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Yamaha BD-S677 Blu-ray 3D Player Preview

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The Yamaha BD-S677 blu-ray 3D player with included remote.

The Yamaha BD-S677 blu-ray 3D player with included remote.

Summary

  • Product Name: BD-S677 Blu-ray 3D Player
  • Manufacturer: Yamaha
  • Review Date: March 05, 2014 08:00
  • MSRP: $329.95
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool
  • Buy Now
  • Media Compatibility: DLNA, USB, BD-Video, BD-R/RE (BD-MV), DVD-Video, DVD-R/-RW (DVD-Video, DVD-VR), DVD+R/+RW (Video and VR mode), SACD, CD-DA, CD-R/-RW
  • File Compatibility: VIDEO: MKV with H.264, MPEG PS, MPEG TS, MPEG-4, VOB, AVI, ASF, WMV, DivX Plus® HD, AVCHD; AUDIO: MP3, WMA, AAC, WAV, FLAC, ALAC; PHOTO: JPEG, GIF, PNG
  • Output Level (1 kHz, 0 dB): 2 ± 0.3 V (BD/DVD/CD-DA)
  • HDMI Output: 480i, 576i, 480p, 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p, 1080p @ 24 Hz
  • USB Port (Front Panel / Rear Panel): 1 / 1
  • Digital Audio Output (Optical / Coaxial): 1 / 1
  • 2-Channel Mixed Audio Output: 1
  • Ethernet: 1 (Wi-Fi built-in)
  • Remote Control Input / Output: 1 / 1
  • Terminal for Detachable Power Cable: 1
  • Standby Power Consumption: ≤ 0.3 W (HDMI control off, Standby Through mode off)
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 17-1/8” x 3-3/8” x 10-1/8”
  • Weight: 6 lbs.

Years ago, there was a time when disc players didn’t do much beyond what their name suggested. You bought a DVD player because….wait for it….it played DVD's. Today’s Blu-ray players have much higher aspirations than those units of yesteryear, aiming to be full featured entertainment hubs instead of simple disc players. Enter Yamaha’s new BD-S677 Blu-ray player: priced at a nickel under $330, it obviously will play practically any disc you throw at it, including 3D Blu-rays and SACD. However, that’s just the beginning of what Yamaha is bringing to the table.

It’s all about the network

Like most modern Blu-ray players, the Yamaha BD-S677 offers network connectivity, in this case via both an RJ45 port on the rear of the unit as well as a built in WiFi antenna. Once connected to your home network, the Yamaha can stream content from your local media server (it is DLNA certified), VUDU, YouTube Leanback, Picasa Web Albums, and even Dropbox. In addition, the BD-S677’s WiFi connection is Miracast compatible, allowing you to mirror video, music, and pictures from compatible smartphones and tablets to your home theater. One other bonus to the network connection is the ability to use Yamaha’s excellent control app for Android and iOS: for those that already own a controllable Yamaha A/V receiver, you can effectively control your entire theater from a smartphone or tablet. 

Yamaha AV Controller App

Yamaha's A/V controller app for iOS and Android gives users full control over the BD-S677 as well as Yamaha A/V receivers.


What, that’s not enough for you? To its credit, the BD-S677 does have a couple non-network tricks up its sleeve. On the rear panel tucked away below the RJ45 port is a powered USB connector for playing content from attached portable devices and external drives. Meanwhile, in another nod to improved usability, the Yamaha offers HDMI CEC support, allowing users to turn on and play discs by touching the SCENE button on a connected Yamaha A/V receiver.

That’s all fine and good, but…

Overall, it seems like this Yamaha will do just about everything outside of making you a nice cup of joe (though it does offer a handy tray to rest your mug!).  However, Apple users might take note of the lack of Airplay. It seems an interesting omission given that most Yamaha networking receivers offer Apple support, and the inclusion of a full Airplay implementation would have given the BD-S677 something comparable to Miracast for iDevices. Nonetheless, given the price point of $330, the BD-S677 still brings quite a few goodies to the party.

Summary

If you think a Blu-ray player should just play discs, then you may want to save some coin and opt for a less featured Blu-ray alternative to the Yamaha BD-S677.   If you're looking for playback device capable of connecting to a variety of internet sources as well as playing content from local media servers and smartphones/tablets, the BD-S677 is a relatively full featured media hub rather than just a  conventional disc player. While Apple fans might wish for a bit more, it’s understandable that Yamaha couldn’t squeeze Airplay in while maintaining a budget friendly price. On the upside, for those that already own a Yamaha A/V receiver, the BD-S677 offers a degree of integration thanks to HDMI CEC as well as Yamaha’s A/V app for iDevices and Android. As a part of a greater Yamaha ecosystem, the BD-S677 seems like a no-brainer, though non-Yamaha owners may still appreciate the tricks that it brings to the table.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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Steve Munz is a “different” addition to Audioholics’ stable of contributors in that he is neither an engineer like Gene, nor has he worked in the industry like Cliff. In fact, Steve’s day job is network administration and accounting.

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