Panasonic DMP-BD50 Blu-ray Player User Interface
The remote is not backlit, which I really don't like. In a dark room, I want to be able to see what I'm doing. In spite of this drawback, I like the design with its differently sized buttons. In addition, the volume buttons can be assigned pre-programmed codes for various appropriate devices, such as AVRs and pre/pros.
The player's aesthetics match those of the BD30. In fact, it looks like the same chassis with the addition of an Ethernet port on the rear. The front panel is easy to read from across the room, and the panel illumination is dimmable, which is a must for any home-theater component. There's a fan on the back, but I never heard it, unlike the PS3, which can be quite loud.
The user menus are well-organized and easy to navigate. Preset picture modes include Normal, Soft, Fine, and Cinema. There's also a User mode with adjustments for contrast, brightness, sharpness, color, gamma, 3D noise reduction, and "integrated" noise reduction (whatever the heck that means). I chose the Normal mode for all of my testing.
Video output over HDMI includes support for 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p (60 and 24Hz). The component output adds 480i but drops 1080p. There's also an Auto mode, which captures EDID (extended display identification) information from the display and outputs the highest supported resolution.