It seems like as soon as Blu-ray became a definitively mainstream home theater format, manufacturers scrambled to find a new format to charge extra for: 3D. Samsung's BD-C6900 ($360 street price) is the first 3D Blu-ray player we've reviewed so far, and the 3D price premium is steep. The step-down is nearly identical except it lacks 3D and costs about $135 less. Not to mention the fact that you'll need to buy a new HDTV and pricey 3D glasses, as well as 3D content--which is exceedingly rare at the moment. We also didn't find the 3D Blu-ray experience to be all that satisfying with the 3D HDTV we used for this test, although we suspect our issues in that area had more to do with the TV than the BD-C6900's 3D performance.
3D-pricing gripes aside, we found the BD-C6900 to be an excellent Blu-ray player. Its outstanding feature set is highlighted by built-in Wi-Fi, the expandable Samsung Apps platform (which already includes services like Netflix, Vudu, and Pandora), and 7.1 analog audio outputs. Its Blu-ray image quality is in the top ranks of Blu-ray players we've tested and its speedy operational performance is bested only by the. If a 3D HDTV is in your future and you're willing to pay the price premium, the BD-C6900 is one of the best Blu-ray players on the market. But if you're taking a wait-and-see approach to 3D--which we'd recommend--save your cash and go with the BD-C6500.