A 4K screenshot, compressed and rendered with website optimisation can never deliver a 100% accurate representation of the 4K (UHD) strength, but that aside, colour tone differences are still present.
We knew 4K UHD would take off, and we knew our customers would encourage us to get on board, and never wishing to disappoint, 4K UHD has landed!
Our favourite format is the lossless MKV which savours all that fine quality, and equally important DTS, DTS-MA, TrueHD / ATMOS audio.
To understand why the MKV is our favourite, let's make a few comparisons.
Digital content sellers, renters and general streamers.
It all comes down to visual and audio quality, bitrates really!
Now, please don't get us wrong, it has to be said, those digital content providers can pack a quality compressed punch, and they have to in order to send big data down our already throttled lines, which is a subject for another day as it has a lot to do with bandwidth speeds and data allowances.
So, for the online digital content sellers to appeal to the broader audience, they need to compress their video files and heavily, and while some would say Netflix does better on some titles over iTunes, and vice versa, compression will inevitably cause degradation (quality loss).
A 4K (UHD) title on the disc can easily exceed 50GB. H.265 mp4 compression can reduce it to 4GB to 7GB depending on the length of the feature. So what gives?
Visual | Reduced quality/degradation when compressing.
It's something that in general is more noticeable when close up to the screen, which in theory is what 4K (UHD) is all about, but compression can smooth out the grain a director and such like intended. Colours, especially black may look a little more grey, others may even be washed out, and some scenes can be a bit skittish from time to time.
The Apple TV 4K box actually upscales lower quality which is very smart, but the upshot is…. Compressed 4K content may look acceptable, but it will never match that of a disc. MKV lossless is therefore our favourite and in many cases, savours the power of Dolby Vision too!
Audio | More compression. (HUGE consideration)
We have always considered sound to be immersive and worth protecting because it represents at least half the experience. TrueHD and DTS-MA audio tracks can actually account for half the titles file size…. So, with H.265 mp4 compression back in mind, the audio will be heavily compressed too!
Compressing audio for an average boom bar, or when listening with your TV speakers is fine, but if you're actually running a decent, if not supersonic home theatre/cinema setup, streaming compressed audio will be way under par compared to our lossless version.
Yes, and we do now, but because you are less likely to need to stream 4K over the internet remotely, we are not going to be as overzealous on compression. For example:
✓ Visual will be compression limited.
✓ Audio passthrough, zero compression for DTS and DTS-MA.
So the upshot is, if an iTunes 4K example is 5GB, your DIGIRAW H.265 mp4 will finish around 10GB to 15GB, maybe even a little more!
Processing power within our Studio has a lot to do with price and right now, ripping to MKV lossless is a lot quicker, and requires less computing power, making the cost of a 4K 100% clone quality conversion to mkv much more price advantageous when compared to a compressed H.265 mp4 version.
H.265 mp4 can take 15 to 24 hours to finish. That's a long time to tie up a powerful and expensive computer!
✓ 4K (UHD) MKV Lossless | £8 p/disc
✓ 4K (UHD) H.265 mp4 | £15 p/disc.
At this time, 4K (UHD) Direct Play Video Support via Plex requires:
Download Infuse 5 from Firecore via the tvOS app store for MKV 4K (UHD) lossless playback.
Infuse 5 from Firecore is a stunning video player that can also connect to your Plex Server. The best part is, Infuse 5 plays just about every file type because it uses its own player rather than the Apple TV player which Plex adopts so playing 4K MKV lossless becomes possible!
So, to play your mkv 4K title on the Apple TV 4K without any hiccups, in a direct play, zero buffer scenario, even over your Wi-Fi, you'll need to spend around £8 per year on Infuse 5 to unlock that capability, while also benefiting from DTS audio which at present is not supported by the Apple TV player either.
£8 per year represents outstanding value!
As at May /June 2018, the Emby community suggests their own tvOS player is in development and could soon be another great option.
We're busy exploring media player apps similar to Infuse 5 for iOS and tvOS devices. We'll report back soon, but if you have any personal experiences to share, please get in touch with us, we'd love to hear from you.
With the MKV lossless in mind, and with there being many media servers, apps, TVs and clients to test, if your set up is non-Apple TV 4K, then we invite you to send us one 4K (UHD) disc for your test.
Please contact us if you would like a single 4K (UHD) free test. All we ask for is an understanding of your set up and your feedback after that. Naturally, we'll return your disc to you.
We pride ourselves on providing great support and endeavour to answer every question we get. For the quickest, most immediate response please contact us using our form below.
Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 4:30pm (GMT)
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The DIGIRAW CD, DVD, Blu-ray and 4K (UHD) ripping service was created in Dec 2012 to help movie, and music lovers alike to convert their physical media collections to digital, quickly. A disc-to-digital home-media service which organises, presents and plays your physical discs on any screen.
Clients tell us it's like a DIY Netflix service, with one notable extra benefit, you get to choose your content, and keep it! That's selective viewing at it's best.
© 2012 - 2018 DIGIRAW. All rights reserved. DIGIRAW and the contents of this website are not endorsed, associated or affiliated with ©Apple Computers Inc., Beats By Dr Dre, iTunes, Plex Media Server, Emby, Infuse 5 (Firecore), ROKU, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Netflix, Nvidia & Dolby. Use and reference to trademarks is done solely with the intention of referencing their products and services.
Your music, movie and TV show Home Cinema with Plex Media Server for your ripped DVDs is based in Buckingham, Buckinghamshire and serves but not limited to London, Middlesex, Bicester, High Wycombe, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Reading, Slough, Maidenhead, Henley, Berkshire, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire and Hampshire.
Personal collection & return service available, subject to order value and location.