Sony BDP-S380 Blu-ray player
Sony BDP-S380 review: Sony's cheapest Blu-ray player has BRAVIA Internet Video and works well
- BRAVIA Internet Video built-in
- Low price
- HDMI cable included in the box!
- No built-in Wi-Fi
- No optical digital output
- Remote is a little cramped
The Sony BDP-S380 is an excellent Blu-ray player that has the added bonus of Sony's BRAVIA Internet Video service. We're disappointed with the lack of optical digital output, and the fact that Wi-Fi is an optional extra, but this is an outstanding product otherwise.
Price$ 199.00 (AUD)
Sony's BDP-S380 entry-level Blu-ray player has an impressively wide range of features. It's a great player for watching Blu-ray movies and it also has BRAVIA Internet Video for Web features like streaming ABC iView video on demand. It has some connectivity options missing, which makes it imperfect as an all-in-one solution, but otherwise it's everything you'd need to give a bit of life to an aging digital TV.
Sony BDP-S380: Design and features
The BDP-S380 has a flat-fronted design that fits in well with its 2011 range of BRAVIA LCD televisions. The BDP-S380 looks attractive, but we don't like how small the main buttons for playing and ejecting discs are — there's plenty of space on the front but the buttons are slightly hard to find in dim light.
The remote control has all the buttons you'll need, so the only time you'll have to visit the player is to change out Blu-ray discs. A suggestion we'd make to Sony is to include back-lighting for the buttons on the BDP-S380's remote control. It's quite a small remote control and the buttons are cramped, so finding the right one in a dim room can be an ordeal.
The BDP-S380 has all the connection options you'd expect on a modern Blu-ray player. We opted for HDMI to connect audio and video to our Pioneer KURO plasma, and Ethernet took care of our networking. There's analog video connectors for component and composite, and coaxial digital audio as well as analog audio outputs. There's no optical digital audio, so you'll need to use the coaxial or run optical digital audio from your TV if you've got a home theatre system hooked up — a small amount of extra hassle that will only apply to a small sub-set of users.
The Sony BDP-S380 has access, through its Ethernet network port or an (annoyingly) optional Wi-Fi adapter, to Sony's BRAVIA Internet Video portal and the Qriocity music service. BRAVIA Internet Video, which has playback of ABC iView, Yahoo!7's PLUS7, and SBS catch-up TV as well as a wide range of other audio and video services. We weren't able to test Qriocity extensively but the ability to stream music to your TV and entertainment system through the BDP-S380 is a useful inclusion.
Sony BDP-S380: Picture quality and performance
The Sony BDP-S380 had no problems playing the 2D content we threw at it. It's not a 3D player, so if you want to watch a 3D Blu-ray movie (on your 3D TV) you'll need to get a more expensive unit like the BDP-S480. Picture quality was perfectly acceptable — there's no video quality problems when watching Blu-ray content on a Full HD screen and streaming through BRAVIA Internet Video is generally acceptable.
The BDP-S380 also starts up quickly. We were into the Terminator: Salvation main movie within 30 seconds, and other titles were similarly speedy to get into the action. The XMB menu interface (similar to the Playstation 3's) doesn't lag and selecting BRAVIA Internet Video services only requires a few seconds of buffering on a fast Internet connection.
Sony BDP-S380: Conclusion
Sony's BDP-S380 is a well designed piece of technology. It does a perfectly acceptable job of playing Blu-ray movies and the BRAVIA Internet Video features are a great extra that broadens the amount of content easily available to viewers. We know it's only an entry-level player but we would have loved to see Wi-Fi on the BDP-S380. Sony needs to include extra add-ons in higher-end players, rather than gimping cheaper models by taking out useful features.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 2 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 3 Apple iPhone 7 Plus review: including Portrait Mode
- 4 Google Daydream View VR full, in-depth review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
Latest News Articles
- Samsung's UHD Monitor covers 99.5 per cent of Adobe colour spectrum
- HP settles cases with inkjet cartridge vendors
- Study predicts PS3 will win the console war
- Samsung wave makes a splash at Mobile World Congress
- Sony returns to profit, cuts full-year loss forecast
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- FTTSM SpecialistNSW
- CCProject SchedulerNSW
- TPSystem AdministratorQLD
- FTTechnical Consultant MS Dynamics AXWA
- FTBack End DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Network ArchitectVIC
- TPDigital Business Analyst | AgileQLD
- FTTechnical Consultant MS Dynamics AXACT
- FTTrading Systems EngineerNSW
- FTLevel 3 EngineerNSW
- FTSoftware Support SpecialistQLD
- FTSenior Linux Systems AdministratorNSW
- FTLinux Systems EngineerQLD
- TPSAP Implementation Manager - Finance System ProjectQLD
- FTSenior Systems AdministratorWA
- TPBusiness Intelligence AnalystQLD
- TPSenior Network EngineerNSW
- FTLevel 3 Support ConsultantNSW
- FTSenior Java DeveloperNSW
- TPICT Support Analyst (level 1 & 2)SA
- TPSenior Project Manager - Digital Application CX TransformationNSW
- TPProjects Planning ManagerQLD
- FTBusiness Development ManagerVIC
- CCSenior Full-stack .Net DeveloperNSW