There are still plenty of folks out there who have not yet joined the Blu-ray family. I’ll bet there’s at least one on your Christmas list. It’s up to you to open their eyes to high-definition home video. Now, I’m sure you’re tempted by those cheap machines hitting the market at the department and big box stores. And sure, you can get someone on board for a hundred bucks or less. I’m here to tell you not to do it. Sure you can give them a basic machine, but you’re also going to give them a future of headache and frustration as they discover more and more things that they cannot do. What if I told you that you can get a high-end player with everything on board for under $500? Get ready to scratch a name or two off that Christmas list, because Oppo’s BDP-103 has tons that even the best players in the big box stores don’t.
We’ll be writing a full review as we put the unit through our rigorous paces, but you can’t wait that long to pick one up. I can already tell you with no hesitation this is the best Blu-ray player I’ve seen. Oppo IS NOT paying us to say this. We will not get a penny from the company. This baby does full-on 3D like nobody’s business. When I compare it to my excellent PS3 3D, this one offers a brighter and sharper image. That’s because the guys at Oppo have put nothing but the best chips inside of this unit. This unit will also convert 2D to a simulated 3D, and there are parameters you can adjust to get the best results. Honestly, this stuff doesn’t compare to the real deal, but it’s a nice effect at times. If you have a 4k monitor capability, this unit will even upconvert to 4k. No other unit for anywhere near this price can do that.
What about the formats? Try and come up with a disc this unit can’t handle. Everything but old HD-DVD’s work great. That includes recorded media. There’s a superior data browser that allows you to access music, video, and images from a CD, DVD, or USB device. You can check out all those tunes you have on your thumb drive. The player has a wi-fi usb device that hooks it right to your home’s internet system. From there you can watch your Netflix, Pandora, or Youtube stuff directly on the machine. With a full gig hard drive there’s plenty of buffer room to avoid those streaming hang-ups you get on many devices. It decodes all of the available audio and video codec’s. DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby Digital True HD work all the way to the 7.1 configuration. There are 2 HDMI outputs so that you can send to multiple sources or split the audio and video depending on how recent your amp/receiver happens to be. There’s also an HDMI output so that you can run another device through this one. It saves on how many inputs you need, and it’s fully capable to pass through 3D signals in case your amp isn’t.
Finally, the unit works fast. It loads discs at even greater speed than before. It’s also a quiet unit that you won’t find distracting in a home theater setup. There is one thing I need to warn you about. Do not test the device before you give it as a Christmas gift. Doing so can lead to you coming up empty-handed on Christmas morning, because you’re not going to want to give it up. On second thought, get two. This unit has become my official review unit for any discs I’ll be reviewing in the coming year. If you find you don’t always get as good a picture or sound as I report, maybe it’s your player. For me at Upcomingdiscs HQ, it’s Oppo.
Check them out at Oppo Digital