A great way to watch Blu-ray discs and DVDs – a real entertainer
Excellent Blu-ray performance in every regard
excellent DVD playback
classy build quality
Only a transport, so it won’t be for everyone
only Profile 1.1
The Denon DVD-2500BT is aimed squarely at dedicated home cinema enthusiasts. It doesn't have any analogue audio outputs, or even coaxial or optical digital sockets.
If you want one, you'll need a multichannel amplifier or processor that can accept audio signals over HDMI and decode them appropriately. This includes Blu-ray's high-definition audio formats Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
The Denon's premium credentials are immediately apparent. This beast bears little resemblance to the slimline players found at the budget end of the Blu-ray market.
Not only does it benefit from almost bomb-proof build quality, but it's also stylish (in an industrial way), and has a usefully large display panel.
But, of course, it's the performance that is of primary concern to us – and this is a sensational performer. HD images are incredible Thrown a copy of The Happening on Blu-ray, the '2500BT makes this most awful of films almost worth watching. Colours are amazingly natural, edges are razor-sharp, and motion is silky-smooth.
More after the break
What's more, it excels in detail, and that lends an extra degree of three-dimensionality to pictures, particularly outdoor scenery.
When the action moves to the gloomier indoor scenes, the Denon produces great blacks, while having the the quality to offer insight into the darkest of corners.
The '2500BT also upscales standard-defintion DVDs to 1080p in scintillating style, with Training Day appearing as sharp, detailed and vibrant as we're used to from the very best standalone DVD players.
These incredible pictures are complemented by an exceptional sonic delivery. Whether the '2500BT is streaming HD Audio from the I Am Legend Blu-ray, or outputting a stereo PCM signal from Kings of Leon's Only by the Night album, the sound it produces is robust, detailed and wonderfully dynamic.
As long as your kit can handle the audio decoding, this Blu-ray player is one of the finest models on the market – it really can transport your disc collection to another level.