Teased months ago, Sony officially unveiled their 4K Blu-ray at CES 2017 which you can see in my video preview. As expected, the player, targeting home theater enthusiasts, packs a ton of features like the ability to playback a host of formats which include:
- 4K Blu-ray
- 4K HDR Blu-ray
- Blu-ray 2D/3D
- Super Audio (SACD) and CD
If that’s not enough, you can also play back a variety of video files with USB which includes just about every format under the sun.
AVCHD Disc Format, Motion JPEG (.mov, .avi), MPEG-1 Video/PS (.mpg, .MPEG, .mkv).VOB, .VRO, MPEG-2 Video/PS, TS (.mpg, .MPEG, .m2ts, .mts, .mkv).VOB, .VRO, MPEG-4/AVC (.mov, 3gp, .3g2, .3gpp, .3gpp2, .flv), MPEG-4 AVC (.mkv, .mp4, .m4v, .m2ts, .mts), VC1 (.m2ts, .mts, .mkv), WMV9 (.wmv, .asf, .mkv), Xvid (.avi, .mkv)
Unfortunately despite a few new TVs from Sony supporting Dolby Vision HDR, the X800 only provides HDR10 playback. Luckily all 4K HDR Blu-rays must support that so compatibility won’t be an issue. As for audio, the X800 also offers a lot of new capabilities for Sony’s fleet like Dolby Atmos support which is conveniently available in their ST5000 7.1.2 sound bar and was also unveiled at CES. In fact, the X800 provides two HDMI outputs so you can send a separate feed to your TV and amp.
Another neat feature of the X800 is Bluetooth audio which will either allow you to stream audio to different speakers or to your wireless headphones, perfect for late night viewing. From Sony:
Sony’s first 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player allows customers to experience the full breadth of what Sony’s 4K ecosystem has to offer. The UBP-X800 Player is compatible with Ultra HD Blu-ray as well as video streaming in 4K resolution and High Dynamic Range (HDR), for greater detail, brightness and contrast that fully captures the movie, TV show, or game as it was meant to be seen and heard. The UBP-X800 provides Ultra HD Blu-ray playback with wide color space BT.2020, which offers twice the color range of existing conventional Blu-ray players and HDR is up to 100 times dynamic range to enjoy realistic picture quality like never before. The UBP-X800 is also a great match to Dolby Atmos and DTS:X object- audio compatible receivers, for the most immersive home theater experience possible.
In addition to support for Ultra HD Blu-ray, the UBP-X800 utilizes a Sony developed Precision HD drive to help maintain consistent performance with virtually every optical disc format, including DVD Video and DVD Audio; CD and Super Audio CD; and Blu-ray 3D, and BD-ROM media in additional to almost any format available via USB. The UBP-X800’s specially designed Frame and Beam (FB) chassis increases structural rigidity and its honeycomb top plate, sf heat sync and offset insulator feet reduce the effects of airborne and mechanical vibration. This high quality construction contributes to Hi-Res Audio sound reproduction which can playback up to 192kHz/24-bit and DSD 11.2MHz. For standard resolution music DSEE HX upscales the original signal’s sampling frequency and bit-depth. And the UBP-X800 integrated Bluetooth means it is possible to listen to wireless headphones while the sound can continue to play from the TV for the rest of the family in the room to enjoy, great for those that need a higher volume or simply don’t want to be interrupted.
The player further incorporates a variety of video codecs that can deliver 4K streaming from video streaming services such as Netflix, along with Sony’s advanced video processing that upscales SD and HD content to near 4K resolution. Additionally, when playing 4K HDR content on a 4K SDR television the UBP-X800 utilizes a unique Sony algorithm to reproduce the proper brightness and color gradations to provide the best picture possible.
There is no official word on pricing for the X800 which will launch some time in Spring but from what I’ve heard, expect it to be priced between $399-$499. I’m curious: for you home theater enthusiasts, does the X800 offer what you’ve been looking for in a 4K Blu-ray player?