Posted Sat Dec 2, 2017 at 11:35 AM PST by Steven Cohen
We've compiled the latest gear news, including details on the viewing angle benefits of LG IPS screens, the arrival of MQA audio on the Oppo UDP-205, and more.
From product announcements and streaming app updates to general industry news and recent gear trends, keeping up with the latest tech news can be a daunting task. With that in mind, we're here to offer you a roundup of some of the latest gear and consumer electronics news that you may have missed.
For this edition, we're covering the results of DisplayMate's viewing angle test using LG and Samsung displays, the addition of MQA audio support for the Oppo UDP-205, and the arrival of several new and updated streaming apps on Samsung Smart TVs.
So, without further ado, here's a rundown of some of the latest gear and tech news:
DisplayMate has conducted a test to see how much LCD TV picture quality changes from different viewing angles on IPS and VA panels. As part of the test, the company examined changes in color, contrast, and brightness from different angles on an LG 65SJ9500 4K Ultra HD TV and a Samsung 65Q8 4K Ultra HD TV.
The LG display uses an IPS LCD panel along with Nano Cell tech to achieve a wide color gamut. Meanwhile, the Samsung display uses a VA LCD panel along with Quantum Dot tech to achieve a wide color gamut. After conducting a few tests, DisplayMate concluded that the LG models maintained color and picture quality from off-center angles much better than the Samsung model.
Here are some key stats from the test per LG:
- The LG IPS LCD TV shows only small and barely noticeable Color Shifts and changes between the 0° and 45° viewing angle positions.
- The LG IPS LCD TV shows only small Color Shifts within the entire 4K Wide DCI-P3 Color Gamut. The Average Color Shift is 2.1 JNCD and the Maximum Color Shift is 4.8 JNCD, which are barely noticeable visually. So every viewer watching the LG IPS LCD TV should see the same high picture quality regardless of their viewing position and angle, up through at least 45°.
It should be noted, however, that while IPS panels are known for superior viewing angles, VA panels still tend to offer much better black levels, which can make them better suited for home theater use depending upon a user's priorities.
Source: DisplayMate via LG
Oppo has announced the addition of MQA audio decoding support to its UDP-205 Ultra HD Blu-ray player. With the new firmware update, users can now identify and play files encoded with MQA through the device's "Music" app.
"Delivering reference audio performance has always been the core feature of the OPPO UDP-205 universal player. We are thrilled to work with MQA to incorporate MQA decoding into the player," said Jason Liao, CTO of OPPO Digital. "Our audiophile customers will enjoy the lifelike and engaging listening experience with the studio master sound quality provided by MQA."
MQA is an end to end audio tech that provides authenticated master quality audio in a file that's small enough to stream or download. The UDP-205 is capable of playback for 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD-Video, DVD-Audio, SACD, Audio CD, and many other formats, including HEVC, H.264, VP9 4K, and Hi10P video codecs. In addition, the UPD-205 includes HDR10, Dolby Vision, and Wide Color gamut support. Dual HDMI outputs with HDMI 2.0 for UHD and HDMI 1.4 for audio, and an HDMI 2.0 input port for external streaming devices or set-top boxes are integrated as well. Likewise, the device offers advanced audio features with 7.1-channel analog audio output, two ES9038PRO DACs, and a massive toroidal power supply.
The new MQA firmware update for the UDP-205 is now available for download directly through the player's update feature or from the company's website.
Samsung has announced the addition of several new or updated apps to its Smart TV lineup. The collection includes YouTube TV, Amazon Prime Music, Hulu's new interface, and Hulu Live TV.
Amazon Prime Music allows Prime users to stream a growing collection of ad-free music tracks, including songs from popular artists like Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Blake Shelton, The Lumineers, Bruce Springsteen and Madonna. The service also offers pre-programmed playlists and personalized recommendations. The app is now available on 2015 and newer Samsung Smart TVs.
Meanwhile, YouTube TV offers access to more than 40 live streaming networks, regional sports channels, and cable stations, including ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, The CW, ESPN, Fox News, MSNBC, USA, Syfy, FX, Disney Channel, Sprout, E!, Bravo, and more for $35 per month. The app is now available on 2016 and 2017 Samsung Smart TVs.
In addition, the updated Hulu experience and Hulu Live TV service are both now available on 2017 Samsung Smart TVs. The upgraded Hulu app features a new highly personalized UI and the option to create up to six user profiles.
Finally, Hulu Live TV is available for $40 per month and includes access to content from ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC with local live broadcast affiliate programming immediately available in many markets, along with additional channels like CBS Sports, ESPN, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, TNT, CNN, CNBC, Fox News, Fox Business, MSNBC, Bravo, E!, Food Network, HGTV and Travel Channel, A&E, Cartoon Network/Adult Swim, Disney Channel, Freeform, FX, HISTORY, Lifetime, National Geographic, TBS, USA Network, Viceland, and more. Live TV subscribers also get to enjoy Hulu's existing streaming plan with limited commercials and more than 3500 TV and film titles. In addition, users can subscribe to add-on packages for HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime.
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