4K resolution is coming to living rooms: just in time for the launch of UHD-Blu-ray, Panasonic, like Samsung, is introducing its first new disc reader. With a recommended price of 799 euros (about 60,000 rubles), this player, of course, cannot be called cheap. We tested the UB900’s 4K and HDR capabilities by running Mad Max: Fury Road on a Panasonic TX-50DXW734 TV and saw significant picture improvements, especially in contrast-poor scenes.
Pros and cons
+ Great image with superb contours
+ Lots of interfaces
+ Analog audio output capability
— Long loading times
— High energy consumption
— High price
Average retail price: 60,000 rubles
Panasonic DMP-UB900: high detail
The new player supports HDR technology, which means the expansion of the dynamic range of the image. In practice, this makes it possible to display even “faceless” scenes with sharp details and rich colors. That’s why, in the desert races in Mad Max: Fury Road, the device manages to endow objects with the appropriate contours.
In addition, the UB900 supports 4K resolution — and we enjoyed watching the test film, although in fact it was a 4K trick, since the Blu-ray had 2K resolution source material in its base. However, the image was convincing due to its saturation and clear structures. However, to see all the beauty, home theater fans will have to move closer to the screens.
Panasonic DMP-UB900: Dolby Atmos and Surrond 7.1
Anyone who attaches particular importance to sound in a home theater will not be disappointed either. The Panasonic DMP-UB900 supports Dolby Atmos technology, is equipped with eight RCA outputs and has a second HDMI connector for connecting a stereo or multi-channel audio system.
Thus, with the right connection, you can get not only a clear picture, but also 7.1‑channel sound in your living room. In addition, the UB900 has additional interfaces: a flip-down front panel provides access to a USB port and an SD card reader.
Panasonic DMP-UB900: high power consumption and long boot times
HDR, 4K compatibility and high quality upscaling come at a price: Not only does the UB900 need more power than regular Blu-ray players, it also takes a long time to load. When playing the movie “Mad Max”, it consumed 16.2 watts, which is well above average.
The time that elapsed from loading the disc to starting playback was 31.2 seconds. Thus, the UB900 took 10 seconds longer than the Panasonic DMP-BDT374, the slowest Blu-ray player on our list. Naturally, all this is criticism at the highest level: if you do not pay attention to the load time, the device will give you a lot of pleasure.
Alternative: Samsung UBD-K8500
The second UHD-Blu-ray-player is presented by Samsung. With similar characteristics, it costs a good 300 euros (about 22,000 rubles) less than a competitor from Panasonic. But if you choose this option, you will have to give up some interfaces: for example, such as analog audio outputs.