Sony PlayStation 3 Super Slim Crystal White Limited Edition Bundle ( 500GB)
While it will begin to cede its position to the PS4 in 2015, the PlayStation 3 still delivers impressively strong value for gaming and video entertainment.
Microsoft Xbox One ( without Kinect)
The cheaper, no-Kinect version of the Xbox One gives buyers a better deal by eliminating the one part of the console they probably didn't want to begin with -- but the PS4 remains a compelling alternative.
The Sony BDP-S3200 will play your Blu-rays just fine but it doesn't do enough to embrace streaming media like its competitors.
The LG BP530 has built-in Wi-Fi and a good selection of apps, but there are just enough quirks to keep it from being a top Blu-ray player pick.
The Samsung BD-F5900 is an excellent Blu-ray player with the right mix of usability, performance, and speed.
Microsoft Xbox One Madden NFL 15 Bundle
While the PS4 remains our overall preferred choice in the next-gen console race, the Xbox One's significant first-year course corrections -- including a welcome holiday price drop -- make it a better deal than ever, and a much better bargain than when it first debuted.
Sony PlayStation 4
The PlayStation 4's beautiful graphics, smart interface, blazing performance, near-perfect controller and better indie offerings give it a slight edge over the Xbox One as both consoles enter their second year.
The Sony BDP-S5100 Blu-ray player offers a wealth of services and very good image quality for the money.
The Panasonic DMP-BDT230 is a mostly solid Blu-ray player, except it serves up obnoxious ads in its onscreen interface.
The Sony BDP-S590 is a great-looking Blu-ray player with built-in Wi-Fi, 3D compatibility, and tons of streaming-media apps, but it's slow to load discs and has some user interface quirks.
The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 is the best Blu-ray value of 2012, with built-in Wi-Fi, tons of streaming-media apps, 3D compatibility, and a simple user interface.
If you want 3D, the LG BP620 has most of the right features, but the absence of Amazon Instant and a dedicated Netflix button hurt its value a bit.
We wouldn't recommend the Philips BDP5506 over competing Blu-ray players.
The Toshiba BDX5200 costs a little less than competing midrange Blu-ray players, but you'll miss out on worthwhile extra features and speedy performance.
The Panasonic DMP-BDT210's built-in Wi-Fi, simple user interface, Amazon Instant streaming, and blazing fast disc-loading speeds make it our favorite Blu-ray player of 2011 so far.
The Samsung BD-D6700 is an excellent all-around Blu-ray player with dual HDMI outputs, but for most buyers its upgrades won't justify its high price.
Sony NSZ-GT1 ( Google TV)
The Sony NSZ-GT1 combines Google TV and Blu-ray in a single box, but Sony's frustrating controller, the high price, and Google TV's content issues make it a tough sell.
The BD-C5500's expandable Samsung Apps platform and DLNA compatibility make it stand out from other entry-level players, although it's one of the slower players we've tested.
Samsung's BD-C6500 Blu-ray player has excellent image quality, outstanding features for the price, and a slick design--we just wish it were a little faster.
The Samsung BD-C6900 has excellent Blu-ray performance and is loaded with features, but you pay a lot for the 3D functionality.