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.
Sony PlayStation 4
The PlayStation 4's beautiful graphics, blazing interface, near-perfect controller, and lower price give it a slight edge on the Xbox One -- for now.
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 Sony BDP-S580 has built-in Wi-Fi and more streaming services than all competing Blu-ray players, but its user interface is mediocre.
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.
Despite disc-loading speeds that are just average, the LG BD670's built-in Wi-Fi and excellent streaming-media suite make it one of the best Blu-ray player values.
Pricing not available
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.
Quick load times, excellent Blu-ray image quality, and a generous suite of streaming services make the LG BD550 a solid entry-level Blu-ray player.
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.
The Sony BDP-S570 has all the features of other midrange Blu-ray players, plus future 3D support and best-in-class operational speed, but its streaming-video performance over Wi-Fi is spotty.
Pricing not available
The LG BD590 deftly handles Blu-ray playback, CD ripping, and streaming media services like Netflix from a single box, but you'll have to pay for that simplicity.
As long as you don't need 3D compatibility, the LG BD570 offers the same mix of solid Blu-ray playback and media streaming that made its predecessor a hit.
The Sony BDP-N460's attractive mix of Blu-ray performance, relatively low price, and streaming media options--including Netflix--make it a solid midrange pick, despite some missing features.
Sony PlayStation 3 Slim ( 120GB)
With a smaller design, more energy-efficient operation, lower price tag, and built-in Blu-ray and multimedia capabilities, the PS3 Slim delivers a compelling package for an affordable price.
The LG BD390's combination of excellent image quality, superfast loading times, and its currently unbeatable feature set make it our top choice among premium standalone Blu-ray players.
Samsung's BD-P4600 Blu-ray player is packed with features and its unique design makes it wall-mountable, but most buyers will be better off with the step-down BD-P3600.
The Sony BDP-S360 handles all the Blu-ray basics with ease, but it lacks the streaming Internet content found on competing models.
LG's entry-level Blu-ray player packs Netflix and YouTube at a reasonable price, but the BD370's image quality is a step below the best.