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Samsung BD-P1600 photos

The Samsung BD-P1600 has a great mix of features and performance for a standalone Blu-ray player, with only an annoying design holding it back.

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Matthew_Moskovciak.jpg

Matthew Moskovciak

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1 of 9 Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung BD-P1600

The Samsung BD-P1600 comes complete with all the features we now expect on Blu-ray players, including Profile 2.0 compatibility and onboard decoding for Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio. But the BD-P1600 goes beyond the basics, adding improved operational speed, Netflix and Pandora streaming, and the ability to add Wi-Fi functionality with a USB dongle (sold separately.)
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Front panel

The BD-P1600 features a sleek and seamless front-panel design, which at first left us wondering where the disc tray was.
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Flip-down door

That's because the entire front panel actually flips down, similar to Panasonic's early Blu-ray player's design, the DMP-BD10. Luckily, the Samsung's tray opens and closes when you eject a disc using the remote control, but we still didn't like it. One reason is that the buttons--even open/close and power--are hidden under the panel, so you'll have to flip it down by hand to make any other adjustments.
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Not as slick with the door down

Also note that there's a USB port under the panel, so if you plan on using that port for BD-Live storage (perhaps because the back port is occupied by the Wi-Fi adapter), you'll have to leave the panel down permanently--which isn't a nice look.
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Front panel buttons

The front panel buttons are touch sensitive and can't be accessed without flipping down the front panel.
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Back panel

The BD-P1600's connectivity is standard. The main connection is the HDMI output, which is capable of handling 1080p HD video and high-resolution multichannel audio.
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Connectivity

There's also a component-video out that can output Blu-ray at 1080i and standard DVDs at 480p. Audio connections are basic, including an optical digital-audio output and an analog-stereo output. There's also an Ethernet port on the back, plus a USB port that can be used with the Wi-Fi adapter.
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Soundtrack decoding

The BD-P1600 has onboard decoding for Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio. That means it can decode those soundtrack formats so they can be played back on almost every HDMI-capable AV receiver. Bit stream output is also supported, if you'd rather the decoding be done in your AV receiver.
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9 of 9 Sarah Tew/CNET

The remote

The included clicker is a substantial redesign over previous players, but in some ways it's a step back. Most of the buttons are logically positioned and there's good button separation, but important buttons like Pop-up Menu, Disc Menu, and Title Menu are stuck at the bottom of the remote and confusingly labeled.

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