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Recent Blu-ray Player Reviews

Yamaha BD-S677 Blu-ray 3D Player Preview

Yamaha BD-S677 Blu-ray 3D Player Preview

Once upon a time, disc players sole function was...playing discs. A quaint notion these days, players such as Yamaha's latest BD-S677 have higher aspirations, aiming to be full fledged A/V hubs in today's home theaters. Priced at $329.95, the BD-S677 boasts built in WiFi connectivity, enabling multiple internet streaming options, as well as a few other handy tricks. What do the Audioholics' think of Yamaha's latest Blu-ray player offering? Keep reading to find out.

Priced at $329.95, Yamaha's new BD-S677 Blu-ray 3D player is packed with amenities included a built in WiFi antenna. Much more than a disc player, read on to see what Yamaha is bringing to the table.

— March 05, 2014 08:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Toshiba BDX6400 Symbio Media Box and Blu-ray Player Review

Toshiba BDX6400 Symbio Media Box and Blu-ray Player Review

Toshiba's new Symbio BDX6400 is promising not only a 4k upscaling Blu-ray player but a WiFi enabled media box that will stream content from the Internet or your local devices. While 1080p and Blu-ray are the current standard in high definition, 4k or "Ultra HD" is on the way. While 4k displays are currently so expensive that not many people have them, manufacturers are already selling Blu-ray players and other devices that will upscale your movies to 4k. The unit itself is very handsome with a brushed aluminum top and glossy plastic sides. The Toshiba BDX6400 was really hit or miss for us in our review.

Review: Toshiba's new Symbio BDX6400 is promising not only a 4k upscaling Blu-ray player but a WiFi enabled media box that will stream content from the Internet or your local devices.

— January 28, 2014 17:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Sharp SD-WH1000U Universal Blu-ray Player and Wireless Bridge Preview

Sharp SD-WH1000U Universal Blu-ray Player and Wireless Bridge Preview

Sharp announced their new SD-WH1000U Universal Blu-ray player. Well, it is "universal" in that it plays CDs, DVDs, SACDs, and Blu-rays. Some might wonder where the DVD-A support is in something touted as universal. In all fairness, Sharp's SD-WH1000U is bringing something to the table that we haven't seen before - WiSA streaming. Are you ready to replace your AV Receiver as the centerpiece of your home theater for a wireless single box solution like this? The Sharp SD-WH1000U allows for 1080p and eight channels of Blu-ray and SACD-quality audio streamed wirelessly. The included Wireless Bridge takes care of the video for you but good luck finding WiSA-enabled speakers at this time.

Sharp announced their new SD-WH1000U Universal player with SACD, DVD, and Blu-ray support, it can wirelessly stream 1080p video and eight channels of SACD-quality audio.

— January 21, 2014 08:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Harman Kardon BDS 580 and 280 Blu-ray Systems Preview

Harman Kardon BDS 580 and 280 Blu-ray Systems Preview

The Harman Kardon BDS units are full featured receiver/Blu-ray combo devices. The BDS 580 will run you $1099 while the BDS 280 is $510. Other than one having five amps and the other two, there are no differences between them. They have a Blu-ray drive and support 3D and ARC, one of their HDMI inputs is MHL compatible, they have a decent number of inputs, trigger in and out, subwoofer pre-out, and USB input. You can connect to your network wirelessly or via a wired connect. Basically, the BDS 580 is a full featured HTiB receiver/Blu-ray combo without the speakers. The two channel BDS 280 makes less sense as a home theater solution but it saves a considerable amount for those that don't care about surround sound.

The Harman Kardon BDS units are full featured receiver/Blu-ray combo devices designed to save space. The five channel BDS 580 will run you $1099 while the two channel BDS 280 is $510. Click for more.

— January 13, 2014 08:15 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Emotiva ERC-3 CD Player Preview

Emotiva ERC-3 CD Player Preview

Well known as a provider of high value amplifiers, Emotiva is looking to take their source offerings to the next level with the ERC-3 CD player. Priced at $499 (and currently available for $449), the ERC-3 boasts some impressive hardware considering the cost. Keep reading to see how we think it stacks up.

Preview: Emotiva ERC-3 CD player is taking their source offerings to the next level. Priced at $499, the ERC-3 packs some impressive hardware for the cost. Keep reading to see how it rates.

— November 21, 2013 20:40 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Oppo BDP-103D Blu-ray Player with Darbee Visual Presence Review

Oppo BDP-103D Blu-ray Player with Darbee Visual Presence Review

We first got a look at the new Oppo BDP-103D (Darbee Edition) at this year's 2013 CEDIA Expo in Denver. The 'D' stands for Darbee Visual Presence, or "DVP". This is a brand new video processing technology that enhances depth and detail by looking at the luminance information on the fly and modulating the pixels to create better contrast and definition. It doesn't affect color, and it's not a system that changes the frame rate or adds any frame interpolation. The processing delay is also very small, just a few hundred microseconds (0.300 ms). The technology works on standard definition, high-definition...even 4K, though anything at that resolution or higher may require some more robust video processing to handle the overhead.

Review: Oppo BDP-103D (Darbee Edition, Darbee Visual Presence, or just "DVP") is a brand new video processing technology that enhances depth and detail by looking at the luminance information.

— November 04, 2013 11:05 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Marantz CD6005 CD Player Review

Marantz CD6005 CD Player Review

Marantz's new CD6005 Hi-Fi Compact Disc Player is a $499 CD player that boasts high-quality components dedicated to getting the best possible sound out of your CD collection. That means that Marantz took care to design this player in such a way as to include the features that audiophiles care about when it comes to playing back their CD collections. Features like a CD drive mechanism that's fastened to the chassis so it minimizes vibrations. Even the circuit board that houses the digital audio aspects of the player is isolated and shielded in the player.

Marantz's new CD6005 Hi-Fi Compact Disc Player is a $499 CD player that boasts high-quality components dedicated to getting the best possible sound out of your CD collection.

— October 09, 2013 10:40 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Oppo BDP-103D Blu-ray Player with Darbee Visual Processing

Oppo BDP-103D Blu-ray Player with Darbee Visual Processing

We made it over to the Darbee Visual Processing booth with the Oppo BDP-103D. The 'D' of course stands for Darbee Visual Processing. It will ship for $600, a $100 premium price over Oppo's BDP-103 player. Darbee is a brand new video processing system. What you have with Darbee (and this player) is a new way of processing video. So the BDP-103D will have three chips. It has a MediaTek chipset that handles deinterlacing and upconversion as well as basic video processing. Next is the Darbee processor that takes care of luminance-based processing to add more depth.

We made it over to the Darbee Visual Processing booth with the Oppo BDP-103D. The 'D' of course stands for Darbee Visual Processing. It will ship for $600, a $100 premium price over Oppo's BDP-103.

— September 28, 2013 00:40 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Yamaha CD-S3000 CD/SACD Player Preview

Yamaha CD-S3000 CD/SACD Player Preview

Let’s face reality: pairing a statement level integrated amplifier like the Yamaha A-S3000 with a cheap CD player is roughly the Hi-Fi equivalent of forcing your wife to wear a garbage bag to save a few bucks. Sure it can be done, and the results might even be passable for an afternoon or two; however, we wouldn’t count on the combination bringing long term satisfaction. Humans are visual creatures after all, and pride of ownership makes a huge difference in our perceptions. So what then would better complement the aforementioned Yamaha A-S3000 than the CD-S3000? Priced at a lofty $6,999.95, the CD-S3000 probably isn’t going to make its way into our budget system recommendations any time soon. Still, if you’re curious what goes into a $7000 CD/SACD player, keep reading.

The Yamaha CD-S3000 isn't cheap at $6,999.95, and as Yamaha's statement CD/SACD player, expectations are high. Does the CD-S3000 pass muster on a first glance at Audioholics? Read on to find out.

— August 25, 2013 07:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Samsung BD-F5900 Blu-ray Player Review

Samsung BD-F5900 Blu-ray Player Review

The fact is the Samsung BD-F5900 Blu-ray player is a very multifaceted machine. It has apps for Netflix, MLB, Facebook, and even a web browser. If you have other Samsung devices, it'll use HDMI-CEC to control them or AllShare for streaming content from your Samsung phone. It's got DTS Neo:6 built in so that you can take your old two channel source (or streamed sources) and turn them into surround at the player rather than at the receiver. If you have having problems with it, you can even call Samsung and they can log into your networked BD-F5900 and troubleshoot it for you. At $120, this is a pretty full featured Blu-ray player. If you are on the market for one, you owe it to yourself to look more fully into what this versus other players can do. You might find that the small DVD upscaling hiccups I experiences and the Netflix idiosyncrasies are an easy tradeoff.

Review: Samsung BD-F5900 - For those that want a cheap solution for playing Blu-rays and streaming without the hassles of running wires, the Wi-Fi enabled Samsung BD-F5900 is a solid choice.

— August 15, 2013 10:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Sony BDP-S1100, S3100, and S5100 Blu-ray Player Comparison

Sony BDP-S1100, S3100, and S5100 Blu-ray Player Comparison

Every year we see a flood of new AV products hit the market, and Blu-ray players are no different. This year, Sony has a pretty slim line with only 3 models. Ranging from an MSRP of $89.99 to $139.99, they have settled squarely into the consumer mass market offering everything that you’d expect in this segment, and nothing that you wouldn’t.

Sony's 2013 Blu-ray player lineup is price low and feature rich, but it has stiff competition from Samsung, among others. Read on for a full comparison.

— August 11, 2013 17:00 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Rotel RCD-1570 CD Player Preview

Rotel RCD-1570 CD Player Preview

Rotel just released their new RCD-1570 CD Player, which is a slight tweak to the existing RCD-1520 model (if you consider adding XLR outputs a "slight" upgrade). Rotel makes some excellent products. We've reviewed several of their amplifiers and such in the past and we continue to have an affinity for how they design and manufacture their A/V and hi-fi components. Their look has changed throughout the years, but their quality seems to be very consistent (and by that, we mean it remains a good value).

Rotel just released their new RCD-1570 CD Player which we previewed here. The RCD-1570 is a slight tweak to the existing RCD-1520 model (if you consider adding XLR outputs a "slight" upgrade).

— April 28, 2013 15:45 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Sony BDP-S790 Blu-ray Player Review

Sony BDP-S790 Blu-ray Player Review

Blu-ray player reviews, like this one for the Sony BDP-S790, are a strange thing. It used to be that we tested all manner of video and audio quality characteristics using test discs and calibration gear. Well, some of us still do... When it's appropriate. Most of our readers already know who the big dogs are in that high-end market and if they want to pay $400 or more for a player, they're free to do so. But what about the rest of you - the rest of US? Well, the video quality is pretty much a done deal with HDMI. It's generally very good. That pretty much leaves features and aesthetics. Now, despite what I just said, I really do care about quality. But once we determine that the video and audio quality are excellent, as they are with this Sony BDP-S790, well, then I want to see what I get for my $230.

The Sony BDP-S790 is an excellent player. It's fast, produces an excellent quality picture, is ready for the 4K format of the future, and will stream all of the current media sources for just $249.

— April 21, 2013 06:20 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews

Samsung BD-F7500, BD-F5900, & BD-F5100 Blu-ray Player Comparison

Samsung BD-F7500, BD-F5900, & BD-F5100 Blu-ray Player Comparison

Samsung's 2013 Blu-ray players stay pretty much within the lines. They continue to phase out analogue connections, while focusing on smart features, UHD, and 3D playback. This year they are offering three different units, the BD-F7500, BD-F5900, and BD-F5100. Surely you will find other Samsung Blu-ray players on the market (as they always release a few specialty players in different regions), but these are their three strongest and most widely available products. Read on for an overview and our recommendations surrounding each model.

Shopping for a Samsung Blu-ray Player? Here's a breakdown of all of the pros and cons of their 2013 lineup, the BD-F7500, BD-F5900, and BD-F5100. Overall, they're pretty solid choices.

— April 01, 2013 18:20 in Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD Player Reviews