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The Official Sony BDP-S350 Owners Thread - Page 6

post #151 of 6745
Ok, As far as stand-alone players go I think the Panny BD30 is the closest competition. I am going to start a list here of advantages (+) and disadvantages (-) that each model has over the other. If anyone has any to add let me know and I will try to keep it updated (for a while anyway). Thanks for your help, I am trying to make up my mind here, I just installed a rack in my wall and I really don't want to try to get a PS3 in there.

Sony BDP-S350 ($400)
+ethernet port
+BD Live capable
+Can decode True HD and DD+
+Faster load times ?????

Panasonic DMP-BD30 ($450)
+5.1 analog out
+SD card slot (AVCHD)
post #152 of 6745
Let me get this straight. Sony is making you buy some (proprietary?) mini flash drive to watch 1.1 content (and I assume 2.0 content at some point)? That is really poor for a $399 player IMHO. The Insignia and Magnavox players (which are about $100 cheaper and recently had $100 gift card offers on top of that) support 1.1 out of the box...

I had high hopes for this player, but it is looking more and more like my PS3 is still the best option out there in the $399+ price range.
post #153 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

Let me get this straight. Sony is making you buy some (proprietary?) mini flash drive to watch 1.1 content (and I assume 2.0 content at some point)? That is really poor for a $399 player IMHO. The Insignia and Magnavox players (which are about $100 cheaper and recently had $100 gift card offers on top of that) support 1.1 out of the box...

I had high hopes for this player, but it is looking more and more like my PS3 is still the best option out there in the $399+ price range.

It is NOT necessary to buy a Sony USB Flash drive. It just needs to be small enough (or the proper shape) to fit the port.

My guess would be that they tucked the connection back into the machine a bit so that it wouldn't get bumped/damaged as easily (which I think is a good thing), NOT to force you to buy their memory device.
post #154 of 6745
I'm curious to see if you can transfer AVCHD from an SD card to the USB drive and play it from there.
post #155 of 6745
Ruined, just a quick question concerning this source direct. I have a Sony KDS 55A3000 sxrd rear projection and it accepts a 1080p/24 so the 350/550 should just send any blu ray movie that is encoded at 1080p/24 directly to my tv without any processing what so ever correct?




Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruined View Post

No the BDP-S350 would be fine in your case.

What I and some others are talking about with "source direct" is if you have a high end display setup that is capable of 1080p & 1080p24 + external video processor or video processor builtin to a receiver like the Reons in high end onkyos.

In order to obtain maximum video quality with both Blu-ray and DVD, many are looking for the player to do this:

With the understanding that the only valid Full HD resolutions that you can encode Blu-ray in are 1080p24 and 1080i60...

1) For Blu-ray 24fps films encoded in 1080p24 (most films), pass 1080p24 directly to the HDTV
2) For Blu-ray 24fps films encoded in 1080i60 (rare), send 1080i60 to a high end video processing chip (either in TV, receiver, or external box) for proper deinterlacing
3) For Blu-ray 30fps concerts/documentaries encoded in 1080i60, send 1080i60 to a high end video processing chip (either in TV, receiver, or external box) for proper deinterlacing
4) For all DVDs, send 480i60 to a high end video processing chip (either in TV, receiver, or external box) for proper upscaling & deinterlacing

That would be optimal use of source direct for maximum quality of both Blu-ray and DVD using chips builtin to some receivers/processors such as Reon & Realta or devices such as the VP50, Lumagen, etc. This is the default behavior of Source Direct, and there is no need to juggle resolution settings in the setup menu with it.

Now, in contrast, what the Sony BDP-S350 does is only allow you to pick one output resolution. If you pick 1080p, then 1080i discs will be deinterlaced in the player to 1080p. If you pick 1080i, then 1080p discs will be processed internally to 1080i. The problem is that the video processing chip performing these operations in most players under $1000 are nowhere near as good as chips such as Reon/Realta. For instance, the Panasonic BD30 (which the S350 may be based on) bobs 1080i content to 1080p, losing lots of resolution in the process. And most people don't want to be messing with output resolution in the setup menu every other movie they watch.

And thus, in summary, people want to automatically bypass the player's internal video processing to use their own superior video processing solution for the large amount of interlaced content on Blu-ray, as well as for DVD. That is the purpose of source direct.

If you don't have a scaler, don't plan to buy a nextgen receiver like the Onkyo 875 which features Reon deinterlacing/upscaling, and your TV's deinterlacing is no prize, then source direct isn't going to help you. However if you upgrade your receiver or TV in the future, you may be sorry that the player lacks this feature. Then again, the cheapest 3rd gen player with Source Direct is the BDP-51FD ($599), so if that is out of your pricerange you may want to forget it and just go with the S350 anyway.
post #156 of 6745
ThankĀ“s for the pictures, but can somebody take any with the open tray? Has the S350 a sliding panel like the S500/2000ES or not?
post #157 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by FCEEVIPER View Post

Mine is getting close...

Please keep that out of this thread, thanks.
post #158 of 6745
Especially since some of us got screwed on our shipping times!
post #159 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdmac29 View Post

Ruined, just a quick question concerning this source direct. I have a Sony KDS 55A3000 sxrd rear projection and it accepts a 1080p/24 so the 350/550 should just send any blu ray movie that is encoded at 1080p/24 directly to my tv without any processing what so ever correct?

I have the KDS 60A3000

And, yes the S350 will send 1080p24 without any processing to it. However it will fumble and use internal processing on the many 1080i-encoded 30fps Blu-ray Discs.
post #160 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan2 View Post

Reasonable - faster than previous Sony models. I'd say on a par with my Oppo.

Not a relevant comparison, as Oppo does not manufacture a Blu-Ray player and the question was about BD load times.
post #161 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by TRT View Post

Bullet 1: I have three 777ES changers running into my Integra DTC-9.8 from a Escient Manager-Not an issue.
Bullet 2: The LPCM works beautifully
Bullet 3: 25 bucks for the bluetooth remote? OK, so I have to use that one along with my Harmony One. Big deal! So what!
Bullet 4: You can't be serious.
Bullet 5: It sits nicely in my BDI stand, but they do make ears for the PS3.
Bullet 6: Again; You can't be serious.
Last but not least; Bullet 7: It is the simplest piece of gear I have ever owned. It also talks to my computer making it the cheapest server on the planet.

As a custom installer, our company doesn't sell them because there is no money to be made. I have 14 units of gear + amps, and the PS3 is everybody's [in my home] favorite unit. Thank goodness it doesn't bitstream the new CODEC's, because it would be in the same boat as the rest of the player's with the popping noises and handshake issues that have plagued us early adopters. When a stand-alone gets released that can beat this unit, I'll give it its due consideration, but for now the PS3 is hard to beat!

I don't think that anyone reading this thread cares a whit about the PS3, so please don't clutter it with arguments that have been worked through 1000x over. There is nothing new to say.
post #162 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruined View Post

I have the KDS 60A3000

And, yes the S350 will send 1080p24 without any processing to it. However it will fumble and use internal processing on the many 1080i-encoded 30fps Blu-ray Discs.

Ruined,

OK, so if I understand this correctly: I plan to connect the BDP-S350 via HDMI directly to my new Samsung LN46A650 (1080p). Since the BDP-S350 will pass a 1080p signal directly to the TV, source direct would not be of value?
post #163 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah008 View Post

It is NOT necessary to buy a Sony USB Flash drive. It just needs to be small enough (or the proper shape) to fit the port.

From the scanned manual, here's the style of USB drive that Sony recommends:

http://www.amazon.com/Sony-Micro-Vau...dp/B000F9LRZI/

Note that this drive omits the metal shield around the connector, which is different from every other USB device I've seen. If the S350 requires this style of device, then I think Sony's stretching the definition of "USB" -- that looks like a non-standard connector.
post #164 of 6745
hpmoon, I plan to compare the s350 to the PS3 because there are a lot of people interested. You may want to put me on your ignore list soon...
post #165 of 6745
Stipulations: (correct me where I'm wrong)
  1. The s350 can bitstream both lossless HD audio streams (DD TrueHD and DTS HD MA) to an A/V receiver via HDMI.
  2. The s350 can also decode DD TrueHD and send it out as LPCM over HDMI in all it's lossless 8 channel (7.1) glory.
  3. The s350 cannot decode DTS HD MA - only bitstream it as described in 1 above.
  4. The current version of the s350 is a profile 1.1 (BonusView) player which allows for mixing a primary and secondary audio & video track, provided they are both on the disk. Secondary audio & video might be Director's audio commentary accompanied by some "how'd they do that" video.
  5. Mixing is enabled by pushing a PIP button on the remote or selecting it via some menu on the disk, prior to or during playback.
  6. The audio mixing has to be done with decoded audio. The player decodes the primary & secondary audio streams to LPCM first and then mixes them before sending them to the A/V receiver.
  7. Because the audio has to be decoded by the player before mixing, it is not possible to bitstream primary audio and have PIP audio working at the same time.

Question:
Since this player doesn't decode DTS MA at all, how is it possible for PIP audio to work with only a DTS MA primary audio track?

The BDA really couldn't make this profile & audio stuff much more complicated could they? Then they wonder why it takes people so long to migrate from SD DVD.
post #166 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by sfligio View Post

Some photos of the Xcross Media Bar menu?
Thanks


And some onscreen info screens showing timebar, etc.
post #167 of 6745
Sorry if I've missed this after earlier discussions on secondary audio, but I found the "BD Audio Setting" section on Page 44 of the manual quite interesting. It says:
Quote:


Selects whether to mix or not mix interactive audio and secondary audio (commentary) when playing a BD that contains such audio.

The options are:
Quote:


Mix: Outputs the audio obtained by mixing the interactive audio and secondary audio to the primary audio.
Direct: Outputs the primary audio only.

This part of the manual fails to clarify whether we're talking about "primary audio" in terms of bitstreamed multi-channel audio via HDMI, or something useless like L/R analog output.
post #168 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by eganov View Post

Question:
Since this player doesn't decode DTS MA at all, how is it possible for PIP audio to work with only a DTS MA primary audio track?

It can decode the core lossy track of DTS-HDMA. So you with PiP you'd simply get lossy DTS.

Also, if this player functions like the Panasonic BD30 which it very well may be based on, you actually need to go into the player setup menu to turn subaudio on/off. There is a button to turn it on and off but that button only works when subaudio is enabled in the menu - you can't change between bitstream and internal decoding on-the-fly.
post #169 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjg100 View Post

I have an HD DVD player that I can use for that. Heck you can buy a HD DVD player for $60.00 if you need 480i over HDMI.

Fantastic point -- this should be a keen way to shut down the protracted emphasis on "Source Direct" and lack thereof. I'm amused to witness the lengths to which some people/someone goes to justify the purchase of an expensive upscaler for the purpose of maximizing quality on mass-market source material that is almost always un-improvable. (I would love to perform a blind test anyway with any Holy Grail upscaler versus that built into my new BDP-S350, where the external upscaler evangelist(s) would probably swing both ways depending on the source material.)

And more to the point, 480i outputs via HDMI are extraordinarily easy to come by, such that the lack in this player is far, far and far from a takedown.
post #170 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Schwartz View Post

Note that this drive omits the metal shield around the connector, which is different from every other USB device I've seen. If the S350 requires this style of device, then I think Sony's stretching the definition of "USB" -- that looks like a non-standard connector.

Can someone please take a closeup picture of the USB port on the S350?
It would be nice for everyone to see exactly what this looks like and what the real contraints are in the USB memory that is purchased.
From what I can tell there has been one specific USB device that didn't work properly (jlangner tried a SanDisk one), otherwise everyone is just guessing what works and what doesn't.
post #171 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by joerod View Post

hpmoon, I plan to compare the s350 to the PS3 because there are a lot of people interested. You may want to put me on your ignore list soon...

AMEN BRO!
And make sure you start a new thread for each and every comparison review you do!
post #172 of 6745
roger that, PS3 to S350 comparo would be great!!!

I don't see myself ever gaming, but if the PS3 will do a better job with my DVD's and/or Blu-Ray rentals I guess not a bad option.
post #173 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by hpmoon View Post

Please keep that out of this thread, thanks.

Why are you mod or something?
post #174 of 6745
Well, many know the attributes of the ps3, so no need to go over it in every thread.
BUT a comparison is something completely different.
post #175 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjacob60 View Post

roger that, PS3 to S350 comparo would be great!!!

I don't see myself ever gaming, but if the PS3 will do a better job with my DVD's and/or Blu-Ray rentals I guess not a bad option.

From what the preliminary info is on boot and disc load time, I'm sure that we wont see the S350 being better in those categories. I have the PS3 and it is fast.
post #176 of 6745
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah008 View Post

Can someone please take a closeup picture of the USB port on the S350?
It would be nice for everyone to see exactly what this looks like and what the real contraints are in the USB memory that is purchased.
From what I can tell there has been one specific USB device that didn't work properly (jlangner tried a SanDisk one), otherwise everyone is just guessing what works and what doesn't.


The USB port is recessed about 1/2 inch inside of a square hole. The problem is that the SanDisk is barely too wide to fit into the hole, therefore the usb connection is never reached. In lite of a picture, look at the manual page I posted of how to insert it. I think it shows a picture.
post #177 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

Let me get this straight. Sony is making you buy some (proprietary?) mini flash drive to watch 1.1 content (and I assume 2.0 content at some point)? That is really poor for a $399 player IMHO. The Insignia and Magnavox players (which are about $100 cheaper and recently had $100 gift card offers on top of that) support 1.1 out of the box...

I had high hopes for this player, but it is looking more and more like my PS3 is still the best option out there in the $399+ price range.

Even if you decide to buy the Sony USB drive it's under $20. What's the big deal?
post #178 of 6745
So I set my 350 up yesterday, thoughts:

So far the player work fine, I like how the player is very quite and the load time is good. The PQ is wonderful and sound too, BonusView works great, the only problem I am having is with the pop up menu screen on 2 discs: Batman Begins and V For Vendetta.

For some reason the menu pop up screen chugs or flickers as it goes up and I navigate though it, now I just returned my Sammy1500 because of many problems and because it did the same thing but it was much worse.

On Batman Begins it's less than on V, the funny thing is when I restart Batman Begins sometimes it doesn't do it but V does it all the time. I'm just wondering if maybe I have a setting wrong, or my HDMI 1.3 cable is not fast enough, but the video looks great so what am I doing wrong?

Has anyone else tried Batman Begins or V For Vendetta on the new 350?

I will appreciate any input.





Quote:
Originally Posted by jlangner View Post

I upgraded from a 300 to the 350. So far I am impressed. Load times are alot faster. Menu system reminds me alot of the PS3 menu system. It also depends on your receiver as well. My reciever can decode TrueHD and DTS MA and since this player can bitstream it whereas the s300 could not (although some debate on whether 300 could). I could tell a big difference in sound using truehd/dts ma compared to the 300. I used Live Free or Die Hard for DTS MA and Batman Begins for TrueHD. I couldn't try the bonus view yet since I didn't have the mini flash drive you need and I don't have internet to it yet so haven't tried the network yet.

Have you had any of the problems in my above post? Does your pop up menu screen flicker or chug on Batman Begins?

Thanks in advance!
post #179 of 6745
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah008 View Post

It is NOT necessary to buy a Sony USB Flash drive. It just needs to be small enough (or the proper shape) to fit the port.

My guess would be that they tucked the connection back into the machine a bit so that it wouldn't get bumped/damaged as easily (which I think is a good thing), NOT to force you to buy their memory device.

I guess you missed my point. I am just baffled why Sony did not include enough onboard memory to at least support 1.1. As I mentioned, even the lowest price Funai branded players have enough onboard memory. This just seems very cheap from Sony in general, and especially for a player that is currently retailing for $399. And from other posts in this thread, not any old flash drive will work. And I am not a Sony hater. I really enjoy my PS3 and have told quite a few people to wait for this player before buying over the past month or two and now I feel like an ass. We have Panasonic requiring people to buy extra memory on their BD50 player (which costs $699) to enjoy 2.0 features and now Sony is requiring folks to buy additional memory to watch 1.1 content. I love Blu-Ray but the BDA needs to stop cutting corners. My expectation is that if somebody pays $399 for a Sony branded Blu-Ray player right now, it should work out of the box with regards to advertised features....
post #180 of 6745
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FCEEVIPER View Post

So I set my 350 up yesterday, thoughts:

So far the player work fine, I like how the player is very quite and the load time is good. The PQ is wonderful and sound too, BonusView works great, the only problem I am having is with the pop up menu screen on 2 discs: Batman Begins and V For Vendetta.

For some reason the menu pop up screen chugs or flickers as it goes up and navigate though it, now I just returned my Sammy1500 because of many problems and because it did the same thing but it was much worse.

On Batman Begins it's less than on V, the funny thing is when I restart Batman Begins sometimes it doesn't do it but V does it all the time. I'm just wondering if maybe I have a setting wrong, or my HDMI 1.3 cable is no fast enough, but the video looks great so what am I doing wrong?

Has anyone else tried Batman Begins or V For Vendetta on the new 350?

I will appreciate any input.



Have you had any of the problems in my above post? Does your pop up menu screen flicker or chug on Batman Begins?

Thanks in advance!

I didn't notice it last night and I used it several times going back and forth switching the audio. I'll play around with it again tonight.
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