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The Best Blu-ray Disc Players: From Blu-Plate to Blu-Chip
Written by Daniel   
Thursday, 05 March 2009 12:44

We tested ten of the latest Blu-ray players, including several cheapies and a few pricey units. Though you can get a good to great high-definition picture from any of them, we identified a few standout models.

Melissa J. Perenson, PC World
Mar 4, 2009 3:30 pm

Blu-ray's star is rising fast, for good reason. The high-def video format remains the best and most consistent way to take full advantage of a 1080p high-definition television. Armed with a capable player and an HDTV with a surround-sound system, you can create your own home theater paradise.

In the ever-evolving world of electronics, it can be hard to tell when to leap into the fray. While Blu-ray Disc players are not exempt from that rule, the ten current models we tested illustrate why now is a good time to jump. Lower prices, a greater movie selection (1000 titles and counting), and a wider array of extra features make Blu-ray more attractive than ever before. There's a reason why Blu-ray has enjoyed notable momentum from late 2008 and into this year, even as the full impact of the economic downturn hit.

Indeed, what a difference a year makes. The models we tested for our previous Blu-ray player review roundup cost $400 to $1000. Now, Blu-ray Disc players are also coming from Chinese manufacturers and other OEMs that specialize in producing midrange and budget-priced electronics. The trend has led to a more diverse selection of Blu-ray players, and has contributed directly to Blu-ray's breaching the $200 barrier--the point that often marks when a new technology has gone mainstream.

This time the cheapest model we tested was the $175 Memorex MVBD2510, with the $220 Sharp BD-HP21U close on its heels. The most expensive model we evaluated was Panasonic's DMP-BD55K, which was $400 at the time of this writing (close to the end of the model's life). Industry analysts expect to see a $150 Blu-ray Disc player this year--and that's not just assuming that aging 2008 models will drop in price to make room for new stock.   [PC World...]     [Comments...]

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