Sometimes an excellent operating system can be made even better
Samsung BD-C6900 3D Blu-ray player
This new Blu-ray disc player can handle the latest 3D content, and it connects to the Internet to stream video on demand
- Fast operation, 3D-ready, large content library via video-on-demand
- Expensive compared to non-3D Blu-ray players, graphical user interface is sometimes slow, occasional visual problems with 3D video
The Samsung BD-C6900 is a very well put together Blu-ray player. It is fast to start, it's compact and attractive, and it can access Internet video content as well as playing 3D Blu-ray discs. It is expensive, but if you're keen on getting your video from more than just a Blu-ray disc it is a good choice.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
Like the Sony BDP-S570, the Samsung BD-C6900 is a 3D Blu-ray disc player that's packed with interesting and useful features. It can connect to the Internet via wired or wireless networking to access video-on-demand content from a wide range of providers, and its ability to display 3D Blu-ray video will be a useful feature — once more discs are available.
The BD-C6900 has traces of DNA from Samsung's older Blu-ray disc players (including the impressive BDP-3600). It is smaller and thinner than its predecessors, with an attractive unbroken fascia and top-mounted touch-sensitive controls on its case. We loved seeing a Blu-ray disc spinning away through the translucent window on the top of the Samsung BD-C6900. An annoying downside is that you won't be able to put it in a stack of home entertainment equipment and still access the top-mounted controls. Thankfully an easy-to-use remote control is bundled.
You can hook up the Samsung BD-C6900 via composite or component video, but to view 3D content in all its 1080p glory you'll need to use the HDMI port. The BD-C6900 is HDMI 1.4 compliant, but we used a HDMI 1.3 cable to play 3D 1080P video with no problems. We opted for wired Ethernet networking, but wireless 802.11b/g/n is also available if you want to cut down on cable clutter.
The Samsung BD-C6900 starts up quickly with a menu on-screen in under 20sec, which is a pleasant improvement from older players' minutes-long boot times. The on-screen interface of the Samsung BD-C6900 is attractive, with full-colour graphics and animated transitions between menu options. It is slow though, with button presses taking a second to register. Transitions are slightly jittery as well.
Samsung's Internet@TV is one of the best Internet and video-on-demand services we've tried. Like the UA55C7000 3D TV, the BD-C6900 uses an application interface similar to the Apple iPhone's. You can download whichever applications you like — as well as YouTube, we gave Google Maps and Twitter a go. The option to pick and choose is really useful, and we're keen to see what other applications are developed for the platform. A gigabyte of internal memory means that you won't need to plug in a USB flash drive to access Internet content. A USB 2.0 port supports a wide range of compressed video — MP3, MP4, H.264, DivX, Divx HD, JPEG, MKV, and AVCHD file support is a boon for people with a large media library.
When it comes to displaying both 2D and 3D Blu-ray discs, the Samsung BD-C6900 is a capable unit. It can handle all recent HD audio formats including Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master Audio. Discs are loaded quickly and 2D 1080P image quality is as good as any other player we've tested. 3D Blu-ray video content is very light on the ground at the moment — we could count the number of 'proper' 3D movies available on one hand — and the test content we had available occasionally exhibited some flickering and edge blurring when viewed on a Samsung UA55C7000 3D TV. Whether this is purely the content, the television or a restriction of 3D TV technology itself is unclear, though — once more 3D Blu-ray video content is available we'll be able to make a more comprehensive judgment. The fact remains that the Samsung BD-C6900 is able to successfully display the higher data and frame rates required by 3D Blu-ray video.
Samsung's BD-C6900 Blu-ray disc player is full of useful features. We'd be inclined to use the video-on-demand features and Internet access more than 3D Blu-ray playback at the moment, but 3D playback will make it attractive to anyone who is thinking about buying a 3D TV.
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