Blu-ray was officially released in 2006 and was in competition with HD DVD.
By 2009 Blu-ray had replaced HD DVD as the medium of choice to store high quality video.
The Blu-ray format was later enhanced by the 4K UHD Blu-ray format.
Difference Between Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray
Before we look at the difference between Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray, let’s look at some basic information on Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray.
Blu-ray was developed by the Blu-ray Disc Association.
Physically a Blu-ray disc is of the same size as a CD or DVD – 12cm.
However, you can’t play a Blu-ray disc on a CD or DVD player. You’ll need a Blu-ray player.
A Blu-ray player is, however, backward compatible. It supports the playback of DVDs and VCD, SVCD and audio CDs.
Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray are read using a blue laser (as their names suggest), as opposed to DVD’s red laser.
Blu-ray supports a data transfer rate of 54 Mbps.
Blu-ray supports a resolution of 1080 horizontal lines. Thus it plays back Full HD 1080p (1920 x 1280) video.
4K Blu-ray is also known as Ultra HD Blu-ray or 4K Ultra HD
DCI 4K Blu-ray
There are two types of 4K video actually. The first is the Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) 4K.
DCI 4K resolution is 4096 x 2160 pixels. his is 4K resolution as applied to the cinema and video industry.
Consumer 4K Blu-ray
For the consumers, it’s 4K UHD that’s available for TVs and Blu-ray players.
4K Blu-ray allows you to play movies and TV shows at native 4K resolution. Thus it supports a pixel resolution of 3840 x 2160 at 60 progressive frames per second.
Note that 3840 x 2160 resolution is doesn’t meet the 4K resolution spec if you compare it with DCI 4K. However, TV manufacturers, for marketing purposes, have adopted the 4K terminology.
Please note that in order to play a 4K Blu-ray disc, you must have a 4K TV.
A major difference between Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray is the extensive storage space available.
4K Blu-ray offers storage space of 50GB, 66GB and 100 GB.
Blu-ray uses the H.264 codec.
4K Blu-ray uses the H.265 and VP9 codecs.
Watch the video below to learn more about 4K Blu-ray.