Gary Merson is the first to check out the Samsung BD-P1200, the first of the second generation Blu-ray players.
It looks to be a great unit. The 1200 improves upon the BD-P1000 by adding a few cool tricks, but more importantly improves upon the last generation's eternal load times by starting in 30 seconds. And video performance was described by the veteran video journo as "flawless" in HD, and the best around in upconverting SD. It's also cheaper at an MSRP of $799.
Anyhow, here are some of the more notable updates:
HDMI 1.3 support gives the player the mojo which only a few TVs can take advantage of. Learn more about the wider color range, and lipsync features here.
Also note the fact that the BD-P1200 has 24Hz support, the native frame rate of film for judder free video. Few TVs support 24p signals, but the top of the line Pioneer PRO FHD1 does.
The Blu Ray player also upconverts standard def DVDs using the Silicon Optix Reon chip set, which only the top of the line Toshiba HD-xa2 HD-DVD player has. They're both the best next gen disc players when it comes to upconverting SD content.
The BD-P1200 doesn't have it all, but the little things you probably won't miss, like support for Dolby's LosslessTruHD format and
...does not allow pop-ups such as the director's head overlaying a movie when the commentary track is activated. The BD-P1200 has an Ethernet connector but it can only be used for firmware upgrades. It will not permit downloadable applications such as new movie trailers or interactive games. To date, none of the Blu-ray players have this capability.
Big deal. It's still the one to get if you're in the Blu-ray camp.