When you first turn on the Samsung BD-P2500, you see a low-resolution, jagged Samsung logo. That's pretty disappointing for a $350 Blu-ray player. Fortunately, it's one of the few disappointments with this model.
Our PC World Test Center judges found the Samsung's image quality simply amazing. The grades we gave it contained a few Goods, many Very Goods, and a lot of Superiors--unusual for our discriminating judges. The BD-P2500 also supports BD-Live for accessing supplemental disc content via the Web. This feature requires an ethernet connection as well as your own USB drive. Regrettably, this model's USB port is inconveniently situated in the back.
The BD-P2500 is one of two Blu-ray players we've tested that can stream video via the Internet directly from Netflix. Armed with an ethernet connection and a Netflix account, you use a PC to queue up 480p and 720p video streams; those streams are then available to you via the Netflix option on the player. But you can forget about the BD-P2550's great image quality when you stream from Netflix. A standard-def stream looked extremely blotchy, and even an HD stream didn't measure up to the best that standard-def discs--let alone high-def ones--can offer.
Still, the Samsung BD-P2500 is an excellent machine. You get what you pay for. In a Blu-ray player, a great-looking image can outweigh shortcomings and a high price.