CES 2009: New Blu from Samsung

Samsung showed two new Blu-ray Disc players at its press event on Wednesday, the BD-P4600 and BD-P3600. According to the company, the lozenge-shaped BD-P4600 (shown at left), is the world’s slimmest BD player, measuring only 1.5 inches deep. Sharing the same ruby hued Touch of Color design as the company’s TVs, the BD-P4600 can be either wall-mounted or propped up on its integrated angled stand.

Specs for the new players include BD-Live (Profile 2.0) compatibility, built-in 1 GB flash memory, Wi-Fi readiness via an included USB dongle, and Netflix and Pandora Internet Radio streaming. But that’s not all. Samsung says both players will be able decode both Dolby True HD and DTS-HD MA soundtracks right out of the box. And folks with older, pre-HDMI A/V receivers will also appreciate the BD-P3600’s 7.1-channel analog audio output.

BD8200_R55 Another cool Blu product that Samsung has in the works is the HT-BD8200, the first ever Sound Bar with a built-in Blu-ray player. This thing delivers virtual 5.1 surround sound from stereo speakers, and helps to keep things extra neat via a wireless hookup to an external subwoofer. As with the company’s new standalone BD players, the HT-BD8200 is BD-Live compatible, offers both Netflix and Pandora Internet Radio streaming, and is Wi-Fi ready via an included USB dongle. Stay tuned for word on pricing and availability.  —Al Griffin