12 August 2011

OPPO BDP-93 Blu Ray and Universal Disc Player

I decided to branch into Blu Ray for certain films. Carrying 50gb of data per disc compared to a standard DVD’s 8.5gb, Blu Ray discs are able to provide significantly more detail for both picture and audio. We won’t see the best of our Hi-Definition TV unless we have a Hi-Def source so I researched players and settled on the Oppo.

I need a player that can handle Blu Ray, DVD, DVDR, CD, CDR, SACD and DVD Audio. Not only that but one which can read discs encoded for all geographical Regions and convert video from PAL to NTSC and vice versa. In short, a universal disc player that can play anything I own whether purchased in the UK or North America.

Oppo is a new American Manufacturer established in 2004 but already making a big name for itself with multi-functional disc players, upper mid-range in price but rivalling high-end competitors for performance. I bought the BDP-93 from an online retailer in Ohio for $630, $100 more than list price for the “region free” modification. Delivery took four days by FedEx. Packaging is the best I have seen; a large box with plenty of padding and the player wrapped in a strong linen bag. A separate box within contains cables, leads, wireless dongle and a chunky remote control with beautiful backlighting. I won’t delve into the technical detail of the BDP-93, suffice to say it has played anything I have thrown at it without fuss. The hefty owner’s manual is available online for the curious, as are detailed reviews.

From a user’s perspective, the Oppo’s upscaling of DVDs is great. My picture has never looked so sharp. Blu Rays are notoriously slow to boot up but this player reaches the menu within thirty seconds. So far I have only sampled a Blu Ray transfer of the thirty-five-year-old “Exorcist” but even that looks superbly defined with detail and illumination even in the dark corners.

As to sound quality, the player is amazing. I already own good players by NAD, Cambridge Audio and Toshiba but this beats them all by some distance. A universal disc player is all well and good but if you need an additional CD player to achieve quality audio then the point is lost. The Oppo gives the best audio experience I have had. Sound is full and crystal clear. I play it through a Yamaha ampilifier/receiver and Harmon Kardon surround sound speakers and the sound is truly detailed and powerful.

A potentially useful feature is the Oppo is wireless Internet ready and I had no trouble connecting it to my home network. Now a full range of online videos are available via the likes of YouTube and Netflix.

As a bonus you can leave an external hard drive plugged into either of the two USB ports and access any audio or video content using on-screen menus on the TV. My entire music collection is ripped to mp3 so unless I am looking for CD quality then I can call up from my armchair anything I fancy listening to. What’s more, the Oppo can read image files enabling you to watch slideshows of your digital photos on the big screen. All in all I’m quite happy with the purchase.


S said...

I was here the other day, but commenting would not work. This post is timely and so helpful. Until I saw it, I had forgotten how much you know about music (and how thorough you always investigate what you purchase). We have been wanting a DVD writer I think it's called as well as a reader. We need something that takes our VHS tapes and converts them to DVDs. We also want to be able to record from our "DVR" cable system onto a DVD so it's permanent for some terrific TV specials. (The DVR system only stores a certain amount in a box from our phone/cable company. You're probably familiar with such.) So, I have had NO idea what to look for. Hubby is in doctoral school at college and work so the investigative work is up to me. I'm going to check out this system you have here. (Our TV flat screen of only a few yrs old, our 1st one is not Blue Ray, but is HD: a Sony Bravia we love.)

I'm so glad you are enjoying this setup. Music is such a delight as are good film at home for you, Michelle, and your girls (to watch as they grow). Home video!

Glad you stopped by to say high. I haven't blogged about my earthquake experience- shudder...but I'm ok now. Twas my Virgo BD recently. You might enjoy the recent post- my quirky humor as my dear hubby would say. Happy Early BD to you. You're born on our daughter's BD.


Perfect Virgo said...

Hi L, I think you have my email about the technology and hopefully you'll find the DVD Recorder you need (and get it connected right!)

Oh yes, I'm a researcher alright, thorough is my middle name and I think it pays off!

Technology for TV screens is advancing so fast it's hard to keep up. First Plasma, then LCD and now LED. The LED I have is barely half an inch thick and the HD display brings out the incredible resolution on Blu-Ray discs!

Music on surround sound is fantastic and the girls get quite hyped up with that!