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Sony BDP-S760 Blu-ray player: Super bit-mapping reality enhancer

Sony's new top-of-the-range Blu-ray player, the BDP-S760, is jammed full of exciting new features such as Wi-Fi Internet access and multi-channel headphone mode

Sony has lifted the lid on its new top-of-the-range Blu-ray player, the BDP-S760. Jammed full of exciting new features -- some of which may actually make a difference to your viewing experience -- it's also packing a walloping great price tag: £340.

The S760 and its more reasonably priced sibling, the S560 (£240), do share an interesting common feature: Wi-Fi. Instead of trailing an ugly old Ethernet cable round to your home-cinema setup, the S760 connects to your wireless network, meaning you can look at photos stored on your PC or make use of Blu-ray's thus-far disappointing BD-Live Internet features.

Home-cinema manufacturers add value to pretty bog-standard componentry by including software to make your picture look prettier. These features always have ludicrous names and Sony doesn't disappoint with the S760 -- 'HD Reality Enhancer' and 'Super Bit Mapping' aren't, in fact, power-ups from 16-bit video games, but they supposedly make your 1080p picture more smooth, realistic and closer to the original colours. Expect us to test these claims -- and make fun of the names again -- in our full review.

Other features on both the S760 and S560 include a six-second Quick Start mode, to cut down the annoying Blu-ray wait we've chronicled extensively here, plus Dolby TrueHD, HDMI 1.3 and the PS3's lovely Xross Media Bar interface. The S760 has a headphone jack for late-night noisiness, with a multi-channel headphone mode. It claims to give you a multi-channel sound effect through your cans, but we rather doubt it'll even approximate a full 7.1 system. Again, we'll wait till we get one in before we pour too much approbrium on it. At least it doesn't have a silly name.

Both the Sony BDP-S760 and Sony BDP-S560 are available to buy now.