My Two Cents

Ultra HD & BD News – Additional technical details on Ultra HD BD, plus Black Angel & more

May 13, 2015 - 2:42 pm   |   by
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First up today, we’ve got a little follow-up on the BDA’s Ultra HD Blu-ray announcement, specifically a few additional technical clarifications...

The video resolution is 3840x2160, with disc capacity at 66GB (dual-layer) and 100GB (triple-layer) – at data rates of 108 mbps and 128 mbps respectively – using the HEVC codec (H.265) via HDMI 1.2 and 2.0, as well as HDCP 1.4 and 2.2. The “digital bridge” system (for Digital Copy) is optional and consists of copy features that enables local playback. What that means for each disc/player is up to the manufacturer and although the Ultra HD Blu-ray spec is complete, the BDA is waiting to hear how manufacturers will implement these features.  [Read on here…]

Ultra HD Blu-ray players will be backwards compatible with existing Blu-ray media (also up to the specific manufacturers is the issue of backwards compatibility with DVD, CD, SACD, DVD-Audio, etc). The HDR component is open system (mandatory 2084/2086). As far as optional HDR, Dolby, Philips, Technicolor (etc) are working with the BDA on a certification program that ensures all HDR meets a specific performance metric. Open system HDR metadata is passed through the 2.0a port and the optional HDR metadata does not have a certain port requirement. So... there’s a little more info for you. We’ll add more as it comes in.

Meanwhile today, in announcement news, Warner Home Video’s Arrow: Season Three, Gotham: Season One, and Supernatural: Season Ten are all now officially set for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 9/8.

Scream Factory has revealed the extras that you’ll find on their Howling II Blu-ray, due on 7/11, including audio commentary with director Philippe Mora, a second commentary with composer Steve Parsons and editor Charles Bornstein, 3 featurettes (Leading Man, Queen of the Werewolves, and A Monkey Phase), an archive of Behind the Scenes Footage, the film’s alternate opening and ending, the theatrical trailer, and a still gallery.

Kino Lorber will soon release Harley Cokeliss’ Malone (1987) on Blu-ray only (street date TBA), along with Matthew Chapman’s Heart of Midnight (1988) on Blu-ray and DVD (street date also TBA).

For Jackie Chan fans, Well Go USA will release Police Story: Lockdown on Blu-ray and DVD on 8/11.

Eagle Rock Entertainment will release The Who: Live at Shea Stadium 1982 on Blu-ray and DVD on 6/30. It will include 25 tracks plus 3 bonus track, all in DTS-HD Master Audio and LPCM stereo.

Also for music fans, Frontiers Music Srl will release ASIA – Axis XXX: Live San Francisco on Blu-ray on 6/23.

Finally, we have a trio of fun things for you Star Wars fans today...

Documentary filmmaker Jamie Benning has created a fun, 16-minute piece on the deleted opening sequence from Star Wars called Blast It Biggs, Where Are You? You can watch that here on Vimeo.

Also, Nerdist today has a fun video featuring an audio recording, made by a 13-year-old in 1977, of audience reaction during a screening of the original Star Wars. It’ll bring you back for sure. Do check that out here.

Finally, some of you might recall the news last year that the lost negative to Roger Christian’s Black Angel, the short film that was originally distributed to theaters with The Empire Strikes Back in 1980, was discovered and screened at film festivals. Well, the restored film is now available for free viewing on YouTube. You can watch it below. Best of all, according to Christian, there’s going to be an important announcement relating to the film on 6/2 – and most suspect that it’s going to be news of an official Blu-ray and/or DVD release. You can visit the film’s official website here, their official Facebook page here, and you can watch the film below. Enjoy!

Back tomorrow with those reviews. Stay tuned...

Bill Hunt


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