Oppo BDP-93 Blu-ray Player Page 2
This new player marks a change in video processing solutions for Oppo. The BDP-83 used Anchor Bay’s acclaimed VRS (Video Reference Series) ABT2010 chipset for video upconversion to 1080p, but this 3D player relies on a Marvell Kyoto-G2 processor with secondgeneration Qdeo technology to do the heavy lifting. The results are spectacular. But the Marvell processing is only active on the HDMI-1 output; for HDMI-2 and component video, the Oppo passes the processing to a custom-made Mediatek decoder, which doesn’t measure up to the Qdeo solution. So the recommended setup is to use HDMI-1 for both video and audio if your AVR can pass 3D. If not, use HDMI-1 connected directly to your display as described above for video and HDMI-2, routed to your AVR, for audio.
If you own a lot of foreign DVDs, the BDP-93 also includes PAL/NTSC conversion for both disc playback and video output, subject to DVD and BD region restrictions.
Like most Blu-ray players, the Oppo supports Deep Color, although there’s no commercially available programming that uses it. Owners of constant-height or anamorphic projectors will relish this player’s zoom mode and scaling. With Blu-ray 3D, this feature doesn’t always work; it relies upon the disc being authored a certain way, so your mileage may vary.
The BDP-93 is BD-Live compliant, so it has 1 GB of onboard storage. If you need more than that, you can use the two USB ports to expand the memory (although I don’t see why you would, given the poor quality of BD-Live features). It’s easy to connect the BDP-93 to the Internet via Ethernet or the Wi-Fi dongle. I’ve found that the quality of wireless pales in comparison to a wired connection in my home, especially with Internet streaming from Netflix.
Speaking of Internet streaming, this is Oppo’s first player to sport the feature. Currently, you can stream movies and TV shows from both Netflix and Blockbuster. The only bummer is that the Netflix interface doesn’t offer a search function or the Dolby Digital Plus audio that Sony’s PS3 does. Instead, it sports the Netflix 2.0 tabbed interface. This lets you add items to your queue without the use of a PC or Mac, but the selections are limited to the options listed under New Arrivals, Comedies, TV, etc.
Each tab offers close to 100 different titles to choose from, so there’s bound to be something worth watching.In January, the Oppo logo showed up on VUDU’s Website, and the player is currently undergoing a testing process to get approved for the superior streaming service. Although I prefer physical media, there are times I’m in the mood for a particular film I don’t own. If
I’m going to stream, I like to have the highest quality available. VUDU’s HDX service is the cat’s meow. It offers 1080p video with Dolby Digital Plus sound. Sure, it’s not Blu-ray, but the casual observer will be hard-pressed to tell the difference on most regular-sized displays.
If you aren’t into streaming, it’s still convenient to have an online connection in order to update the player’s firmware. I’ve had the player for a few months and have gone through some updates already. It only takes a few minutes to complete, and keeping the player up to date minimizes the chance of a Blu-ray not loading. If you’re not interested in BD-Live content, I recommend that you turn this feature off in the setup menu. Some studios use BD-Live to stream trailers before the main menu, which can prolong the time it takes to get to the main menu. If you’re as impatient as I am, disable it.
You can use the USB and eSATA ports to play a wide range of media, including AVCHD video, MPS, and WMA. Unfortunately, the Oppo doesn’t support WMA Pro, Lossless, or Voice. For a complete list of compatible formats, check Oppo’s Website.
I’m a big fan of universal remotes, so it’s rare for me to get excited about the stock remote that comes with a new piece of equipment. This one fits nicely in my hand, includes large backlit buttons, and the player responds to most commands instantly. One issue I’ve experienced is that its IR receiver is a tad weaker than the BDP-83’s, and it doesn’t have as wide a receiving range as its sibling. If you have two Oppo players in your rack, you can change their remote codes by entering the Setup menu and adjusting a physical switch inside the remote’s battery compartment.