Blu-ray Disc Association Completes Ultra HD Blu-ray Specification


4K Blu-ray discs arriving in 2015

Blu-ray Disc Association Completes Ultra HD Blu-ray Specification


The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) today announced completion of the Ultra HD Blu-ray specification and released the new logo that will delineate Ultra HD 
Blu-ray products. The Ultra HD Blu-ray specification, which represents the work of global leaders from the consumer electronics, IT and content creation industries, will enable delivery of Ultra HD content via Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc to the rapidly growing number of UHD TV households.

"For years, Blu-ray Disc has set the standard for high definition picture and audio quality in the home. Ultra HD Blu-ray will do the same for UHD home entertainment," said Victor Matsuda, chair, BDA Promotions Committee. "The technical capabilities of Blu-ray Disc, in particular its significant storage capacity and high data transfer rates, will enable the delivery of an unparalleled, consistent and repeatable UHD experience."


Blu-ray Disc Association Completes Ultra HD Blu-ray Specification  

The completed Ultra HD Blu-ray specification addresses a range of factors, beyond simply increasing resolution, that will significantly enhance the home entertainment experience for consumers. In addition to delivering content in up-to 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution, the Ultra HD Blu-ray format enables delivery of a significantly expanded color range and allows for the delivery of high dynamic range (HDR) and high frame rate content. Next-generation immersive, object-based sound formats will also be delivered via the Ultra HD Blu-ray specification. Additionally, with the optional digital bridge feature, the specification enhances the value of content ownership by embracing the notion that a content purchase can enable the consumer to view their content across the range of in-home and mobile devices. 

The specification also mandates all new Ultra HD Blu-ray players be capable of playing back current Blu-ray Discs, giving consumers access to the vast library of more than 10,000 titles currently available on Blu-ray Disc. 

Licensing of Ultra HD Blu-ray is scheduled to begin this Summer. The BDA is working closely with industry leaders in the authoring, testing, certification and replication industries to develop the tools and process needed to ensure interoperability between players and software and to facilitate the development of a robust ecosystem to support the hardware and title launch of Ultra HD Blu-ray.


Our Thoughts

From what we already know about the new 4K Blu-Ray Standard, we know that it will require different hardware from your standard Blu-Ray disks. While the disks and their capacity remains largely unchanged, the way the videos are encoded and decoded are different as it used the data is written and compressed using the H.265/HEVC codec rather than the older H.264AVC codec, which required much more in terms of processing power to read/ play.

New Blu Ray Players will be required in order to play these Ultra HD Blu-Rays, though given that they are playing at a higher resolution that today's Blu-Ray players do not support, this will not be that big of an issue.

Using physical media instead of relying on fallible and often limited Internet connections means Blu-ray discs today provide the best possible image quality and easily provide the most stable playback.

4K, or Ultra HD, Blu-ray does more than just give us four times the number of pixels as than today's prevailing 1080p Blu Ray videos, the new specification also will improve colour gamut dramatically and offer a higher dynamic range so details in shadows and highlights are much more visible. The new format also will be able to show 4K video at 60 frames per second another great advantage for us framerate junkies.

Personally I do not see 4K Blu-Ray seeing wide adoption, provided internet connection speeds continue to get faster and more stable. While physical media often provided the best viewing experience, the people of today prefer the sheer convenience of digital available content, either through streaming services or direct download.


You can join the discussion on Ultra HD Blu-Ray on the OC3D Forums.



The Blu-ray Disc Association has Completed the Ultra HD Blu-ray Specification. 4K Blu Rays are...

Posted by OC3D on Wednesday, 13 May 2015
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