Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity

Home Blu-ray Players

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Blu-ray Players

Toshiba BDX5200 3D Blu-ray Player

Toshiba BDX5200 3D Blu-ray player To compare today’s Blu-ray players with the very first models that shipped back in 2006, one would find those early players to be a mere shadow of what’s available today. Early adopters had to live without full lossless sound support, no 24p, no Internet apps, terrible ergonomics, glacially slow load times, and of course, high prices. Now we have models like Toshiba’s BDX-5200 that give you everything but the kitchen sink for under $180. Ain’t technology great?

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Panasonic DMP-BDT210 3D Blu-ray Player

Panasonic DMP-BDT210 Blu-ray player for the Home Theater Sales figures for home theater components are not something I really pay attention to. I’d much rather own something that works great than to have what’s popular, or to have my opinion influenced by sales numbers. However, I’d be willing to bet that Panasonic has done pretty well with their 3D Blu-ray players this year because of one huge advantage they have over everyone else: The ability to include Avatar 3D for consumers. And now, you can get a 3D Blu-ray player for $200: the Panasonic DMP-BDT210.

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Samsung BD-D5500 Blu-ray Player

Samsung BD-D5500 Blu-ray Player for the Home Theater At the CEDIA Expo last fall, the big push for everyone was 3D and online connectivity. We all knew that 3D was going to be everywhere, but also, everyone seemed to have an iPhone or Android Application, and was trying to offer as much online content to the user as possible. Samsung's new BD-D5500 is 3D-capable, and does a pretty good job with regular Blu-ray movies as well, all for less than $200.

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McIntosh MVP881 Universal Blu-ray Player

McIntosh MVP881 Universal Blu-ray playerMcIntosh is one of the most distinctive, and iconic, brands in all of Hi-Fi. Sporting a look that seemingly has never changed, they are most well known for their two channel amps and preamps, but also have a full line of home theater components as well. The MVP881 is McIntosh's contribution to the world of universal players (CD, DVD-A, and SACD). At $8,000 there is a lot of less expensive alternatives as competition. How did the McIntosh compare? Read on.

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Pioneer BDP-43FD Blu-ray Player

Pioneer BDP-43FD Blu ray player for the Home TheaterThe first Blu-ray players that I reviewed for Secrets many years ago were Pioneer models. Up until then, the only player I had used was a PlayStation 3, and was looking forward to a regular box that my universal remote could control and would be easier for my wife to operate. While the Pioneer players did fulfill those requirements, they were also far slower in use than the PS3 was, and as was common for most players then offered no online capability at all. Skip ahead a few years and at the CEDIA Expo, Pioneer was displaying players that were not only much faster and smaller that those early models, but had online streaming capabilities and other features as well. I asked them to send along a unit as soon as they could, and they happily provided me with their BDP-43FD model from their Elite line.

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