Blu-ray blues

We recently got rid of our cable TV (keeping the internet of course) and wanted to get a set up where we could stream Netflix and other video sources directly to the TV.  Of the various options, it seemed that a blu-ray with built in WiFi would be best, and we started with the Samsung BD-C6500.  This claimed to be able to connect wirelessly, stream Netflix and Hulu Plus, and had a bunch of other internet-ready content via apps.

Most of this is true.  We were able to hook it up no problem, got it connected to our wireless network and streaming Netflix, and were able to browse other internet content such as YouTube.  However, one major glitch:  the blu-ray player lost the network settings each time we powered it off.  We’d have to re-scan and enter the password for our network each time.  This makes using it almost unbearable.  Further, Samsung customer support was not very helpful, suggesting a few things that made no difference.  Finally, the apps available were meager at best, with no Hulu Plus or ESPN apps, and the few apps that weren’t there by default were not very interesting.

Contrast this with the Sony BDP-S570, which at Best Buy cost the same.  This blu-ray player set up as easily as the Samsung.  However, it kept the network settings no problem.  No re-entering the network password.  And the number of apps that come installed with it is much greater than the Samsung, with maybe 5 times as many.  I haven’t found yet if it is possible to install new ones, though I assume there must be some way.  Hulu Plus is not available on the Sony, but in contrast to the Samsung, it seems that there is a plan to get it soon.  This one is even 3D-ready (it isn’t 3D capable yet, but with a firmware upgrade expected to be available soon, it will be).  This isn’t something I care much about, but it just points to the overall better product this player is for the same price as the Samsung.

I’m not sure how much of the issues with the Samsung are specific to our setup.  Our router is an Apple Time Capsule, and I saw online others with that setup having the same problem.  It is just odd that this day and age this kind of thing doesn’t work better.  And that Samsung didn’t have a better response suggests they are ignoring the problem.

I’m very happy with the Sony.  And if anyone else runs into these network issues with the Samsung, I would highly recommend taking it back and getting the Sony instead.

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