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Always a bit confused about Blu Ray players (1 Viewer)

Gary Schatz

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I had the money in hand to buy a Pioneer Blu Ray but the BB salesmen said to wait for Version 3.0 which I see arriving no time in the near future. I want to begin enjoying my blu ray disc. My son suggests a PS3 from Sony, which he has but I am not a gamer. Any suggestions for a guy wanting a new BDAY Present
 

Stephen Tu

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Rule #1 to avoid confusion when buying electronics is never ask salesmen for advice. They often know only just enough to confuse themselves and everyone they talk to with half-truths and sometimes blatant falsehoods. On internet forums you get wisdom of the crowds, when someone posts incorrect information usually someone will come along to correct them.

What people are waiting for is not called "version 3.0", it's "Profile 2.0" aka "BD-Live" support. You may or may not want to hold out for this capability, the only significant thing it is adding is internet connected special features. It's possible that vendors like LG might also integrate this internet capability with downloadable movie services.

If you care about 2.0, the Samsung 1500 is supposedly upgradable to this, the PS3 definitely upgradable. The PS3's only real significant drawbacks are the lack of IR (so have to either use game controller, or buy their Bluetooth remote, or use a universal remote and either buy a 3rd party IR->bluetooth converter or IR->USB dongle), and extra noise. Sony & Panasonic 2.0 players are due out within a month or so according to reports.

If you don't care about the internet features, and don't play games, then there are plenty of choices but if you are interested in the newer audio codecs some may be better than others depending on what model receiver you have, whether it's new enough to decode the new codecs, or can only accept them via HDMI, or can only take analog multi-ch in.
 

Scooter

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Depends on your age this time around.

There are always strippers!

But..for the time being, think Junior would let the PS3 be in the main part of the family viewing area until you buy a stand alone?
 

CptGreedle

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There actually is a standard coming out called Profile 3.0. It might be what the guy was thinking, but again it is more salesmen confusion.
Profile 3.0 will allow for BD-music discs, however there is no requirement date for profile 3.0.
If that is what he is thinking, the PS3 is still capable of this upgrade.
But I think he is misinformed.

The PS3 is not the "best" BD player in terms of quality, as I have heard many others say that some higher end stand alone players (and more expensive) look better and even run faster. That is not to say that the PS3 does not look AMAZING. However the PS3 IS the best BD player for several other reasons. It is still fast with loading discs, it is fully future-proof and can handle (and has handled) any kind of upgrade. It plays DVDs, CDs, .mp4, BDs, and some even play SACDs. It also plays games. PLUS, it can internally decode TrueHD and DTS-HD MA. As far as I am concerned, for the price and the ability and the quality, the PS3 is the best BD player on the market! Not to mention it is BD-Live capable.

You can not go wrong with the PS3, as long as you connect it to the internet for upgrades and BD-Live.
 

Paul Kemp

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There's no two ways about it for me - PS3 is the best player available for more reasons than the obvious. Buy the dedicated remote control system and it's no different to use than any other stand alone unit.

I would avoid investing expensive sums of money in Blu Ray players with 7.1 Analogue Outputs as there is some evidence circulating the web to suggest that the analogue output stages of a significant number of players supply a decoded version of the 'lossy' soundtracks of Blu Ray rather than the lossless formats.

Here at least, the cheapest Blu Ray players that have 7.1 outputs cost so much that you would be better to simply upgrade your receiver and buy a cheaper player. I would not buy anything other than the PS3 in the current Blu Ray market.
 

Hal Masonberg

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The new Sony due this fall has 7.1 analog outputs and sells for $499. I haven't read any negatives about 7.1 analog outs, but would like to if they are out there. Let me know where they are. I'll keep looking, too. Can't afford a new amp at this time as the blu-ray player and a front projector are the top of my list at the moment. However, my amp does 7.1, just not with HDMI. The way I see it, my 5.1 optical or coax won't be lossless either, so I might as well go 7.1 and at least get all the channels.
 

Paul Kemp

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You spends your money you makes your choice. It's not what I've done. I can't access lossless in my current set up but then, high bit rate Dolby and DTS sounds suitably convincing to my ears!
 

Hal Masonberg

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Seems to me if I have a 7.1 receiver and speaker set up, I might as well get that extra punch. Lord knows I love a good 6.1 mix (DTS ES). Would hate to give that up. 7.1 sounds even better. But still want to know about the negative stuff you read about 7.1 analog outs.
 

Paul Kemp

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It is not "negative", some testimonials on the web are suggesting that the analogue outputs of the Blu Ray players they have bought are producing sonics indistinguishable from the 'lossy' codecs stored on the discs. One fellow engineer I know in the UK has himself suggested that some of the players he has encountered are in fact decoding the reduced bit rate codecs rather than the lossless ones for their analogue outputs.

It is not necessarily true of all players but it is certainly worth trying before you buy. Of course, an HDMI receiver would side step all of these issues.

If 7.1 is your main motivation then consider the amount of 7.1 encoded software available - hardly a compelling argument in itself. Once you have tried a Blu Ray player feeding your existing receiver a full bit rate DTS 'core' or higher bit rate Dolby Digital soundtrack, you may lose the itch to explore the lossless codecs :)
 

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