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Discussion Starter #1
I own a first gen Pioneer BDR-206MBK BDXL drive. I recently helped my uncle spec a general use computer and since the BDXL offerings were only $30 more than a normal DVD burner he also has a BDXL drive now.

I've searched the interwebs via Google and I cannot find any actual information source that specifies what a 4K Blu-Ray will actually play on? For example, will my first gen BDXL drive be able to play a 4K Blu-ray when they are available?

Anyone have any official info on this?

Chuck
 

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BDXL, by definition I believe, are write-once/dye-based formats. That is, there's no "ROM" version of BDXL. The reading of such write-once discs is slightly different than the reading of pressed discs. Given 4K BD will almost certainly be on pressed discs, there's no saying whether it'll be compatible with drives that can read BDXL. While it might be theoretically possible to make compatible, I'm guessing it won't be


The sizes for 4K BD are 50GB, 66GB, and 100GB. The capacity is certainly within the realm of BDXL but from the sounds of it, it'll be a totally different format requiring different optics and firmware to read.


For any official information, you're not going to see that until the last part of this year, close to the time when it releases.
 

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I was told by a disc technology company that the design of BDXL is the basis for the new format. I don't know if that's true or not but it makes sense and ages ago, it was determined that 100GB discs could be read with existing BD-ROM drives when updated with firmware.
 

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I've read that all of the new 4k content will require devices that are HDCP 2.2 compliant. I think that spec arrived in 2013 and your Pioneer was manufactured in 2011? So that could be an issue.
 

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The spec (4k BD that is) has not been finalized. Currently it is targeted for summer for the final spec and end of the year or next year for actual product release. Until we see actual playback software on the market, we can assume it will never be allowed on a PC :(
 

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Considering its the of players that cracked dvd and bluray, they might not even open it up for software players.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So basically, nothing for sure yet, and we won't know until later this year. Thx for the replies All!
 

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For the drive/disc itself, we knew the capacity and data rate requirements: 66GB/108mbps or 100GB/128mbps. HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2. 3D not supported yet.
 

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I've read that all of the new 4k content will require devices that are HDCP 2.2 compliant. I think that spec arrived in 2013 and your Pioneer was manufactured in 2011? So that could be an issue.
HDCP has nothing to do with the drive, it doesn't come into play until the video is sent out over HDMI.

So basically, nothing for sure yet, and we won't know until later this year. Thx for the replies All!
Right, we won't know until it comes out.
 

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I will join in spreading FUD - I would be shocked to see a next gen bluray drive for the pc.

That would make spreading copies on the internet exponentially harder - you'd need a player, some in-line device that can crack the new HDCP protocol, and something that can capture it in 4K.
 

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The sizes for 4K BD are 50GB, 66GB, and 100GB. The capacity is certainly within the realm of BDXL but from the sounds of it, it'll be a totally different format requiring different optics and firmware to read.
I would expect the same optics can read the discs. BDXL drives already have the optics to read triple and quad layer discs. They can also read discs with the tighter track pitch that will be used for UHD Blu-Ray. It's likely that at most a new firmware is all that will be necessary to read the discs.

That said, I'm not sure we'll see a new firmware or PC based optical drives that read UHD Blu-Ray discs. SACD stayed uncracked for a long time thanks to a lack of PC support. It wasn't until a PC like device that could read the discs (PS3) was compromised that SACD ripping happened.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well, I for one am hoping that those of us that own BDXL drives will be able to use them to play 4K Blu-ray - it would suck to need to buy yet another drive...
 

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I'm more worried about the availability of software to play them than drive compatibility. That and graphics card/Windows compatibility, what with HDR, Wide Gamut and 10 bit color, none of which are (easily) available in Windows/PCs.
 

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I would expect the same optics can read the discs. BDXL drives already have the optics to read triple and quad layer discs. They can also read discs with the tighter track pitch that will be used for UHD Blu-Ray.
Are you sure about that though? Is there a source that verifies that?

Well, I for one am hoping that those of us that own BDXL drives will be able to use them to play 4K Blu-ray - it would suck to need to buy yet another drive...
It seems as if there may not be drives or software. From what others seem to be saying on this thread, PCs may not be playing back 4K BDs at all. In terms of copy protection, it is a good idea. If you can't read the discs on PCs on ~$100 drives, that's gonna cut down on piracy a whole lot. Of course OTOH it may also steer people away from 4K discs and just on to streaming, in spite of the fact that the quality/bitrate won't be nearly as good.
 

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Are you sure about that though? Is there a source that verifies that?
What do you mean? BDXL disc are triple and quad layer. 100gb BDXL discs have 3 33gB layers. 128gB BDXL discs have 4 32gB layers. UHD BD is supposed to have 2 or 3 33gB layers.

It seems reasonable that if you can read 3 33gB layers on a BDXL disc then 3 33gB layers on a UHD BD shouldn't be a problem (optically).
 

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I predict that new drives WILL absolutely will be necessary to read the new spec compliant discs AND that software players/drives for PC WILL be avaliable, otherwise without PC support I ex[ect the format to be stillborn. They can use techniques like audio watermarking to curtail ripped copies-it seems to have been very successfull on BD's with Cin* protection. Only after a few years will the likes of VLC be able to read decrypted copies of the new discs.....I could be wrong but every format which lacked PC support failed to gain manstream acceptance: minidisc, dvd audio, sacd, adat, .........

Lets hope that PC drives and software from the like of cyberlink/corel/vlc/xbmc/laewo become avaliable for the next generation.
 

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Well, I for one am hoping that those of us that own BDXL drives will be able to use them to play 4K Blu-ray - it would suck to need to buy yet another drive...
Word on the street was that Samsung pushed for using BDXL as the basis for the new spec and it makes sense. No way the industry will tolerate another bastard optical format from Sony/Panasonic - who control the bulk of disc replication lines - that requires investing in "new" equipment.
 

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Word on the street was that Samsung pushed for using BDXL as the basis for the new spec and it makes sense. No way the industry will tolerate another bastard optical format from Sony/Panasonic - who control the bulk of disc replication lines - that requires investing in "new" equipment.
But the whole point is for everyone to make money......don't you get it?
 

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Even if they did restrict the new discs to dedicated players, you'd find hacked firmware showing up within months that would let you dump discs over Ethernet/Wi-Fi. DRM never works when people are determined to defeat it.
 
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