The Sony BDP-S380 Blu-ray player joins a few other recent additions to Sony’s 2011 line up, and serves its purpose well. The player has been deemed by most as an “entry level” player, lacking some of the bells and whistles that other Sony players take advantage of. However, this isn’t to write the Sony BDP-S380 off. For those that are looking for a straight forward Blu-ray player, this is a good value option.
Now, a look at some of the differences between the Sony BDP-S380 and some of Sony’s other Blu-ray players currently on the market. The first marked difference is the lack of 3D capability, which may be a large deciding factor for some especially considering the burgeoning marketplace for 3D Blu-ray discs. Even though there is the lack of 3D capability, the Sony BDP-S380 still makes use of features on Sony’s top of the line players. For example, the mobile media app found on the more expensive BDP-S480 can still be used on this player, which allows smart phones and other portable media devices to act as a “remote” of sorts for the player. The app not only gives your portable device the functionality of a standard DVD remote, but also allows you search the web for programming and stream video directly from your device. Currently, devices that are known to work with this device include the Android, iPhone, and iPad.
The Sony BDP-S380 also has some other pretty unique features for a Blu-ray player in the £150 price range. For example: the player has the ability to make use of Wi-Fi and can search the internet to find programmes or movies for you to watch. However, you need to buy the optional UWA-BR100 dongle to take advantage of this. It can also socially network with your friends on Twitter to let them know what you are watching. USB ports are another addition, which gives you the ability to connect an mp3 player or external hard drive to stream content from those devices. The player takes advantage of full high-definition 1080p video, and with HDMI out it is compatible with most major HD televisions on the market today.
The design of this new player is still influenced by the ‘monolith design’ concept, but Sony have added a little curve at the bottom to soften up the edges a little. We preferred the looks of the previous player, but each to their own, and it’s certainly still a very good looking player.
There is a new version of this player available: Sony BDP-S390.
What to consider before you buy the Sony BDP-S380 Blu-ray Player
If you cannot connect your player to a wired internet connection, then the optional USB dongle required to make it wireless does push the player closer to the £200 mark, and makes it similar in price to the range topping BDP-S580 with Wi-Fi built in. Also the upgrade to the 3D ready BDP-S480 is not quite as much as you’d think so might be worth considering too.
Why you should buy the Sony BDP-S380 Blu-ray Player
Like the model before it, we can’t see much wrong with Sony’s entry level player. It may lack some of the bells and whistles of the models higher up the range, but as a starting point, it’s pretty faultless. Fully featured, very good looking, and great value make it an obvious choice for anyone looking to get the first or next Blu-ray player. Rating: /5
Sony BDP-S380 Best Prices