Panasonic UB820/UB9000 w/HCX video processor & dynamic conversion adjustment

Robert Zohn

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Just received our 1st 820UB. Panasonic USA received a few units for review and included me as the only retailer with a sample! Here's my very early impressions:

- Very nice all metal build quality. All connection ports are high-grade and the overall fit and finish is very good. *Note, not up to the build quality of OPPO's players, but better than most others.

- Exceptional video quality. You can see the advantages of Panasonics well respected video and chroma processing. The HCX Hollywood tuned processor renders the images from UHD/HDR BD discs beautifully.

- Lots a very cool set-up configurations, see some of my pics below, with more to come.

- Love the HDR Optimizer controls. I was able to set the UB820 up on a few TVs with varied peak luminance capacity and it's easy to dial in the best HDR value for each TV's ability.

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I'll be doing more testing, including Dolby Vision HDR over HDMI for Sony X1 Extreme TVs and HDR10+ (once a disc comes out) as I get more time with this player, but for now I can tell everyone with confidence this is a very well engineered advanced UHD/HDR BD player.

We set the price at $499, double boxed and delivered Nationwide.

Here's a few pics, with more to come:

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Here's our dedicated page with more detailed information.
 

bkeeler10

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Good deal. Now that Oppo has decided to call it quits on disc spinners, this UB820 is at the top of the heap for me. Would consider the Oppo, but concerned about long-term support. Just wish they weren't quite so expensive.

I believe I read that this unit will be DLNA compatible. Do you know if it will play SACD, and be able to stream audio and video content from storage devices on the local network?
 

Robert Zohn

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Yes to streaming from devices on your network, including Hi Res files, no for SACD support.
 

JStewart

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Is the hdr tone mapping on a slider like the 900?
I have the 900 and even with custom hdr gamma curves for the pj that slider is invaluable because of inconsistencies in the source materials. Without custom gamma it is essential.
Kept the oppo 103 for sacd and dvd-a playback.
 

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Nice... been wondering with either Sony or Panasonic would really step up, and that's not a bad price at all.
 

Robert Zohn

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Check out this video from Vincent in the UK about Panasonic's UB9000. The video section of the UB820 is the same as the UB9000 so everything he says applies to the UB820.

 

Robert Zohn

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I was able to move up my 1st allocation of UB820s to third week of July! Supply is constrained, but we still have about 20 available from the 1st allotment with our 2nd shipment coming in early-mid August.
 

alanc

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Hello I'm new here. I am currently with using UB900 on a Panasonic vt25 and tried the HRD/SDR conversion with mixed feelings about it. To me not much better than a regular blu ray on this non HDR set. Is the 820 superior in this regard on HRD/SDR conversion? I love this TV and keep it primarily for 3D but also want the best possible blu ray player for it. Another benefit of player is the multi out that I use with my older processor. I'm pleased with audio section of UB900. Do you know if UB820 uses same audio section or did they cut costs like some newer models do?
 

Robert Zohn

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HDR/SDR conversion works very well on the UB820. I can't say if it's better than the UB900. The UB820 audio section is excellent and it's definitely not a downgrade from the UB900.

Here's a new overview of the UB820 from Flatpanelshd.

We were able to increase our 1st UB820 allocation so we're back taking orders for the end of July launch!
 

Robert Zohn

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Busy day at Value Electronics! Our 1st allocation of Panasonic's new UB820s arrived and we double boxed and shipped every order.

 

bkeeler10

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Busy day at Value Electronics! Our 1st allocation of Panasonic's new UB820s arrived and we double boxed and shipped every order.

Hi Robert,

Sorry to drag up an old thread, but I ordered one of these from you a couple weeks ago, awaiting your new allocation. Are they still supposed to be in this week (mid January), as stated on the website? Thanks.
 

Robert Zohn

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Our Panasonic UB820 allocation is arriving Tuesday, Jan. 22nd and all orders will be double boxed and shipped to our clients the same day.

Thanks for your Patience!
 

bkeeler10

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Thank you sir! I assume that means it wouldn't arrive to 84087 until the following week. Excited to get it though. I will be using it with my JVC DLS-RS440 projector.
 

Robert Zohn

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Just a reminder that Panasonic's $50 Instant Rebate for the UB820 ends Sunday, July 14th. Further, in reading the latest roadmap that goes through September no more promotions are schedulled.
 

Robert Zohn

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Surprise flash sale on Panasonic UB820 on sale now with a $51 discount. All in - double boxed and delivered Nationwide for $449.00. While supply lasts!
 

Sonnie

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I don't understand why anyone would buy the UB9000 over the UB820 .... $550 more for build quality? Okay... so you get better analog outputs, but who uses those on a 4K player? If you want to get Dolby Digital, Atmos, DTS-HD, etc, you have to hook up the HDMI... or a digital cable... now your analog is shot. Plus you are likely going to have a digital volume on your AV processor if you are setting up a 4K rig. The only benefit the improved analog outputs would provide is if you are setting up a two channel analog system, then why buy this player, as you wouldn't need all the other stuff it offers? What am I missing?
 

Todd Anderson

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The UB9000 is more or less akin to the difference between the UDP-205 and UDP-203. Aside from that, I believe (and @Robert Zohn, correct me if I'm wrong), it actually has two additional Peak White settings (6, not 4) over the 820 that will help with HDR.

Doesn't play SACDs... which is really confusing. Why in the world would they make a universal disc player that doesn't accommodate that segment of media?


I will say this: anyone running an HDR projector (sub $10K) absolutely must use either the 820 or 9000 for tone mapping. It's a necessity. My 820 has taken the place of my 205. I've kicked around the idea of just selling the UDP-205 and keeping the UDP-203 for SACD.
 
Last edited:

Sonnie

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I don't really care about the SACD/DVD-Audio part... while it would nice if it included it, it's rare I ever break those out, although that Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd in surround is one awesome listen.

My problem is I don't have any room to put my OPPO 205... so I may end up selling it if I settle on the 820.

My main needs are 4K with good HDR decoding, USB thumb drive for music, Netflix and Amazon Prime, all in one unit. I hate using Apple 4K (and that idiotic remote that only a few buttons can be learned)... and the Tidal experience just hasn't been good, which I can use BlueOS for that if I end up keeping it. So I can eliminate a source with the 820 or 9000. If the 9000 would give me any noticeable improvement in video over the 820... I like the finish on it enough I might go with it... that 820 looks cheap.
 

Todd Anderson

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The 820 is cheap feeling, yes.

I'm not sure if the 9000 will give you definitively better video performance. If you have your projector setup in movie or cinema mode (or THX/ISF mode... whatever is closest to getting D65 white on your model)... and you've used the Spears and Munsil disc to help dial it in... then the next best thing is getting one of these Pannys. The 820 allows you tell the player that you're using a projector, and then you basically select an output mode via the remote during playback. Some movies are mastered at lower nits (some higher)... so what tone mapping mode you select will vary from movie to movie.

It generally works well. At least for me, it's radically improved my viewing experience with my RS520.
 

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I just couldn't bring myself to do the 820.... ordered the 9000 thru Robert at Value Electronics... got the Spears and Munsil disc as well.

The better build quality, smoother/quieter operation... and a litter better HDR for projectors will all be worth the extra cheese for me. Audio won't do me any good, but the video should be a huge improvement for me... and I'll finally ditch the Apple 4K... :woohoo:
 

Robert Zohn

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Just confirmed no successor to the UB9000 or UB820 will be announced at CES. The UB9000 and UB820 will continue on through 2020-21.

Also no Instant Rebate promotions or price reductions are planned for the UB9000 as the tariffs have made it impossible to make this device's price any lower. So our $998 double boxed and delivered price with Spears & Munsil's 10bit test disc included is the best deal.

18b43f1a226d7b30eb9bd0e1c2f1bb84_rq5k.png
 

phillihp23

Senior AV Addict
VIP Supporter
Joined
Apr 14, 2017
Messages
1,039
Location
Washington, The West
Once you put hands on with this UB9000 you will understand the price difference with the UB820. This thing is a beast. I haven't really owned any other top of the line player to compare it too, but its pro quality build. It's solid, heavy, larger than the average player. It puts out a beautiful image.
 

Sonnie

Senior Admin
Staff member
Joined
Apr 2, 2017
Messages
2,482
Location
Alabama
My AV System  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
NAD M17 V2 Processor
Main Amp
Emotiva XPA-1 Gen 2 Monoblocks
Additional Amp
Emotiva XPA Seven
Other Amp
Emotiva A-150
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Panasonic UB9000 4K UHD Player
Front Speakers
MartinLogan Classic ESL 9
Center Channel Speaker
MartinLogan Focus C-18
Surround Speakers
MartinLogan ElectroMotion ESL
Surround Back Speakers
MartinLogan Motion 12
Front Height Speakers
MartinLogan EM-IC
Rear Height Speakers
MartinLogan EM-IC
Subwoofers
SVSound SB16-Ultra x 4
Video Display Device
Epson 6050
Screen
Elite Screen
Remote Control
Universal MX-890
Other Equipment
Dish Joey 4K
I agree ... very nice player. I originally had my doubts about it, but after receiving it and hooking it up... doubts are all gone.

If I want to nit pick... I wish it had a better interface for USB audio files.
 
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