May 4, 2021
Is the Sony Bravia Core the streaming service we all need?
Sony has come prepared to shake the world of home theatre with their latest line of TV models: The Sony Bravia XR which now comes with Sony Bravia Core. A premium streaming service that claims to stream select films in UltraHD Blu-Ray quality with Dolby Atmos sound.
Whilst the promise is high, the delivery may not be. We have been promised 4K UltraHD content from current streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+, who do deliver 4K but only at the threshold of quality. Can we assume Sony’s Bravia Core service will also do the same?
What sets Bravia Core apart from other streaming platforms is the amount of bandwidth that is needed. Netflix, Disney+, AppleTV stream 4K at 25mbps whilst Amazon streams at 15mbps:
Bravia Core, however, streams up to 80mbps using Sony’s Pure Stream technology. This means a minimum of 115mbps is required to stream films in 4k.
The reason the required bandwidth is higher is that movies are not as compressed and will deliver far more detail, and colour compared to something streamed on Amazon prime.
The audio is also not being compressed heavily. This allows movies to be mixed and heard in Dolby Atmos. If you have a home theatre set up with a minimum 5.1 surround sound system then you will be able to discern the audio quality more than other streaming platforms.
Bravia Core gives you access to a variety of movies that are licensed by Sony Pictures Entertainment. This is likely to expand once more people are using it and they bring the streaming service to other Sony products like the PS5.
There will also be a library of IMAX enhanced films that have been digitally remastered specifically for Bravia Core. The idea is to emulate the look and quality of an IMAX movie for home viewing. For Sony, it means delivering films in the highest quality possible, with the original aspect ratio the movie was filmed in. Most movies are shown in the ratio 2.35:1 which has often been cropped from 16:9.
Depending on the model Sony Bravia TVs will come with 12 or 24 months of free access to the streaming service when you buy a Sony Bravia TV. If you buy another TV then the free access to the streaming service will increase. Once the free access is over, Sony will implement a credits purchasing system for films.
Yes, it is. Sony are the leaders in TV technology right now, and the XR models are incredibly high quality displays - great for viewing sports, movies and TV shows. However, we do not think that you should pick up this TV solely for the Bravia Core streaming service.
Before you purchase this TV there are two things that you need. A fast and reliable internet connection and cabling infrastructure.
Fast and reliable internet connections come in the form of leased lines. These are dedicated lines of bandwidth that homeowners do not share with other people on the street. This guarantees an incredibly high-speed and constant internet connection. Whereas a regular line of broadband is shared with other people in the home, but also in the neighbourhood.
Infrastructure cabling gives you a reliable way of making sure your TV is always online and ready for streaming. A Cat6 data cable connected from your router to your TV will enable you to have the fastest speed for streaming. This also keeps the wireless bandwidth free for all your other devices to use.
Relying on Wi-Fi for streaming is not recommended. Wi-Fi signals can be dubious and when your router is behind walls in different rooms, getting a sufficient signal can be a challenge.
If you are implementing a cabling infrastructure and paying for a leased line, then there is a better solution to using Bravia Core.
While Bravia Core has access to a plethora of movies, they are all licensed from Sony Pictures Entertainment, leaving you needing to use other streaming services anyway. The solution for this comes from Kaleidescape who partner with movie & TV studios to losslessly remaster movies and TV shows for home viewing.
This is not a streaming service. Kaleidescape movies are directly downloaded to a local movie server and then played back in the highest quality. This means the movie is available offline and is always available at the press of a button without having to worry about buffering or drops in quality.
The Kaleidescape is also region free so a film that might not be available on Netflix because you are in the UK will be available for download on Kaleidescape.
Kaleidescape go through a rigorous process of error checking to ensure that content is played back in the highest quality video and sound.
Kaleidescape also remasters the sound in movies for a balanced and smooth audio playback. This enables you to be fully engrossed in the movie where action scenes and dialogue scenes are seamless in levels.
The biggest gripe people have with streaming movies is that the sound is never balanced. Action scenes are too loud and dialogue scenes are too quiet. Movies from Kaleidescape will be smooth and seamless.
This streaming service is a perfect addition to any Smart Home system that utilises an AV Cabinet to store equipment that is not needed in the room, like amplifiers, video matrices and home control hardware and a movie server. With smart control and video switching the movie server can connect to multiple displays in the home not just a projector.
If you are looking for a new TV to add to your home then the Sony Bravia XR models are going to be a great addition to your home with its incredibly high-quality display and being able to stream movies and TV shows directly to the TV.
However, if you are looking for a movie-watching experience unlike any other then investing in the Kaleidescape movie server will deliver unmatched video and audio quality as if you are were watching it in the cinema.
If you are currently working on a project and would like to discuss your new home theatre set up get in touch today.
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