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Haier HEC BDP100 Network Blu-ray Disc Player - Product Review

Introduction to the Haier HEC BDP100

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating
User Rating 4 Star Rating (2 Reviews)

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Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Front View with Included Accessories

Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Front View with Included Accessories

Photo (c) Robert Silva - Licensed to About.com
The Haier HEC BDP100 is a very affordable Blu-ray Disc Player that is both very compact in size (less than half the size of some Blu-ray Disc players) and performs well. Besides Blu-ray disc playback, the BDP100 also provides 1080p upscaling of standard DVDs via HDMI output. The BDP100 also provides built-in ability to stream Netflix movies and Pandora Radio from the internet. After reading this review also check out a supplementary Photo Profile and Video Performance Test Results.

Overview of the Blu-ray Disc Format

Blu-ray is one of the two major High Definition disc formats that were vying to replace the current DVD standard in the U.S. market. The other format was HD-DVD. However, as of February 19, 2008, HD-DVD was discontinued and now Blu-ray is the remaining high definition disc format available to consumers.

Blu-ray utilizes Blue Laser and sophisticated video compression technology to achieve high definition video playback on the same size disc as a standard DVD. For a more details on Blu-ray, as well as historical information on HD-DVD, check out my Guide to Blu-ray and Blu-ray Disc Players.

Overview of DVD Upscaling

In addition to the ability to play Blu-ray Discs, the BDP100 can also upscale standard DVDs to 720p, 1080i, or 1080p (in addition to 480p) to your HDTV, provided you are using the HDMI connection option.

720p is 1,280 pixels displayed across the screen horizontally and 720 pixels down the screen vertically. This arrangement yields 720 horizontal lines on the screen, which are, in turn, displayed progressively, or each line displayed following another.

1080i represents 1,920 pixels displayed across a screen horizontally and 1,080 pixels down a screen vertically. This arrangement yields 1,080 horizontal lines, which are, in turn, displayed alternately. In other words, all the odd lines are displayed, followed by all the even lines.

Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Rear Panel Connections

Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Rear Panel Connections

Photo (c) Robert Silva - Licensed to About.com
1080p represents the same pixel resolution as 1080i, however, the lines are displayed progressively, rather than alternately, providing a better visual look. Check out more details on 1080p.

The Practical Side Of Video Upscaling

The capability of the BDP100 to upscale standard DVDs in 720p, 1080i, or 1080p format allows a closer match to the capabilities of today's HDTVs.

Although this is not the same as watching your DVDs in true-high definition, such as the results you get when watching Blu-ray Discs, it does provide a better DVD viewing experience on an HDTV, especially with today's larger screen sizes.

Haier BDP100 Product Features

1. The BDP100 features Profile 2.0 (BD-Live) functionality with 1080p/60 and 1080p/24 Resolution output capability via HDMI 1.3a audio/video output.

2. The BDP100 can play the following discs and formats: Blu-ray Disc/BD-ROM/DVD-Video/DVD-R/DVD-RW/CD/CD-R/CD-RW/CD, MP3-CD, WMA-CD, Jpeg-CD, AVCHD, VCD, H.264, VC-1.

3. The BDP100 also provides DVD video upscaling to 720p, 1080i, 1080p output via HDMI connection (adaptable to DVI- HDCP).

4. High definition video outputs include: HDMI, DVI-HDCP video output compatibility with adapter.

5. Standard definition video output: composite video.

6. Besides audio output via HDMI, additional audio output options include: Digital Coaxial and analog stereo outputs.

7. Built-in Ethernet Connectivity, with access to Netflix and Pandora Internet Radio. Note: According to Haier, access to CinemaNow content is expected to be available sometime in October 2010.

8. One USB 2.0 port for digital photo, video, and music content access via flash drive as well as external memory required for BD-Live access.

9. A Wireless Infrared Remote Control and full color high definition onscreen GUI (Graphical User Interface) is provided for easy setup and function access. The onscreen menu is both extensive, but easy to navigate.

10. Suggested Price: $149.99

For an additional look at the features and connections of the BDP100, check out my supplementary Photo Gallery.

Hardware Used

The additional home theater hardware used in this review included:

Home Theater Receivers: Onkyo TX-SR705, Harman Kardon AVR147.

Source Components: OPPO BDP-83 and Sony BD-PS350 Blu-ray Disc players.

Loudspeaker/Subwoofer System 1 (7.1 channels): 2 Klipsch F-2's, 2 Klipsch B-3s, Klipsch C-2 Center , 2 Polk R300s, Klipsch Synergy Sub10.

Loudspeaker/Subwoofer System 2 (5.1 channels): EMP Tek E5Ci center channel speaker, four E5Bi compact bookshelf speakers for left and right main and surrounds, and an ES10i 100 watt powered subwoofer.

Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Remote Control

Haier HEC BDP100 Blu-ray Disc Player - Remote Control

Photo (c) Robert Silva - Licensed to About.com
TV/Monitors: A Westinghouse Digital LVM-37w3 1080p LCD Monitor, and Syntax LT-32HV 720p LCD TV. Displays calibrated using SpyderTV Software.

DVDO EDGE Video Scaler used for baseline video upscaling comparisons.

Audio/Video connections made with Accell, Cobalt, and AR Interconnect cables. 16 Gauge Speaker Wire used.

Level checks made using a Radio Shack Sound Level Meter

Software Used

The software used in this review included the following titles:

Blu-ray Discs used included scenes from from the following: 300, Across The Universe, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Hairspray, Iron Man, Percy Jackson and The Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Shakira - Oral Fixation Tour, The Dark Knight, Tropic Thunder, Transporter 3, and War of the Worlds (2005).

Standard DVDs used included scenes from the following: The Cave, House of the Flying Daggers, Kill Bill - Vol 1/2, Kingdom of Heaven (Director's Cut), Lord of Rings Trilogy, Master and Commander, and V For Vendetta.

CDs: Al Stewart - Sparks of Ancient Light, Beatles - LOVE, Blue Man Group - The Complex, Joshua Bell - Bernstein - West Side Story Suite, Eric Kunzel - 1812 Overture, HEART - Dreamboat Annie, Lisa Loeb - Firecracker, Nora Jones - Come Away With Me, Sade - Soldier of Love.

Proceed to Page 2: Evaluation and Final Take

User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 4 out of 5
haier blu-ray player, Member tbrandhub

I recently purchased this player on-line from ABC Warehouse.They had an on-line special and was able to get the player for $29.99!!Player is very straight forward and simple to operate.Very nice picture even with regular dvd's.Has a on-screen menu that is very user freindly.Would totally recommend this to anyone especially for the price!

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