After over a decade of not bothering with selling content, Kaleidescape has worked out distribution deals with all the major movie studios. Originally the studios were fearful of high-quality digital downloads due the possibility of piracy and unauthorized file sharing. Kaleidescape’s proven robust copy protection, anti-piracy and content security provided by their proprietary hardware and kOS operating system has made it possible for Hollywood motion picture studios to trust the Strato line of products with their most precious quality content for home entertainment. The benefit for us movie enthusiasts is that we finally get access a massive library of well-organized digital downloads in the highest quality.
Kaleidescape starts with the authoritative mezzanine video file from the studio. Then using their proprietary methods, they process the file using minimal compression to preserve maximum fidelity. Downloaded 4K and HDR content plays back at up to 100Mbps with 10bit color and up to 60 frames per second. The picture quality easily rivals, and can exceed, that of a 4K UHD Blu-ray. Both Blu-ray quality and 4K Ultra HD movies are also available with lossless multichannel and object-based audio, including Dolby Atmos and DTS:X.
Unfortunately for some flat-panel customers with lower-end video processing, HDR content is not available in Dolby Vision. This is not a big deal for projector customers because projectors do not support Dolby Vision anyway.
Since the Strato S plays downloaded movies and not streamed from the headend, you will have to wait for the movie to be fully downloaded before it can be played back. If a 12TB Strato S can hold 180 movies in 4K that means a single 4K movie file averages up to 66GB which is massive. A single Blu-ray Quality HD movie averages about 37GB.
The large files means an incredible amount of information to ensure the highest quality picture and sound, but they can take a while to download. I remember a few years ago, it took up to 8 hours to just to download a single HD movie on to a Kaleidescape in Blu-ray quality. Fortunately, internet speed has increased dramatically over the last few years.
On a Gbit Ethernet network you can now download a 4K movie in less than ten minutes. In fact, on my home network which average about 220 Mbps, it would take about 25 minutes to download HD movie and about 43 minutes to download a 4K HDR movie.
The ease of use provided by the Kaleidescape system combined with reliable high-quality has made the Strato the go-to video source for most manufacturer demos at major tradeshows. Its quality and reliability is also why many Custom Integrators choose to incorporate Kaleidescape into systems they design for their most demanding customers.