First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
Yamaha BD-S671 Blu-ray player
Yamaha BD-S671 review: Well built, with basic features
The Yamaha BD-S671 is a very well built Blu-ray player with a basic feature-set. It doesn't have the diverse range of Internet and video-on-demand gubbins that you can find in Blu-ray players from LG, Sony or Samsung (and Panasonic, to an extent), but it has some network capabilities and we can't fault its Blu-ray or DVD picture quality as well as its interface or design.
- Every conceivable audio and video codec supported
- iPhone app control works well
- Networking is seamless
- Comparatively expensive
- No 'app' support
Yamaha's BD-S671 is an extremely well built and well designed Blu-ray player. We can't fault its operation, picture quality or industrial design. However, it doesn't have the same extensive feature-set as Blu-ray players available from mainstream brands like Sony, Samsung or LG.
Price$ 349.00 (AUD)
Yamaha BD-S671: Design, connectivity and setup
The Yamaha BD-S671 is designed to look good alongside the company's hi-fi receivers. It's very solidly built and doesn't have any gaudy design cues — its two-tone brushed metal and plastic face is complemented by four very sturdy-looking milled aluminium feet. Unlike a lot of players currently on the market, the BD-S671 doesn't shy away from putting several buttons on its front — there are easily visible and accessible play, pause, stop, fast forward, rewind, eject and power buttons on the Yamaha BD-S671's front.
Around the back of the device, a small range of audio, video and multimedia ports can be found. There's HDMI — our choice for its Full HD video playback and audio support, obviously — as well as composite and component video. Both coaxial and optical digital audio outputs are available to directly connect an A/V receiver. There's also an Ethernet port for DLNA media sharing of video, audio and picture files — that same content can also be played directly from the Yamaha BD-S671's rear USB 2.0 port.
You can control the Yamaha BD-S671 with an iPhone app — convenient if you lose your remote control. The Yamaha AV Controller app is a free download from the App Store, and its most useful feature is the ability to scroll through your PC or Mac's shared media library, select a movie and play it on your TV via the BD-S671.
Yamaha BD-S671: Performance
The Yamaha BD-S671 starts up reasonably quickly, hitting the main menu of our test Terminator: Salvation and The Dark Knight Blu-ray discs in under 30 seconds. DVD movies start in under 10 seconds — understandable due to their simpler nature. The interface of the Yamaha BD-S671 is clean and easy to navigate using the bundled remote control, which itself is clearly laid out.
The Yamaha BD-S671 is able to display all the detail available in 1080p Full HD Blu-ray movies. While there is really only a small amount of difference in the image quality of most Blu-ray players on the market — most use the same components, AV processing and output stages — it comes down to players' differing abilities to upscale DVD video to choose between them. The Yamaha BD-S671 does a good job; its upscaling tends to be sharp but without introducing any jagginess or blocky artefacts.
Yamaha BD-S671: Conclusion
The Yamaha BD-S671 is expensive, $50 or more so than the top-specced Sony BDP-S580. It's likely to appeal most to those who already have Yamaha hi-fi equipment or who like the brand. Its interface and picture quality are good and the iPhone app control is a nifty extra. Anyone looking for Internet-enabled video on demand should look elsewhere, though.
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GGG Evaluation Team
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
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