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CNET First Look
CNET First Look
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>> Hi. I'm Matthew Moskovciak, senior associate editor at CNET.com, and we're here with the Sony BDP-S360. This is an entry-level Blu-ray player from Sony, and it has all the basics you'd expect from a Blu-ray player in 2009. It is a profile 2.0 player, which means it can play back any of the Internet enabled BD live features that are available on some Blu-ray titles. Now, if you look around back, you'll see that there's an Ethernet connection, which you'll need to make the access those features because the unit doesn't have built-in Wi-Fi. Or you can add it via a dongle, like you can on some Samsung players. You'll also need to plug in a USB stick to use the BD live feature, so it has a place to store the downloaded content. And there's a USB port in the back, although note that it is a recessed USB port, and some of the fatter or larger USB drives may not fit in the small chamber. The player also has onboard decoding for both Dolby true HD and DTS HD master audio. So you'll be able to take advantage of those soundtracks with an HD-mic capable receiver. Unlike many to he other Blu-ray players we've seen this year, the Sony doesn't have any of the online streaming video services, like Netflix or YouTube. In our book, that's a pretty big drawback because the other players don't cost any more, and it's nice to have that instant gratification ability when you don't want to sit back and watch a high-definition Blu-ray movie. For image quality, the Sony is pretty good. It looks great on most Blu-ray movies. There were a couple of video-based titles where we could see some artifacts, but there's not that many video-based titles in general, so it's probably not gonna be an issue. Load times are slower compared to the newest generation of Blu-ray players, so if you're someone that likes to demo a lot of material, and you're switching in a lot of discs, this probably isn't the best player for you. All together, although the Sony BDP-S360 handles all the basics of Blu-ray playback fine, it's hard to recommend over some of the other options that offer more features and streaming media services. I'm Matthew Moskovciak, and this is the Sony BDP-S360.
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