LATEST ADDITIONS

Thomas J. Norton  |  Feb 26, 2019  |  12 comments
The recent decision by Samsung to cease selling Blu-ray and Ultra HD Blu-ray players (at least in the U.S.), reported elsewhere on this site, has been taken by many as foreshadowing the death of video on physical media. Add in Oppo’s cessation of player manufacturing last year, and the statistically significant falloff in disc sales (confirmed locally by a recent, dramatic reduction in the shelf space devoted to video discs at my nearest Best Buy), and, the news certainly isn’t encouraging.

But the imminent death of the disc isn’t yet in sight. The disc market is still profitable, and the studios haven’t yet slowed down churning out both new and older titles. Check out The Digital Bits website for their weekly lists of releases and then tell me that video discs are on life support. They may be limping, but as a wise man once said, “It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.”

 |  Feb 26, 2019  |  0 comments
Pangea Audio has added an affordable “one-size-fits-all” speaker stand to its stable of audio accessories.
SV Staff  |  Feb 26, 2019  |  2 comments
AV enthusiasts reaffirm their love of 4K Blu-ray in a Sound & Vision poll.
SV Staff  |  Feb 25, 2019  |  2 comments
Samsung turned more than a few heads last week when it confirmed that it would no longer sell Blu-ray players in the U.S. The news was particularly striking because Samsung made headlines just three years ago when it introduced the world’s first 4K/Ultra Blu-ray player — the Top Pick-designated UBD-K8500.
Leslie Shapiro  |  Feb 25, 2019  |  0 comments
While teased last summer, a new video just released is showcasing Symfonisk, the collaboration between smart-speaker manufacturer Sonos and IKEA, maker of meatballs, build-it-yourself furniture, and all things Swedish and practical. The speakers that will come from this new venture promise to deliver the exceptional sound that Sonos is known for with the functionality and budget-friendliness of IKEA.

SV Staff  |  Feb 25, 2019  |  0 comments
Sony has announced pricing for the X950G Series of 4K LCD TVs previewed at CES 2019.
Mike Mettler  |  Feb 22, 2019  |  0 comments
Picture
Sound
Extras
The indisputable success of Bohemian Rhapsody confirms what many of us have known for decades: Queen was one of the biggest rock bands in the world, and their late frontman Freddie Mercury was one of the singularly most polarizing and mesmerizing popular-music performers of the 20th century.
SV Staff  |  Feb 22, 2019  |  9 comments
Physical media took another hit this week with word that Samsung will no longer produce standard and 4K/Ultra HD Blu-ray players for sale in the U.S., leaving Sony, Panasonic, and LG to carry the BD hardware mantle.

The news comes on the heels of recent NPD VideoScan data that reveals 4K/UHD discs accounted for only 5% of sales among the top 50 titles for the week ended February 9; standard Blu-ray claimed 40% and DVD 55%. The numbers were reported by MediaPlayNews.com, which bills itself as the “voice of the home entertainment industry.”

Add to that Hollywood’s selective commitment to 4K on disc. Upcoming home video releases of The Favourite and Stan & Ollie, for example, will reportedly be released only on DVD and standard Blu-ray. Other upcoming releases that make no mention of 4K/UHD Blu-ray include Vice (due out April 2) and Holmes & Watson (due out April 9). Both movies will be released on DVD and standard Blu-ray, according to studio announcements.

Despite 4K-on-disc omissions, the Digital Entertainment Group (DEG) put a positive spin on 4K Blu-ray in its 2018 year-end report, noting that 445 4K titles were available, compared with 682 digital 4K releases. In its Q3 2018 report, DEG said sales of 4K discs at that time translated into more than $162 million.

All of which brings us to your disc buying habits and how they are changing.

Be sure to leave a comment to share your thoughts on what many believe is the beginning of the end of physical media.

How Long Will You Continue to Buy Discs?
I’ll continue buying 4K discs for their superior performance as long as Hollywood makes them.
75% (1717 votes)
I’m thinking about cutting back on disc purchases as I start to stream more content.
4% (83 votes)
I’m already throttling back my disc purchases as I start to stream more content.
5% (117 votes)
My disc purchases are few and far between these days as I morph into a bona fide streamaholic.
8% (187 votes)
Discs are so 20th Century. It’s full stream ahead.
8% (175 votes)
Total votes: 2279
SV Staff  |  Feb 22, 2019  |  1 comments
Samsung has added voice control to the next generation of its wireless Galaxy Buds.
Barb Gonzalez  |  Feb 21, 2019  |  16 comments
Samsung has stopped selling Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray players in the U.S. Could this be one more sign that physical media will ultimately disappear, only to be replaced by streaming movies and TV?

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