Particularly in the area of the home cinema systems, the slogan “sharper than reality allows” has been very persistent for some time. The manufacturers are trying to meet this slogan and are developing more and more high-resolution entertainment electronics. The resolution Full HD became the new minimum standard. If you want to experience real Kinogenuss, you should have access to Ultra-HD or 4K-players. The resolution is much higher and the image still sharp. This way, you can also play your Star Wars Blu-rays in a dignified manner. The time of the simple DVD player is thus terminated.
In our guide to various Blu-ray player tests 2017, we would like to show you what to look for when buying a Blu-ray player. To help you with the purchase decision, we also have suggestions for a Blu-ray player comparison winner of your choice. In the end you should find the best Blu-ray player for your needs, whether you play many Blu-rays, or the device only occasionally need.
1. What is a Blu-ray player?
A Blu-ray player is similar to a DVD player a device for playing external storage media. A special feature here is that in addition to Blu-Rays usually also CDs and DVDs can be played. So almost every Blu-ray player is also a DVD player. Meanwhile, there are movies in the new 3D technology like Avatar or Jurassic World. To enable you to see such videos in good 3D quality, you need a good Blu-ray player with 3D function. These 3D Blu-ray players or 3D players can achieve good results on some films.
The Blu-ray disc has been released on February 19, 2002. On this day, the nine companies Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Sony, Thomson, LG Electronics, Hitachi, Sharp and Samsung reached exactly specifications for the Blu-ray -Disc some. In January 2004, Dell and Hewlett-Packard joined these Blu-ray Disc specifications. In March 2005 Apple and Acer followed suit. During this time, the HD DVD was the only competing product. The situation was decided in favor of the Blu-ray disc, when Toshiba announced the end of the development of the HD DVD. Today many of the manufacturers belong to DLNA. It is the Digital Living Network Alliance, which is responsible for developing and updating new technical guidelines.
1.1. What is a Blu-ray recorder?
A Blu-ray recorder or Blu-ray recorder can not only play Blu-ray discs, but also record videos from a receiver or a TV and then burn it to a Blu-ray disc. A Blu-ray or Blu-ray recorder usually has an internal hard disk that allows recording. The cost of a Blu-ray recorder is significantly higher due to the extended function, so the Blu-ray burners do not appear in our overview of Blu-ray player tests. We would like to bring you the advantages and disadvantages of a Blu-ray recorder.
2. Purchase Criteria for Blu-ray Players: You have to pay attention
When choosing your Blu-ray player, you should not be tempted by the big brand names such as Samsung, Panasonic and Sony for purchase. If you are buying a Blu-ray player, you should not pay too much attention to marketing such as 3D Blu-ray players, 3D players and 4K Blu-ray players. It has been shown in our review of the Blu-ray player tests that LG’s cheap Blu-ray players can also achieve good results. You also have a 3D function and can be a 3D Blu-ray player or 3D player.
There were major differences in the connections in the relevant Blu-ray player tests. Ultimately, you have to decide which connections your TV, receiver or the compact system has.
For your AV receiver, you should pay attention to the presence of a suitable audio connection. Most of them now fit digital audio outputs. However, some older models require analog audio outputs that allow connection via RCA plugs.
LAN or WLAN connections have now been established for connection to the Internet or a network. The network capability also allows you to view online streaming services such as Netflix or Maxdome directly from the playback device.
For connecting to the TV, an HDMI cable is used for all devices from the various Blu-ray player tests 2017. The connection via scart cable is no longer common with the Blu-ray players and would also reduce the picture quality. Especially with the construction of a home cinema system this would be a real shortcoming. A USB port also allows you to play movies from external hard drives or USB sticks and increase the variety of your personal program.
2.2. Supported video formats
All devices from various Blu-ray player tests play Blu-rays, DVDs and CDs. Larger differences were found in the supported video formats, which can be accessed via Internet, an external hard disk or a burned DVD. As a rule, you should ensure that the products can play the format MPEG2 and MPEG4. In addition, the products XVID, DivX and DivX-HD should be able to play, since in the Internet many films in these formats are offered. The devices of the manufacturer Samsung cover here quite a good range. Better are only players of LG Electronics, since they have no problems with FLV, MP4 and MKV files. If you sometimes record video with a digital camera, you should pay attention to whether your Blu-ray player can also use the format.
Apart from the video formats, audio and photo formats are generally supported. The audio files can usually play MP3s, WMAs and AACs. Playing their favorite songs from the MP3 player is nothing to prevent. You can also display your favorite photos as almost all models support JPEGs and PNGs. When you buy a good Blu-ray player, you no longer need a digital picture frame for your photos because you can view the photos on the TV.
The standard for Blu-Ray players is now Full-HD. Some manufacturers like Panasonic or Samsung convince with the standard Ultra-HD, also called “4K”.
One has to note, however, that the Blu-ray laser provides the TV picture. The resolution of the TV is thus the last link in the resolution chain.
If the TV can neither represent Ultra-HD nor Full-HD, the enjoyment of a particularly high resolution unfortunately fails.
2.4. 3D playback
Some devices from the various Blu-ray player tests can also play 3D movies. They convince as a 3D player or 3D Blu-ray player. With the 3D function, the output devices are very important. If the accessories are not correct here and the TV or beamer does not have a 3D playback, the 3D playback function of the player uses nothing.
2.5. Smart TV
The term Smart TV actually describes an internet-capable television, which also has a return channel. This makes it possible to use some useful additional features and also play games. If the Blu-ray player has this feature, you can not only watch new Blu-rays or other playback media, but also use online video stores via the LAN or WLAN connection.
3.1. Which Blu-ray player does it all?
Finding a Blu-ray player that plays all audio and video formats is relatively difficult. In our overview of Blu-ray player tests it has been shown that especially the models of LG can play many video formats. Unfortunately, these are not all formats that exist. Sometimes a software update can be helpful for you to play more formats. All devices from the Blu-ray player comparison, however, could play new Blu-rays, DVDs and CDs.
3.2. What Samsung Blu-ray Player is good?
Samsung makes many good players. Unfortunately they all have a problem: The operating noise is quite noisy. You should decide for yourself whether the BD H6500 or the BD F5100 EN is the better model for them.
3.3. How do I update my Blu-ray Player?
Black compact Sony player
The Sony S4500 – a fairly simple and reliable playback device.
Periodically, the vendors issue software updates to improve security or playback. In this case, you must download the firmware update file and upload it to the player. This can be achieved via a USB connection, if the player has no LAN or WLAN connection. Some internet-enabled models also have an update feature that you can use.
3.4. How good is the PS3 as a 3D Blu-ray player?
On the Internet, there are various tests on the use of PS3 as a Blu-ray player. All come to the conclusion that the PS3 provides a perfect picture. A difference to a real player such as the Philips 8000 is hardly noticeable. The power consumption of the PS3 is however significantly higher than that of a Blu-ray player. If you regularly watch Blu-rays, you should buy a real Blu-ray player.
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