For better or worse, Blu-ray is the only show in town. For HD -- and at some point, 3D -- there's no other home entertainment format that comes close to competing with it. But cost is still standing in the way of widespread appeal, and with players coming in at £200 or more, it's not hard to see why. The answer to these problems, according to Sony, is its low-cost BDP-S360.
While you shouldn't expect support for Internet video like MKVs or YouTube streaming, the BDP-S360 still has plenty of grunt. It's a Profile 2.0 player, so you'll have access to both online video and other content via BD Live, and video commentaries on some discs. You'll also get 24p playback, x.v. colour support and Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD MA sound.
The ease of use hasn't been compromised either. You get the Sony Xross Media Bar, which we love to point out is the most horrifically named technology in consumer electronics, but works very well as a way to navigate through the player menus. Sony also claims this machine has fasterand more responsive menus. From what we've seen so far, it isn't wrong.
If you time it right, and get a special offer, this player can be had for around £80 or so. More commonly though it will set you back £120 at most online retailers. It's also possible that you might be offered this machine for free if you buy a TV -- we think that's a tempting incentive. We'll be posting a full review soon, so keep an eye on our reviews section to see how we rate its picture and sound quality.