Sony BDP-S500

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Sony BDP-S500
  • Sony BDP-S500
  • Sony BDP-S500
  • Sony BDP-S500
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Excellent audio performance, great Blu-ray and DVD upscaling playback, streamlined interface, attractive design

Cons

  • Slight lag times at startup and when navigating discs

Bottom Line

The BDP-S500 is a powerful Blu-ray player, geared towards enthusiasts. Its high-end audio capabilities is best suited to a system that already has high quality audio products, although even on its own it's a great device.

Would you buy this?

Sony's BDP-S500 is the company's latest Blu-ray player to hit the market, geared for enthusiasts. Superior audio performance is the selling point for this model, alongside the already stellar video performance delivered by Blu-ray. In addition to the standard array of features, such as full 1080/24p playback, and DVD upscaling, the S500 also includes the capacity for uncompressed Linear PCM 7.1 surround sound, as well as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD. Alongside support for BD JAVA (which allows access to bonus material), the BDP-S500 is a high-end and very well rounded Blu-ray player.

Blu-ray playback on the S500 is excellent. Support for 24p means that with a compatible TV, users will be able to watch movies at a "native" 24fps (the frame rate used in movie cinemas). The video quality is everything we've come to expect from Blu-ray. As with most high-definition players, however, there is a slight lag when performing functions such as fast forward or skipping chapters. Although not longer than perhaps a second, it can be slightly irritating.

DVD upscaling is a core feature of high-definition players, and well it should be, as it means that existing DVD collections won't become obsolete. The S500 is capable of upscaling DVDs to up to 1080p resolution, although the 24p frame rate is only available for Blu-ray. This provides quite a noticeable difference, especially on large, high resolution screens, where the low resolution of DVDs looks blocky and pixelated. The upscaling provides a much clearer, better defined, and sharper image, and definitely does justice to DVDs on high-definition screens.

The player's audio performance is definitely one of its major attractions. All the major high-definition audio formats are supported, along with up to 7.1 channels. Users with a system larger than 5.1 will need a separate receiver though, as the S500 only includes analogue outputs for 5.1 systems. In general, we found the player's audio performance to be excellent, and only the most avid enthusiasts should find the need for a dedicated receiver/amplifier (unless using a 6.1 or greater system, of course).

Sony has taken care with the design of the S500, keeping it in line with its target audience of enthusiasts. It's quite attractive, with a glass front panel and buttons located on the top edge, rather than the front face. The rear panel houses 5.1 analogue audio connections, in addition to the standard array of ports, including HDMI.

The on-screen menu is incredibly simple, and easy to access and navigate. A well laid-out remote makes operating the S500 a breeze, and despite its high level of performance, there are actually relatively few options that will need tweaking, even on an irregular basis. The entire interface is highly streamlined and efficient. Now, if only they could get rid of the lag times!

Overall, though, the BDP-S500 is a great high-end Blu-ray player. Its extra audio capacities make it a great choice for those with the other equipment to take full advantage of them. While those without similarly high-end gear would probably be better served by a less expensive unit, for enthusiasts this is a great product.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?