Kaleidescape's high-end DVD upscalers push out 1080p, following Toshiba's lead

Blu-ray, Home cinema


It seems Toshiba isn’t the only company without a vested interest in Blu-ray who’s trying to push out new technology that, supposedly, makes DVDs look as good as high definition discs.

Kaleidescape has announced the latest version of its expensive movie jukebox, the 1080p Player, featuring algorithms that can upscale standard DVDs to 1080p quality.

It’s worth being a little careful (so as not to get myself into trouble), because the situation is just a little vague (like some of the interpolated pixels on an upconverted image, you might say). On the one hand, “Kaleidescape says that its upscaled DVD playback matches the quality of Blu-ray movies”. On the other hand, Linus Wong, product development director at Kaleidescape, notes that “many people won’t be able to tell the difference between upscaled DVDs and Blu-ray”.

Hmm. So it’s not quite the same as 1080p after all, then? Sounds a bit Toshiba to me.

Kaleidescape uses technology from Sigma Designs to enhance DVD footage using special video processors. Seeing as Kaleidescape’s gear has always been expensive, it’s not clear how much of the $4,295 (about £2,100) asking price is for the upscaling tech, and how much is for the nifty jukebox system. My guess is the latter, and I’m left wondering why those who simply want to watch their DVD collection in near HD quality don’t just buy a Blu-ray player which upscales as well as plays high definition discs?

Kaleidescape (Via Venture Beat)

Related posts: Toshiba’s new 1080p upscaling tech to rival Blu-ray | JVC Everio high definition camcorders

Andy Merrett
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One thought on “Kaleidescape's high-end DVD upscalers push out 1080p, following Toshiba's lead

  • Toshiba’s tech(aka Super Upconversion) is better than Kaleidescape’s player.

    The output of Toshiba’s DVD Super Upconversion is 960p native, created via fusion of 9 adjacent frames.

    Toshiba’s tech was originally developed for high-end HDTV sets and would have normally cost thousands of dollars in stand-alone DVD players had Toshiba decided to not position Super Upconversion to counter Blu-Ray.


    “It’s always been said by us that you cannot take standard definition, upconvert it to HD and expect the same results as if you had an actual HD source. With that said, the cell processor technique demoed by Toshiba – in real-time so as to not be mistaken for a parlor trick – came pretty darn close. Detail popped and edges cleared up without the typical artifacts you’d expect. We did notice some jaggy artifacts on some of the material, but overall this is a technology that is extremely promising.”

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