Being an early-adopter is risky business -- especially when the product in question costs $1,000 and is embroiled in a so-called format war -- so the opinions of experienced reviewers are key in helping folks to decide whether or not to take the Blu-ray plunge, and whether Samsung's BD-P1000 is the machine to do it with. Luckily PCMag has a thorough write-up which not only discusses the merits and detriments of the player itself, but looks at the format as a whole to determine what type of consumer would actually benefit from next-gen optical devices in the first place. The review basically boils down to this: if you have a high definition TV larger than 42-inches, then you'll definitely notice a difference between Blu-ray and standard or upscaled DVDs, and the Samsung does a good job delivering the picture quality that Blu-ray is capable of. However, this particular reviewer also feels that Toshiba's HD-A1 HD DVD player -- at half the price -- has a slight edge in the picture department, although the P1000's uncompressed audio and ease-of-setup are judged to be superior. Ultimately the decision comes down to personal preferences, so you'll probably want to give both devices a thorough going-over at the store (even if you're buying online); as for us, we're just hoping that Ricoh gets that dual format laser out the door poste haste, so we never have to make a choice at all.

[Via Digital Media Thoughts]

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Samsung BD-P1000 Blu-ray player reviewed