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First Look: Vizio VBR200W

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First Look: Vizio VBR200W

2:38 /

The Vizio VBR200W Blu-ray player is rough around the edges and a little slow, but you do get a lot of bang for your buck.

[ Music ] ^M00:00:03 >> Matthew: Hi, I'm Matthew Moskovciak, Senior Associate Editor at CNET.com and we're here with the Visio VBR200W. It's currently selling for about $190 online and that makes it the cheapest Blu-ray player that we've tested with built-in WiFi. As you could see the design isn't quite a slick as some of the other players that we've tested. It does have a glossy black finish but it picks up a lot of fingerprints and there's also a kind of a chunky silver disk tray in the middle that kind of detracts from the design a little. The Visio features touch-sensitive illuminated buttons on the front, which are nice. The only problem is that when the player's off all the buttons go dark so you kind of just have to guess where the power button is to turn it on. Some of the clunky aesthetics also carry over to the remote, which is a lot thicker than a lot of the remotes we feel so it feels kind of large in your hand. The button layout's also a little bit different than you may be used to as there's an oversized play/pause button in the middle, and some of the menu buttons are a little bit strangely shaped. The aesthetics get a lot nicer once you move to the graphical user interface. It has high def colorful graphics and there are large icons to select streaming services such as Netflix, Voodoo and Pandora. Overall the Visio doesn't have quite as many streaming services as some of its competitors but it covers all the major bases as you get subscription movies via Netflix, Paperview movies via Voodoo and you get free streaming music from Pandora. If you look around back you can see the connectivity is pretty standard for a Blu-ray player. There's an HDMI output along with both optical and coax field digital audio outputs. There is an Ethernet port on the back but like we said before this is a WiFi enabled player which makes it a lot easier to access those streaming media services especially if you don't have an Ethernet connection in your living room. Moving on to performance we felt that the Blu-ray image quality of the Visio was very good overall although it wasn't quite in the top tier of players that we've tested this year. It did have a couple snags with program material but it's video-based such as concert, DVD's. However, since most Blu-ray movies are film-based you're not gonna run into some of the issues that we saw all that frequently. More of the problem is with some of the operational sluggishness that we saw with the Visio. It is one of the slower Blu-ray players that we've tested this year and we also ran into a couple of operational hiccups where we had to restart the player or it took particularly longer to load a certain movie. All together while we weren't exactly crazy about the aesthetics and there were some operational quirks that gave us worry you are getting a lot of features for the money with the Visio so if you're on a budget it's definitely worth considering. I'm Matthew Moskovciak, Senior Associate Editor at CNET.com and this is the Visio VBR200W. ^E00:02:35

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