DVD and Blu-ray Players
Netflix may exist now, but DVDs and Blu-ray discs are still in style. Many people still buy DVD and Blu-ray players, sometimes simply to watch the old discs they have at home and experience a wave of nostalgia. While DVD and Blu-ray players are similar in nature, they still have some differences.
What is the difference between DVD and Blu-ray players?
- DVD players can only play DVD formats and older, while Blu-ray players can play almost all popular file formats including the DVD format.
- Blu-ray players are therefore more versatile, while maintaining the ability to play high-quality Blu-ray discs. If you were to choose one to buy, it would be better to buy a Blu-ray player for its increased capabilities.
What is Blu-Ray, anyway?
Blu-ray is essentially a file format that can encode content up to a resolution of 1080p, as opposed to a standard DVD format which encodes up to 480i resolution. This means Blu-ray discs have better video output quality, which brighter colors, clearer sound, and better details. However, do note that another file type known as 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray is not the same as Blu-ray despite the similar names; Ultra HD Blu-ray requires its own type of player and cannot be played on standard Blu-ray players.
What should I look for when buying a DVD player?
DVD players are more straightforward to purchase, but still, keep an eye out for the following:
- Check the types of file format that a DVD player supports, and make sure it's in sync with the files/discs you want to play.
- A DVD player with the USB input option, as this will allow you to play movies and songs from a USB flash drive or hard disk, instead of just discs.
- Some DVD players have an "upscaling" feature, which improves the quality of standard definition DVDs and produce an output closer to Blu-ray quality. This may be helpful if you don't plan on buying a Blu-ray player, but want improved picture quality.
What should I look for when buying a Blu-ray player?
Blu-ray players offer much more than a standard DVD player, and can often expand to function as a multimedia player. Do consider the following when purchasing one:
- Consider if it's worth the extra investment. Blu-ray content offers excellent quality, but only if played on a HDTV. If you only have a SDTV, you may not be able to fully enjoy the experience that Blu-ray can offer.
- Choose the relevant connectivity. Most Blu-ray players connect via HDMI, so be sure to have this option on your display be it your TV or computer. Many newer players also offer connectivity via Ethernet or Wi-Fi for streaming web content, which is a great way to expand the use of your player.
- Some video game consoles like the Sony PlayStation have an incorporated Blu-ray player, so if you want to game and have a player, you can consider this option.
3D Blu-ray players support 3D discs and content, so if you have a 3DTV or plan to get one, look out for this feature.