Blu-ray is entering its fifth year on the market, and just when you thought everything that a Blu-ray Disc player can do, has been done, along comes the BDP-103 from OPPO Digital.
The BDP-103 plays 2D and 3D Blu-ray Discs, provides both 1080p and 4K upscaling, and not only provides two HDMI outputs, but also adds two HDMI inputs for additional connection flexibility. In addition, if that isn't enough connectivity for you, a total of three USB ports are provided as well.
However, you won't find any analog video outputs, as both composite and component video outputs have been eliminated, save for a composite video output that only displays the onscreen menu system if needed for diagnostic purposes. For more details on the BDP-103, keep reading this review. After reading the review also be sure to check out a supplementary Photo Profile and Video Performance Test Results.
OPPO BDP-103 Product Features
As a starting reference, here is an overview of the features and specifications of the BDP-103:
4. High definition video outputs include: Two HDMI outputs, either of which can be used for 2D and 3D Blu-ray Disc playback. Both HDMI outputs are adaptable to DVI-HDCP video output compatibility with adapter (2D only output using DVI).
5. A Diagnostic composite video output is provided that allows the display of onscreen setup menus only that can be used for setup troubleshooting.
6. Besides audio output via two HDMI outputs, additional audio output options include: Digital Optical, Digital Coaxial, and a set of 7.1 Channel analog audio outputs (the front left/right analog outputs can also be used for two-channel only output, if desired in place of using the 5.1/7.1 channel analog output option).
7. DVD-Audio and SACD audio output is accessible by both 5.1 channel analog and HDMI outputs (NOTE: DSD audio output for SACD only available via HDMI 2 output - However, SACD PCM converted output available from both HDMI outputs).
8. Two HDMI inputs (one front, one rear) are provided for connection of external devices that take advantage of the BDP-103's internal video processing features, in a similar manner as an upscaling home theater receiver. In addition, the front mounted HDMI input is MHL-enabled. This additionally allows the connection of compatible MHL-enabled source devices that include select smart phones and tablets.
9. On-board adjustments are provided for factors, such as Sharpness/Contrast/Brightness/Saturation as well as video processing/scaling adjustments for Edge Enhancement and Noise Reduction. However, the video adjustment setting options provided for the HDMI 1 and HDMI 2 outputs are slightly different, due to the fact that separate video processing chips are assigned separately to each output.
10. The BDP-103 provides switchable NTSC/PAL output - automatic PAL/NTSC bi-directional conversion (non-region coded discs only).
11. Video processing and upscaling for HDMI output 1 utilizes Marvell QDEO Video processing, while video processing and scaling for the HDMI 2 output is provided by an OPPO/Mediatek chip.
12. Network/Internet Connectivity via Ethernet/LAN or provided USB WiFi adapter. Access is provided to several streaming services, including CinemaNow, FilmFresh, Netflix, Vudu (including Vudu 3D), Pandora, Picasa, Rhapsody, and YouTube, as well as media files stored on network connected devices, such as Media Servers and PCs.
13. One front, and two rear mounted USB 2.0 ports for digital photo, video, and music content access via flash drive are also provided.
14. 1 GB of total internal memory. However, the amount of memory available for BD-Live functions can vary depending on other player operations. On the other hand, BD-Live memory capacity can be expanded via flash drive, if desired, using one of the three available USB ports.
15. RS232 and IR port connections for custom installation needs.
16. A Wireless Infrared Backlit 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. Additional remote control convenience is also provided, via downloadable apps, for both compatible iOS and Android Devices
For an additional look at the features and connections of the BDP-103, check out my supplementary Photo Profile.
Additional Components Used to Conduct Review
Additional Source for 2D and 3D Blu-ray comparison: OPPO BDP-93.
Loudspeaker/Subwoofer System 2 (7.1 channels): EMP Tek Cinema 7 Compact Home Theater Speaker System (on review loan).
TV/Monitor (2D): A Westinghouse Digital LVM-37w3 1080p LCD Monitor.
Video Projector (2D and 3D): Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 3020e (on review loan).
DVDO EDGE Video Scaler used for baseline video upscaling comparisons.
Software Used Used to Conduct Review
Blu-ray Discs (2D): Battleship, Ben Hur, Cowboys and Aliens, The Hunger Games, Jaws, Jurassic Park Trilogy, Megamind, Mission Impossible - Ghost Protocol, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, The Dark Knight Rises.
Standard DVDs: 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, Outlander, U571, and V For Vendetta.
CDs: Al Stewart - A Beach Full of Shells, Beatles - LOVE, Blue Man Group - The Complex, Joshua Bell - Bernstein - West Side Story Suite, Eric Kunzel - 1812 Overture, HEART - Dreamboat Annie, Nora Jones - Come Away With Me, Sade - Soldier of Love.
DVD Audio Discs: - Queen - Night At The Opera/The Game, Eagles - Hotel California, and Medeski, Martin, and Wood - Uninvisible, Sheila Nicholls - Wake.
SACDs: Pink Floyd - Dark Side Of The Moon, Steely Dan - Gaucho, The Who - Tommy.
Additional audio, video, and still image content content from streaming, flash drive, and network connected sources.
BDP-103 provided excellent detail, color, contrast, and black levels with Blu-ray Disc playback, and provided excellent playback quality for DVDs and a good job with internet and network streamed content.
In more thorough testing, the BDP-103 passed all of the tests on the HQV Benchmark DVD, which measures video processing and upscaling performance.
The tests revealed that the BDP-103 does excellent on jaggie elimination, noise reduction, detail enhancement, motion adaptive processing, and moire pattern detection and elimination (see result samples)
The BDP-103's 1080p upscaling performance easily matched, or surpassed both the previous OPPO BDP-93 Blu-ray Disc player and standalone DVDO EDGE Video Scaler used for additional video upscaling references.
Note: I was unable to verify the 4K upscaling capability of the BDP-103, as I did not have a 4K-capable TV or video projector onhand.
Also, the BDP-103 did not have a problem converting HDMI to DVI. I connected the BDP-103 to a DVI input on a Westinghouse LVW-37w3 1080p LCD monitor. Using an HDMI-to-DVI adapter cable, there was no problem with signal recognition. Also, rerunning the HQV tests, no detectable performance difference was detected using DVI or HDMI, except for the fact that DVI cannot transfer 3D signals.
For 3D playback, I found that the 3D Blu-ray discs did take longer to load than standard Blu-ray Discs, but the BDP-103 is a fast disc loader and from disc insertion to menu display, the time rarely took more than 30 seconds. Also, once the 3D content was accessed, the BDP-103 had no difficulty playing the disc. There was no playback hesitation, frame skipping, or other issues that could be attributed to the player.
The BDP-103 lived up to its role in supplying the correct 3D signal to the Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 3020e, used for 3D display.
Also, keep in mind that with 3D, the Blu-ray Disc player is only one part of the 3D viewing chain. What you ultimately see on the screen depends on the quality of the source content (how well the 3D movie or program is filmed or post-processed for 3D Blu-ray), the integrity of transmission medium (in the case of this review both high-speed HDMI cables, and WHDI wireless transmission between the player projector were used (The Epson 3020e comes with a WHDI transmitter/receiver system), the 3D signal decoding of the 3D-enabled TV or video projector, and, finally, how well the 3D glasses used synch-up with the 3D TV or video projector.
Just as its three predecessors (BDP-80, BDP-83, and BDP-93), the BDP-103 offers complete onboard audio decoding of currently used audio formats, and also provides undecoded bitstream output for compatible home theater receivers. In addition, the BDP-103 comes equipped with both HDMI and 5.1/7.1 channel analog audio outputs, allowing Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio access to both HDMI and non-HDMI equipped receivers.
The BDP-103 delivered stable audio output for Blu-ray discs, DVDs, CDs, SACDs (Super Audio CDs), DVD-Audio Discs, as well as good quality audio playback from both the Pandora and Rhapsody online services. I noticed no audio artifacts that could be attributed to the BDP-103.
The BDP-103 demonstrated versatility as an excellent Blu-ray Disc, DVD, CD/SACD/DVD-Audio, and internet streaming player. It is too bad that SACD and DVD-Audio discs are more niche audio playback formats, as this player really delivers the audio goods for both.