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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
For the last few years consumers have been force-fed 3D as the latest and greatest must-have display technology. While there was little resistance to the arrival of high definition, 3D has been branded by some as a selling gimmick that is hampered by those awkward glasses among other issues. But now there’s a new beast on the block named 4K and the industry is falling all over itself to tame it. In the last year we’ve witnessed the arrival of 4K displays and projectors, a few bordering on nearly affordable, that offer approximately four times the resolution of standard HD. There’s only one small problem: you can own one of these cutting-edge technological animals, but it’s nearly impossible to find a 4K device capable of feeding it...until now.

RED, a company that has helped usher us into the 4K dimension with a stable of Ultra-HD cameras, has officially released an intriguing – but expensive – 4K media player. Meet REDRAY, the new nemesis of our favorite hero Blu-ray.


REDRAY connects to any 4K display through a standard HDMI 1.4 port or four HDMI 1.3 ports. In addition, it provides a dedicated HDMI port for 7.1 channel LPCM 24-bit 48kh surround sound audio output to a receiver. If you don’t have a 4K display, REDRAY can scale 4K content to 1080p or 720p and output the material via HDMI 1.3 to any HDTV (or split an image across four HDTV’s for commercial digital signage purposes).

REDRAY and Blu-ray, Big Differences

Unlike Blu-ray, REDRAY does not accept optical disc media. In other words, there’s no slot for Blu-ray, DVD, or any sort of REDRAY discs. What it does play are two compressed media files: .RED (4K) and .mp4 (1080p and 720p). The proprietary .RED codec is only playable on REDRAY devices. At present, REDRAY does not allow for local streaming of audio or video content, but the device does contain a 1TB hard disc that can store roughly 100 hours of 4K content (REDRAY says the average movie is about 13.5GB, equating to somewhere between 60 and 70 movies). This drive can be supplemented by an external FAT32 formatted USB 2.0 hard drive to expand storage capacity. Users can add or play media by copying .RED files to an SD card or USB flash drive which insert into the front of player.

Beyond resolution and the lack of physical discs, REDRAY supports 4K and 3D content with 12-bit 4:2:2 color sampling at 24, 48, and 60fps. Blu-ray, on the other hand, delivers HD and 3D content at an 8-bit 4:2:0 color sampling clip. This simply means REDRAY offers higher resolution and less averaging of colors in blocks of pixels (better clarity and better overall color). Like many Blu-ray players, REDRAY comes with an IR remote control and a downloadable iOS remote app.

Available Content

RED and Odemax have partnered to create the world’s first net-based 4K Ultra High Definition entertainment provider. If you’re hoping to find last summer’s biggest blockbusters, though, you’ll need to keep looking. For the time being, Odemax is focusing on Indie films. Film makers can create their own channels on showcase.odemax.com. As of today there are 11 films available and 7 dedicated film maker channels.


Pricing and Availability

REDRAY was first announced late last year with a projected offering price of $1450. As of this week, REDRAY was available for purchase from red.com with a new price of $1750. Early adopters beware, Sony is rumored to be readying a similar stand-alone device of its own with a lower offering price of $699.


Image Credits: red.com, screen shot from showcase.odemax.com
 

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RedRay still seems to be lacking the crucial element, movie material to play through the device. The promising thing about Sony is that they own a studio and are requiring all films shot in there studio to be shot in 4K, or so it is rumored. This gives Sony the edge up with access to material to play through their new device to be announced.
 

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Im so on the fence on this entire Ultra HD thing. As with 3D I just dont see it catching on with most consumers.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
RedRay still seems to be lacking the crucial element, movie material to play through the device. The promising thing about Sony is that they own a studio and are requiring all films shot in there studio to be shot in 4K, or so it is rumored. This gives Sony the edge up with access to material to play through their new device to be announced.
Wouldn't disagree with this...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Im so on the fence on this entire Ultra HD thing. As with 3D I just dont see it catching on with most consumers.
I agree... your average consumer will be dazzled by the notion of more pixels, but most of them probably don't realize they aren't getting 1080p piped through their cable tv lines. It's folks with big screens and/or projectors that will probably reap the benefits (and want them too). Especially when it comes to more accurate color sampling. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing where it all goes... it's really hard to believe it will be so much better that folks will be willing to shell-out $5-$10K on displays or equipment. Maybe 8 years down the road the technology will be cheap and fine-tuned (just in time for me to retire my set-up and "upgrade" :T )
 

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As I have followed many small budget film makers on Vimeo and other forums I have seen many that are making 2.5K and larger movies. I have been learning more and more about time lapse and will end up making small 4k films myself. Long way off and nothing like Sony but in the same realm. But after following Red and BMC there are quite a few films that are now using there technology. Just going to the Red site will show you there are quite a few blockbuster movies that all utilize their cameras and codec.

Either way this player should push others like Sony to develop their product and hopefully the price will go down from there. But as stated you still would need others to develop their 4K projectors also to take advantage of this or other players. But after seeing a 4K projector I am sold. Cant afford it but want one down the road. :D
 

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Looks awesome!! Blu-ray prices should drop significantly. But what TVs can do 4k?? Price tag is probably too high to take off big.
 

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There is a manufacturer in California putting out 55" 4k TV's for 1500. We'll see when it happens.
 

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I dont see the 1080p going away. Larger displays maybe but still going to be around for a long time. Everything else would have to change also before 1080P goes away. Hard drive capacity and speed, processors speed rates ect ect. For me to do a 4K time lapse requires large hard drives. Then comes editing and so on which requires lots of computer power and hard drive space. So For now 2.5K is great and usable. Maybe in 5 years we will have the technology tnd price will be down for 1080 to then go away. But nothing is changing yet. Even this Red player is awesome but Red has a 6K camera out now. So time to upgrade......lol

Red has a compression technology that is making it possibly to broadcast 4K but you still need to capture it in RAW of other large file sizes.

Anyways I am excited about Red ray and hope to have one in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
To clarify, RED says that HDMI 1.4 will be adequate for deliver 12 bit color... and their four HDMI outputs (used at once) are enough to deliver high frame rates (in the 50-60 range).
 
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