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Panasonic DMP BD75EB K Blu Ray Player Review

Review: We go hands on with the Panasonic DMP BD75EB K

Introduction

Anything that has the words ‘ultra fast’ in the title had better be quick. This thing had better run like The Flash with diarrhoea or else we’re not interested. So, does it fly over the finish line or merely stop in its tracks? We hung our reviewer upside down from a nearby pylon until he agreed to find out for us…

THE SPECS

Around the office, we just love a perfect 10. No, we’re not being stereotypical males, we mean a Blu Ray player that measures 10 x 10 x 10 cm. The Panasonic DMP-BD75EB-K is compact and storage friendly. Smaller products are also that much more environmentally friendly (in terms of creation and disposal) and we’re proud to say that we care about such things. Although the Panasonic DMP-BD75EB-K weighs 2.3 kg (somewhat heavy by Blu Ray standards) it is still petite enough to look sleek and modern as it fits snugly and economically under your TV.

Now, statistically speaking, some of you reading this are thinking that you can buy a Blu Ray player and that it will not only play these new Blu Ray discs you’ve been hearing so much about, but also upscale your DVD collection to HD quality. Of course, this is entirely true, but what you may not have considered is that this plan won’t work without a decent sound setup and an HD TV with 1080p resolution. Without an up to date TV and speaker set, any quality playback is rendered useless. Please consider this before upgrading to Blu Ray.

The Panasonic DMP-BD75EB-K is Internet ready (connecting to PC via DNLA). This enables you to enjoy streamed content, apps and view digital media. It also has USB connectivity, so that memory sticks, cameras and external hard drives are all well supported.

THE PRICE

At just over £60, the Panasonic DMP-BD75EB-K is a steal. Given that it costs about the same as ‘Old Kent Road’, yet still features Internet connectivity, up to date playback options and a rapid ‘booting up’ time, this one certainly looks like it offers Good value.

THE PERFORMANCE

Well, I don’t know how to say that this player doesn’t quite live up to its boast, without making Panasonic sound like a bunch of liars. The truth is that this is a fast booting Blu Ray, in fact, much faster than almost anything else in its range. However, that doesn’t make it ‘ultra fast’. If you’re going to use the word ‘ultra’ I want the thing to move so fast it becomes a fire risk, and the DMP-BD75EB-K just doesn’t go that fast.

Despite this minor niggle, the player works very well. The playback is good and the DVD upscaling is exceptional.

There are problems, however. Firstly, any media played from a hard drive or memory stick will only play in a 4:3 aspect ratio and seemingly cannot be changed to any better resolution. Secondly, this machine really likes to freeze up on you. Its not a common occurrence, but even every once in a while is a pain, add to that the clunking noise that you occasionally hear during playback and you have some very disappointing observations.

On the plus side, this thing is easier to use than a hammer, and I mean that.

WHAT OTHER USERS SAY

Unsurprisingly, the Panasonic DMP-BD75EB-K is a polarizing product. Reviews range from raving about the price and ease of use to griping about the constant freezing and both sides make very valid points.

Amazon user ‘A.E. Healey’ praised the DMP-BD75EB-K as “an excellent purchase”. ‘D.Walsh’ from Lancashire agreed, praising the fast start up time and great picture quality. A user with the very edgy sounding name ‘Filthy Raider’ (who hails from the decidedly un-edgy location of Dorset) praised the strong laser and called the DMP-BD75EB-K “well worth the money”.

Critical reviews frequently cited the player’s propensity to freeze mid play and then require a complete mains deactivation in order to start up again. Among the users who mentioned this were, ‘Old Technophile’ (creepy name) and ‘Fouldsy’. Elsewhere, ‘Davo’ suggested that it was far too loud and a user called ‘jmg’ said that the player simply was not able to connect to his/her Windows home server, which would be a serious problem indeed.


Our Verdict

This is a good player at heart, but it’s blighted by far too many problems to be worthwhile. One or two are an annoyance, but any more than that and you’re looking at a fully-fledged pain in the A. For the price, we can overlook some of these issues, but not all of them. This is a fast booting, ‘budget’ level Blu Ray player with good connectivity options and solid playback. It is, sadly, nothing more than that.

Features:

8/10

Performance:

8/10

Design:

7/10

Value:

7/10

Was: £64.99
Now: £59.99

Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.co.uk.

Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 business days

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Tags: blu ray player