Google Chromecast Ultra Offers UHD/4K and HDR Streaming for $70 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 09:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Google Chromecast Ultra Offers UHD/4K and HDR Streaming for $69

Wow, that was fast. Blink for a second and Ultra HD with HDR streaming suddenly becomes affordable to the masses. Today, Google announced its latest player, the Chromecast Ultra ($69). You can't order one yet, it still coming soon, but what it promises to do is to make your phone or tablet into the core of your home entertainment experience. Surprisingly, according to numerous reports, the new device supports both HDR10 and Dolby Vision flavors of HDR a first for an external device and a surprising move considering its low cost.


The new Chromecast Ultra from Google.


With its support for Ultra HD and HDR, the Chromecast Ultra offers an inexpensive means with which to add streaming as a source to an AVR, which in turn makes it possible to take advantage of Dolby Digital+ bitstream audio encoded with Atmos. Or, you can add one to your existing HDR-compatible TV to experience the convenience of being able to cast directly from various apps.

The pitch for this tiny new player—it's diameter is 2.3" and it is 0.58" thick—leans heavily on the fact most people already have the streaming apps they love on their phones, with all the personalization that goes with it. As a result, Google expects that many people who use the Chromecast Ultra will not need to re-enter passwords for various services, like they would with the apps found on other players or built into TVs. Furthermore, Google touts the advantage of being able to use your phone to search, instead of needing to use the on-screen keyboards provided by TV apps.

You are not restricted to using a phone or tablet to control the Chromecast Ultra, it also works with PCs and laptops. The system even includes a guest mode that negates the need for your friends or family to connect to your Wi-Fi in order to stream. Plus, not only can you cast content directly to the device, you can also mirror the screen of an Android mobile device with it.

The Chromecast Ultra includes an Ethernet port built into its power supply, for a wired connection to broadband Internet. This assures reliable streaming of UHD content, which can require a lot of bandwidth. The wired option makes this a home theater-friendly product since it helps ensure reliable streaming for interruption-free movie watching.

With both HDR10 and Dolby Vision available on such an inexpensive device, it's hard to see how we're not headed to a Coke/Pepsi or Dolby/DTS type situation where two formats coexist in the market together. However, it's also hard to see how manufacturers that do not include Dolby Vision in their HDR compatible TVs will be able to justify continuing with that approach.

Even if you own a UHD/4K TV that does not support HDR, the new Ultra will provide UHD/4K streaming that can look a lot better than 1080p streams. And if you have a 1080p TV, Google touts that the Chromecast Ultra is able to load videos almost twice as fast as its HD-only sibling that sells for a mere $35.

At launch, the Chromecast Ultra will support HDR video from Netflix, and Vudu. Google also plans to offer HDR videos through its Google Play service, starting right around the time the new device ships. Notably, as per CNET’s article on the topic, the Chromecast Ultra does not support Amazon video, which is a popular source of original HDR content.

Regardless of which flavor HDR you prefer, the reality of a mass-market UHD/4K streamer that fully embraces the latest advances in video for such a low price marks today as one for the Silicon Valley and consumer AV history books. Expect Google's Chromecast Ultra to ship this November.

Here's a brief video overview of the Chromecast Ultra from Google.
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Last edited by imagic; 10-05-2016 at 01:15 PM.
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post #2 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 10:44 AM
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Looks great! I'll be ordering one.
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post #3 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 11:00 AM
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I could be wrong but, i seem to remember that no amazon. Apparently amazon and google dont get along
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post #4 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 11:01 AM
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DV HDR and HDR10 streaming ability for $69. That's a good deal. If Google can sell that for $69, there should be absolutely no excuse why all tv makers can't include DV streaming with their new higher end UHD tv's in 2017. It's not that expensive.
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post #5 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by JLevy1978 View Post
I could be wrong but, i seem to remember that no amazon. Apparently amazon and google dont get along
You are correct.
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post #6 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 11:23 AM
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Does this offer anything you can't get with the amazon app that's included in every UHD TV and UHD blu-ray player?
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post #7 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 11:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JLevy1978 View Post
I could be wrong but, i seem to remember that no amazon. Apparently amazon and google dont get along
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Originally Posted by puddy77 View Post
You are correct.
I'd love to have a clear answer since multiple news outlets reported that it would stream Amazon content. But, not signs of Amazon's logo on Google's Chromecast Ultra site and Katzmaier over at CNET specifically said Amazon is not included so I edited the OP to reflect that.

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post #8 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 01:13 PM
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This morning, I was getting ready to order the new Roku Ultra and saw an article on the Chromecast Ultra (the word "Ultra" must be the new big naming system for streamers ). It looks to be better in features for half the cost of the Roku device. I just may be placing an order when available.
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post #9 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wxman View Post
DV HDR and HDR10 streaming ability for $69. That's a good deal. If Google can sell that for $69, there should be absolutely no excuse why all tv makers can't include DV streaming with their new higher end UHD tv's in 2017. It's not that expensive.
The biggest problem is that we all have been hoping tv manufacturers would include all the apps (or as many as they possibly can) so we would not have to purchase a stand alone device. Every tv make/model has an app missing. Even with my new tv, I would be forced to purchase a separate streaming device just to get the two apps (HBO Now & PlayStation Vue) that I'm missing. Some say it is better to have a separate device anyway but I would rather have all 5-6 of my (popular) apps on the television.
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post #10 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Perpendicular View Post
This morning, I was getting ready to order the new Roku Ultra and saw an article on the Chromecast Ultra (the word "Ultra" must be the new big naming system for streamers ). It looks to be better in features for half the cost of the Roku device. I just may be placing an order when available.
I used to have Apple TV and Roku, and then I added Chromecast and FireTV Stick. Now I have a 4k UHD/HDR TV, and Samsung's built-in apps suck, so it's back to the drawing table. I gave up on the FireTV Stick, it doesn't do anything that all the other devices don't, and I don't like the Amazon-centric interface, and I gave up on Apple TV for now, as it's main functionality was AirPlay, which for my uses, does the same thing as Google Cast, since I won't use the iTunes Store for anything due to it being a totally closed ecosystem.

With 4k, I have been using my TV's built-in apps, but they suck. So I'm getting a Roku Ultra, which I'll use for HBO Go, Amazon Prime, and Netflix, as it has the nice remote and 10-foot interface that Chromecast completely lacks. I also will get the Chromecast Ultra for my main TV to replace my OG Chromecast. The OG Chromecast is great for casting a phone's screen or YouTube videos, where they are more interactive. I would have stuck with the OG Chromecast, as it's not really quality-dependent, but I want Chromecast on all my TVs, so I got a 2nd generation Chromecast,and I will get a Chromecast Ultra. I find that for watching something while I'm doing chores, I can put podcasts up on YouTube, or use HBO Go, or even cast a tab from XFinity TVGo, so I figured I should put one on every TV, and I can just change what TV I am casting to as I move around.

I feel that Chromecast is a totally different product category than Roku/FireTV. If I'm sitting on the couch vegging, I want the 10-foot interface and hardware remote, but for YouTube, or or secondary TVs, Chromecast is simple, utilitarian, and allows me to move around and switch from TV to TV fairly easily with minimal interruption.
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I pre-ordered the Google Home... I really hope that it can control my Google Nexus Player in the same way it controlled the 4k Chromecast in the demonstration. I also REALLY hope I dont have to say OK GOOGLE for it to response and can use a more natural name like Amazon Echo has Alexa....

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post #12 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 06:50 PM
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I just don't see the value per dollar in this, I don't know why anyone would be getting this. I feel like Google just made it because they felt like they should. If this had come out before the Nvidia Shield or Nexus Player I'd have though it was great.
But now, even though the Shield is like 18 months old, its still the best value proposition for tv streaming, heck even the best performing at any price.
If you have a new 4k tv, you aren't poor, so spending the $200 for a Shield with nearly unlimited potential and top performance makes a lot more sense than a 70$ casting only device.

Anyway, I think the bigger story here is the UHD content is finally coming to Google Play. Personally, I don't buy digital if I can help it, I prefer disc or subscription streaming, but everything that I do buy is on Google Play because its the only thing that works on all my devices.

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post #13 of 42 Old 10-05-2016, 07:07 PM
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Maybe they'll finally get the ball rolling on more 4k rentals. All the services I've seen that support 4k have limited rental options for 4k movies. It will get better over time though.
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post #14 of 42 Old 10-06-2016, 03:59 AM
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I wonder if it would be any way to use this instead of a dedicated Kodi box for playing content from my server? The Nvidia Shield is the other option but it appear to be discontinued.

I also like how the ultra has a wired network connection as well to use.

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post #15 of 42 Old 10-06-2016, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazarus Dark View Post
I just don't see the value per dollar in this, I don't know why anyone would be getting this. I feel like Google just made it because they felt like they should. If this had come out before the Nvidia Shield or Nexus Player I'd have though it was great.
But now, even though the Shield is like 18 months old, its still the best value proposition for tv streaming, heck even the best performing at any price.
If you have a new 4k tv, you aren't poor, so spending the $200 for a Shield with nearly unlimited potential and top performance makes a lot more sense than a 70$ casting only device.

Anyway, I think the bigger story here is the UHD content is finally coming to Google Play. Personally, I don't buy digital if I can help it, I prefer disc or subscription streaming, but everything that I do buy is on Google Play because its the only thing that works on all my devices.
What is it you're trying to do with the Shield? You can cast all the streaming services and if you're not watching that you're watching BD or UHD BD. What more do you need? I think this looks like a no-brainer to buy.

Ever since I bought my Chromecast 2 my life has been so much easier. I just plug it into my receiver and I can watch pretty much anything or listen to anything through my phone. Spotify, youtube, hbo, netflix (plus a ton of Swedish streaming services) - it can't get any easier that just casting it. Granted I don't live in the US and maybe you have services over there that it can't support. Maybe I can see a use case if you rip all your movies and want to watch those from a NAS or something. But in my experience I've stopped trusting anything else than a proper BD-player for playing Blu-Rays. I'd rather have a cheap casting device for series and documenteries and put the rest of the money towards a proper player like an Oppo for movies.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazarus Dark View Post
I just don't see the value per dollar in this, I don't know why anyone would be getting this. I feel like Google just made it because they felt like they should. If this had come out before the Nvidia Shield or Nexus Player I'd have though it was great.
But now, even though the Shield is like 18 months old, its still the best value proposition for tv streaming, heck even the best performing at any price.
If you have a new 4k tv, you aren't poor, so spending the $200 for a Shield with nearly unlimited potential and top performance makes a lot more sense than a 70$ casting only device.

Anyway, I think the bigger story here is the UHD content is finally coming to Google Play. Personally, I don't buy digital if I can help it, I prefer disc or subscription streaming, but everything that I do buy is on Google Play because its the only thing that works on all my devices.
I was expecting them to announce a Nexus Player Ultra or since Nexus seems to be dead maybe calling it Pixel Player Ultra with 4k HDR support but I guess they might be just dropping that all together and thus the Chromecast Ultra was released...

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Does it support WCG? Usually 4k, HDR and WCG come together as a package. But there is no mentions of it.
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post #18 of 42 Old 10-06-2016, 03:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Does it support WCG? Usually 4k, HDR and WCG come together as a package. But there is no mentions of it.
Yes, HDR10 and Dolby Vision both use WCG

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Originally Posted by Perpendicular View Post
This morning, I was getting ready to order the new Roku Ultra and saw an article on the Chromecast Ultra (the word "Ultra" must be the new big naming system for streamers ). It looks to be better in features for half the cost of the Roku device. I just may be placing an order when available.
I guess by "ultra", they refer to "UltraHD".
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im not seeing the point of this either since the tv comes with the apps , says netflix or amazon etc that stream 4k , so why do you need this ?

Tv's also have youtube so once again why would you need to buy this when it comes on your tv already ?

Please explain if im missing something
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post #21 of 42 Old 10-06-2016, 07:53 PM
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Not all apps are available on every tv brand. If all you use to stream is Amazon and Netflix, then no, you would not need a stand alone streaming device. I use Amazon, HBO Now, Netflix and PlayStation Vue. So, I would need some type of separate streaming device.
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post #22 of 42 Old 10-07-2016, 06:52 AM
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Loving our OG CC's in the house. This is a definite buy when we make the jump to a nicer television. We still have a rear-projection LCD. She's been good to us that one

It would be nice to have receiver manufacturers bake CC functionality into their products. We're pumping everything through the receiver anyway and would save us from having to use an HDMI port. What would the disadvantage(s) be?
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Originally Posted by Perpendicular View Post
Not all apps are available on every tv brand. If all you use to stream is Amazon and Netflix, then no, you would not need a stand alone streaming device. I use Amazon, HBO Now, Netflix and PlayStation Vue. So, I would need some type of separate streaming device.
Plus a lot of the Smart TVs have awful streaming apps that crash all the time, like my Samsung.
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Plus a lot of the Smart TVs have awful streaming apps that crash all the time, like my Samsung.
I've never had a problem with crashing on any of my tv's (LG, Samsung & Sony). This is including using Ethernet or WiFi.
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post #25 of 42 Old 10-08-2016, 09:23 AM
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I am most excited about Dolby Vision ATMOS Titles ATMOS soundtrack which the ARC of my LG OLED does not pass through and with device I can get both HDR 10 - DV and ATMOS connecting it to my Marantz Receiver 6010.
The same it can do for projectors ....
I have never used a chrome cast before and I hope the interface is snappy.
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I've never had a problem with crashing on any of my tv's (LG, Samsung & Sony). This is including using Ethernet or WiFi.
The JS8500 series from Samsung is an app mess. I use Ethernet. The interface is OK, but both the reliability and the interface will definitely be improved with the Roku, and the Chromecast will offer me even more options.
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post #27 of 42 Old 10-10-2016, 02:58 PM
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Slightly off topic but, what of Nvidia's Shield. I find that to be very good at streaming and hoping a simple download will allow for DV and HDR 10. Any thoughts?

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post #28 of 42 Old 10-12-2016, 01:10 PM
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I am most excited about Dolby Vision ATMOS Titles ATMOS soundtrack which the ARC of my LG OLED does not pass through and with device I can get both HDR 10 - DV and ATMOS connecting it to my Marantz Receiver 6010.
The same it can do for projectors ....
I have never used a chrome cast before and I hope the interface is snappy.
I don't see any mention of Atmos anywhere but do see that it will support Vudu Dolby Vision titles. Do the 2 (Atmos and Dolby Vision) go together or could it only support Dolby Vision without Atmos?

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post #29 of 42 Old 10-20-2016, 03:34 PM
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Just received the mail from Google:

"The wait is over - Chromecast Ultra (Black) is here, in limited quantities

Now available The item you requested is now
available, in limited quantities.*
Get it at the Google Store.

*While supplies last. If the version of the product you want is not available, you will have the opportunity to sign up for the waitlist of the specific version you want."

https://store.google.com/product/chr...st_ultra_black
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post #30 of 42 Old 10-20-2016, 06:58 PM
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I received a similar mail; had signed up for notification on announcement day. But now it is showing "Ships in 2 - 3 weeks" at the google store. I guess I don't need to be the first guy to get one, I can wait until the local Target & Best Buy have them.

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Just received the mail from Google:

"The wait is over - Chromecast Ultra (Black) is here, in limited quantities

Now available The item you requested is now
available, in limited quantities.*
Get it at the Google Store.

*While supplies last. If the version of the product you want is not available, you will have the opportunity to sign up for the waitlist of the specific version you want."

https://store.google.com/product/chr...st_ultra_black
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