Samsung BD-H8500M review
|Review: April 2016|
In a nutshell: Released in 2014, and now available at a very good price, the Samsung BD-H8500M is a Smart 3D Blu-ray player with a 500GB Freeview HD recorder built in. This combined player/recorder is fully featured, with support for 3D disks, Smart TV and catch-up TV services, plus built-in Wi-Fi.
Today's best buy: Samsung BD-H8500M 500GB from Tesco Direct (£169.00)
Design & looks
There's not much to say about the way that the Samsung BD-H8500M Blu-Ray player looks. It's larger than most players, has a glossy black plastic finish, and is shaped like a rectangular box, with one rounded corner. A front display shows disk playback information, and there are touch controls for power and eject.
Playback & recording
The BD-H8500M is capable of playing both 2D and 3D Blu-Ray disks as well as DVDs, including DVD±R and DVD±RW formats. It can also play CDs, including CD DA, CD-R, and CD-RW format disks. A built-in CD ripping feature lets you convert CD audio to digital music formats.
Audio quality is above average, and the player supports 7.1 channel Dolby and DTS decoding.
But what really sets this model apart from ordinary Blu-Ray players is its capability of recording to its built-in 500GB hard drive (HDD). The device includes dual DVB-T2 / C tuners, allowing you to record two channels simultaneously. The 500GB of disk is sufficient to record 70 hours in HD quality, and up to 200 hours in standard quality.
The HDD also enables you to pause and rewind live TV.
Catch-up TV & Smart TV
If you do miss a programme, all is not lost, as the player includes a wide range of catch-up TV services - ITV Player, BBC iPlayer, the 4oD service from Channel 4, and Demand 5 from Channel 5. This allows you to watch programmes broadcast within the past week, using internet streaming.
And if there really is nothing to watch, then you can access streaming content from Netflix and Amazon Instant Video.
To use the catch-up or streaming services, you'll need to connect the box to the internet using either an ethernet cable, or the built-in Wi-Fi. A HDMI cable connects the device to a HD-Ready TV.
Additionally, an optical digital audio output lets you hook up to a 7.1 audio system, and you can plug in a USB drive if you want to record video on a removable device.
You can also access music, photos and videos from connected devices on your TV, and screen mirroring of compatible smartphones and tablets is also possible.
If you have a Samsung TV, the Anynet+ feature lets you use just one remote control to control both devices.
Conclusion - a recommended Blu-Ray player & HDD recorder
The Samsung BD-H8500M cost around £250 when it launched back in 2014, but it's now available for well under £200, and it's now probably the UK's most popular Blu-Ray player and HDD recorder combo.
It isn't hard to understand why - the H8500M includes all the features that most people want from a recording device, including 500GB of disk space, twin tuners, built-in Wi-Fi, Smart TV services, plus playback of 3D Blu-Rays disks.
Samsung BD-H8500M features include:
- Playable disks: Blu-Ray (including 3D), DVD, CD
- Dual tuner DVB-T2 / C
- Record, pause and rewind live TV
- 500GB disk allows 70 hours of HD recording
- Catch-up TV services including BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4oD, and Demand 5
- Smart content including Amazon Instant Video and Netflix
- 7.1 channel audio decoding
- Connectivity: HDMI, Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, ethernet, USB 2.0, optical digital audio output, AnyNet+ (HDMI-CEC), DLNA, screen mirroring
- Size (W x H x D): 430 x 55 x 282 mm
Got a question? This is the place to ask it!
Please don't ask a question that has already been asked. Duplicates will be removed.
Why won't my player play BBC Iplayer at full screen?
Asked by Bob
on 13th Sep 2017
Purchased from Currys PC World I contacted them but after 3 weeks am no further forward.
Getting a Samsung BD H8500M Player/Recorder, Can I use with a Sky Box.?
by David Masser
on 21st Dec 2016
Always running out of space as members of the family have their favourites to save. With Sky box & Samsung box I thought it would keep us all happy is it possible to use them both. Thank you.
Hope u can help.
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