Samsung DVD-HD870 review: Samsung DVD-HD870

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CNET Editors' Rating

3.5 stars Very good
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Styling; features; picture quality.

The Bad Remote control; ugly menus; sluggish controls.

The Bottom Line With support for lots of formats and a nifty upscaling feature, we wouldn't have a problem recommending the Samsung DVD-HD870 if you want to boost the picture quality of your DVD collection

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With all the bluster about HD DVD and Blu-ray, you could be forgiven for thinking that it was the end of the road for the humble DVD player. In reality, however, the DVD player has plenty of life left in it yet.

Slow sales of the high-definition disc formats prove that people aren't in any particular rush to ditch DVD, but the ageing format is not without its downsides. It was never really designed for today's large-screen televisions and, as such, picture performance can sometimes be a little lacklustre.

Upscaling DVD players like Samsung's DVD-HD870 try to offer a solution, by squeezing the best possible picture quality out of DVD.

Design
The player itself is pretty funky. It's around half the depth of a standard DVD player, which is a mixed blessing really -- its smaller size means stacking anything on top of it isn't ideal, but it does take up a lot less space on your shelf or TV stand.

There is a simple display on the front of the player, but it doesn't provide much information and looks fairly basic. The rest of the front panel is dedicated to a little four-way controller for play, pause, previous and next track navigation, and of course the disc tray.


At the back are all the usual connections, plus hi-def component and HDMI out. You'll also find a pair of digital audio outputs

The remote control is the usual Samsung style -- it's around half as long as the remotes that come with its televisions, but the same shape, with the chunky bottom end. It's not the most attractive design and it's not brilliantly ergonomic, but let's face it -- you won't be conducting an orchestra with it, so it's not the end of the world.

Features
The key feature on any DVD player that will be connected to an HD Ready TV is the ability to output a progressive scan signal. If a DVD player can do a decent job of creating a 576p image out of a 576i one, then the LCD can take that and stretch it to fit the high-resolution screen.

The Samsung DVD-HD870 will happily generate a progressive signal, but it also has scaling hardware that will create a high-definition picture up to 1080i. The difference between 576p, 720p and 1080i was negligible. The improvement in quality comes from the progressive scan option. We think this player will be best left at 576p, unless you have an older TV with poor quality video scaling, in which case bump it up to 720p.



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Where to Buy

Samsung DVD-HD870 - DVD player

Part Number: DVD-HD870
Pricing is currently unavailable.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Upscaling Yes
  • Media Type CD
    CD-R
    CD-RW
    DVD
    DVD+R
    DVD+RW
    DVD-R
    DVD-RW
    Kodak Picture CD
  • Type DVD player
  • Sound Output Mode stereo
  • Upscaling via HDMI up to 1080i