faster-than average load-to-play time for Blu-ray
convenient front-panel USB port
for photos, music via USB thumb drive or USB-enabled MP3 player
remote with large, uniquely shaped buttons that are logically
grouped; transport buttons are backlit for ease of use in the
better than average Netflix
nifty Touch Sensor controls on
audio slightly out-of-synch ("lip synch" problem)
minimal display on front panel
(wireless status); missing display for chapter/track, when
listening to music
labor warrantee is only 90 days
(full one-year warrantee for parts)
"Full HD" 1080p via HDMI; 720p or
1080i via component video
Dolby TrueHD and
Master Audio decoding
internet features via Samsung's
streaming (subscription required), Blockbuster On Demand,
DailyMotion, Pandora internet radio,
USA Today news, AccuWeather, Google Maps, Facebook, Twitter
DLNA certified for streaming of
photos, video, and music from your DLNA-enabled Windows PC
connections: HDMI (1080p), component
video (720p, 1080i),
composite video, optical digital audio output,
stereo analog audio output, Ethernet port for internet access, 2 USB
ports (one front, one back)
plays: BD-ROM (Blu-ray Disc
movies), BD-R, BD-RE, DVD-ROM (DVD-Video movies), DVD-R/DVD-RW,
DVD+R/DVD+RW, CD-DA (music CD), CD-R, CD-RW
cannot play: HD DVD, DVD-Audio,
DVD-RAM, Photo CDs, VCD, Super VCD
power consumption: 14 W
17.1"W x 8.1"D x 1.7" H
weight: 3.8 lbs
What's Included in The Box:
remote control (AK59-00104R), includes
2 AAA batteries
PDF, 12 MB)
quick set-up guide
Netflix, Pandora, and Blockbuster
AV cable (composite video, stereo analog audio)
article first published on
10.10.2010 | last updated on
Samsung has become a dominant force in HDTVs, leading the
market with cutting edge and innovative models. How are
they at making Blu-ray Disc players? We believe just as dominant.
Their 2010 entry-level player is the Samsung BD-C5500. It is a
great value with its solid performance and clean interface.
The only thing missing is Wi-Fi and 3D Blu-ray Disc support.
What makes this player different?
nifty Touch Sensor controls on the front panel
good remote control with large useable
buttons, and the buttons are logically group together
Like many Blu-ray Disc players, the BD-C5500 is a
slim-box design that takes up very little vertical space on your stack of AV
and home theater gear. The front
panel is adorned with nifty Touch Sensor controls that operate with
the slightest touch of your finger. Any pressure against them,
as you would expect to exert on traditional buttons, would dislodge this lightweight
unit from its resting position. For me, it took some getting
used to. Four such Touch Sensor controls include power, disc
tray open/close (eject), stop, and play/pause. For other
functions, you would
have to use the remote control. The disc tray is located on
the left side of the unit, while the LED display is located dead
center. A convenient front panel USB jack can be found on the
far right side of the front panel.
click pictures to enlarge
Usability: Ease of Set Up
The initial set up of this Blu-ray Disc player was easy.
I used an HDMI cable to hook it up to my Onkyo TX-NR5007 AV
receiver, which takes care of both the video and audio signals.
(My Onkyo AV receiver does the HDMI switching, sends the video
signal to my Epson 1080p projector, and decodes the requisite surround sound
formats). I plugged it into an AC outlet, plugged in a
Ethernet network cable, and turned it on. It automatically checked for and downloaded the latest firmware,
so you would get the latest refinements and internet apps.
That's was it to enjoy Blu-ray Disc movies. Samsung
pre-configured the BD-C5500 with default factory settings for an
16:9 aspect ratio HDTV display and surround sound system.
Usability: On-Screen User Interface
The Samsung's on-screen user interface was
intuitive and well designed. Most functions can be accessed easily enough through this user
interface, including the access of internet based content.
Usability: Remote Control
Unlike the remote controls of comparable
entry-level Blu-ray disc players, the Samsung BD-C5500's remote was
very usable. The buttons are larger than what is typical for
entry-level players, making it easy
to press the right button. The disc transport buttons (play, pause,
stop, forward/reverse, skip chapters forward and reverse) glow
in-the-dark, making it easier for night-time use or in a dimly lit
home theater. Given the relatively low price
point of this player, where many manufacturers take cut-cutting
measures, the usability of the remote is a welcome surprise.
Kudos to Samsung.
Operationally, the remote does offer direct
access to most commonly used functions, without having to pull up
and navigate through the on-screen menus. Four color buttons (red,
green, yellow, blue) allow for BD-Live interactivity. For
Samsung HDTV owners, there are buttons to control the volume, mute,
and change channels.
Blu-ray Disc picture quality: The Blu-ray Disc
picture quality through the HDMI
connection as 1080p is great! The player
is capable of outputting 1080p at 24 frames per second (i.e.,
1080p/24) for film sources, replicating the native frames captured
on film. With a well-produced Blu-ray Disc action movie,
nothing can beat the clarity, detail, color, and brilliance of Blu-ray
Disc, and the BD-C5500 definitely brings it to life.
Blu-ray Disc sound quality: Blu-ray Disc
sound quality through the HDMI using the
Master Audio is awesome. For action movies, my
system's Onkyo AV receiver and
B&W CDM CNT
literally rocked the home theater with a bit-for-bit rendition of
the original studio master soundtrack. I have never heard
surround sound any better, including that in commercial movie theaters. Unfortunately, the BD-C5500 picture and sound was out of synch (also
known as the "lip synch" problem). This was easily
compensated with my Onkyo AV receiver "lip synch" compensation
function with the aid of
Video Essentials (DVE) HD Basics Blu-ray disc audio/video timing
test clip. For the
everyday consumer who do not have a AV receiver with the "lip synch"
compensation, this could prove to be a nuisance.
DVD-Video picture quality: Depending on the
quality of the video encoding, DVD-Video movies can up-convert very well to 1080p.
The up-converted picture looks soft, and lacks the same color depth and
compared to the native Blu-ray 1080p picture, which is to be
expected. The better the mastering, the better it will
up-convert without video artifacts. Those that were poorly
encoded did not show much improvement, as the proverbial "garbage in
is garbage out" saying goes.
DVD-Video sound quality: Both
Dolby Digital and
DTS sound tracks sound good,
comparable to what a DVD-Video player would provide.
Netflix Streaming performance:
streaming is very good on the Samsung BD-C5500. The
Samsung Netflix app enables easy forward or reverse scanning
capability, very much like streaming on a PC browser with the
Microsoft Silverlight plug-in. A series of thumbnail images gives you an
idea of what images are being scanned through.
Competitive Models & Value - How does this model
Within the Samsung Blu-ray Disc player line, the
BD-C5500 is the entry-level model and goes for about $131. If
you are looking for the ease of Wi-Fi connectivity, 1G built-in
memory for BD-Live downloads, and 7.1-channel analog audio outputs
for your AV receiver, consider the
Samsung BD-C6500 (about $192). Then
to add 3D capability, take a
look at the
Samsung BD-C6800 (about $201).
Samsung Blu-ray Disc players are very competitive,
in terms of feature set, performance, and value. The Samsung
BD-C5500 is the best value there is among entry-level Blu-ray Disc
players. For example, the entry-level
Sony BDP-S370 (read
our review, about $135) comes with a free iPhone/iPod touch
remote control app, offers
playback, and comes with a full one-year warrantee for labor/parts.
However, it its remote is not as user friendly as the Samsung and
its Netflix streaming navigation does not offer easy forward/reverse
HDMI cable: to connect the Samsung BD-C5500 to your HDTV or AV receiver
Mediabridge HDMI v1.3 cable - Category 2 certified supports
3D and audio return channel
3 feet - $9.49 from
6 feet - $9.99 from
10 feet - $11.99 from
15 feet - $13.99 from
Recommended by TimeForDVD.com!
Associated equipment used in evaluation: Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 8100 3-LCD
1080p 16:9 aspect ratio front projector with custom screen, Onkyo TX-NR5007
THX Ultra2 certified A/V receiver with 145 Watts/channel, four
B&W CDM 9NTs as left/right main speakers
and left/right surrounds, B&W CDM CNT center channel speaker,
Mediabridge Ultra HDMI cables available from
Amazon.com, Monster Cable Original speaker cables, and Lovan Sovereign T HiFi audio
rack. For internet streaming and content, we use a Motorola SB5100
cable modem and
Netgear WGR614 wireless-g router
for our home network. Our home theater equipment was calibrated
Essentials (DVE) HD Basics Blu-ray disc.
This review was originally posted on
October 10, 2010.
Did you find this Blu-ray player review helpful? Let us
know your thoughts, send an e-mail to us at Staff@TimeForDVD.com.
a friend about this site: send a link to this
page or this
site to a friend.