? There's the good news. Each disc review and news post has a Disqus comment section where you're able to freely comment (so long as it's civil) and share your opinion about said film. Truthfully the HDD Forums accounted for a very small fraction of our daily traffic activity while we saw an impressive amount of activity in the Disqus section. 

If you have any questions you can comment below! And certainly reach out to us here: https://www.highdefdigest.com/forms/feedback

Thanks again for being awesome readers and great online friends, Best - 
The High-Def Digest Team

An Experiment In Music - The High Definition Music Card

 On January 15, 2020, MediaInVision / Surround Records International is releasing what they call 'Prototype 2020' - a new media experience that they are hoping will replace CD Audio discs. Where this goes in the future will depend a lot upon consumer adoption rates. MediaInVision's own product info is as follows:

"Have you heard about the new format that will replace the music CD and revolutionize the music industry as you know it? Let us introduce to you the new High Definition Music Card. If you love music, then you have a lot of sources to choose from today. But, if you REALLY love music, you re probably not satisfied with the sound quality of what you are listening to. You re frustration is comparable to a viewer watching a movie in IMAX and 3-D at the local theater, and then seeing the same recording on their Smartphone... wow, what a difference. See, the High Definition Music Card is based on an advanced technology that places each sound in a unique 3-D location in space. Well, now you can get that 3-D type of experience in music by using The High Definition Music Card. Developed by Alexander Goldberg Jero, winner of prestigious Surround Music Awards, The High Definition Music Card is a new USB format device for delivering music content that features the latest advances in surround sound reproduction that compares with no other format in the world. In addition to recording music, the High Definition Music Card can also include Hi-def photos, bios, release information, support software, and additional links for a complete 360 degree sensual experience. The High Definition Music Card is versatile and can be used in blu-ray players, laptops, home theater systems, stereos, headphones, and more. Whether you are a music distributor, artist, or just want the best sound quality, you need the High Definition Music Card. Alexander Golberg Jero, the brilliant mind behind many jaw-dropping compositions and the innovator of this extraordinary new product, reports the first steps of High Definition Music Card development. This card utilizes the USB technology that we use everyday as well as his in-depth knowledge of surround sound technology to transform how people listen to music wherever they are. The past 6 months have been busy for the development of this project. As a result of the support of Amazon, the High Definition Music Card had working prototypes up on their website. This allowed for the testing of this technology on the consumer market to help improve the product before bringing it to market. There was also a marketing campaign that was launched to create awareness for this product, informing them of the important features of this product. Because of these efforts, connections were established with key content providers including major record labels for the future releases of some of the top music artists. Due to these developments, shares of MediaInVision PLC were made available with a significant amount of interest established for the future investors. Future steps in place include creating a graphic user interface for Blu-ray players and further increasing the marketing efforts.

Plays on all USB capable playback devices including:
Blu-ray Players
DVD players
PC and Mac Computers (software included)
Car Audio (with USB port)

Prototype 2020 Release Featuring:
1. 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio 24bit 96khz Surround Mixes, 5.1 and Stereo Configuration Compatible
2. Stereo FLAC 24bit 192khz Resolution
3. Educational Videos
4. Inspirational Images
5. Playback Software for Surround Sound Files for Mac and PC.
6. Support Links and Services
7. Public Folder
Copyright © Surround Records International Patent No.US59723547B1"

Final Thoughts:

I believe that in the end street price will have a lot to do with adoption, and realistically the best approach to keep the unit cost as low as possible is to separate the two components of this product. The product as it appears to be is a memory device merged with a USB controller/adapter. Perhaps we will see a future release of the two components sold individually, so that one would only have to buy the controller once, and then buy the titles they want ala carte. As far as the future of physical media, the gap in the cost of a memory type device versus an optical disc could be a lot closer or eliminated completely. When you can buy a 64GB USB flash drive for less than $5, imagine what mass production, removal of the USB controller itself and possibly eliminating the ability to rewrite the storage chip (ie: a ROM) could give us. Because everything old is new again (ahem, vinyl) we might be viewing movies someday from sleek memory sticks, which in prior decades we referred to them as cartridges. We could eventually see video players where the optical drive is replaced with only a couple of slots, USB, Traditional Memory Cards and future versions of these devices, what ever they would call them.

Want to see and purchase launch titles? Yup, we've provided links to those below.

Beethoven Symphony Nos. 5 & 6 (HD Media Card)

Order Beethoven Here!

Mahler: Symphony No.9 (HD Media Card) art

Order Mahler Here!

Mozart: Requiem (HD Media Card)

Order Mozart Here!

Stravinsky: 'The Rate of Spring' 'The Card Party' (HD Media Card)

Order Stravinsky Here!

Everything on Netflix with Dolby Vision, HDR, and/or Dolby Atmos
here's our handy list of Everything on Netflix currently available in Dolby Vision and/or Dolby Atmos.
Editors' Choice Winners: Best Gear of 2019
Welcome to our Best Gear gift and buyer's guide where we recommend our Editors' Choice picks for the very best possible A/V gadgets n' gear you can currently buy.
Coming Soon to Streaming: THE WITCHER, THE AERONAUTS, and More
Geralt of Rivia is riding toward Netflix in December.
Everything Coming to Netflix in November 2019
Check out all the streaming titles coming to Netflix throughout November.
HBO Max Set to Launch in May 2020 for $14.99 per Month
Pricing and availability have been announced for the company's new digital video platform.
New Trailer for THE MANDALORIAN Promises an Action-Packed STAR WARS Western in Space
"Mandalorian, look outside. They're waiting for you."
Apple Details New AirPods Pro with Active Noise Cancellation
The newest addition to the AirPods lineup has been detailed.
NVIDIA Launches New SHIELD TV & SHIELD TV Pro with Dolby Vision & Dolby Atmos
The company's latest streaming media players have been revealed.
Coming Soon to Streaming: THE CROWN, THE KING, and More
The third season of Netflix's royal drama will start streaming in November.
HDD Gear Deals: TCL 2018 55" 6-Series 4K Roku TV on Sale for Just $399!
TCL's highly-rated value TV is now on sale for its lowest price ever!
AMC Theatres Launches On Demand Digital Video Service
The movie theater chain is getting into the streaming business.
Axiim Releases LINK USB Wireless Audio Transmitter for LG 2019 WiSA Ready TVs
The new transmitter enables wireless audio transmissions from compatible 2019 LG WiSA Ready TVs.
Apple TV App Arrives on Fire TV Stick and Fire TV Stick 4K
Apple's streaming app is now available on the Fire TV Stick.
Best Buy Launches Free Next-Day Delivery for Holiday Season
Thousands of products are now eligible for free next-day delivery.
Sony Announces Availability for New 360 Reality Audio Music
Object-based music tracks will be available via a variety of services.
Coming Soon to Streaming: LADY AND THE TRAMP, THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, and More
Disney's latest live action remake headlines this week's roundup of streaming trailers.

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The latest news on all things 4K Ultra HD, blu-ray and Gear.