Hot on the heels of the currently in theaters <I>Superman Returns</I>, Warner Brothers announced a slew of new DVD releases of the original films. There has been no formal announcement of any of these titles appearing on HD DVD or Blu-ray (Warner supports both formats), but we can hope.
Samsung has announced that the first production run of its BD-P1000 Blu-ray Disc player, which includes all players now in use and in stores, has an error in the programming of a Genesis chip used in the design. A noise reduction feature in that chip which cannot be user defeated has apparently been set to a level high enough to noticeably soften the image—an error that could account for the mixed reports on the player and the Blu-ray Disc format that have been published to date, here and elsewhere.
At $2,099, the DV9600 is Marantz' flagship "universal" DVD player. You can read about this player's many features in the Specifications section of this review, or on Marantz' own website. Some of the more significant ones are:
How things have changed. Just a couple of years ago, bringing a 57-inch TV into my studio meant wrestling with a 300-pound gorilla of metal, glass, plastic, and particle board. I'm still trying to figure out how to get my 51-inch Hitachi CRT out of its room so new flooring can be installed. But when Mitsubishi delivered their new WD-57731 for review, I could almost have moved its 88 lbs. by myself had it been in a more compact package. As it was, two delivery persons hauled it into my house without breaking a sweat.
A few years back everyone was wondering if our civilization would come crashing down around our keyboards. All of our computers stored the year as a two-digit number, and 00 did not compute. Best case: Aunt Ellie wouldn't get her airline reservation in time for that visit, or better yet might end up in Sri Lanka. Worst case: an extinction level event.
Panasonic has announced that starting July 1st, it will begin providing authoring services for studios producing Blu-ray titles (BD-ROM) at the Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory (PHL) in Universal City, California. Panasonic began authoring DVD titles for various studios in the U.S. in 1996, and has now installed state-of-the-art equipment to perform similar services for the Blu-ray platform.
It's hard to fight the notion that an upconverting DVD player works some kind of magic on the lowly, standard definition DVD. I've written about this before, but if recent Internet forum traffic is any indication, the confusion continues.
The gear has been packed back up and the rooms cleared. The demo material has been tossed into suitcases, destined to end up in an obscure corner of each exhibitor's factory, the place where overplayed and now unloved recordings go to die. And copious notes have been made on what worked and what needs to be improved.
We haven't reviewed any of Revel's flagship Ultima models since the Gem/Voice/Embrace combination was evaluated in <I>Stereophile Guide to Home Theater</I> way back in 1998. But we've reviewed several Revel Performa systems since then. Three years ago I reviewed the then-new flagship system of Revel's Performa line, headlined by the floor standing <A HREF="http://ultimateavmag.com/speakersystems/123/">Performa F50 </A>.