CES 2017: Panasonic launches three new 4K Blu-ray players

The three new Panasonic 4K Blu-ray players all support the BT.2020 set of video standards, meaning they’re ready to handle future innovations such as 8K video. (This is CES 2017’s first mention of 8K video. We doubt it will be the last.)

Each player incorporates Panasonic’s Hollywood Laboratory’s HCX processor, seen to such impressive effect in last year’s UB900 and UB700.

4K streaming services are supported, as are MP4 4K videos via any external hard drive. And, for lower-resolution fare, each machine features an upscaling engine called 4K Direct Chroma for more natural, vibrant upscaled images.

The DMP-UB400 features twin HDMI outputs, so audio to an amplifier can be isolated from the video information being sent to a display.

And as a further audio fillip, the UB400 features several high-resolution audio treatments, including processing designed to replicate the sound of vacuum tubes, with 24-bit/96kHz or 192kHz files.

MORE: Ultra HD Blu-ray - everything you need to know

Each player can handle the more usual hi-res audio formats – DSD (2.8 MHz/5.6 MHz), ALAC, FLAC and WAV – and have reworked user interfaces.

The UB400 and UB310 feature integrated wi-fi, while the UB300 makes do with an Ethernet socket.

Details on release dates and prices are yet to be announced at the time of writing, though we are told both the UB400 and UB300 will be coming to the UK.

MORE: CES 2017 highlights

MORE: Panasonic.com

Simon Lucas is a freelance technology journalist and consultant, with particular emphasis on the audio/video aspects of home entertainment. Before embracing the carefree life of the freelancer, he was editor of What Hi-Fi? – since then, he's written for titles such as GQ, Metro, The Guardian and Stuff, among many others.