6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

First Look: Panasonic BDT230: Do you want ads with that?

About Video Transcript

First Look: Panasonic BDT230: Do you want ads with that?

1:57 /

The Panasonic DMP-BDT230 is a mostly solid Blu-ray player, except it serves up obnoxious ads via its onscreen interface.

Hi, this is Ty Pendlebury with a review of the Panasonic BDT-230PK Blu-ray player. As televisions get progressively smarter and more streaming services are loaded on to inexpensive devices, like the Roku, or consoles like the PS3. People aren't looking to Blu-ray players as much as they have in the past. However, a Blu-ray player like the Panasonic is both able to offer the same apps as Roku, like Netflix and Hulu Plus, while also being much less power-hungry than a games console. This is a very competent player, with excellent picture quality and fairly responsive operation. But it has two major flaws. Firstly, it subjects you to advertising and secondly, the menu system isn't very intuitive. On most menu pages you will see ads, and the worst thing is you can't currently turn them off. If you're paying full price for a Blu-ray player and its competitors are offers similar performance and no ads, why would you choose Panasonic? But I digress, the design of this player is changed from last year. But it is an exact replica of the Sony player, with a trapezoidal shape and piano black accents. The remote control is fairly simple to use and it does include a Netflix button. But I wish it had a shortcut to the Smart TV via air-connect service, because without that you have to deal with the vagaries of the menu system. Want to play Pandora? You can't simply go down to "Music"; instead you have to go up to "Network", then right to "Network Services", and then find Pandora from the menu system, it's complicated. Performance wise though, it's very good, with excellent playback of both Blu-ray and DVD movies and a great selection of apps. But, if you have about $120, I'd suggest going for the Sony BDP-S5100 instead, which has nothing else doesn't currently subject you to unwanted advertising. This has been Ty Pendlebury for CNET.com

New releases

Philips adds a 75W Replacement SlimStyle LED to its lighting lineup
2:17 November 22, 2014
This bigger, brighter version of the original SlimStyle LED looks like a strong value in its class
Play video
2015 Acura TLX V-6 Advance (CNET On Cars, Episode 54)
16:28 November 21, 2014
Acura hopes the TLX is what it will drive into the future, we explore the head-up display coming to your car soon, and check out the...
Play video
Los Angeles Auto Show 2014: CNET's editors choose their favorites
5:55 November 21, 2014
The press days are over here at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show. Before we head off into the Hollywood hills we took a moment to re-cap...
Play video
Watch Tony Hawk do endless 360s on a hoverboard, Ep. 184
5:36 November 21, 2014
This week on Crave, we can see sound waves. We might get to see an unexplored part of the moon. But most of all we get to see Tony...
Play video
The $199 HP Stream 11 wants to be as cloud-friendly as a Chromebook, but with Windows 8
2:18 November 21, 2014
If you keep expectations in check, this bargain-basement Windows 8 laptop has good battery life and a decent design.
Play video
Yamaha SRT-1000 gives good single-speaker surround
1:44 November 21, 2014
The Yamaha SRT-1000 sound base offers discrete looks, an astoundingly wide soundstage and plenty of features in a package that is still...
Play video
Hate ads? Pay Google to block them for you
2:50 November 21, 2014
Google is testing an ad-blocker service, Amazon may be inserting ads into streaming video, and Comcast lets you track the cable gu...
Play video
The 404 Show 1,584: Google Contributor, JFK has a drone problem, San Francisco's poo map (podcast)
30:08 November 21, 2014
We're back in the studio today! Join us for a very special episode complete with a full tour and the start of our Call of Duty: Advanced...
Play video