New Samsung BD player puts a huge dent in ATV

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Michael CM1, May 18, 2009.

  1. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    Yesterday, I found me a new Blu-ray player since I will soon "need" two when I get into a house. I started out looking at reviews for a Samsung unit on sale for $250 because it had Netflix and Pandora streaming plus BD Live. Well, after some of the reviews mentioned drawbacks like the flip-down front and speed, I looked at the $350 unit. It got great reviews at CNet, saying it's sometimes faster than the PS3 and includes the otherwise $80 wirless dongle plus 1GB internal memory (for downloading BD Live stuff).

    Yeah, it is good.

    It took a little bit of know-how to set up the wireless connection -- don't have an SSID with a space in it -- but I now have it setup with everything working. The Blu-ray Discs load SO MUCH FASTER than my previous player, and the streaming looks awesome. It claims that a lot of stuff is in HD, but it really just looks like a super-sharp DVD compared to my 720p TV.

    I really don't have much interest in buying an Apple TV now. Yes, this thing is more expensive and assumes you are into Blu-ray, but my dad's Apple TV seems to be so darn limited in features if you don't rent movies from Apple. I like watching my videos from iTunes on a TV as much as the next guy, but I kept on having "this video is in the wrong format" errors when trying to play from ATV.

    With the huge library of video that Netflix has, this just seems like a better deal than Apple TV. Had this player been one of the first BD players to ever arrive at this price (I know, a fantasy), the adoption rate would've been doubled. I just hope that maybe Apple will start licensing its ATV software to BD player makers like Netflix is. There are USB ports on this unit, so just allow an external HDD to be plugged in and an integrated ATV deal is no problem. Add Hulu software to this and I may mess myself. :)
  2. dmm219 macrumors 6502

    Aug 25, 2008
    $350? No thanks. I'll get a PS3 for that price and get an entire game console to will be on PS3 soon...BD live isn't very impressive.

    Now, in 2 years, if this is down to $100-$ may have an argument...

    Also, of all the "set top boxes" out there right now, ATV is still king for can get (almost) all TV content on it...movies is comparable to the other services...

    ATV has a ton of do all the set top boxes...and thats just the way the studios like it...don't expect a great set top box anytime soon...

    I still believe Apple will kill off the ATV pretty soon. Your licensing model is one good choice...but more likely, just allowing other boxes and TVs access to the Itunes store with direct download and streaming...
  3. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    The ATV issues you may have had aren't exactly common.

    I doubt the adoption rate for BR would have doubled with this player because things like Netflix and Hulu weren't as prevalent as they are now. Timing is off.

    Have you actually plugged an external drive into the BR player or is it confirmed that this can actually happen? Without seeing the UI I can't tell if it is set up for this task but it would be quite interesting.

    I agree that the BR player is expensive when compared to the PS3 especially when you have something like Boxee or Plex.

    As an ATV owner who only just started considering the Mac Mini alternative (and is now buying one) the ATV is limited for those wishing to expand past iTunes content. I watch a lot of hulu and frankly the ATV/boxee alternative somehow doesn't appeal to me. I am unsure why. What is funny is that ATV is limited and yet king for content but clearly this is driven by iTunes only.

    Overall I don't mind paying a bit more for something like a Mac Mini to get a computer to boot. If I could have the mini plus the BR player I'd be quite happy but I don't think the BR player the OP got is anything epic.
  4. Michael CM1 thread starter macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    Well, my whole Netflix/Hulu thing was a pipe dream pretending as if they were more prevalent 3 years ago. My point was basically this unit feels like a "finished" product. My dad's old BD player, which cost $500, didn't even have an Ethernet port. That should've been standard from day 1 with all the online capabilities that were planned (updates, BD Live from the start). Now that wireless is finally hitting these things, it doesn't feel like something's missing. And no, I haven't tried plugging in a HDD, but I'm saying it physically could be done if the OEM would write it into the firmware. Hell, every TV seems to have a USB port now for firmware updates.

    As for the PS3 comparison, I get that. But I don't really want a PS3. They use entirely too much power and I wasn't impressed with the longevity of my original PS2 -- plus I have a Wii already. The PS3 uses 197 watts of power, while this BD player uses 30 watts. The average computer uses 80 watts, so I had no interest in sucking down a few nuke plants every time I wanted to watch The Dark Knight.

    I will also completely disagree about whoever said the iTunes library is bigger. If we're talking video, I'm pretty sure that Netflix is deeper than iTunes -- and I'm already paying for Netflix, so I don't have any added cost of downloading said stuff. Before I bought this thing, I watched a season of Heroes, a season of Friday Night Lights, and two seasons of 30 Rock on my computer. I didn't have to buy the darn DVDs to do this, which saved me a ton of impulse-spending buckaroos.

    I still think the Apple TV has a future, but just not in its current state. Either Apple has to start adding these features (BD player, Netflix, Pandora, Hulu), integrate the software with existing BD players or other units, and/or get the price way down. There also needs to be an actual remote with the Apple TV.
  5. brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    I have the Netflix streaming available on 3 of my devices and I can't bring myself to use it. As long as the content is HD it's ok but their SD content looks downright terrible on my displays. Unfortunately they don't have much streaming HD content.
  6. Lorenz0 macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2009
    Oooh.. Richer sounds have that player (well I'm assuming that player - same make/same spec) available for £135... I'm sorely tempted
  7. omegaphil6 macrumors 6502

    Jul 19, 2002
    Fort Myers Florida
    BD_Live is the biggest fluff in the industry since HD DVD...

    BD_Live is like when you click the SUPPORT button in a computer program and get instantly taken to the software company's website....

    They should market BD live for what it is. a Movie themed webpage that is completely useless.

    Production companies stop wasting yours and our time and instead spend an extra penny to include a version of the movie on DVD in the box with the bluray movie. <-- much more practical.
  8. Dave00 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 2, 2003
    You're really talking about different beasts. Sure, you can do HD movies on both, the ATV version using rented movies. But can your BD show your photos, set to music; play a music set for your party; watch YouTube videos; watch movie previews; or watch your home movies you have on your computer? I'm not sure what the problem is with your video, converting to the right format is not hard and a much nicer way to display when people come over than asking them to look at a computer screen.
    OTOH, it can be more convenient to simply pop in a disc than to download a video (depending on your connection speed.) Like I said, different beasts.
  9. Blue Fox macrumors 6502a

    Blue Fox

    Apr 13, 2009
    #9 issues here playing ripped copies of Blu-ray/DVD movies on my buddie's Apple TV. As long as you export the rips to the correct file format (I forget, think it's .M4V or something). He had a Blu-ray player & Apple TV......and when his Blu-ray stopped reading disc's, we started ripping them and exporting them for Apple TV. No need for a BD player anymore. Though, the files we export are FREAKING HUGE because we don't want to compress them as much. But a 1.5TB hard drive works well for this purpose. :D
  10. Undecided macrumors 6502a

    Mar 4, 2005
    Why were they so huge? Given that the ATV is limited to 720p, and 25 fps at that resolution, I would think that the files would not be out of control.
  11. areusche macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2008
    I have the exact same unit. I believe it is a Samsung BD P2550.

    I love that thing. Pandora along with the Netflix streaming makes it a joy to sit and watch TV. Got mine for 250$ from a friend!

    I wish it supported my external HD. I have a lot of digitized movies that would make this box the best all-in-one media experience.
  12. almostinsane macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2008
    Why would you get a PS3? It lacks IR, quietness, the ability to bitstream out, and analog outputs. This box replaces the ATV. That's one less box people need. And the PS3 won't be getting Netflix in its lifetime. MS has exclusivity for the consoles.
  13. supajay macrumors newbie

    Nov 22, 2008
    Not arguing with anything because you are right. I've got a tvix that complements my ATV and it's much less of a drag ( no content in belgium).

    BUT... the new ps3's are 100-120 watt... the old ones ( like mine) do around 180-200. Which is ridiculous really. The atv does 15 or something and the tvix with a 1 tb hd is only 18 watt.

    This is according to some crappy meter i got at the local hardware shop.
  14. bruinsrme macrumors 603


    Oct 26, 2008
    they have a $20 ir/bluetooth adapter works nicely with my remotes
  15. peskaa macrumors 68020


    Mar 13, 2008
    London, UK
    I personally love BD. I own three players - Sony's 550 and 350, along with a PS3. My AppleTV has been relegated to music streaming and the odd film - I'd rather pay £10-15 for a copy of a film on BD than Apple's prices for renting a HD film. BD then has the full TruHD/HD Master Audio/PCM audio tracks, and full 1080p picture.

    So yes, BD has really chewed into how much the AppleTV is used.

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