Samsung BD-P1400 Blu-ray Disc Player
At a Glance
This Blu-ray player is inexpensive, but its image quality and features disappoint.
The Samsung BD-P1400 ($400 as of 4/24/08) is, at this point, one of the older Blu-ray Disc players currently available. And its features reflect this: It lacks both BonusView for picture-in-picture playback and BD-Live for accessing Internet-connected content.
In our image and sound quality tests, the Samsung BD-P1400 just barely nudged ahead of the Panasonic DMP-BD30, which had the
Surprisingly, the Samsung unit did well on our standard-definition playback tests. But on our high-definition tests, it fared worse, coming in last in our tests for color quality and detail.
The BD-P1400 failed one test entirely. When we inserted a Blu-ray disc of Pixar's Cars, this model happily displayed the trailers, but froze on the main feature. The disc wouldn't play, even after we waited nearly
Speed-wise, the BD-P1400 is a mixed bag. It powered up and started playing in 47 seconds--faster than all but one of its competitors--but once it started playing, it didn't respond well to the remote. More than once I pressed a button and waited, not sure if the player had actually received the signal I'd just sent it.
The player itself is easy to use: The on-screen menus are clear and well-illustrated, with attractive and informative icons. An exceptionally useful Speaker Setup screen helps you get your surround system properly arranged. The menus fail to explain a few items (the concept of PCM Down Sampling isn't explained on-screen), but the thorough, 65-page (and all-English) manual takes up the slack there. A clearly written and colorful Quick Setup Guide complements the manual. Although the remote isn't backlit, commonly-used buttons glow slightly in the dark.
The BD-P1400 comes with an ethernet port, which makes updating the firmware a breeze if you can stretch a cable from your router to your TV room. But this player won't play media off of your home network, and it won't work with BD-Live features on discs.
At $400, the BDP-1400 remains among the least expensive Blu-ray Disc players available. But other models can offer better value.