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Panasonic shows off BD-Live Blu-ray payer

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 06 May 2008 18:16 User comments (5)

Panasonic shows off BD-Live Blu-ray payer Panasonic has showed off its latest BD-Live capable Blu-ray player, the DMP-BD50, finally letting some specifications out of the bag. The player was first introduced at the CES event in January.
After demoing the latest player it is easy to see that the main distinction between the player and its predecessor the DMP-BD30 is the addition of BD-Live. BD-Live simply means the player can handle BD movies that have Internet-enabled content, such as "interactive multiplayer games, and trailers and extra features you can download from the Internet to local storage, either in the player or on an external memory card."

The latest model however, will cost $700 USD, a $200 premium over its older cousin. In addition to BD-Live, the BD-50 adds in-unit decoding for advanced lossless audio codecs like Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio. The primary advantage to this is that you can choose and control the secondary audio mixing within the player. Another new feature is support for 24p playback of upconverted standard-definition DVDs.

Of course there is a catch however. The BD50 "lacks the minimum 1GB of onboard memory required for BD-Live" and instead you will have to purchase an SD card to use the player's SD card slot.

The lack of sufficient on-board storage is very surprising considering the player's price tag and the fact that Sony's upcoming BD-Live player, the BDP-S550 will retail for $500 USD and have 1GB on-board storage.

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5 user comments

16.5.2008 19:22

The competition continues for our BD money !!

26.5.2008 20:36
dblbogey7
Inactive

Quote:
The latest model however, will cost $700 USD, a $200 premium over its older cousin. In addition to BD-Live, the BD-50 adds in-unit decoding for advanced lossless audio codecs like Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
The $700 price is the MSRP so expect this to have a street price of $600 to $650 - still costing much less than my first BD player (the $1000 Panasonic DMP-BD10) and my 2nd HD DVD player (the $900 Toshiba HD-XA2).

Quote:
The primary advantage to this is that you can choose and control the secondary audio mixing within the player.
This means that you won't lose the audio when watching PiP content using bitstream. A very welcome addition since this was one of the main complaints with the XA2.

Quote:
Another new feature is support for 24p playback of upconverted standard-definition DVDs.
Excellent. My JVS RS1 projector handles 24p content nicely.

Quote:
Of course there is a catch however. The BD50 "lacks the minimum 1GB of onboard memory required for BD-Live" and instead you will have to purchase an SD card to use the player's SD card slot.
There may be a reason for this. Onboard memory is where you store downloadable features such as trailers, new supplementary material and new extras. With this feature you'll have the ability to use higher capacity SD cards and even insert new SD cards to avoid clearing memory and re-downloading the content. Those who expect use a lot of the BD-Live features will be thankful for this.

Since this machine is DiVX capable, the SD cards could also be a way to play DiVX encoded material.

37.5.2008 6:36

^^ They could how ever have 1gb internal memory and 1 SD slot too.

47.5.2008 8:23
dblbogey7
Inactive

Originally posted by SDF_GR:
^^ They could how ever have 1gb internal memory and 1 SD slot too.

Technically you can't call this a BD-Live player without the 1 GB persistent (internal) memory. BD-Live specs mandate a minimum of 1 GB. So you could very well be right. The SD slot is likely an expansion to the 1 Gig persistent memory.

(Note: The source of this info about the lack of onboard memory is a blog from PC World. I'd wait for a confirmation from Panasonic regarding this. Like I said, BD-Live specs require you to have 1 GB of persistent memory onboard.)

57.5.2008 10:34

According to Panasonic's press release the SD card slot is for AVCHD and JPG images from high-def camcorders:

http://www2.panasonic.com/webapp/wcs/sto...022008022415775

Quote:
The included SD Memory Card slot allows for easy transferring of images from an HD camcorder or digital still camera via an SD Memory card. The consumer simply inserts the SD card into the BD50 and then can view the images on a large screen HD flat panel television with AVCHD format video images or JPEG stills in full 1920 x 1080 resolution.
This is a big plus for me since I have the Canon HF10 high-def camcorder which can store AVCHD video and stills on SD cards. IMO worth the price.

The price is indeed steep but if you're willing to settle for a Bonus View player then Walmart will be stocking up on the Funai/Magnavox NB500 for $298. This is the same as the Sylvania NB500 listed on amazon.

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