Earlier this year, shortly after the release of the first Ultra HD (UHD) Blu-ray Disc player from Samsung, I wrote about the challenges of getting the player's full-bandwidth video signals to travel over longer distances in “UHD Blu-ray vs. HDMI: Let the Battle Begin”. Unfortunately, nearly 8 months later, consumers whose displays are more than 15 feet away from the Samsung UBD-K8500 are still in a pickle when it comes to choosing the proper HDMI cable to get the menu screen to properly come up on screen.
The successful sketch comedy duo of Key and Peele has made the transition from their Comedy Central series to motion pictures with their comic adventure Keanu. The Shakespearian plot unfolds thusly: Rell (Peele) is depressed and hasn’t left his couch or his bong in days because his girlfriend has just dumped him. His straight-laced cousin Clarence (Key) sympathizes but is of little consolation. A timely miracle shows up on Rell’s doorstep in the form of a lost kitten that meows plaintively and is adorable beyond all reason.
Once again, Samsung has partnered with a noted industrial designer to rethink modern TV. Last year it was the magnificent S9W, an ultra-wide 21:9 TV designed by Yves Béhar. This year it’s the modestly sized (and priced) Serif TV, created in collaboration with the Parisian design duo Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec.
Q I'm slow to bite on buying an Ultra HDTV because I’m waiting to see which high dynamic range format will stick. If I buy an HDR10-only set and Dolby Vision wins, can support for that format be added through a future software update? —Ray Blackburn
AT A GLANCE Plus
Flexibility of stand or speaker-top use
Strongly defined height effects
Potential timbre-matching issues
Footprint too large for some speakers
Requires flat or nearly flat speaker top
If you like your Dolby Atmos and DTS:X height effects well defined, the Klipsch RP-140SA and its horn-loaded tweeter do the ceiling bounce with vivid results.
Progress is great, except when it’s not. By now, you’ve probably read a lot about Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, the nextgeneration object-oriented surround standards, and pondered what they mean for your system. But maybe the news that height-enriched surround sound has finally come of age is bittersweet to you. What if you love your existing speakers and don’t want to let go of them? Which matters more: upgrading to the latest and greatest or holding onto the tried and true? You might prefer to stick with your existing 5.1- to 7.1-channel system and tell progress to take a hike.