Pros ID looks great!
Cons Streaming services all have issues and lack flexibility in control interface
Summary I bought this player because of cnet's review, and now i wish i hadn't.
1. Netflix load time is terrible (actually 57 seconds) compared to:
Sony S570: 45s
Sony S580: 46s
WD TV Live Hub: 38s
(I have all 4 units and use FiOS, so connection speed is not an issue)
2. YouTube videos CANNOT be fast forwarded or reversed and on top of that, play, stop buttons won't work, have to use arrow keys instead (come on, Panasonic, what are you thinking!!!!?)
3. NO subtitle button on the remote (had to navigate thru menus every time)
4. Skype cannot be used without a camera.
5. Quite the contrary to what the reviewer emphasized, the menu is very hard to use and navigate (exit button takes you to the homescreen no matter what, then what is the point of Home button?) I actually prefer Sony's interface, much better.
These are just deal breakers for me.
Pros Great Blue-ray and DVD player. I've watched several movies in both formats. Discs load quickly, picture quality is great!
Cons The wireless connection on this player is broken. It drops the internet all the time.
Summary Before I describe my Netflix problems, you should know that I have a current technology wireless network in my house with all the latest firmware installed in my router. My router is a Linksys E3000 dual band wireles N router. I also have a ROKU box that streams Netflix wirelessly and quickly with absolutely no problems. My Panasonic Blue-ray player says it has a full strength connection to my router. In the little over a month I have owned this machine, I have installed two Panasonic firmware updates.
Here are the problems with Netflix. (Yes, this is a Panasonic issue not a Netflix issue) Netflix takes a long time to load, perhaps 30 seconds or more. You can litterally get up, get a drink from the kitchen and come back before you ever get to Netflix. It will work fine for a week, then all of a sudden, I'll start getting a "This program can't be played right now" error right in the middle of the movie. My only recourse is to turn the player off and back on again - or go upstairs and watch it on ROKU where everything works! Most recently Netflix has refused to load at all. I've now had to reset the player and redo all the initial settings. Very frustrating!! It seems like bad reviews like mine exist throughout the internet. If you don't believe me, you should try going to the Panasonic site and read reviews there. They echo all the problems I'm having.
I had hoped the reset I did would solve my problems. If it does, I'll update my review. Until then, assume that this is one player NOT to buy if you plan to watch Netflix or use any of the internet features. There is no excuse for a piece of electronics to be this buggy! I say PASS on this one and BUY SOMETHING ELSE!!
Pros I've only watched a single blu-ray movie on it (Scott Pilgrim vs the Wolrd), it seemed to function adequately.
Cons This model is plagued with problems with its wireless connection. There are numerous complaints about it losing the wireless signal, and unable to gain it again until the unit is restarted.
Summary I purchased this model because I needed both a blu-ray player and a streaming device, like a Roku. This seemed like my best option. I ordered it from Sears, online, and immediately tried watching netflix on it.
In the middle of the streaming video, it would suddenly attempt to load, and then complain that it couldn't load the video. I'd go to the connection settings, saw it was no longer connected, and attempted to reconnect. It'd report that it detected no wireless connection. I'd have to turn off the unit and restart it. Upon restarting, it would instantly connect to the network that it had previously been connected to. This constantly happened, I wasn't able to watch anything with it.
I'm on my laptop this entire time, chatting and web-browsing, so my connection was fine. I get 20-30 MB/s, and my router is in the same room as my player, maybe 20 feet away.
I returned it to Panasonic for service. They sent me back a new or factory refurbished model. I tried it again and encountered the same problem. Although, this time, after a couple of restarts, it would make it through an entire movie on Netflix.
I called Panasonic customer service, they tried to blame it on my internet connection, but eventually had be reset using some button pattern on the remote.
I'm not sure if this will fix the problem, but I suspect it won't. There are numerous complaints about this model, online, here's an example:
I suspect many of the people that haven't had a problem with it don't use streaming extensively, and I doubt the CNET reviewers played a whole movie streaming wireless. Stay away from this player.
"Noisy as...Heck!"on by D-Hicks
Pros Good Picture & Audio, nice navigation
Cons Did I mention it was Loud?
Summary I only had this player for 30 minutes hoping that the noisy disc drive would go away, but it didn't, no matter what I played, Blu Ray, DVD, CD, whatever! It was very annoying. It might have been just THAT player, but I tried a disc on the floor model...same thing. But hey, you can always take it back.
Pros None, none, none, none
Cons Under powered processor, clunky inconsistent menus, poor button and USB placement
Summary Bought this based on the Panasonic AV reputation. What a disappointment.
1. The Tray and Power buttons are poorly placed, inducing numerous unintentional presses.
2. The menu, apps, and graphics overwhelm the processor, pausing, freezing, etc. You'd think they would design graphics the unit could handle.
3. The style of navigation changes. It's like each section was designed by a different person. The main menu follows the D-pad directly, others use different versions of the standard navigate>enter system. Stupid.
4. USB port is in front, and under the cover, so leaving one plugged in for BD Live means the cover stays open. Also stupid. (the Samsung this replaced offered USB on the front, AND back, so I could leave one in place, and still plug in media)
5. Like the other apps, Netflix is clunky, and shifts quality, usually staying low. I using a wired conenction and it still can't play HD consistantly. (My TV plays VUDU and Netflix just fine in HD, even over WiFi)
6. From reading the reviews at Panasonic, there is clearly an issue with the WiFi on this unit, beyond just slow speed.
This cannot even be close to the best BD Player of 2012. CNEt must be taking payoffs to rate this so high