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Samsung’s 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player goes on sale a bit early, release date pushed forward

by on February 8, 2016
 

Stephan Jukic – February 8, 2016

The Samsung UBD-K8500, which is one of the first three 4K Blu-ray players to hit the market in 2016, is going on sale earlier than originally expected by most sources.

This device and its Philips and Panasonic cousins which all offer the world’s first 4K UHD Blu-ray playing capacity have all been heavily anticipated but it seem that the UBD-K8500 will be beating the pack by a bit thanks to an early release date of February 10th in some cases, instead of the wider release in March as originally expected.

The UBD-K8500 was originally announced by Samsung all the way back at IFA 2015 and was again presented in even more detail at CES 2016, along with two other 4K UHD Blu-ray players from Philips an Panasonic. All three devices were originally slated for release to the buying public in March of this year and all three devices offer very similar features and pricing profiles.

The March release date also roughly coincided with the sales releases of several dozen 4K UHD Blu-ray movie titles from assorted online and offline retailers like Amazon, most notably. These movies, coming from major studios like Warner Bros, Sony Pictures, Lionsgate and a few others are also already available on pre-order from sites like Amazon.com.

In any case, the UBD-K8500 from Samsung first seems to have been delivered to scattered stores which are rumored to already have the device in stock and one store in Santa Monica, California even placed the UBD-K8500 on sale this past Friday, with all units of the player selling out within the same day according to a Facebook post from the retailer.

Now, according to national retailer Best Buy, customers who pre-ordered the Samsung 4K Blu-ray player from their website will be getting it shipped to their homes on February 10th.

Nobody is yet sure why the new Samsung UBD-K8500 is getting such an early release date but if we were to guess, we’d say that it’s an effort on Samsung’s part to cut in ahead of the rival manufacturers of similar devices. The early release certainly isn’t because of native 4K Blu-ray content since none of the few 4K Blu-ray discs being made now are in any stores anywhere yet.

However, the UBD-K8500 also has plenty of other tricks under its hood and can stream native 4K movies and shows from online providers like Amazon Prime Instant Video and Netflix. Furthermore, the player is capable of HDR-compatibility and can of course play regular HD Blu-ray discs, DVDs, CD and 3D discs, with upscaling technology being part of the benefits offered to playback of some non-4K video content.

4K entertainment fans who want to get their hands on a UHD Blu-ray players don’t quite yet have any reason to rush in on buying the UBD-K8500. The format is here to stay at least for 2016/2017 and we strongly suspect that prices will drop at some point in this year from the current retail tag of $399.

Story by 4k.com

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  • Dr
    February 14, 2016 at 12:28 am

    UHD Blu-Rays have been available at least 2/13, and 2/14 is a full release catalog. Not really sold on the Samsung 4K player as it seems to be having some color issues in use from some users. It’s either an issue with the player, the TV it’s connected to, or of all things, the 18gbs HDMI cables. The player can be hooked up to even samsungs SUHD TVs with HDR and WCG and have issues displaying Ultra HD color features. That’s what leads me to suspect it’s due to an issue with the player or even HDMI cable not having enough bandwidth.

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    • Mike
      February 18, 2016 at 1:57 pm

      Possible that those users with the Samsung 4k player may not have a Samsung tv? I’ve got the Samsung JS9000 tv and just picked up the 4k player and it looks absolutely AMAZING!

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      • Dennis
        May 7, 2016 at 6:28 pm

        I also have the Js9000 (55″) and just bought the 4K bluray player today with Mad Max, Days of Future Past, and The Martian. It looks AMAZING! Almost 3D like. The colors and clarity really make objects stand out.

        Reply

  • Bill Craven
    April 5, 2016 at 12:47 am

    Mike, I also have the Samsung JS9000 TV, where did you buy the DVD player from an how much was it ? I want one .

    Reply

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