More Blu-ray on the Way
Now that it's a Blu-ray world in high-definition video discs, expect to see a lot more product available on both the hardware and content sides. That gives you a wide range of options when it comes to allocating your bucks.
Amazon reports that the top three selling Blu-ray players fall in the $350-$750 range. The current sales leaders are the Sony BDP-S300 ($379), followed by the Samsung BD-P1400 at $356 and then the Panasonic DMP-BD30K at $749.
If you've got a bit more cash to spend, legendary audiophile brand Goldmund this week trotted out a $17,000 Blu-ray player. No, Switzerland-based Goldmund doesn't really use gold in its products; they're just priced that way. What you do get for your $16,900 is the AC-Curator power supply circuit that promises to dramatically improve picture and sound stability and dynamics, mechanical grounding construction that's said to eliminate vibration that can cause jitter, and a high-end magnetic damper that's said to reduce reading errors.
Or, you can wait for Sony's new interactive Blu-ray players announced this week in Las Vegas. The BDP-S350 will retail for $400 when it ships to stores this summer. Compatible with Bonus View, it won't be BD-Live ready at launch but you'll be able to upgrade the firmware using the Ethernet connection. The BDP-S550 ($500) will be fully BD Live and Bonus View-capable when it arrives in stores this fall.
And if you're wondering what you'll watch, Netflix has your back. The company said it would add 1,500 Blu-ray titles by the end of the year but at what cost to subscribers hasn't been announced.--Rebecca Day