So after reading the news of this player's abilities yesterday, I immediately ran over to Best Buy to pick one up to link to my not so old Denon 3808CI. I've owned the original Samsung 1000, a Panasonic BD10 (which is sitting in the garage), and a PS3 (which was in use until yesterday). I took out the PS3, hooked the 1400 up in its place and proceeded to go through a stack of Blu-ray discs to test all kinds of aspects of this player (X3, Kingdom of Heaven, Crank, Stargate, TMNT, Ghost Rider, Pirates of the Caribbean 2, Hoosiers, The Sentinel...).
Wow was I completely disappointed in this player! Not the quality of the video or audio upgrades, but the functionality and ease of the use of the player itself. I've been using the PS3 for the past 8 months, but is this the state of the art in terms of stand alone BD players?
First off, this thing makes my XA2 seem quick and responsive. This Samsung is sluggish and kind of frustrating to use. While the load times MIGHT be similar to the XA2, the flashing dots indicating the disc is loading actually made me more aware of how long this thing took. It took me 4 minutes from the insertion of the disc to the menu screen of Pirates 2. That's unacceptable... plain and simple. I also encountered discs where selecting the main menu from the movie would mark the return of the loading dots. Very annoying and, again, unacceptable once the disc has started playing.
Secondly, there is nothing of value to the player's OSD. One of the things I hated about the Panasonic (other than the player's inability to open the tray with the remote), was the lack of any viewable remaining time on the disc. Sometimes (not all the time, but occasionally) when I watch a film, I might hit the display button to see how much of the film (or extras) are left. It annoys me to no end that the Samsung doesn't provide such a simple feature. In fact, I have to pause the movie to see the time status on screen.
And finally, while I might be able to live with the above quirks given enough motivation, the following is a class A, numero uno, no bones about it deal breaker. There is a 4 second lag between when video appears on screen and when my receiver receives a bitstream and sound appears. This is happening regardless of format (DTS-MA, TrueHD, DTS-ES, Dolby 5.1, Dolby 2.0, PCM). It happens on both BD and DVD. Any change and the audio bitstream drops out. This was especially aggravating when jumping from chapter to chapter in a film or when leaving the film to go to the menu. The PS3, the XA2, and my DVR all send out audio bitstreams almost instantaneous, so I know it's not the Denon. While 4 seconds might not seem like a long time, it is where I live. This was also an issue with the Onkyo receivers (I had originally purchased the 805 but returned it because I couldn't stand the bitstream drop outs, delayed audio locks, and speaker pops). I just can't stand listening to silence only to have the audio pop in mid-sentence.
Now, while I'm completely unhappy with the Samsung 1400, I'm sure there are others who are completely thrilled by it. I'm not saying any of this to denigrate their purchase decisions or their opinions. I'm merely laying out my severe disappointment as a warning to others who might be bothered by similar things as myself. Giving people differing opinions, nothing more.