What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Fri, 7 Sep 2012, 10:49am

Samsung BD-E6100

Tested at £100
80100
4

An update to the performance coupled with a drop in price means this is now a much more competitive player

Write your own review

For

  • Tempting price
  • plenty of smart features
  • good interface
  • can use USB accessories

Against

  • Picture needs more detail
  • sound lacks power

UPDATE 07.09.12

We originally reviewed the Samsung BD-E6100 Blu-ray player back in June. At the time, we noticed a considerable amount of motion judder issues, and Samsung has since then developed the player further. 

So we tested the player again, and we can say that the motion is much smoother and stable, and makes for a more pleasant watch. 

The picture of this player has a slightly cool palette, and doesn’t have enough subtlety or layers of detail compared to the rival offerings from Sony and Panasonic. The Samsung’s sound isn’t as strong and powerful as them either. 

The BD-E6100 is now available for £100 (it used to be £150), and while it’s got tough competition, its smoother motion and price drop upgrades it to a 4-star product. 

 

Original review published 25.05.12

The Samsung BD-E6100 sets out to be an all-encompassing entertainment hub packed with a host of features.

The Samsung BD-E6100 sets out to 
be an all-encompassing entertainment hub packed with a host of features. 
The company’s excellent Smart Hub service contains an ever-increasing amount of apps that encompass all kinds  of lifestyle, entertainment and social media content. Samsung’s now-familiar areas for family, fitness and kids are present and correct, along with specific apps for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Netflix, Vimeo and many more. Our review sample didn’t have BBC iPlayer, but Samsung confirmed that the 
products in the shops will have it.
Be sure to keep updating the software and apps, though, as the company regularly adds and upgrades content. 
Smart features aplenty
Local file handling comes under Samsung’s AllShare umbrella. The tech gathers media content from various devices (discs, computers, USB devices and NAS drives) into one area, so you’re able to access music, videos and photos easily. Later this year the service will also be able send it out to an online cloud storage area (you get 5GB), which means you can then share the content with your other Samsung devices.
Samsung keeps things simple yet stylish when it comes to its sleek, easy-to-use interface. We wish we could say the same for the awkward remote.
The enclosure is your standard slim case, with similarly basic connections: HDMI and coaxial outputs at the back, plus an ethernet port, and a USB port for cameras and other devices on the front. 
Those “other devices” can include 
a mouse and keyboard – which makes using the web browser a much nicer experience than with the remote.
So, on to the performance side of things. We started with Tintin and were met with a good picture, filled with smooth detail and colour.
Fair enough, but it just isn’t up to the standard of the other two in this test. The E6100 doesn’t convey the layers 
of details and texture that are so easily achieved by the Panasonic. Contrast is a little subdued, while textures of clothes seem to lose their tangible quality.
There’s scope to adjust the settings, though, and we found that increasing the contrast level a little breathes a bit 
of life into the picture.
Sound quality is a notch up on the 
LG, though – it puts dialogue at the forefront, is punchy with explosions 
and steers surround effects well.
Switch to the 3D version of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, and there’s a relatively clear picture 
and good depth, but there are also deep pools of black that can overwhelm finer details. Motion handling is more of an issue, with frustrating judder at times.
This is also apparent in our Lord of 
the Rings DVD: the Samsung isn’t the best at upscaling to 1080p, with the picture not as clear as the Panasonic.
While the Samsung is packed with smart features (including £50 of free movie credit from AceTrax until October), the key issue of picture 
quality lets it down – and with the Panasonic BDT220 only £30 more, 
it has a lot of catching up to do.

The company’s excellent Smart Hub service contains an ever-increasing amount of apps that encompass all kinds of lifestyle, entertainment and social media content. 

Samsung’s now-familiar areas for family, fitness and kids are present and correct, along with specific apps for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Netflix, Vimeo and many more. 

Our review sample didn’t have BBC iPlayer, but Samsung confirmed that the products in the shops will have it. Be sure to keep updating the software and apps, though, as the company regularly adds and upgrades content. 

Samsung BD-E6100: Connectivity
Local file handling comes under Samsung’s AllShare umbrella. The tech gathers media content from various devices (discs, computers, USB devices and NAS drives) into one area, so you’re able to access music, videos and photos easily. 

Later this year the service will also be able send it out to an online cloud storage area (you get 5GB), which means you can then share the content with your other Samsung devices.

Samsung keeps things simple yet stylish when it comes to its sleek, easy-to-use interface. We wish we could say the same for the awkward remote.

The enclosure is your standard slim case, with similarly basic connections: HDMI and coaxial outputs at the back, plus an ethernet port, and a USB port for cameras and other devices on the front. 

Those “other devices” can include a mouse and keyboard – which makes using the web browser a much nicer experience than with the remote. So, on to the performance side of things. 

Samsung BD-E6100

Samsung BD-E6100: Picture quality
We started with Tintin and were met with a good picture, filled with smooth detail and colour, even though the E6100 doesn’t convey the layers of details and texture that are so effortlessly delivered by close rivals. 

Contrast is a little subdued, and the textures of clothes lose their seemingly tangible quality.

There’s scope to adjust the settings, though, and we found that increasing the contrast level a little breathes a bit of life into the picture.

Switch to the 3D version of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, and there’s a relatively clear picture and good depth, but there are also deep pools of black that can overwhelm finer details. 

Motion handling is more of an issue, with frustrating judder at times. This is also apparent in our Lord of the Rings DVD: the Samsung isn’t the best at upscaling to 1080p, with the picture not as clear as the best in class.

Sound quality is passable though – it puts dialogue at the forefront, is punchy with explosions and steers surround effects well.

Verdict
While the Samsung is packed with smart features (including £50 of free movie credit from AceTrax until October), the key issue of picture quality lets it down – and with the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 only £30 more, it has a lot of catching up to do.

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