Oppo BDP-103 Blu-ray player
This Blu-ray player has the best picture that money can buy -- end of story
- Unrivalled image quality
- Class-leading design and build
- Unique feature-set
- Netflix and Vudu not useful for most Australians
- No eSATA or Gigabit Ethernet
The BDP-103 is as good a Blu-ray player as we’ve ever seen. It’s extremely well-built and uses the highest quality components. It produces the best picture, supports the most formats, and has the most features of any consumer-level Blu-ray player on the market. Its international-focused video services are largely useless to Australia, though.
Price$ 699.00 (AUD)
Oppo Digital is a slightly confusing company. It’s actually the American arm of the Guangdong-based Oppo Electronics, and while the Chinese brand focuses on consumer electronics like low-priced smartphones and portable media players, the Californian spin-off is responsible for some of the highest-quality Blu-ray players available today.
The Oppo BDP-103 is the latest incarnation in a long line of DVD and Blu-ray players, which started with the OPDV971H from 2004 — notable for its up-scaling of 480p DVDs to LCD- and plasma-friendly 720p and 1080i resolutions.
The BDP-103 takes all of the learnings of the last eight years and incorporates them into a Blu-ray player that can output video at any resolution up to Ultra High-Definition. It can stream media files from your network, can connect a games console or mobile device and up-scale that, or can access instant streaming movies and TV shows from the Internet. But it’s $699 — is it worth that much?
Oppo BDP-103: Design and build quality
When our Oppo BDP-103 arrived in a nondescript box all the way from Mountain View, CA., we were somewhat nonplussed. It didn’t help that the box had taken a couple of scars along the way, but we were surprised that such an expensive home cinema component looked so ordinary.
Opening up the sturdy box, you’ll find a card showing off the player’s most noteworthy features — strange, since you probably just bought it. That card covers the thick foam padding that surrounds and suspends the player. The thick A4 manual — 88 pages long — sits on top of the player, which is safe from scratches or scuffs in a fabric bag. An accessories box includes the bundled power cable, HDMI cable, 802.11n Wi-Fi network adapter (USB 2.0), and backlit remote control.
The BDP-103 itself is an incredibly sturdy, well-designed, well-manufactured piece of equipment. It’s wider, deeper and taller than the slim-line players from Sony, Samsung and LG that are flooding the marketplace, and at 4.9kg it’s definitely not lighter. With most consumer electronics technology we’d want smaller, lighter, sleeker, but the BDP-103 is made to stand the test of time, not made to a budget.
The face of the BDP-103 is simple — not futuristic and minimalist and lacking in controls, but not particularly busy, either. From left to right, there’s a power button with colour-changing, dimmable LED (red for off, blue for on), single-line LCD for playback information, tray-loading Blu-ray disc drive, eject button, USB 2.0 host port, MHL-compatible HDMI input, 3D and Ultra HD status lights, and five-way control pad. All the buttons are softly back-lit, and like the LCD they can be dimmed or blacked out completely.
Around the back of the BDP-103, you’ll find more connectors than most other Blu-ray players have in this digital day and age. From left to right — 10/100Mbps LAN, HDMI input, coaxial and digital optical audio output, two HDMI outputs, two USB 2.0 inputs, infrared input for a repeater, RS-232 serial for home automation, 7.1/5.1/stereo analog audio output, and AC input. No eSATA port or Gigabit Ethernet is slightly disappointing.
The Oppo BDP-103 largely justifies its premium price with these extra inputs and outputs. Instead of a single HDMI output, you get two, one for audio to your A/V receiver and one for video to your display — or audio and video to both. Three USB inputs in total, to simultaneously support the USB Wi-Fi adapter, a permanently-attached USB hard drive, and a temporary flash drive. Two HDMI inputs, letting you attach other devices like a PC, notebook, or MHL-compatible smartphone or tablet (and the front HDMI/MHL port even charges the attached device), and process their video through the BDP-103’s noise reduction and up-scaling circuitry.
The remote control that’s bundled with the BDP-103 is one of the best we’ve used. It’s as equally sturdy as the player despite being plastic, with switchable back-lighting. Buttons are easy to press, clearly labelled, and have appreciable tactile response that lets you know when you’ve pressed the button properly. Buttons are intuitively laid out — playback controls and navigation down the bottom, and a number pad and direct function access up top.
Two buttons on the top of the BDP-103’s remote control take us nicely to the next chapter of our review: this Blu-ray player’s integrated features.
Next page: Features, interface and performance
Join the PC World newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Acer Swift 7
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® Portable SSD
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Surface Pro 4
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 HTC U Ultra phone full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Plex Cloud is now open to all paid users
- YouTube launches streaming TV service with 40 channels and unlimited cloud DVR storage
- Up next for Apple TV: 4K streaming reportedly in the works
- Apple’s original TV shows are almost ready for prime time
- Apple snags Amazon Fire TV exec to lead Apple TV efforts
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- LG G6: unboxing, hands on review and detail shots
- And the 2017 winner of the Formula 1 Best Pit Lane Boom Gantry is...
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- CCProject Manager Retail Supply Chain OptimisationQLD
- FTLinux / Unix Systems AdministratorSA
- FTDrupal Developer - Senior or Mid levelQLD
- FTSenior .Net DeveloperNSW
- CC.NET Developer!QLD
- FTWorkforce AnalystNSW
- FTInfrastructure ArchitectVIC
- CCAutomation Developer - LinuxNSW
- FTSolution Architect (e-Health)NSW
- CCNetwork Engineer (cisco)NSW
- FTWeb DeveloperACT
- FTDevops EngineerVIC
- TPJunior Software DeveloperQLD
- FTField Deployment EngineerNSW
- FTChange ManagerNSW
- CCOrganisational Change Manager - Banking/Financial ServicesNSW
- CCSAP FICO ConsultantWA
- TPAgile Implementation LeadNSW
- FTWeb Developer/ReportsNSW
- FTInfrastructure ArchitectNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTProject Manager - Financial Forecasting SystemsNSW
- FTProject Manager, FinanceNSW
- FTBusiness Improvement ManagerNSW