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Sony’s new Blu-ray Spinners aren’t proper 4K Players

It's all about the music

by Mark Hodgkinson Jan 6, 2016


  • Seeing as Sony has such an investment in the Ultra HD universe – from lens to living room - it seems odd that neither of their two new Blu-ray players announced at CES 2016 feature the capability to play Ultra HD Blu-ray discs.
    Both Samsung and Panasonic have confirmed UHD spinners for release in 2016, yet Sony seems to holding off, at least for now. Instead, Sony has announced the UHP-H1 High-Resolution Audio and Video Player and the BDP-S6700 4K UHD Upscale Blu-ray Disc Player.

    The UHP-H1 promises ‘audiophile-quality’ reproduction of any source – on disc, over your home network or streamed from a range of online music services. It can also stand alone or integrate into your existing Wireless Multi-room setup. It plays CD, Super Audio CD or Blu-ray Disc; you can connect a USB loaded with High-Resolution Audio files or browse built-in audio apps like Spotify and Deezer.

    The UHP-H1 features Sony’s rigid Frame and Beam chassis design that minimises mechanical vibration. Naturally there’s a full complement of audio codecs, letting you enjoy pristine High-Resolution files encoded right up to 192kHz/24-bit and double DSD (5.6MHz). 2-channel analogue audio output to your hi-fi amplifier, home cinema receiver or TV Sound Bar is via a 32-bit 768kHz audio DAC..

    Most Blu-ray players send both audio and video to your TV via the same HDMI output. To ensure that sound quality is absolutely uncompromised, the UHP-H1 can split audio and video signals, routing them to separate HDMI outputs to reduce electrical cross-interference. There’s also an Audio Direct function that mutes the player’s video output and switches off the front panel display for the purest sound possible.

    Integrated Bluetooth means you can slip on a pair of wireless headphones and enjoy movie soundtracks, music on disc or streaming sound files in privacy; LDAC technology by Sony triples the data rate transmitted over Bluetooth.

    Blu-ray movies in Full HD benefit from 4K 60p upscaling, with further picture refinement delivered by SuperBitMappingV.

    The BDP-S6700 upscales Blu-ray movies to near 4K UHD detail. Like the UHP-H1 Premium Audio and Video Player, it’s a hub for enjoying a wide range of audio experiences and slots easily into your existing Wireless Multi-room setup. There’s no shortage of music on tap, with easy access to streaming services like Spotify and Deezer. The SongPal Link opens up extra listening options around the house with Wireless Multi-room.It also features Bluetooth with LDAC.

    The new UHP-H1 Hi-Res Premium Audio and Video Player and BDP-S6700 4K Upscale Blu-ray Player are available from March, just as we expect the first wave of UHD discs. Perhaps this explains Sony's lacklustre launch titles?

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