Received my Samsung 1600 yesterday, excellant service from Robert Whyte who confirmed in stock and said exactly when it will be delivered. On phoning they gave a CityLink tracking no and (for once!) it arrived on the morning of the day promised.
Clunky when reading discs, lightweight panels, exactly what you would expect of a player sub-£300. But this is £150, setup to 1080p / 24 frame Movie mode / re-encode all sound formats to DTS 1500 bps (Optical) easily made within a couple of minutes.
Quick test of 3 Blu-Rays I have, where are these long loading times I'd been expecting! Obviously much improved from earlier models, glad I didnt go for the Denon 3800 at this stage. Tried 30 minutes each of Foo Fighters, Rush - Snakes & Ladders, and wife's Mama Mia.
Picture quality on all three looks very good, I have no other BRPs to compare with in my setup, but obvious detail and lack of compression artifacts makes it a step up from my DVD player which cost about 30 times more. Whether it will match its subtleties and depth etc on longer watching remains to be seen.
Found colours a little cool compared with my other sources, adjusted Colour Balance on my Kuro to compensate as no colour correction built-in.
Sound into my Tag AV32 processor most pleasing with the re-encode. Will never know if analogues would have beaten this or not (in a cheap player like Samsung 2500), but it sounds pretty good to me and allows all the TAG processing adjustments (Room correction, delays etc) that will be knocked out when I go to analogues in the future.
Surprised manual (in one place), suggests it can play divx from a USB stick, will check eventually.
Only problem is lip-sync on the Rush disc, but this has been reported as a disc problem on other forums. Cannot be compensated for in processor because I think the picture is ahead of sound! Disc is 1080i, strangely.
Summing up, cant go wrong at £150 for a player that loads quickly, decodes all formats without waiting for firmware upgrades, profile 2.0 (for those that want it) and immediately connected to wired ethernet and checked for updates.
PS - The 1600 (like other Samsungs before it) re-encode high res audio to the maximum rate DTS that can be achieved using an optical Digital connection. For those without an HDMI amp/processor, as long as your amp can decode DTS it seems a good compromise.My amp shows 448 bps for dolby digital 5.1 from a DVD, but 1536 bps for Blu-Ray. Still cant believe that Samsung dont promote this much, and that other manufacturers dont make it available.
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A seriously talented performer that has a few design issues
This is a top-notch surround package for the money. It’s a worthy alternative to the award-winning KEF R100 5.1
A great amp with some notable musical skills, but it loses a star compared with its better-performing, better-specified rivals
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