Blu-Ray

Why is my Blu-ray player "jerky?"

Sony UBP-X700 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Player

Episode 1549

Rich from Tuscon, AZ

Rich recently bought a 4K TV, now he's having issues watching Blu-ray DVDs that are non 4K, because it's a bit "jerky." Leo says it's called "decoding hesitation." Scott says that the very first Samsung Blu-ray players had problems with resolution and detail. It's also related to upscaling. What's odd is that it's inconsistent, happening every 5-10 seconds. Leo also says the Blu-ray player is losing sync when decoding the data stream. A better player will fix the problem, and if Rich is looking to get the next component in his new 4K system, the Blu-ray player is where to start.

Why can't I get sound out of my TV?

LG 50UH5500

Episode 1538

Al from Roseburg, OR

Al has an old receiver and he wants to connect his TV to it. He bought one, but he's not getting sound from the TV. If he connects it to the Blu-ray player, though, it works just fine. Leo says that he'll need to go into the LG menu setup and disable the onboard speakers in favor of external speaker output. Another possibility is the DAC may not understand the TV signal because it's encoded, while the BluRay Player is using unencoded PCM audio. Al should figure out what audio the Blu-Ray is sending out and see if he can duplicate that setting on the DAC.

How can I rip my DVDs?

Apple iPhone X

Episode 1504

Darwin from Broken Arrow, OK

Darwin wonders what the FBI used to crack open the iPhone of a terrorist. Leo says that the FBI won't say. Leo suspects they went to an Israeli firm called Celebrite, which can unlock older iPhones with four digit codes. Which is why Apple changed the code to a six digit code and patched vulnerabilities that would allow them to bypass it. If Darwin can prove that he owns his personal iPhone, Apple can open it for him. But if it's his sister's, there's no guarantee that Apple will. But if he can prove ownership or relational link, it's possible.

Is 4K Blu-ray worth investing in?

Billy Lynn's Long  Halftime Walk

Episode 1444

Isaac from Clinton, MS

Isaac has a nice Sony home theater system. But with 4K, he wants to know if the difference in quality is worth rebuilding it in 4K. Leo says that Blu-ray is not only 4 times the resolution as 1080p, it also has the high dynamic range and that's more important. If his home theater supports HDR, then there's no problem. If not, he may want to think about it. Moving forward, he can start picking up UHD HDR Blu-rays for his collection. Billy Lynn, Master and Commander, the BBC Earth series — all are excellent.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1432

What is the real difference between 4K streaming and ultra Blu-ray discs? Scott Wilkinson says that most of the Ultra Blu-ray discs on the market are now 4K HDR. Streaming content is making the move to HDR, and several of the TV shows streaming are in 4K. Netflix is the leader in this. Stranger Things is going to be streaming in 4K HDR as well, but it won't be as good because of bitrate. It'll top out at about 25 Mbps streaming, and it's data compressed, while 4K Blu-ray HDR is about 100 Mbps uncompressed. Renting Blu-rays is an option, but finding HDR Blu-rays can be a challenge.

Why can't my Blu-ray player pick up my Wi-Fi signal?

TPLink 2-Port Gigabit Passthrough Powerline Starter Kit

Episode 1372

Susan from Yorba Linda, CA

Susan is having trouble streaming with her Blu-ray player and her TV. Leo says it could be that the Blu-ray's Wi-Fi isn't working too well. She may need to move her hotspot closer to the TV itself. It may also be that there's congestion on the 2.4 Ghz band, and her TV won't pick up the 5.0 Ghz band. She should try using her mobile phone as a hotspot and see if it picks it up. If it does, then the Wi-Fi spot is either too far away or is congested and swamped by other signals.