Bruce upgraded to an LG C7 TV, and it's been the best TV he's ever owned. He has an older generation Apple TV, not the new 4K version that's out now. He's wondering if it would be better for him to get a Mac Mini instead. He wants to know what the difference would be between Apple's tvOS and macOS. Leo says the new Apple TVs support UHD and high dynamic range (HDR). One of nice things about using an Apple TV is that it's automatic, Bruce would just have to plug in the HDMI cable and everything would work. The other thing it does is Dolby Atmos sound.
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.
Scott says that there are now 4K HDR projectors, and you can get them under $5,000. It sounds like a lot, but it really isn't considering where the prices were last year. Sony makes one that uses a technique called E-Shift, or 4K enhancement. The pixels 'wiggle' back and forth and can create close to 4K using 1080p imagers. It's pretty impressive. Scott says that the black levels are key to making the image really pop, and JVC is better with black levels than Sony. TheDLA-X790R is the one with great native contrast ratio and deep blacks.
John bought a Samsung QLED 4K TV. Does he really need to get a Blu-ray player for it? All he really watches is Netflix and it's pretty good. Leo says that streaming gets compressed, so even though it looks pretty good, Blu-ray is uncompressed and will look far better. The way he can tell is by looking for "macro blocking." He'll see it in solid blacks, and it'll show bands, instead of a smooth gradient. He'll also see some jaggies in titles and text. But Leo says in spite of that, Netflix does a good job. It just depends on if he wants the perfect image or not.
Murray has a Sony XBR 930D 4K TV, and it has horizontal lines across the bottom of the screen. Then it looks like it has a double image after awhile. Leo says it sounds like a hardware failure. Scott says that it sounds like LCDs are stuck open, or that the edge backlighting on the 930 are running a muck. Bottom line, it's broken. He may be able to have it repaired under warranty since it's under 2 years old. But if not, it'll likely cost more to fix it than buying a new TV.
Scott joins Leo to help Doug from Albuquerque, NM figure out what TV to buy. Scott says that the "spousal acceptance factor" is high on big flat screens, but not on speakers all over the house. So for Doug, a soundbar is probably best. As for the TV, Doug's living room is in a bright area, with plenty of windows, so Scott says an LED LCD TV is going to be the best option.
Tom is buying a new TV today and wants to know what to get. Leo says it depends on his budget. If he's spending a few thousand, then OLED is the way to go. Better yet, he should get a larger size than he would think. If he's at less than a 10' viewing distance, 55" is OK, but Leo likes 70". HDR makes a significant difference if he likes to watch movies. 4K, for sure. But everything else in the chain has to be 4K HDR in order to get the benefit.
Richard got a Vizio 4K TV and suddenly it says his TV isn't capable of receiving 4K, when it has been for the last two years. Leo suspects there's a "handshake" problem between the DirecTV box and the TV itself, and it's usually the culprit of HDMI cables. He should try replacing the cable first. But he'll have to be sure to have a cable that is certified for high speeds of 18GB per second. Amazon sells them for about $10. He could also try another HDMI input to see if that fixes it.
Mark has a 2012 Panasonic Viera and wants to know if he should upgrade to 4K. Leo says that the Viera was a plasma TV and it's really the best quality there is. And it still works! Yes, there's 4K, yes there's HDR. But 4K is only important if he's really close to the screen. Chances are, it won't be all that much of a difference. HDR, on the other hand, offers superior dynamic range. But unless he sees them side by side, he might not notice it. So Leo advises keeping that plasma TV until it dies. He can always upgrade then. And when he does, he's going to want to get an OLED.
Scott went and saw Ready Player One. Scott says that the film is a visual feast and they've done some great work depicting virtual reality, and the virtual characters are a little closer to being realistic. What's interesting is that for all its impressive CGI, the special effects were only rendered in 2K because that's what all computer graphics are done in. Still, it's downright impressive. And if you go see it, you should see it in Dolby Atmos. It's incredible.