Blu-ray players offer maximum movie enjoyment with razor-sharp picture quality. Whether you’re watching Hollywood blockbusters, underground movies, or your favorite series, a Blu-ray player enhances your experience. Compared to DVD players, Blu-ray players provide superior playback, delivering HD and sometimes even UHD quality for both picture and sound.
The Best Blu-ray Players in a Detailed Comparison
In our comprehensive comparison, we present several popular models from well-known brands, including Sony and Samsung. You’ll easily find the perfect Blu-ray player for your home theater. Our guidebook section covers essential aspects to consider, necessary ports, and additional functions that can greatly enhance your viewing experience. We also answer common questions about Blu-ray players in our guide.
1. Blu-ray player Sony BDP-S1700
At an affordable price, the Sony BDP-S1700 offers you a more than a reliable package. Held in classic black, it is an elegant and equally compact appearance in your living room.
Watch your favourite movies and series in Full HD 1080p – you’ll immediately notice how much more deeper and clearer the picture is compared to a DVD player. Dolby TrueHD, as well as DTS-HD, are also on board and ensure first-class sound quality. Extensive codecs are supported by the device, which means you can watch more videos, music or photos without having to worry about the file format. Thanks to the practical Ethernet input, you can conveniently use the popular video streaming services Netflix, YouTube and Amazon with this Blu-ray player.
Catch-up TV and Video-on-Demand give you access to more than 300 apps. If you want, you can enjoy your favourite movies or music via USB play. In addition to a USB input, there is also an HDMI output and a coaxial digital audio output. Sony BDP-S1700 features a graphical user interface that makes searching for features or apps easy. If you can do without UHD and 3D, you’ll make a good purchase with this device.
2. Blu-ray player Samsung BD-J4500R
The Samsung BD-J4500R is available at an affordable price, but still brings a lot of innovative and useful features. This inexpensive device is so much more than just a standard Blu-ray player, which is particularly suitable for beginners.
Behind Anynet + (HDMI-CEC) hides an incredibly smart feature. You can control up to twelve compatible devices connected to your TV via HDMI with just one remote control. So you have less mess on your living room table and can call about the TV and this device with the same remote control.
With BD-Wise is another highly interesting technology aboard the player. It makes sure that the picture setting between your TV and your home theatre system is automatically optimized. What follows is an even better viewing experience.
A various video, audio and image formats are supported by this Samsung Blu-ray player. Via USB and HDMI, numerous devices can be easily connected. Samsung BD-J4500R comes with the right remote control and a quick start guide so that you can start using it safely.
3. 4K Blu-ray Player Sony UBP-X700
The Sony UBP-X700 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player gives you the ultimate 4K HDR experience with all the trimmings. Since this is the most up-to-date technology on board, this device naturally costs you a little more than an entry-level model with slimmed-down equipment.HDR10 and Dolby Vision bring you movie enjoyment at its best – exact details, rich colours and a brightness that ideally should be.
With this Sony Blu-ray player, you can play almost all disc and file formats easily and reliably – including Dolby Atmos and DTS: X soundtracks, FLAC, DSD and MP3. Even super audio CDs (SACD) can read this player. WiFi is also available, thanks to online streaming, you can enjoy a whole new variety of programs. The standby mode of the device is automatically called after 20 minutes of inactivity to save energy and save your electricity bill.
Whether it’s an Ethernet port, two HDMI outlets, a coaxial audio out, a USB input, or Wi-Fi, there’s no shortage of connectivity and connection technologies you can choose from. The intuitive interface facilitates you to operate, and it will not be long until their apps and functions can call in seconds.
With its slim design and stylish design, the Sony UBP-X700 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player will look good in your home. The package includes not only the player itself in black but also a remote control, the batteries, the warranty card and the manual.
4. LG BP250 Blu-ray player
The LG BP250 is a reasonably priced and visually appealing Blu-ray player that offers great value.
While it lacks special features like 3D or WLAN, its picture quality is impressive thanks to Full HD upscaling. You can enjoy sharp content from external sources, such as your tablet or smartphone.
This player supports various formats, allowing you to watch your favorite movies and listen to music with excellent sound. The package includes the device, power adapter, remote control, and user manual.
5. Panasonic DP-UB9000 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray Player
The Panasonic DP-UB9000 is a premium Blu-ray player that delivers the best quality without compromises. With impressive 4K picture quality, dynamic HDR optimization, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision, your viewing experience reaches new heights. This THX-certified player ensures movie-like sound.
You can not only enjoy high-quality movies but also access a wide selection of 4K streaming services like Netflix, Amazon, and YouTube. The player features high-quality audio components, separate power circuits, powerful D/A converters, stereo XLR, and gold-plated 7.1 analog outputs.
Control the player using the remote control or external voice assistants like Alexa or Google Assistant. Multiple connectivity options are available, including HDMI ports, USB ports, Ethernet, and WLAN. The solid aluminum design adds a touch of elegance. The package includes the player, remote control, batteries, power cable, and instructions.
6. 3D Blu-ray player Samsung BD-J5500
The Samsung BD-J5500 3D Blu-ray player stands out with its dynamic Curved Design, complementing modern soundbars and TVs. It offers excellent value in the mid-price range. This player allows you to play CDs, DVDs, USB storage devices, and enjoy movies in 3D with Dolby TrueHD and DTS 2.0.
With access to around 250 apps, including the Amazon Video app, you’ll have a wide range of entertainment options. AllShare enables wireless networking of your digital devices using the DLNA standard. Say goodbye to cable clutter with Anynet+.
The player provides various connections, including USB, HDMI, Ethernet, and digital audio output. The package includes the Samsung BD-J5500 3D player, remote control, and quick-start guide.
7. LG UP970 UHD Blu-ray player
The LG UP970 UHD Blu-ray player offers high-quality performance in the mid-price range. It not only plays content in Ultra HD (UHD) but also provides excellent streaming capabilities.
Enjoy a captivating TV experience with multi HDR and 4K resolution. Access streaming portals like Netflix and YouTube for a wide range of 4K UHD content. The player features two HDMI ports, a USB port, digital audio output, and a LAN port for optimal connectivity.
Dolby Atmos bitstream adds to the immersive experience. Play Blu-rays, DVDs, and CDs with ease, and take advantage of USB playback to enjoy videos, music, and pictures directly from your USB flash drive. The package includes the LG UP970 UHD player, remote control with batteries, and user manual.
8. Pioneer BDP-180-K 3D Blu-ray player
The Pioneer BDP-180-K 3D Blu-ray player offers an excellent combination of functionality and style at a reasonable price. It features 4K upscaling, which enhances full HD content to Ultra HD resolution, provided you have a compatible TV.
With WiFi Direct and Miracast, you can stream content wirelessly from your mobile devices to your TV without the need for a router. Enjoy high-resolution audio for a true studio-quality music experience.
The Quick View / Slow View feature allows you to adjust disc playback speed without affecting the pitch
Control the player using the iControl AV5 app on your smartphone or tablet. HDMI, USB, and Ethernet connections are available, ensuring compatibility with your existing devices. The package includes a remote control.
9. Marantz UD7007
The Marantz UD7007 is a high-end Blu-ray player that offers exceptional performance, but it comes with a higher price tag. If you’re looking for something extraordinary for your home theater setup, this player is worth considering.
Not only does it deliver excellent Blu-ray disc playback, but it also allows you to stream audio and video files from your home network and the internet. Enjoy access to popular video-on-demand services like Netflix and YouTube.
The player features DLNA 1.5 certification and offers high-quality HDAM audio modules for superior analogue stereo performance.
The use of high-quality components sets this player apart. If you want an elegant and feature-rich player, the Marantz UD7007 is an excellent choice.
What is a Blu-ray player?
Blu-ray players are compact devices that use a laser with a small wavelength to scan and read data from Blu-ray discs. This enables them to handle fine data layers and provide superior picture and sound quality compared to DVDs. Blu-ray players also offer improved software capabilities, supporting various modern video and audio formats. Many models have direct internet connections, allowing access to user-friendly apps.
Pros and Cons
Consider the following pros and cons when deciding to purchase a Blu-ray player:
- Superior picture and sound quality compared to DVDs
- Support for modern video and audio formats
- Access to streaming services and user-friendly apps
- Wide range of brands and models available
- Higher cost compared to DVD players
- Requires a compatible TV and sound system for optimal performance
Several well-known brands dominate the Blu-ray player market. Keep an eye out for these brands:
Brands like Samsung and LG offer a wide variety of Blu-ray players across different price ranges. However, it’s worth exploring the offerings from other manufacturers as well. You might find a lesser-known brand that offers a great price-performance ratio.
How much does it cost?
When it comes to the cost of a Blu-ray player, it varies depending on the features and capabilities. Simple models can be purchased for less than £70, while UHD Blu-ray players or 3D-capable models tend to be more expensive, ranging into the hundreds of pounds. The price range is wide, allowing options for different budgets.
Types of Blu-ray Players
Blu-ray players come in various types, each with its own set of features and capabilities. Here are the most common types explained briefly:
- HD and Full HD – These Blu-ray players offer an affordable option for playing high-definition discs, providing improved picture and sound quality compared to DVD players. However, they do not support UHD or 3D content.
- UHD – UHD Blu-ray players bring the ultimate cinema experience to your living room with 4K resolution. These players are typically more expensive than standard models due to their advanced capabilities.
- 3D – 3D Blu-ray players allow you to enjoy movies in 3D at home, requiring 3D-compatible films and hardware such as a 3D TV or projector.
- Software player – By installing a Blu-ray drive in your computer and appropriate software, you can enjoy Blu-ray content on your PC or laptop.
- Recorder – Blu-ray recorders are specialized devices that not only play Blu-ray discs but also allow you to record content onto discs. These recorders are pricier compared to standard players.
- Video game consoles – Some video game consoles, like the Sony PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, also function as Blu-ray players, offering the ability to play 3D discs alongside gaming capabilities.
Blu-ray player vs. DVD player
When deciding between a Blu-ray player and a DVD player, several factors come into play. Cost is one consideration, as Blu-ray players tend to be more expensive than DVD players. Another factor is content options. While DVD players only play DVDs and CDs, Blu-ray players offer a wider range of content available on Blu-ray discs, making them a must-have for cinephiles who value high-quality image and sound. However, if image and sound quality are not a top priority for you, a DVD player may still meet your needs adequately.
Is an Internet-enabled Blu-ray player worth it?
Internet connectivity is not available on all players, especially on budget models. If you want to access online movie databases or streaming services, an internet-enabled Blu-ray player is essential. It also allows music enthusiasts to listen to internet radio stations. The convenience of controlling your Blu-ray player using smartphone or tablet apps via Near Field Communication is another advantage of an internet-enabled player.
Traditional Scart connections are outdated, and modern players should have HDMI and USB ports. HDMI allows for high-quality audio and video transmission, while USB ports enable easy connection of USB sticks or other storage media. Ethernet connections and coaxial audio outputs are also commonly available. Some players offer Wi-Fi for wireless connectivity.
To fully enjoy the capabilities of your player, consider purchasing compatible accessories. These may include:
- UHD or 3D-capable TV set
- Projector and screen for a cinematic experience on a large screen
- High-quality sound system, such as a 5.1 surround sound setup, for immersive audio
- Headphones for private listening
- 3D glasses for home 3D cinema
- Cables such as HDMI or USB cables, although many modern players support wireless connectivity
- Special software for managing your movie archive
- Multi-functional remote control for convenient control of your player and other electronic devices
There are several top-rated 4K Blu-ray players available, including the Sony BDP-S1700, Samsung BD-J4500R, Sony UBP-X700, LG BP250, Panasonic DP-UB9000, Samsung BD-J5500, LG UP970, Pioneer BDP-180-K, and Marantz UD7007. The best choice depends on your specific needs and preferences.
When testing Blu-ray players, we consider various factors. We examine the connectivity options, such as HDMI ports and multi-channel analogue audio output, to ensure compatibility with different setups. We evaluate disc loading speed and tray stability. Additionally, we thoroughly review the specifications to ensure format compatibility for an optimal viewing experience.