Panasonic DMP-BDT220 3-D Blu-ray player for under $150(Oct 2011 Home Theater magazine - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 09-13-2012, 01:38 AM
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Default Panasonic DMP-BDT220 3-D Blu-ray player for under $150(Oct 2011 Home Theater magazine

Panasonic DMP-BDT220 3-D Blu-ray player for under $150

(October 2012 Home Theater magazine review is located on pages 74-76)

** Reference quality video processor on a Blu-ray player for under $150 is outstanding **

** Better Netflix streaming quality when compared to the OPPO BDP-93/95 **

The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 is a 3-D Blu-ray player with a list price of only $149.99. Currently Amazon offers the brand new Panasonic DMP-BDT220 for only $112.95 with free shipping (prices sometimes change daily at Amazon). Possible around the Christmas season the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 might sell for around $99.99. The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 will only play Blu-ray discs, DVD’s, and standard audio CD’s. It does not offer SACD playback and DVD-Audio playback like the OPPO BDP-93/95 and some other more expensive Blu-ray players. Blu-ray playback includes the ability to play both 3-D and 2-D Blu-ray discs (3-D display needed to view movies in true 3-D). Like all modern Blu-ray players the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 does not offer a component video or S-Video output. Consumers with 480i displays will need to use the composite video output on the Panasonic DMP-BDT220. The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 offers one HDMI 1.4a output for lossless audio and HD video signals. Lossy audio for legacy receivers is an option with the optical digital output or with the 2.0 left and right stereo analog audio output. The Panasonic supports both wired and wireless Internet connections. The Sony Playstation 3 supports 1Gbps networking but the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 like all other standalone Blu-ray players only supports up to 100Mbps networking speed. There are some Internet providers that are now offering 1Gbps Internet speeds. Verizon FIOS nationwide is offering 300Mbps Internet speeds so 1Gbps networking jacks like the Sony PS3 has offered since 2006 is starting to become an important feature. BD-LIVE HD downloads are extremely fast with high speed Internet service plans.

The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 lacks 1GB of built in memory for BD-LIVE. Consumers need to purchase a SD card with a minimum 1GB capacity in order to use the BD-LIVE feature (4GB is ideal for some Blu-ray titles if one wants to download all the extra features). The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 accepts SD, SDHC, and SDXC memory cards for BD-LIVE storage. ExFAT, FAT32, and FAT16 are supported on the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 for reading and writing.

The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 has a detachable power cord which is a nice feature to have if the power cord were to every become damaged (replacement of the power cord is easy). The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 has an excellent video processor with a 24P feature that will convert film based 480i DVD’s and 480i/P streaming services to 1080p/24 with around the same quality as the OPPO BDP-93/95. 720P 60Hz and 24Hz film based streaming services will also be upconverted to 1080p/24. Native 60Hz video based resolutions with no 3:2 pulldown will be upconverted to 1080P/60. According to the Home Theater magazine review the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 video processor is one of the best on the market. Also Netflix streaming on the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 is reported to be better quality when compared to the OPPO BDP-93/95. Most likely because the Panasonic supports 1080P Netflix with 5.1 surround sound compared to the OPPO BDP-93/95 that only offers Netflix 720P with 2.0 stereo (The review did not mention why the Netflix was better quality on the Panasonic but in theory this is the reason).

When Home Theater magazine tested some recent Fox Blu-ray titles they discovered that the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 was slower at loading Blu-ray discs when compared to the Sony PS3 and OPPO BDP-95. CNET using different Blu-ray titles had the opposite results. According to the 2012 CNET speed rating the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 is the fastest Blu-ray player, even faster than the Sony BDP-S590, OPPO BDP-93, and the Sony PS3 slim. According to CNET the PS3 slim received the slowest speed rating, followed by the OPPO BDP-93 being the second slowest Blu-ray player. Different Blu-ray titles appear to load faster on certain players. CNET used the OPPO BDP-93 and Home Theater magazine used the OPPO BDP-95, but both the OPPO BDP-93 and BDP-95 share the exact same motherboard and are the same when it comes to disc loading speed (BDP-95 just has better analog audio outputs). CNET's 2012 comprehensive Blu-ray chart

The following are select quotes from pages 74-76 of the Home Theater magazine review

“Reference-quality Blu-ray playback”

“Lots of streaming options”

“The DMP-BDT220 is a pretty zippy player, through it’s not the fastest I’ve used. There’s a quick-start feature that works pretty well, but load times on some titles were slower than my PS3 and Oppo BDP-95.”

“The DMP-BDT220 features only one HDMI output (1.4a) and it’s 3D compliant. There’s also a composite video output but no component video or S-video options.”

“Another nice feature on the video processing side is the ability to scale any of the streaming sources. The Panasonic’s video processing chip is one of the best out there, and it did a great job with feeds from Amazon and Netflix. You can even change the frame rate to 24p if you want. This helped out some material, and I rarely saw any dropped frames or tearing in the image.”

“The DMP-BDT220 passed all of our Video Test Bench tests with flying colors on the HDMI connection. Out of curiosity, I even tried some of my more advanced deinterlacing tests that I typically reserve for scalers, and the DMP-BDT220 passed nearly every one of them with ease.”

“Streaming services such as Netflix and Vudu were better than I expected for what they are. Vudu was definitely the standout. The HDX 1080p video service delivered images that weren’t quite as good as what I get from Blu-ray but not that far behind”

“Not surprisingly, Netflix wasn’t as good, with obvious compression artifacts and mixed detail/resolution performance, but it was better than the performance I get when I stream it from my Oppo player.”

“The Panasonic DMP-BDT220 player delivers 2D and 3D Blu-ray images that rival even the heavyweights.”

“If all you want is a great Blu-ray player for Blu-ray and DVD playback along with a host of streaming services, you can’t go wrong here. Like last year’s model, this one goes straight to the top of my budget player recommendations and delivers the Blu-ray experience in spades.”

Last edited by HDTV1080P; 09-28-2012 at 01:00 AM. Reason: UPDATED WITH THE LATEST WEBLINK THAT WAS JUST RELEASED
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Old 09-28-2012, 01:00 AM
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Home Theater magazine just released the complete review on their website. Here is the link to read the review on the Panasonic DMP-BDT220.
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Old 09-28-2012, 04:57 AM
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Panasonic is unique when it comes to BD players. They use their own SoC (System on a Chip) called "UniPhier" that is designed and manufactured by Panasonic SoC. All other BD Player CEMs use 3rd party SoCs. The SoC is the "brain" of a BD player.
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Old 10-28-2012, 10:34 AM
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I really love Panasonic TVs, but have had 2 BD players that I've test driven and returned because they just didn't measure up to what I wanted.

Firstly my display is a 42-inch HD 1080p Panasonic plasma connected via HDMI.
A few years ago I brought home a brand new Panasonic DMP-BD65 and while the picture appeared to me to be outstanding I would, after a period of 10-15 minutes into use, begin to get "snow" on screen. The intensity of the snow would increase with time.
There was no snow problem previous to this when using my PS3 as a BD player, and it was occurring with different HDMI cables. The player was fully up-to-date. I returned that unit and went with a Sony BD player instead that has served me surprisingly well and with no video issues, ever...

More recently, I brought home the DMP-BDT220 from Best Buy as I was looking to update my hardware and maybe get some built in wi-fi and improved upconverting.
The player impressed on a number of levels, although I was NOT impressed with the large drive-door flap. It's either in the way when closed and looking tidy...or is open, ugly, and a dust-trap. The player performed admirably, and Panasonic really does seem to have the edge over most of the other guys on video processing. But you know what? I could not get the darn thing to play nice with my external usb drive. And by that I mean I could not even get it to recognize the device. No music, photos, no video...nuthin. It was not compatible... That 2 1/2 year old Sony player I got for $119? works like a charm with the drive 95% of the time. So back to Best Buy the 220 went because at this point no USB drive support is a deal-breaker.. The manual obviously says it fully supports external USB media, and maybe a newer drive would work just fine...but you know what Panasonic, if you're going to make devices that are designed to be in the middle of everything, you might want to make sure they can handle being in the middle of everything. Not causing video snow on one of your own HDTV displays, or pretending that my USB HD is hard to get along with.
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