Sony BDP-S470 review: Sony BDP-S470

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The Good Excellent picture quality; good media-playback support; attractive styling.

The Bad Lack of 7.1 analogue audio outputs.

The Bottom Line Although the 3D-capable Sony BDP-S470 isn't really worth considering unless you have a 3D TV, it's still a top-notch Blu-ray player, at a very reasonable price.

8.8 Overall

If you like real life, then you'll almost certainly want 3D capability in your home-cinema system. After all, life is shown in 3D, so why shouldn't your favourite movies be too?

Okay, we all know that 3D is a mix of utter hype and an innovation no-one asked for. But it's also genuinely impressive technology, and, for all our scepticism, we can't help but be impressed by it from time to time.

Sony is at the front of the 3D charge, and it's not hard to see why. It makes movies, TVs, Blu-ray discs and players, and now professional camcorders that shoot in the new format.

The company's BDP-S470 is one of the cheapest 3D Blu-ray players on the market, at about £180. Cheap can be good, but it's still expensive if the product isn't any good. We took a look to find out if the BDP-S470 is another of Sony's recent Blu-ray player triumphs.

Cheap as chips, for 3D

Like any other new technology, Sony has treated 3D as a very easy way to bump prices up. It's done this with its 3D TVs, and we've had a proper moan about it. But the good news is that this Blu-ray player is actually very sensibly priced. While you are paying a premium for the 3D technology, it's not an outrageous one.

If 3D isn't your bag, then don't get this player. The BDP-S370, which won our coveted Editors' Choice award, is now about £50 cheaper than the BDP-S470, and does pretty much the same job.

Little beauty

The BDP-S470 is a very svelte and visually appealing machine. We love the way Blu-ray players have slimmed down from being the size of a house in a very short period of time.

Its size doesn't affect the amount of outputs on offer either. You get a HDMI 1.4a output, which carries 3D video and lossless digital audio. You also get both optical and coaxial digital outputs for conveying 5.1-channel Dolby Digital and DTS audio to an older AV receiver.

Also provided is component out, but we can't honestly see the point of this now -- the output generally isn't very good because of restrictions placed on Blu-ray players by the Blu-ray Disc Association. As you'd expect on a Profile 2.0 player, there's an Ethernet socket for network connectivity, and the machine is Wi-Fi ready too.

Picture quality

It doesn't surprise us that the BDP-S470's picture quality is every bit as excellent as that of the BDP-S370. We noticed no problems due to the move to 3D, and we thoroughly loved the picture this player produced. As a company, Sony might have some problems, but delivering great picture and audio quality aren't among them.