Kaleidescape Chapter 2: What You DON'T Know About Kaleidescape [VIDEO REVIEW]

Manufacturer & Model
Kaleidescape Strato Player + Compact Terra 6TB Server
MSRP
$9990 ($5995 + $3995) as tested
Link
https://www.kaleidescape.com
Highlights
Kaleidescape offers many lesser-known features which cater to the high-performance home cinema owner vs the streaming services and the DIY home media server options.
Summary
Kaleidescape is the high-octane content source to make the most of your home theater investment. Access over 13,000 movies - with more in 4K and lossless than any other source - for pre-order, purchase and rental. Direct download to your Kaleidescape server allows video as good as or better than UHD HDR discs, and audio delivered in lossless Dolby TrueHD + ATMOS and DTS-HDMA/DTS:X.

Kaleidescape offers the convenience of streaming coupled with higher-fidelity source material for the ultimate home theater experience.
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In Chapter One, we discussed the overall idea and concept of the Kaleidescape Movie Player System and the more commonly discussed features and options.

But that's not what convinced me. I had built a DIY system that was providing high quality content to watch in my theater. I was looking for something more plug-and-play. A turnkey system that didn't require the maintenance and upkeep. In the video below, I discuss the lesser-known value props offered by Kaleidescape that convinced me to invest in this system:
  • Hassle-free
  • All-In-One Ecosystem
  • Multiple Versions of Movies
  • Re-Downloading Movies
  • System Integration
As the investment in your home theater space grows and grows and you continue to upgrade performance, at some point, you want to think about the quality of the content you're feeding it. After all, you don't buy a Ferrari and fill it up with 87 octane ethanol blend. You want high octane content to make the most of your equipment, and the Kaleidescape movie player system fits the bill.

For a special player like the Kaleidescape, a single video was not enough, so I'm producing a trilogy. For a deeper dive into the specific features that influenced my purchase of the Kaleidescape movie player system, check out chapter 2 below!


Also check out:
Chapter 1: What Is Kaleidescape?
Chapter 3: The Kaleidescape Store - A Deep Dive


Kaleidescape Strato C Player Specifications
  • Resolutions: 2160p60/50/30/25/24, 1080p60/50/24, 1080i60/50, 720p60/50, 576i, 576p, 480i, 480p
  • Chroma: 4:4:4 8-bit up to 2160p60, 4:4:4 10/12-bit up to 2160p30, 4:2:2 12-bit up to 2160p60, 4:2:0 8/10/12- bit at 2160p50/60 only
  • Color spaces: BT.2020, BT.709, BT.601
  • HDR: HDMI 2.0a with support for SMPTE ST 2084 EOTF, SMPTE ST 2086 metadata
  • Network Connection: Gigabit Ethernet (1000 Base-T)
  • Audio Outputs
    • HDMI 2.0a (combined with video on the VIDEO connector)
    • HDMI 1.4 (audio-only on the DIGITAL AUDIO connector)
    • S/PDIF (coaxial RCA & TOSLINK connectors)
  • Audio Formats
    • Dolby Atmos
    • Dolby TrueHD
    • Dolby Digital
    • DTS:X
    • DTS-HD Master Audio
    • DTS Digital Surround
    • PCM
    • MPEG audio
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Price: $5995

Kaleidescape Compact Terra Server Specifications
  • Storage Capacity: Available in 6TB, 12TB, & 18TB
  • Movie Storage: 6TB unit stores approximately 100 4K movies, 12TB stores approximately 200 4K movies, 18TB stores approximately 300 4K movies
  • Network Connection: Gigabit Ethernet (1000 Base-T)
  • Maximum Download Rate: 800Mbps
  • Playback Capability: Can accommodate 5 4K playback streams simultaneously
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Price: $3995 (as tested)
Kaleidescape Terra Server Also Available in 48TB & 72TB Options
 
Last edited:

mechman

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Great review but still a hard no for me. Price does not justify it. My Plex has been fine and I have a backup system in case it ever were to go belly up. Still a LOT cheaper than this option. I'd guess I have maybe $1500 in my Plex server and backup system.
 

thrillcat

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They still have those?
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Great review but still a hard no for me. Price does not justify it. My Plex has been fine and I have a backup system in case it ever were to go belly up. Still a LOT cheaper than this option. I'd guess I have maybe $1500 in my Plex server and backup system.
It’s definitely not for everyone. I am really enjoying the simplicity.
 

Todd Anderson

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Great Part 2 Travis :T, you know how I feel about k-scape. I think you're finding the simplicity, as you call it, as seductive as I did/do.

After almost a year of use, my favorite feature still might be the ability to buy and nearly instantly download content. I can't tell you how many times I've spent a few wakeful moments in the middle of the night buying a few titles. Not to mention, feasting on the almost weekly bundle sales and theme sales!
 

thrillcat

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Emotiva UPA-500
Other Amp
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Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X800
Front Speakers
Triad Bronze InWall/4 LCR
Center Channel Speaker
Triad Bronze InWall/4 LCR
Surround Speakers
Triad Bronze OnWall/4 LCR
Subwoofers
SVS PB2000
Other Speakers or Equipment
Bang & Olufsen BeoLab 8000
Video Display Device
JVC DLA X790R, Samsung & Sony 4K panels
Screen
SeymourAV Proscenium 124” diagonal 2.40:1
Remote Control
Harmony Elite
Streaming Equipment
PLEX Server, Nvidia Shield, AppleTV4K, Bluesound Node2i
Streaming Subscriptions
AppleTV+, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, YouTubeTV
Satellite System
They still have those?
Other Equipment
ProJect Debut Carbon Turntable (2-channel system), Hana EL cart, Cambridge Audio Phono Stage, Cary Audio Preamp
Stupid high pricing on the movies.
About the same as disc. Higher at release, prices go down, and you can find awesome bargains on catalog titles.

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Last edited:

madFloyd

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Those prices are certainly reasonable. I recall seeing $40-50 per title which I found crazy. Are you limited by the storage inside the unit or can you expand to a NAS? I buy almost every UHD on disc on release day for anywhere between $18-30 less $6 for the digital code that a friend buys from me. I then rip the disc and it sits on my NAS and backed up to external hard drives. I have 1450 UHD titles and 1840 HD titles.
 

thrillcat

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869
Location
Seattle, WA
My AV System  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Anthem AVM60
Main Amp
Emotiva UPA-500
Other Amp
Jolida JD202BRC (2-channel system)
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X800
Front Speakers
Triad Bronze InWall/4 LCR
Center Channel Speaker
Triad Bronze InWall/4 LCR
Surround Speakers
Triad Bronze OnWall/4 LCR
Subwoofers
SVS PB2000
Other Speakers or Equipment
Bang & Olufsen BeoLab 8000
Video Display Device
JVC DLA X790R, Samsung & Sony 4K panels
Screen
SeymourAV Proscenium 124” diagonal 2.40:1
Remote Control
Harmony Elite
Streaming Equipment
PLEX Server, Nvidia Shield, AppleTV4K, Bluesound Node2i
Streaming Subscriptions
AppleTV+, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, YouTubeTV
Satellite System
They still have those?
Other Equipment
ProJect Debut Carbon Turntable (2-channel system), Hana EL cart, Cambridge Audio Phono Stage, Cary Audio Preamp
Those prices are certainly reasonable. I recall seeing $40-50 per title which I found crazy. Are you limited by the storage inside the unit or can you expand to a NAS? I buy almost every UHD on disc on release day for anywhere between $18-30 less $6 for the digital code that a friend buys from me. I then rip the disc and it sits on my NAS and backed up to external hard drives. I have 1450 UHD titles and 1840 HD titles.
Limited to the Kaleidescape drives, but unlimited downloads in 10 minutes, so you can delete titles from the disc to free up space and re-download later if you want to watch again.

There are titles that are slightly higher than the disc, but not terrible. Secrets of Dumbledore is like $4 higher than the disc.

Kaleidescape also often has titles weeks or months ahead of disc availability.
 

Todd Anderson

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Denon X8500H
Computer Audio
AudioEngine A2+
DAC
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Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Kaleidescape TERRA, OPPO UDP-203, Panasonic UB9000
Front Speakers
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Center Channel Speaker
GoldenEar Technology SuperCenter Reference
Surround Speakers
SVS Ultra Surround
Surround Back Speakers
SVS Ultra Bookshelf
Front Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Front, Top Mid-Front)
Rear Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Middle, Top Rear)
Subwoofers
dual SVS SB16s + dual PSA XS30s
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Behringer 1124p; Aura Bass Shaker Pros; SuperSub X
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JVC NX7
Screen
Carada Cine-White 0 gain
Streaming Equipment
iFi Audio Zen Blue
Streaming Subscriptions
Qobuz, TIDAL, Spotify, ROON
Other Equipment
LG Electronics 65-inch B6 OLED, Sony 65-inch X900F, ZeroSurge 8R15W x 2, ZeroSurge 2R15W x 2
Those prices are certainly reasonable. I recall seeing $40-50 per title which I found crazy.

Pricing is super reasonable. Yes, there's the occasional $34.99, but no different than a hot disc release. Check out this group of titles I bought a few weeks ago:

53034
 

Chuck Gerlach

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Messages
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I did the Plex/MKV thing for a very long time. While I still have some concerns about Kaleidescape, the 10 minutes download time to access any of the 13,000 K titles was the kicker that got me to make the move: My very own 4K Redbox - but more convenient. Plus, I'm a big fan of "Scenes" and "Scripts" given I do a fair amount of demos of our theater. There are some features that I would like to see added but the one thing I really like about it is that "it just works".

And there really is no price "justification". If you want what K has to offer, you get to pay the price.

Great videos BTW.
 
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