It is true that the arrival of the very best streaming companies has made disc codecs like Blu-ray and Extremely HD Blu-ray pointless for some. However studios nonetheless often launch new and outdated motion pictures on disc, and there are many impartial publishers who launch obscure and iconic studio titles for launch in deluxe packages with a great deal of extras.
Merely put, Blu-ray is right here to remain for the foreseeable future, and we could not be happier about that. However whereas there’s nonetheless a gradual provide of latest discs, the very best 4K Blu-ray gamers have grow to be uncommon, with most AV producers both ceasing new gamers or limiting manufacturing to a single mannequin.
That is why it is all the time good to listen to in regards to the arrival of a brand new 4K Blu-ray participant available on the market. Magnetar launched its first participant, the UDP800, in 2022 and has now been adopted by a brand new flagship, the UDP900. At €2,500 (about $2,700 / £2,200 / AU$4,100), the UDP900 prices about $1,000 greater than the UDP800, making it the most costly participant we all know of.
What’s going on contained in the Magnetar UDP900 to justify its excessive value? On this case, it isn’t nearly what’s inside, but additionally what’s outdoors. Based on the corporate, the UDP900 has “an all-aluminum alloy physique and a bolstered two-layer chassis construction.” Its inside parts are additionally independently shielded with a steel case to scale back vibration and noise, and two 60W toroidal transformer energy provides are included for the participant’s analog audio output.
Such sturdy construct high quality could be the explanation why Magnetar’s participant measures 17.5 x 5.2 x 12 inches (W x H x D) and weighs 34 kilos. Within the shrinking world of 4K Blu-ray gamers, the UDP900 is an actual beast.
Contained in the UDP900 is an ESS9038PRO digital-to-analog converter (DAC) for the participant’s analog stereo XLR output and an ESS9028PRO DAC for its 7.1-channel analog RCA output. Dolby Imaginative and prescient and HDR10+ Excessive Dynamic Vary codecs are supported, and the UDP900 can play SACD and common CDs together with Blu-ray, 4K Blu-ray and DVD discs.
Along with its two HDMI outputs (one video/audio and one audio solely), the UDP900 additionally has a USB Sort-B DAC enter for connecting a pc for audio playback.
Evaluation: Why purchase a Blu-ray participant, particularly an costly one?
There isn’t a disputing that streaming is handy and that a lot of the world has chosen to go that route for watching motion pictures and music. However the Blu-ray Disc format stays viable, with new common Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray discs being launched on a weekly foundation. A few of these are deluxe editions aimed toward collectors, like Criterion’s latest 4K remaster by Terry Gilliam Fisher King from 1991. However different latest movies equivalent to Finest Image have been nominated for an Oscar All calm on the western entrance and Triangle of unhappiness.
In the event you’re a Blu-ray collector, it is sensible to personal the absolute best disc participant to make sure you’ll have a dependable, robustly constructed machine to play your discs lengthy into the long run. For this reason I am not delay by the Magnetar UDP900’s exorbitant value, regardless that there are extra inexpensive high-performance participant choices, equivalent to Panasonic DP-UB900.
What the UDP900 brings to the desk, apart from its unmatched construct high quality, is its give attention to audio and video efficiency. With help for prime dynamic vary codecs Dolby Imaginative and prescient and HDR10+, it has a balanced analog XLR output and a devoted toroidal transformer energy provide for every stereo channel. This implies it must be an excellent participant for Compact Discs together with Blu-rays and 4K Blu-rays, and it additionally helps the audiophile SACD format.
Considered one of my treasured AV possessions is an Oppo UDP-203 The 4K Blu-ray participant, which was the final mannequin Oppo made earlier than shutting down its Blu-ray participant manufacturing, reportedly as a result of the drive was wanted to supply telephones for the Indian market.
The Oppo Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray gamers had been sturdy and dependable, and their wonderful construct high quality and efficiency justified their larger value in comparison with different gamers. And whereas Magnetar’s claims for the UDP900 are undoubtedly excessive, I even have little question that that is the form of participant you will nonetheless be utilizing many years from now.