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Panasonic DMP-BDT180EB review

 Review: May 2016  
 

Rating: 4 stars

In a nutshell: The Panasonic DMP-BDT180EB 3D Blu-Ray player is a good choice if you don't need a Wi-Fi connection. This model offers excellent picture quality, with 4K upscaling of Blu-Ray disks, and upscaling of DVDs to Full HD. A wide range of audio formats is supported too. In addition, the ethernet port allows connection to the internet for access to the BBC iPlayer, as well as Netflix and YouTube.

Best buy: Panasonic DMP-BDT180 from Tesco Direct (£74.00)



 

Design & looks

Panasonic's 2016 range of Blu-Ray players don't look very different to their 2015 counterparts, and the DMP-BDT180EB looks very similar to the DMP-BDT170EB. It's a glossy black box with curved corners and bevelled edges, with a sleek look, but broadly similar to every other entry-level disk player. The "4K" logo is displayed prominently on the front, ensuring everyone knows that you have an up-to-date product.

Playback

The DMP-BDT180 is lifted above other entry-level Blu-ray players by its ability to upscale Blu-Rays to 4K, and DVDs to 1080p HD quality. It's a fine player, built on Panasonic's outstanding image-processing technology, with features like Deep Colour Output to deliver the richest possible visual experience.

Audio quality is good too, and the device supports a wide range of high resolution audio formats and audio processing with Dolby Digital, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, DTS-HD Master Audio Essential, and DTS-HD High Resolution Audio. Audio output is via the single HDMI output. Supported audio file types include MP3, AAC, WAV, WMA, ALAC, FLAC, and DSD.

The player is versatile in terms of the types of disks it can play. It plays both 2D and 3D disks, with 2D to 3D conversion possible. As well as BD-ROM and BD-Video, it includes support for BD-RE, BD-RE DL, BD-R, BD-R DL, BDAV, and BDMV formats.

Playback of DVD disks is supported, including DVD-RW/-R/-R DL. The player will also play CDs, including CD-R, CD-RW and CD-DA.

Smart TV

Panasonic's version of Smart TV isn't quite up to the standard of Samsung's, but it includes catch-up TV from the BBC iPlayer, as well as Netflix, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Picasa Web Album and AccuWeather apps.

Panasonic's app store lets you download additional apps, and the system also includes a full web browser, although this isn't easy to use without a keyboard.

To access any of these services, you'll need to connect the device to the internet using an ethernet cable.

Connectivity

The DMP-BDT180 misses out on Wi-Fi, but it does include an ethernet port for network connection. A HDMI output is used to connect the box to your TV, and you'll also find a USB port for connecting an external hard drive, memory stick, or other USB-equipped device. The box is DLNA-certified and can stream music, photos and video from connected devices to your TV screen and speakers.

Conclusion - excellent for disk playback

The DMP-BDT180's key strength is in playback of Blu-ray and DVD disks. With class-leading image processing, and 4K upscaling of Blu-ray disks, it does the core job of any Blu-Ray player exceptionally well. A very wide range of formats is supported, including 3D disks.

The device is less competitive when it comes to smart networking. Although it includes a number of key Smart TV functions, it doesn't offer everything that the likes of Samsung and Sony include, and it relies on an ethernet connection instead of the convenience of Wi-Fi. It does, however, allow streaming of content from PCs and laptops on your home network, as well as connected USB devices.

The Panasonic DMP-BDT180EB is reasonably priced, and it offers good mid-range functionality. The slightly more expensive Panasonic DMP-BDT280EB includes the flexibility of a Wi-Fi connection, but if you're sure you won't want that, then the 180EB is an excellent choice.


Panasonic DMP-BDT180EB features include:

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User questions

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Does it play region one us dvds without any hassle?

Asked by holtham from united kingdom on 16th Dec 2016
derek email derekholtham22@sky.com


Reply by aurelio o. angeles from Philippines on 29th Dec 2016
Is BDP 180 multi-region? I have dvds coming from various regions.

Does it play dvd ram discs?

Asked by Lula from England on 2nd Aug 2016



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