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Author Topic: Blu-Ray Player Recommendations  (Read 2794 times)
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JSL
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« on: November 11, 2008, 11:04:31 PM »

In a shocking turn of events, my wife has told me that she wants to get a Blu-Ray player, as DVDs just don't take advantage of our new Samsung LCD. I really haven't followed too much in the realm of Blu-Ray, so I am looking for recommendations about players, what to avoid, and what to look for.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2008, 11:06:56 PM »

PS3.  You get to keep updated Blu-Ray firmware through the PS3 updates and you get another console.  Any new feature they add to Blu-Ray, You will get.
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« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2008, 11:17:20 PM »

I bought a PS3 just for movies figuring the firmware updates will be very nice and I can play the occasional game on it. If you buy the remote for it, it acts just like a regular player (I found the controller to be extremely annoying for movies). Been very happy with it, and it has played every Blu-Ray w/o issues.
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ravenvii
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« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2008, 11:33:23 PM »

Blu-Ray players will drop under $200 during the holidays.

After that, I'm not sure if the PS3 would still be the best recommendation at $500.
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« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2008, 11:33:50 PM »

Just picked up the Samsung BD-P1500 + 4 movies for less than $200. Not top of the line to be sure, but the picture is spectacular even on my 720p TV.

-Randy
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« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2008, 11:37:34 PM »

Quote from: ravenvii on November 11, 2008, 11:33:23 PM

Blu-Ray players will drop under $200 during the holidays.

After that, I'm not sure if the PS3 would still be the best recommendation at $500.

It's the best blue-ray player on the market. It's worth 500$ since you also get a console thrown in and firmware support out the yingyang.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2008, 11:42:00 PM »

$500 is for the new 160 GB pack.  There are still 80 GBs for $400. 
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ravenvii
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« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2008, 12:29:24 AM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on November 11, 2008, 11:42:00 PM

$500 is for the new 160 GB pack.  There are still 80 GBs for $400. 

If you want the PS3 in the first place, it's a great deal for a current game console and a Blu-Ray player. But if you could do without the PS3, it's a bit pricey for a Blu-Ray player.
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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2008, 01:32:01 AM »

PS3.   it's probably the only blu ray player that's guaranteed to not be rendered obsolete by something Sony does, like what they did with profile 2.0.
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Canuck
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« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2008, 11:37:56 AM »

I think it's been a long time since PS3's were $500 (well the cheapest versions anyways). Surely Sony will lower the price for the holidays anyways.  I can't understand why anyone would buy a different player if they were looking for a bluray player.  Anything that is under $200 will probably be shit anyways.
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Knightshade Dragon
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« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2008, 01:49:47 PM »

Another vote on the PS3. 
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« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2008, 03:39:23 PM »

I concur with the PS3 choice.
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« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2008, 03:50:51 PM »

The ps3 is the very best movie player I've ever had...and I've had a few.

One other thing, that I'm unsure of whether other blue-ray players offer as well, is the fact that your normal dvd's are upscaled to much higher quality that on a normal dvd player.

Also, it makes the moviepicture fit the ENTIRE screen by magic, and not just a small square in the middle on so many other players
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kathode
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« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2008, 03:57:11 PM »

Not sure when it will be available, but LG is releasing a Blu-Ray player with Netflix streaming built in --

http://us.lge.com/bluray/
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« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2008, 04:02:04 PM »

It's what I bought a PS3 for.  As a side benefit I get to play PS3 games.  Occasionally.  I'll ramp it up eventually.
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« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2008, 05:20:45 PM »

Quote from: Canuck on November 12, 2008, 11:37:56 AM

I think it's been a long time since PS3's were $500 (well the cheapest versions anyways). Surely Sony will lower the price for the holidays anyways.
Eh, I wouldn't hold your breath.  If they were going to drop prices, they would have done it by now.
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JSL
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« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2008, 06:31:54 PM »

The PS3 does seem to be the best future proof Blu-Ray player around, especially since it is easy to upgrade with the built-in wireless. It is still a bit expensive though and I'm not sure if I will play any games on it. Also, my sound system is a 2:1 system and there is little chance of it being upgraded any time soon, so wonder if getting a high end player is even worth it? Lastly, does having a system with profile 1.1 really make a difference in what movies I can watch? My understanding is that it only effects watching the online content and extra features not directly related to the movies.
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« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2008, 06:36:53 PM »

I just recently bought a PS3 40 gig w/ 2 controllers & 5 games for $300.
I can't wait to watch some bluray's on it ... looks great on 46" samsung 1080p  icon_smile
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« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2008, 06:40:44 PM »

I'd say the major weakness of the PS3 as a blu-ray player is the hoops you need to jump through if you want to control it with your IR universal remote.
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« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2008, 07:02:59 PM »

I was just at Costco...they had a blu-ray player for $199...looked decent, but didn't have enough time to test/look as wife/kids wanted to move on smile
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JSL
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« Reply #20 on: November 15, 2008, 04:52:41 AM »

Well, everyone almost has me convinced to just get the PS3 for my Blu-Ray needs, especially since I seem to have a reasonably good deal if I get one ($100 off if I get two movies and one game).
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JayDee
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« Reply #21 on: November 16, 2008, 09:19:55 PM »

My parents wanted to get me a Blu-Ray player for Christmas, so I went to the store to pick one out today. I didn't consider the PS3 because they are much more expensive and I have no interest in playing games on it (I already have a 360). I did want to stick with Sony though since they did invent the tech. I settled on this one, but for $30 less (and that's in CDN $):  http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0665000FS10109229&catid=25323&logon=&langid=EN

I can hook an ethernet cable up to it so I'm assuming that I would be able to get any firmware updates. Even if not, I don't care, because I just want it to play movies. I don't watch special features.
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mori
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« Reply #22 on: November 17, 2008, 12:07:04 AM »

PS3. The only reason I have a console is to play Blu-Ray movies, and the occasional game of Madden '09.
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JSL
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« Reply #23 on: November 17, 2008, 02:20:36 AM »

Quote from: JayDee on November 16, 2008, 09:19:55 PM

My parents wanted to get me a Blu-Ray player for Christmas, so I went to the store to pick one out today. I didn't consider the PS3 because they are much more expensive and I have no interest in playing games on it (I already have a 360). I did want to stick with Sony though since they did invent the tech. I settled on this one, but for $30 less (and that's in CDN $):  http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0665000FS10109229&catid=25323&logon=&langid=EN

I can hook an ethernet cable up to it so I'm assuming that I would be able to get any firmware updates. Even if not, I don't care, because I just want it to play movies. I don't watch special features.

That is one I have been considering. It seems decent enough as well and I'm not really interested in BD Live so not having it hooked up to the Internet would be fine with me.
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JayDee
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« Reply #24 on: November 17, 2008, 02:29:53 AM »

Quote from: JSL on November 17, 2008, 02:20:36 AM

Quote from: JayDee on November 16, 2008, 09:19:55 PM

My parents wanted to get me a Blu-Ray player for Christmas, so I went to the store to pick one out today. I didn't consider the PS3 because they are much more expensive and I have no interest in playing games on it (I already have a 360). I did want to stick with Sony though since they did invent the tech. I settled on this one, but for $30 less (and that's in CDN $):  http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0665000FS10109229&catid=25323&logon=&langid=EN

I can hook an ethernet cable up to it so I'm assuming that I would be able to get any firmware updates. Even if not, I don't care, because I just want it to play movies. I don't watch special features.

That is one I have been considering. It seems decent enough as well and I'm not really interested in BD Live so not having it hooked up to the Internet would be fine with me.

I've been reading more about it and you can update the firmware through the ethernet port, which means I can't find a single reason why I would need to get a PS3, other than that it plays games. But paying $150 more ($399 instead of $250) for the option to play games when I already have a console doesn't make much sense to me. I'm happy with my decision.
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Razgon
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« Reply #25 on: November 17, 2008, 07:19:08 AM »

Can it upscale your DVD's? If you have a HD tv, will it make the movie fill up the entire tv screen, or just 2/3's as so many other players?

those are key selling points for me on my PS3 regarding movies...

bear in mind though, that it DOES make noise (see? not entirely fanboi here ;-) )
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« Reply #26 on: November 17, 2008, 01:56:11 PM »

Today's Woot:

Memorex Blu-Ray Disc Player
$139.99

http://www.woot.com/
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« Reply #27 on: November 17, 2008, 02:06:16 PM »

Quote from: Razgon on November 17, 2008, 07:19:08 AM

Can it upscale your DVD's? If you have a HD tv, will it make the movie fill up the entire tv screen, or just 2/3's as so many other players?

those are key selling points for me on my PS3 regarding movies...

bear in mind though, that it DOES make noise (see? not entirely fanboi here ;-) )

Yes, it upscales, but I don't know what you mean by 2/3's of the screen. Do you mean the black bars on the top and bottom of the screen that appear when watching 16:9 movies on DVD?
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Razgon
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« Reply #28 on: November 17, 2008, 02:09:44 PM »

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 02:06:16 PM

Quote from: Razgon on November 17, 2008, 07:19:08 AM

Can it upscale your DVD's? If you have a HD tv, will it make the movie fill up the entire tv screen, or just 2/3's as so many other players?

those are key selling points for me on my PS3 regarding movies...

bear in mind though, that it DOES make noise (see? not entirely fanboi here ;-) )

Yes, it upscales, but I don't know what you mean by 2/3's of the screen. Do you mean the black bars on the top and bottom of the screen that appear when watching 16:9 movies on DVD?

indeed, my old dvd players makes me crazy with this, but PS3 makes the movies fullscreen through magic, it seems...
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JayDee
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« Reply #29 on: November 17, 2008, 02:20:10 PM »

Quote from: Razgon on November 17, 2008, 02:09:44 PM

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 02:06:16 PM

Quote from: Razgon on November 17, 2008, 07:19:08 AM

Can it upscale your DVD's? If you have a HD tv, will it make the movie fill up the entire tv screen, or just 2/3's as so many other players?

those are key selling points for me on my PS3 regarding movies...

bear in mind though, that it DOES make noise (see? not entirely fanboi here ;-) )

Yes, it upscales, but I don't know what you mean by 2/3's of the screen. Do you mean the black bars on the top and bottom of the screen that appear when watching 16:9 movies on DVD?

indeed, my old dvd players makes me crazy with this, but PS3 makes the movies fullscreen through magic, it seems...

Wow, I had no idea it was possible to turn a 16:9 movie into full-screen without ruining the aspect ratio and making the picture look "stretched". I looked into it further and I can't find anything to indicate that this player does this, but the following review (http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2326273,00.asp) is comforting. It's third behind the PS3 in terms of benchmarking, but I can live with that to save $150.

"All Blu-ray players are also upconverting DVD players, but the upconverted picture quality depends on the prowess of the video-processing hardware. The S350 offers one of the best upconverted 1080p DVD viewing experiences I've seen; a significant improvement over the S300. The player rendered my selection of classic DVD movies in excellent detail without distracting artifacts such as jagged edges or line flicker. The addition of user-adjustable picture controls, including detailed video noise reduction (NR) settings, helped enhance the player's HQV Benchmark test score. It placed third, behind only the LG BH200 Super Blu and Sony's own PlayStation 3."
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Razgon
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« Reply #30 on: November 17, 2008, 02:26:03 PM »

yeah, its actually a bit strange, but I've decided not to think too much about it, since, I have no clue how it's done...the only thing I can think of, is that it cuts something off somewhere, but, I've never ever noticed this, and a lot of the movies I watch, I've seen before on my old dvd players, and I cant tell any difference..

And that blueray does sound good, and if you'r not interested in playing ps3 games, well, I can certainly understand why you wont be going for a ps3 :-)
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« Reply #31 on: November 17, 2008, 02:48:07 PM »

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 02:20:10 PM

Wow, I had no idea it was possible to turn a 16:9 movie into full-screen without ruining the aspect ratio and making the picture look "stretched".

A 16:9 movie will fill the screen of an HDTV by default since HDTVs have an aspect ratio of 16:9, or 1.78:1.  Many movies are 2.35:1 (Lord of the Rings, Quantum of Solace) and they will have black bars on an HDTV unless you're fine with ruining the movie by stretching or zooming the picture (don't do this).  Many other movies are 1.85:1 and will have black bars smaller than the 2.35:1 movies.
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« Reply #32 on: November 17, 2008, 02:54:03 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on November 17, 2008, 02:48:07 PM

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 02:20:10 PM

Wow, I had no idea it was possible to turn a 16:9 movie into full-screen without ruining the aspect ratio and making the picture look "stretched".

A 16:9 movie will fill the screen of an HDTV by default since HDTVs have an aspect ratio of 16:9, or 1.78:1.  Many movies are 2.35:1 (Lord of the Rings, Quantum of Solace) and they will have black bars on an HDTV unless you're fine with ruining the movie by stretching or zooming the picture (don't do this).  Many other movies are 1.85:1 and will have black bars smaller than the 2.35:1 movies.

ALL movies and ALL shows that I bought on DVD are fullscreen on my PS3, so, I dont think thats it... although, again,  Ireally dont know how its done, thus my only explanation is that its pure magic...
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« Reply #33 on: November 17, 2008, 02:54:57 PM »

It's not magic- you're either missing part of the picture or it's compressing it and thus distorting it. 
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JayDee
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« Reply #34 on: November 17, 2008, 03:01:04 PM »

Quote from: wonderpug on November 17, 2008, 02:48:07 PM

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 02:20:10 PM

Wow, I had no idea it was possible to turn a 16:9 movie into full-screen without ruining the aspect ratio and making the picture look "stretched".

A 16:9 movie will fill the screen of an HDTV by default since HDTVs have an aspect ratio of 16:9, or 1.78:1.  Many movies are 2.35:1 (Lord of the Rings, Quantum of Solace) and they will have black bars on an HDTV unless you're fine with ruining the movie by stretching or zooming the picture (don't do this).  Many other movies are 1.85:1 and will have black bars smaller than the 2.35:1 movies.

You're right. I had it backwards. The TV is 16:9 and movies are 2.35:1. Although I don't think I get black bars on my TV for 1.85:1 movies. I'll have to double-check.
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« Reply #35 on: November 17, 2008, 03:05:26 PM »

Quote from: Razgon on November 17, 2008, 02:54:03 PM

ALL movies and ALL shows that I bought on DVD are fullscreen on my PS3, so, I dont think thats it... although, again,  Ireally dont know how its done, thus my only explanation is that its pure magic...

1) You're beating the odds and somehow only renting/buying movies that are 1.78:1.  Go bet money on red and/or black.  Maybe not "and."
2) You have your PS3 set to zoom or stretch higher aspect ratios.
3) You have your TV set to zoom or stretch higher aspect ratios.
4) Voodoo and/or Hoodoo.  What can you tell me about Cabrit Sans Cor?
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« Reply #36 on: November 17, 2008, 03:13:27 PM »

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 03:01:04 PM

You're right. I had it backwards. The TV is 16:9 and movies are 2.35:1. Although I don't think I get black bars on my TV for 1.85:1 movies. I'll have to double-check.

You probably won't see it on 1.85:1 movies- most of the time that's well within the TV's overscan (ie beyond the edges of the TV).  It would probably be more apparent on a monitor which typically doesn't have the overscan that most TV's have. 
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JayDee
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« Reply #37 on: November 17, 2008, 03:33:27 PM »

It makes me wonder why widescreen TVs were made 16:9 when most movies don't use this aspect ratio (either 1.85:1 or 2.35:1).
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« Reply #38 on: November 17, 2008, 04:00:37 PM »

Quote from: JayDee on November 17, 2008, 03:33:27 PM

It makes me wonder why widescreen TVs were made 16:9 when most movies don't use this aspect ratio (either 1.85:1 or 2.35:1).

I wondered that, too.  Wikipedia says it's because 1.78:1 was a compromise between the US & UK 1.85:1 standard and the 1.66:1 non-UK European standard, but well, you know, citation needed.
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« Reply #39 on: November 17, 2008, 04:19:59 PM »

Got $3000 to spend?  There's the Sony HES-V1000, a 200-disc Blu-Ray changer.

« Last Edit: November 17, 2008, 04:22:14 PM by Isgrimnur » Logged

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