The new generation of players is built on the company’s proprietary M-Class architecture and offer an improved onscreen user interface as well as Blu-ray support. The Kaleidescape M500 and M300 players, when coupled with a Kaleidescape server, play back Blu-ray content and include support for 1080p video with 24 frames per second and bit-stream pass-through of Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
The M500 also copies Blu-ray Discs, DVDs and CDs onto a server. The imported content can then be played back instantly by M500 and M300 devices, yielding what is described as “the world’s first multi-zone movie server for Blu-ray”.
To address the concerns of the studios, Kaleidescape requires the disc to be present when playing Blu-ray content from the server. Currently, this means that the Blu-ray Disc must be in the tray of an M500 Player, but to enable the full Kaleidescape experience for Blu-ray, the company is developing a disc loader which will keep a large number of discs present within the Kaleidescape system.
“We have invested a great amount of time and resources in developing the M-Class architecture, which is our platform for future innovation,” said Michael Malcolm, Kaleidescape’s founder, chairman and CEO. “We now have the tools to improve our world-renowned user experience and offer an even greater variety of content.”
Enhancements present in the new generation of players include improvements to the onscreen user interface, along with an expansion of the Kaleidescape Movie Guide to encompass more than 3,300 Blu-ray Disc titles.
Shipments for the new players – which are compatible with existing Kaleidescape products – begin this week, with the M500 priced at £2,995 (UK MSRP) and the M300 at £1,995 (M300). The disc loader is expected to be available in the first half of 2011.