Samsung BD-D7000 3D Blu-ray player hands-on

There are some who are starting to doubt whether Blu-ray will ever become the dominant standard for movie media, or whether it will be bypassed by cloud-based or digitally-stored video content instead. And as for 3D Blu-ray, it's struggling to get any sort of user-base thanks to exclusivity deals, and some studios' lack of urgency or interest...

However, Samsung is happy to support the format, and with decks like the BD-D7000 we might find take up quicken over 2011.

This new deck is primarily designed to be housed in a second room, or funky living room. It's not the company's top of the range model, yet it does sport plenty of the features as the super-slim BD-D7500.

For starters, not only can it spin Blu-ray platters, 3D and otherwise, with the proficiency of a futuristic DJ, but it has the manufacturer's latest version of its 2D to 3D conversion.

Pocket-lint got to try the upgraded technology at CES 2011, and we must admit that it performs far more admirably than its 2010 equivalent. Rather than give the impression of a sequence of 2D images stacked on top of each other, the new upconversion techniques genuinely fake a tangible sense of depth. It's not real 3D, but you'll give it a whirl.

The BD-D7000 also has Samsung's one-foot DLNA connection tech inside, which means it will read and play media files stored on any compatible device placed within a foot of the player, regardless of being connected to a router or not.

In the confines of the CES, it was impossible to see this in action, but it does come on all of Samsung's 2011 range of AV and mobile devices, so the Korean company must be confident it works to a reasonable standard.

Other than these, and the obvious regular features for the format, including integrated Wi-Fi, the striking thing about this specific deck over rivals and stablemates is its form factor. It's dinky - like an external Blu-ray player. The top rises slightly to accept a disc, but that's the only external moving part.

And Samsung is also releasing a range of other kit to match the BD-D7000, including bookshelf speakers and an amplification unit, so you can even turn it into a more-than decent mini-system for audio playback. Tasty.

There's no price or release date yet, but we would expect it to hit the UK in March/April time and if it's not around a ton (£100), we'd be surprised.

Has Blu-ray had its day? Is streaming media the future of HD video content? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below...



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