The BD-C6900's connectivity is a step above most competing players thanks to its inclusion of 7.1 analog outputs. That's a nice plus for people using older, non-HDMI AV receivers, as you'll still be able to take advantage of both Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio at their full resolutions. It's also a plus for anyone with existing HDMI-capable AV receivers that lack HDMI 1.4 compatibility. This way you can send 3D video straight to your HDTV and use the analog outputs to connect to your AV receiver.
|Ethernet||Yes||SD card slot||No|
|USB ports||1||RS-232 port||No|
Like virtually every other player, the BD-C6900 also includes an Ethernet port if you prefer the stability of a wired connection. We would have liked to see an additional USB port on the back panel, like there is on the Sony BDP-S570 and Oppo BDP-80, but it's a minor quibble.
Blu-ray image quality
Overall, the Samsung BD-C6900's Blu-ray image quality is excellent. It passes all of the most important Blu-ray test patterns, as well as all of our program material tests. Though our reference Blu-ray player, the Oppo BDP-83, performs better on a few test patterns, its very difficult to see those differences in actual program material; the vast majority of movies will look identical on the BDP-83 and BD-C6900.
All our testing was conducted via HDMI at 1080p/60, with the Samsung PN58B650 display, and the Oppo BDP-83 and LG BD570 for comparison. If your display supports and correctly handles 24 frames per second output (also known as 1080p/24), you can largely ignore these tests, as we find all players to have virtually identical 1080p/24 performance. For more information on our testing procedure, consult our full guide to how we test Blu-ray players. Home theater enthusiasts can also see more detailed testing results in our 2010 Blu-ray players comparison chart.
|Blu-ray image quality: test patterns|
|Film resolution||Pass||Dynamic range high||Pass|
|Video resolution||Pass||Dynamic range low||Pass|
|Text overlay on film||Fail||Luma multiburst||Pass|
|Cadence tests||4/8||Chroma multiburst||Pass|
|Chroma bug test||Pass|
The BD-C6900 ran into no major issues in our suite of test patterns. It easily passed both the film and video resolution tests, indicating it should handle the vast majority of Blu-ray titles well. The BD-C6900 actually came close to passing quite a few of the cadence tests and many of them were judgment calls; it just wasn't clear cut as to whether or not the BD-C6900 passed. That being said, we're aware of virtually no program material that uses uncommon cadences, so these test patterns have little real world value.
|Blu-ray image quality: program material|
|"Ghost Rider"||Pass||"Tony Bennett"||Pass|
|"M:I:III"||Pass||"NIN Live"; chapter 3||Pass|
|"Sunshine"||Pass||"NIN Live"; chapter 4||Pass|
We consider program material tests to be even more important than test patterns, and the BD-C6900 passed all our standard program material tests. That gives it a slight edge over other Wi-Fi-connected players like the Sony BDP-S570 and Vizio VBR200W, which have minor issues on relatively uncommon video-based movies. Though we'd still give the overall image quality nod to the reference Oppo BDP-83, the truth is that you're going to get identical performance on the vast majority of movies from the Samsung BD-C6900 and Oppo BDP-83.
We spent plenty of time looking at 3D content with the BD-C6900, but there's not much we can definitely say about its performance. The BD-C6900 is the first and only 3D Blu-ray player CNET has had in its labs, which means we didn't have any competing models to compare it against. Even worse, we had only one 3D TV in-house at the time of this review, and there's only one 3D movie currently available ("Monsters vs. Aliens").
Though we can't directly compare the BD-C6900's 3D performance yet, we can describe our experience with the BD-C6900 directly paired with the Samsung UN55C8000, Samsung 3D's Starter Kit, and "Monsters vs. Aliens." As we mentioned in the UN55C800 review, Samsung's 3D setup definitely creates a credible 3D effect, but ultimately we felt like we just saw too many double images (also known as "crosstalk"). Every time we'd notice the crosstalk, it would take us out of the movie-watching experience, which ironically made the 3D effect feel less immersive. That's unfortunate, because we're not exactly 3D skeptics; we've been impressed at many of the 3D movies we've seen at the theater and the 3D demos companies have been showing in recent years.
Furthermore, we'd emphasize that our criticisms are most likely due to the 3D TV, rather than the BD-C6900, although we have no way of knowing that now. When we get 3D TVs and 3D Blu-ray players in from other manufacturers, we'll be better able to determine the performance of each individual piece of equipment.
|Blu-ray operational speed (in seconds)|
|"M:I:III" | player on||9.33||"POTC" | until movie||77.54|
|"M:I:III" | player off | quickstart||n/a||"Spider-Man 3" | until movie||57.42|
|"M:I:III" | player off | no quickstart||15.95||"Sunshine" | chapter skip||16.89|
|"POTC" | past loading||19.51||CNET speed rating (composite score)||106|
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
The Samsung BD-C6900 is one of the fastest Blu-ray players we've tested this year, bested only by the Sony BDP-S570. In fact, the BD-C6900 was by far the fastest player to load a movie with simple menus, like "Mission: Impossible III," coming in at 9.33 seconds. We were also impressed with the Samsung BD-C6900's boot-up times; even without a "quick start" mode, it was able to load movie in 15.95 seconds, which is just as fast as the BDP-S570's quick start mode. The BD-C6900 wasn't quite as quick on movies with more complex menus and it was a little slower than expected on our chapter-skip test, but overall the BD-C6900 is one of the fastest Blu-ray players you'll be able to buy this year.
We didn't encounter any major operational issues with our review sample of the BD-C6900, but it's worth pointing out that last year's line of Samsung Blu-ray players fared poorly in CNET's user reviews--with many people complaining of operational problems. We didn't have any problems during our review period, however, we'd recommend buyers to keep an eye on CNET's user opinions, as well as popular shopping sites like Amazon and Newegg, to see if there are widespread issues with this year's crop of players.
|DVD image quality: test patterns and program material|
|Video resolution||Pass||"Star Trek: Insurrection"||Pass|
|Text overlay on film||Fail||"Invite Them Up"||Pass|
If all we did was look at test patterns, we'd say the BD-C6900's DVD image quality is subpar. It failed the most important test pattern we have, the film resolution test, which indicates the BD-C6900 should struggle with film-based DVDs. However, when we looked at actual program material, the BD-C6900 didn't have problems; we can usually easily see jaggies on the introduction to "Star Trek: Insurrection" if a player can't properly do 2:3 pulldown processing. Digging a little deeper into the issue, we noticed that the BD-C6900 did pass the film resolution test on the older HQV Benchmark DVD (version 1.4).
We've contacted both Samsung and HQV about the discrepancy, and we'll update the review when we find more information. We're not sure who's at fault--no other Blu-ray players have struggled with the new HQV disc, but the BD-C6900 does handle other 2:3 pulldown test patterns fine--but the bottom line is that the BD-C6900 doesn't have any issues with actual program material. Anecdotally, we found the BD-C6900's to be on par with the LG BD570, but a touch behind the Panasonic DMP-BD85K.
|Streaming video image quality|
As with most Blu-ray players, we saw no major issues with Netflix streaming on the BD-C6900. That gives the BD-C6900 an edge over the Sony BDP-S570, which suffers from some streaming image quality issues.
|Standby | quick start off|
- Release date03/15/10
- Product type Blu-ray player
- Streaming service Internet@TV
- Connectivity Ethernet Wi-Fi
- Additional features Progressive scanning 3D movie playback BD-Java Anynet+ Wi-Fi Ready
- Analog to HDMI Conversion Up to 1080p
- Sound output mode Surround Sound