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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
To be more clear, you do not import content from existing discs to the Encore system components (Alto/Strato/Terra). The only way to get content into the hard drives on the Alto/Strato/ and Terra Server is by downloading from the K Store.

You can indirectly get your currently owned content onto the hard drives (both BR and DVD, which the Store refers to as HD and SD) by using the Vault to catalog that content and "if" the movie is available in the Store you can then download it to the Encore components. If you have UV rights, you should be able to download at no cost. Other BR titles (HD) are usually $1.99 to download, while upgrading a SD movie to HD is usually $5.99. Of course pricing is subject to change, and just fyi, pricing is mostly determined by the studio's, not K.





Jim
Hi Jim, HNY! If you want to do a bokmark demo loop like for d-box action scenes now with the changer, how long between bookmark on disc a to bookmark on disc b?
 

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To be more clear, you do not import content from existing discs to the Encore system components (Alto/Strato/Terra). The only way to get content into the hard drives on the Alto/Strato/ and Terra Server is by downloading from the K Store.
Thanks for the detailed response Jim, much appreciated. To make sure I have this right, only the discs in the vault can be upgraded to digital downloads? If I put in a regular disc into the alto it will only play it back and cannot be used to download onto a Terra server, correct?

If that's correct then at this stage I think I'll forgo the Alto altogether and just focus on new 4K & re-purchasing bluray's I really want from the K store.
 

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To receive "Digital Offers" from the K Store, the Store must be able to identify the content you currently own, and this is accomplished through the "cataloging" process which occurs when you place physical discs in either the Vault, or the Alto's optical drive. You are correct that a disc placed in the Alto tray will playback (or catalog), but will not import content to the Terra Server.



Jim
 

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Hi Jim, HNY! If you want to do a bokmark demo loop like for d-box action scenes now with the changer, how long between bookmark on disc a to bookmark on disc b?

Hi Peter, HNY to you as well! (Reach out again when in the J'ville area, sorry we missed lunch last visit!)

To my knowledge, that cannot be done. I think you are referring to the "Scripts" function for setting up a demo, and that vault (changer) function you are referring to is part of the Encore (Alto in particular) line functionality, AND, the "Scripts" capability was not migrated to the Encore line. Only the Premiere line has the scripts function.


Jim
 

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is this the right thread to ask about Kaleidescape? I have some questions and couldn't find anyone to help me with Kaleidescape related questions
You may want to try the forum kscapeowners. But the previous poster above you would be able to address almost any question you have. You could send him a pm.
 

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What is the purchase process for Kaleidescape stuff? Can I just find a local distributor, walk in, and walk out with the devices? I'm interested in the Strato and a Vault. Also, does anyone know how the new physical UHD Blurays will fit into the mix? I ordered 3 of them from Foxconnect. Will there be a way for the store to recognize I own the UHD version of the movies?
 

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What is the purchase process for Kaleidescape stuff? Can I just find a local distributor, walk in, and walk out with the devices? I'm interested in the Strato and a Vault. Also, does anyone know how the new physical UHD Blurays will fit into the mix? I ordered 3 of them from Foxconnect. Will there be a way for the store to recognize I own the UHD version of the movies?
AVS PM me and I'll give you contact info on my Theta dealer (Craig Shumer, Theatermax, VGI on AVS Forum) who also luvs and is a dealer for Kaleidescape. He can answer all your questions.
 
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What is the purchase process for Kaleidescape stuff? Can I just find a local distributor, walk in, and walk out with the devices? I'm interested in the Strato and a Vault. Also, does anyone know how the new physical UHD Blurays will fit into the mix? I ordered 3 of them from Foxconnect. Will there be a way for the store to recognize I own the UHD version of the movies?
You are unlikely to find anybody who has these on the floor in inventory - especially for the Strato, which was taking pre-orders with cash down months ago. Mine shipped on Friday so I should have them Monday to show people who want to see it in action.

Kaleidescape does not yet have a 4K player with a physical drive. They have not announced their plans on that. While they are hoping to have all the major studios online shortly (missing 2, one of which should be coming live in the store within a couple weeks) so there will be a way to get the majority of 4K content into their system without a drive. That said, the lack of importing physical media would add a stumbling block to people who have physical content they don't want to buy again.

The lead time on Kaleidescape systems is generally pretty short. If you have any questions, shoot me a message. I have been a Kaleidescape dealer for about 13 years now.
 

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Does the Strato work for ripped redbook audio? Or do they have hires audio downloads available? It would be nice to have 1 box, or suite of boxes, with the same consistence interface for all my content.
 

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The Strato player does not do audio at all. In fact, then entire Encore line (Strato and Alto players and Terra Server) do not play audio or store audio files. The premier line does, but the premier line does not do 4K.

As the 4K system is rolled out, they will eventually (approx 6 months from now) have the system set up where a Strato player can play back movie content from the Terra Server and also from a premier server, but to play back audio from the premier line, one would need either an M-class or older player. When that merged system interface happens, all content from the Kaleidescape store will need to be housed on an Encore line product if you are merging the two systems into one interface.

I know that is a little confusing, but that was the only practical way to implement the merging of the system interfaces with the restrictions Hollywood gave on accessing their 4K content.
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 · (Edited)
Hi Mike, Please advice us the minute an HDR title shows up, the ones that i saw look identical to the sony 4k server. so I will hold off until HDR comes out.

 

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I spoke with Kaleidescape and they have informed me they have HDR content for their demo loops, but I don't know if the full films in the store are HDR. I have a request in to them to let me know what content that have that I can download that has HDR and wide color. As soon as I hear, I will post it on the Kaleidescape Owners forum and here as well.
 

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Thanks for the detailed response Jim, much appreciated. To make sure I have this right, only the discs in the vault can be upgraded to digital downloads? If I put in a regular disc into the alto it will only play it back and cannot be used to download onto a Terra server, correct?

If that's correct then at this stage I think I'll forgo the Alto altogether and just focus on new 4K & re-purchasing bluray's I really want from the K store.

Before you repurchase your movies, here's what I did. I created a Vudu Account and connected it to my Ultraviolet account.....but then....


I downloaded Vudu's disc-to-digital application for my older blu rays with no UV card. I was able to get the digital versions of many blu rays for $1.00 each (if you get more than 10 at a time, it's $1.00 each for most titles...if you get less than 10 at a time, it's $2.00 each.) I did this for around 50 blu rays and spent just $50, adding to my fairly extensive digital collection already ammased in Vudu via Ultraviolet. For most newer movies, Ultraviolet is all you need to get your physical disc purchase onto Kaleidescape. With Fox now on board, the future is looking very bright for the Strato.


Now, to be fair--not all discs were eligible (usually studio restriction as the culprit). I'd say I tried about 75 blu rays, and of those, 50 of them were eligible.
 

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Before you repurchase your movies, here's what I did. I created a Vudu Account and connected it to my Ultraviolet account.....but then....


I downloaded Vudu's disc-to-digital application for my older blu rays with no UV card. I was able to get the digital versions of many blu rays for $1.00 each (if you get more than 10 at a time, it's $1.00 each for most titles...if you get less than 10 at a time, it's $2.00 each.) I did this for around 50 blu rays and spent just $50, adding to my fairly extensive digital collection already ammased in Vudu via Ultraviolet. For most newer movies, Ultraviolet is all you need to get your physical disc purchase onto Kaleidescape. With Fox now on board, the future is looking very bright for the Strato.


Now, to be fair--not all discs were eligible (usually studio restriction as the culprit). I'd say I tried about 75 blu rays, and of those, 50 of them were eligible.
I did see where fox is NOT allowing new UV partners at the time. The way it as worded made me think it could (could) come.
 

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I did see where fox is NOT allowing new UV partners at the time. The way it as worded made me think it could (could) come.
That's correct, unfortunately Kaleidescape have stated on their Facebook page that UV will not work with Fox titles, which is a tad dissappointing!
 

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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
That is good although thusfar sony appears to have a leg up on PQ on 4k mastering. All this HDR content is great but I can't help wonder if Kaleidescape jumped the gun with the strato platform, as had they waited 9 months they could have integrated Intelligent Tone Mapping unto the player.

I saw a sample of FF Coppolas work updynamizised and some of it The Cotton Club looked unreal.

Here is some info on technicolors ITM which is a natural for playback of legacy bluray. I hope Kaleidescape recognizes this and gives us an upgraded strato platform.

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Today's high-definition TV and video can look great, but there's always room for improvement. New, higher-fidelity image schemes are beginning to gain traction these days, including 4K, wide color gamut, and high dynamic range.
The idea behind all of these methods is to allow video shown on current and future TVs to look more like reality, whether through improved detail and sharpness (called 4K); a broader range of colors that more closely matches what the human eye can perceive (wide color gamut, or WGC), or brighter highlights and darker blacks presented on-screen at the same time (high dynamic range, or HDR).

We already have some 4K shows and movies available today, along with 4K TVs to display them. Standards to allow wide color and HDR in home video are being developed now. From demos we've seen, they have the potential to improve image quality much more than 4K can.

One issue, however, is that most of those movies and TV shows were mastered for standard dynamic range (SDR) and the narrower color range of HD. That's the issue Technicolor's (ITM) aims to address. It's a method to convert standard dynamic range content (i.e., pretty much everything) into a pseudo-HDR.

When I first heard about ITM, I was skeptical. There are no good examples of converted content that looks remotely as good as the real thing. 2D movies converted to 3D look worse ( but are likely dying) and upconverted resolutions rarely looks as sharp as true HD or 4K. For an example of the latter, just turn your HDTV to a standard-definition channel.

So how can something with standard dynamic range match the incredible pop of HDR? I went to Technicolor's labs in Hollywood facilities to find out.

The lab

Technicolor's sharply angled and modern steel-and-glass building occupies the Sunset side of the legendary Sunset Gower Studios. Security checks, valet parking and name badges were all typical in this company town, and offered no surprises for "Jeffery Morrison."

Inside looked much like any office building, perhaps with sturdier (soundproof) doors and far more movie posters and blown-up stills than average. After a brief meet-and-greet, I was shepherded into one of the labs by Mark Turner, vice president of partnership relations and business development, and Josh Limor, director of product development for industry video technology. Both enthusiastic about HDR and knowledgeable. I meet plenty of people in technology who are one or the other, but rarely both.

technicolor-tour-2.jpg
Geoffrey Morrison/CNET
The room (above) was a pretty typical post-production lab. There were 30-inch Sony OLED broadcast monitors that cost about $1,000 an inch; a wide control surface that looked like a mixing board but with more knobs and fewer sliders; and dominating the far end of the small room were two 65-inch Samsung JS9500SUHD TVs. I'm told they were set up as identically and correctly as possible.

The demo

Both Samsung TVs were running the same demo reel. It consisted of a series of clips, commissioned by Technicolor, and edited and processed in house. Each version of this reel was created from the same camera files. Each version was "tuned" to look as good as possible in its specific color space and dynamic range.

The left JS9500 was running a standard image, with the Rec 709 color space It was essentially HD-quality, and looked good.

The right JS9500 showed a split screen image. The right half was true HDR content displayed in the P3 color space. It looks fantastic, as HDR can, with rich cyan skies, deep red bathing suits, bright highlights on metal that really pop and more.

The left half of the split screen was way more interesting to me. It showed the standard dynamic range image, run through Technicolor's ITM process, to create a pseudo-HDR image from the SDR content.

Essentially, that means upconverting SDR to HDR.

It looked...really good, actually. Much better than the SDR version. Did the real HDR look better? Absolutely. Depending on the shot, at least 20 to 30 percent better. But the upconverted version looked so good, that if that was the only image shown, I doubt anyone would have guessed it was "fake" HDR. Which is, of course, the point.

What's goin' on

Of course, I took what I was seeing with a big bag of salt -- I've been shown a lot of demos in my day, this is not my first rodeo drive. However, there are a few things that make this particular demo more promising than most.

The first thing to keep in mind is that recent and current digital video cameras have significantly greater dynamic range than is possible within the confines of the current HD standard. (So do most recent TVs, incidentally, whether they officially support HDR or not.)

During the initial mastering process for HD, the image shot by the director and cinematographer on those cameras is essentially "dumbed down" for delivery to your eyes via today's HD sources, namely Blu-ray, streaming or broadcast TV. During a remastering process, more of this visual information can be used to create an image with greater dynamic range.

The second is that ITM isn't a fully automated process. It's a plug-in for post-production color grading software (color grading is used to make sure the whole show or movie looks consistent and how the director wants it). So don't expect to see an "ITM" button on your next TV.

resolve-with-itm.jpg
Technicolor
A colorist, ideally along with the original content creator (be it director, cinematographer or both), makes choices as to what to accentuate, what to hide, and how much color to bring out in the highlights, midtones and shadows. The goal is to get the image you see closer to what they intended you to see.

To show me this process, Technicolor's lab techs put the SDR/709 image on the left TV, then undid the work they did with the ITM for the image on the right. The images were identical, proving their claim from earlier about the TVs.

Then, using sliders and adjustments familiar to anyone who has used Lightroom or Photoshop, they were able to dial in color to various parts of the image. With more dynamic range to play with, for example, more detail can be brought out in both clouds and shadows.

Excitement and concerns

What do with "legacy" content is a concern during any video transition. Upconverting 50 years of NTSC (the video system or standard used in North America that's 30 frames per second) content was often done poorly, and making 2D into 3D was and is rarely done well.

The possibility of converting standard to HDR getting bungled is real and worrying, especially given the great possibilities of the "format."

What I saw gives me hope, though of course it was in a pristine environment as part of a demo. The potential for the conversion to be done correctly -- or at least not badly -- exists.

technicolor-tour-1.jpgEnlarge Image
HDR on the right, is not "brighter" just for the sake of being brighter. Highlights and colors can be brighter thanks to a greater dynamic range. The addition of wide color gamut makes the colors richer and more realistic too.
Geoffrey Morrison/CNET
Will there be poorly converted HDR content? Of course, it's inevitable.

What Technicolor's demo showed me is that for content creators who care, there's a way to convert SDR content cost-effectively, while creating an end-product that looks better than SDR, if not quite as good as native HDR.


And really, that's what matters. The content that you want to look really good ("Game of Thrones" or "Sense8"for example), can look good. Probably even better than what you're seeing now.

Cameras are improving all the time, as are TVs. With HDR and WCG, the content is finally catching up. Technicolor's ITM, and other methods like it, are a promising step to help us bridge the gap between SDR and a wonderful HDR future.

Got a question for Geoff? First, check out all the other articles he's written on topics such as why all HDMI cables are the same, LED LCD vs. OLED vs. Plasma, why 4K TVs aren't worth it and more. Still have a question? Send him an email! He won't tell you what TV to buy, but he might use your letter in a future article. You can also send him a message on Twitter @techWriterGeoff or Google+.
 

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AVS PM me and I'll give you contact info on my Theta dealer (Craig Shumer, Theatermax, VGI on AVS Forum) who also luvs and is a dealer for Kaleidescape. He can answer all your questions.

I second this. Been using Craig for years. Got everything from Theta processors to Sony 4k projectors from the guy.

I did see where fox is NOT allowing new UV partners at the time. The way it as worded made me think it could (could) come.
That's correct, unfortunately Kaleidescape have stated on their Facebook page that UV will not work with Fox titles, which is a tad dissappointing!
@7channelfreak and @Wookii thanks for that clarification. So Fox titles will need to be double-dipped. Drats...that is a less-than-ideal end state.

That is good although thusfar sony appears to have a leg up on PQ on 4k mastering. All this HDR content is great but I can't help wonder if Kaleidescape jumped the gun with the strato platform, as had they waited 9 months they could have integrated Intelligent Tone Mapping unto the player.

I saw a sample of FF Coppolas work updynamizised and some of it The Cotton Club looked unreal.

You've got me wondering...is it better to wait? I'm always afraid to wait, because there's always something new on the horizon for this hobby....but if ITM is a technology that the undsutry experts feel "should" have been included in the Strato, but isn't...I might consider waiting for that implementation. I guess a blu ray drive wouldn't hurt either...it would save me the hassle of having to get a separate one this year. Well, let me put some cushions and a back-rest here atop this here fence.
 

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AVS PM me and I'll give you contact info on my Theta dealer (Craig Shumer, Theatermax, VGI on AVS Forum) who also luvs and is a dealer for Kaleidescape. He can answer all your questions.

Seconded. I've used Craig multiple times as well. Great guy.
 
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