NVIDIA Shield Update Adds Netflix HDR Streaming, VUDU 4K, Dolby Atmos, Plex, and More!

Posted Wed Jun 29, 2016 at 02:00 PM PDT by
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The powerful streaming media player now boasts several new features.  

NVIDIA has released the latest software upgrade for its NVIDIA Shield set-top box. The update includes high dynamic range support for Netflix HDR titles, VUDU 4K playback, and more.

Under the hood, the NVIDIA Shield is powered by an NVIDIA Tegra X1 processor; 256 core NVIDIA graphics 64-bit CPU; and 3 GB of RAM. The player is also Android TV Google Cast Ready and offers 4K Ultra HD playback at 60 fps. Likewise, the streaming box includes support for 10-bit color and HDR (high dynamic range) content. The base model includes 16 GB of storage; a microSD card slot; Wi-Fi; Gigabit Ethernet; USB 3.0; and a micro-USB SHIELD controller along with support for next-gen Android games. In addition, a larger 500 GB model is also available.

With the new update, NVIDIA Shield owners can now stream select Netflix titles in HDR (high dynamic range). High Dynamic Range technology offers enhanced brightness and contrast on supported content and displays, resulting in superior highlights, shadows, and colors. Over 100 hours of HDR programming will arrive on Netflix by August, and more than 150 hours will be added by the end of 2016. Current Netflix Ultra HD subscribers can now watch season one of 'Marco Polo' in HDR. Beyond the Netflix upgrade, other new NVIDIA Shield features include Plex media server support, VUDU 4K playback, Dolby Atmos audio pass-through, and more.

Here's a full rundown of new features per the release notes:

- Netflix in HDR: SHIELD is the first Smart TV box to support Netflix in HDR! Pair with an HDR TV and enjoy brighter highlights, more detail in dark scenes, and a wider color range. One hundred hours of HDR shows coming this summer. Limitations apply (nflx.it/HDR).

- VUDU in 4K: Catch up on the latest movies and binge-watch TV series. Joining IS FREE. You only pay for what you rent or buy. VUDU supports UltraViolet and Disney Movies Anywhere playback, as well as 4K and voice search.

- Media Streaming At Home and On the Go: With PLEX Media Server built-in, you can stream your personal media collection from SHIELD to mobile devices, even outside the home. Accelerate your media (even from a NAS) with SHIELD’s HD transcode.

- Dolby Atmos: Enjoy a home theater experience with rich Dolby® Atmos surround sound pass-through in VUDU, MX Player, SPMC, and SHIELD’s preinstalled Photos & Videos app.

- YouTube 4K 60FPS: Watch YouTube videos in 4K Ultra HD resolution at a smooth 60 frames per second—only on SHIELD.

- Access SHIELD folders from a network PC or Mac and enjoy drag-and-drop file sharing. Enable in Settings > Storage & reset > Access SHIELD folders on PC.

- Mount a network attached storage device (NAS) to SHIELD to access your complete media collection. Stream this media to mobile devices using the Plex app and SHIELD’s HD hardware transcode. Set up in Settings > Storage & reset > Network storage.

- Automatically turn off your TV when SHIELD sleeps. Enable in Settings > HDMI > HDMI-CEC preferences.

- Enable YCbCr 4:4:4 color space for improved video quality on supported TVs. Go to Settings > HDMI > Color space.

- Improves picture quality for RGB TVs

- Delivers the latest monthly Android security updates

- Improves video playback for 23.976 Hz refresh rate

- Improves TV compatibility 

The SHIELD Experience Upgrade 3.2 is rolling out to customers now. The NVIDIA Shield 16 GB model is on sale for a suggested retail price of $200. Meanwhile, the NVIDIA Shield 500 GB model is currently available for $300.

Sources: NVIDIA 1, NVIDIA 2, Engadget, Android Central

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Tags: Nvidia, Nvidia Shield, Media Players, Set-top Boxes, Streaming, Netflix, 4K, Ultra HD, HDR, VUDU, Dolby Atmos, YouTube, Plex (all tags)