Pros With the Silicon Optix HQV upconvert chip you get great results upscaling DVD's to 1080 i/p. The player loads DVD's briskly (20 sec) and Blu-ray nearly as fast. Audio support includes DTS HD, Dolby True HD, Dolby Digital plus, DTS and Dolby Digital.
Cons Clumsy remote that uses unique codes that most Universal remotes don't recognize. No proble, just use a Universal-Remote-Control model RF10 instead and your good to go.
Summary This is the first player I have examined closely that has superior playback quality of standard DVD's without compromising playback quality of Blu-ray disks. It is far faster than any other I have considered for purchase and provides HD audio support plus connection to Netflix via BD-live which is standard with this model. All of this and under $400.00.
Pros - access to netflix streaming videos at no extra cost provided that you have a subscription to a Netflix DVD's rental service
- high quality picture from upstreaming regular dvd's and playing blu rays
Cons - could be smaller in size and cheaper (I paid $300 at Circuit City)
- remote control feels cheap and the buttons are too small
- no HD-quality video from Netflix
- Netflix should add movie browsing capability through Netflix-ready devices
Summary I was not rushing to buy a blu-ray player because I was happy with the picture from regular DVD's. But, when I learned that Samsung BD-P2500 is Netflix ready, I decided to try it. I was extremely pleased. The selection of movies, documentaries and tv shows is so good, that I cancelled my movie, variety and choice packs from my cable company. The idea of watching a movie you want at a time that is convenient for you is very appealing. I was never satsfied with movie packs from cable providers - they keep showing the same movies over and over. Being a busy person, I can not adjust my schedule to the times when my favority movie or show is on. Being also a lazy person, it does not appeal to me to go to a video rental store on a regular basis. With Samsung BD-P2500, I can watch movies I want without leaving the house, paying only $9 a month for the Netflix account. Since the Netflix instant viewing service is new, I am sure they will keep increasing their library of intsantly watched movies (currently 12,000) and hopefully add HD quality conent and news/sports live streaming. At which point, I will find the cable TV completely useless and cancel it altogether, keeping only the cable internet. I can't believe that I am paying $65/mo for the basic digital cable with HD channels. Way to go Netflix! We need more content-over-internet providers to break the TV monopoly of cable and sattelite TV companies.
Pros Nice picture... for two weeks!!
Cons Samsung would not stand behind their product. Electric junk!!
Summary Samsung did not care that their product failed (think...Toyota). They lost a customer and couldn't care less.
Pros Netflix Player Built In (Great playback resolution and functions, much better than expected)
Cons Static electricity caused "audio pops" until I grounded the unit (Samsung tech support doesn't have a clue)
No Memory Stored at Shut Down/Power Off. Upon re-power, must manually search through DVD to find previously watched "pause/stop" time.
Summary I live in a dry climate that is responsible for causing static electricity to build up on this DVD player, and many other electronic devices in my home, though not all of them. This "static charge" resulted in very loud audio "pops" sometimes during the power up cycle and sometimes during play back and using DVD functions, like skipping forward to the next chapter on DVD's. Samsung Tech Support wanted me to send the unit back to them to "check" for problems. I rejected this idea and found out that attaching a small "ground" wire to the rear of the case fixed this "audio pop" issue. Tech Support does not have a clue. I have reported this "fix".But, here's a "work around" for this DVD memory "pause" quirk. "Pause" DVD playback, but do not manully shut off the unit. After 5 minutes of "pause", a screen saver program begins and then after 30 minutes, a "power saving" program will automatically shut off the unit. Only then does the DVD "pause" time get stored in memory, so when you "power up" the next time, the unit will start playing the DVD at the point where you previously stopped watching the DVD. I found this by "chance" as there is no mention of this in the product manual or if you call product support. Go figure.
However, my biggest dislike (function problem) is the lack of thoughful design relating to shut down. This unit does not have a memory which stores the place/time on a DVD when you "pause" or "stop" the unit, like when you shut down the unit for sleeping, having dinner, etc. When you re-power the unit, since there is no memory of where you had previously stopped movie playback, the unit starts the DVD at the beginning! So you must "write down" on paper the time on the DVD that you "stopped/paused", and then manually skip through chapters and fast forward or re-wind to the place on the DVD where you previously stopped.
I own 2 other "el cheapo" K-Mart specials (les than $50 each) which I purchased years ago that "remember" the point where you "shut down" the DVD. So, when you power up, these DVD players "automatically" start play back at the exact previous "shut down/power off" point on the DVD.
Samsung Support as of 03/20/09 says they are working on a "firmware update" to address this issue, but do not know if they can use a "firmware update" to fix this annoying non-functionality. They also do not know when a future model will be released to address this issue if "firmware" can not solve it.
I'm selling this on e-Bay and getting a different model DVD player and separate Roku Netflix player.
If you don't mind this "shut off" memory issue, this model has great playback quality including sound, and the Netflix player quality and function is way above my expectations.
Updated on Mar 22, 2009
Pros - The blue ray picture was excellent
- Upscaling regular dvds was quite nice
- The netflix instant watching feature was great
- Very good sound
- Pretty easy to set up (including connecting to the internet for Netflix & BDLive)
Cons - On day 16 out of the box, unit had to be shipped to Samsung for repair
- Relatively slow loading times
- Remote is not the best & was unable to sucessfully program Panasonic 1080p TV to use (so you need two remotes - to change volume etc.)
Summary As touched on briefly above, this was a Christmas gift that has been fully set up by the pm of 12/26/2008. It is now 1/10/2009 and I have just returned from visiting our local UPS store when I had to ship my unit to Samsung for repair (I guess I should be "greatful" that customer service provided the shipping label).
Until this morning, I would have given this product a 4.5 - now I will have to rate it a 1.5 and agree with what appears to be the countless other Samsung customers that have been "burned" by a shoddy product and poor customer service.
This unit was completely up and running for the past 16 days (with all the bells & whistles - HDMI cables, connection to the internet and service from Netflix watch instantly feature). Then all of a sudden about 1/4 way the blu-ray disk for the movie "Cars" (a "new" disk that it has played perfectly 3 or 4 times) the picture froze & then the entire screen went green. I consulted with the manual...nothing on green screens or problems with disk play-back. So I called Samsung customer service. After waiting 5 minutes I was connected to a phone center rep with marginal english skills. Honestly, I don't mind overseas call centers...but is it too much to ask for a basic command of english? After spinning my wheels with this rep...whose best tech advice was 1) Turn the unit off and then 2) unplug the unit, I got a magenta screen. WOW! So...I finally get transfered to another rep (add another 10 minutes of wait time for the transfer) and he asked that I try to "reset" the box - per the manual...(Hello...I already tried all the fixes suggested in the manual). After that failed AGAIN, he concluded that there is something materially wrong with the unit and that it would need to sent to repair - and would take 14-21 business days to be repaired.
I queried as to whether a new replacement unit might be provided since it was a little ridiculous to be having these problems after 9-10 uses. The reply...Samsung "may consider that option" only after 3 repair attempts have been made for the same issue. So that means you need to be without the unit that you paid nearly $400 for at least 42-63 business days! And - read between the lines - if there is more than one issue to be addressed, the guideline is 3 "bites at the apple" per issue.
My advice, if you are looking for both Bly-Ray and the instant Netflix option, is to go with Cnet's recomendation for the Blu-Ray that best meets your needs and then go with the stand-alone Roku box . I sure wish I did.
Samsung, you burned me once...but never again...