Panasonic have well and truly firmed up their Blu-ray player range with the launch of the DMP-BD55 and the DMP-BD35, with both models appealing to a different set of customers. But can the BD35 compete with its better-specified older brother?
The previous model to the BD35, the BD30 was something of a disappointment. In common with many Blu-ray players launched at the time it was not up to date with the latest Blu-ray profile, and although it performed well, we felt it did not make a good buy because it would be soon outdated. The Panasonic DMP-BD35 is different though, not only does it use the latest BD-Live profile, but it performs very well indeed.
Moving from DVD to Blu-ray is always going to show a noticeable improvement, and if you choose a film that takes full benefit of the extra definition, it will be an amazing improvement. The BD35 is, perhaps unsurprisingly, a very capable Blu-ray player. But importantly is also very good at playing standard definition DVD, which is as been an important factor for many buyers who don’t want an additional player, they want one that will replace their DVD player as well.
The BD35 is a good looking machine, and as we noted with the BD55 it has a more conventional DVD player look about it which should fit in better with existing equipment. It comes with an SD Card clot allowing you to view digital camera pictures through it.
The price is very keen indeed – at around £300 this player is going to sell well – and because of this, competition from retailers is likely to be fierce so expect prices to come down further, giving an even better deal. If you amp is HD capable, then you’ll pleased to know that it has bitstream output allowing your amp to do the processing of the DTS-HD Master or Dolby True HD signal. The BD35 does everything you would expect from a top brand Blu-ray player with the addition of also playing normal DVDs well.
What to consider before you buy the Panasonic DMP-BD35 Blu-ray Player
The player lacks a couple of features which could be vital for you – there are no 7.1 surround sound connections on the rear of the machine so you need to connect to a separate home cinema receiver via HDMI if you want surround sound. It also lacks some of the higher end audio processing capabilities of its bigger brother the BD55, which may not be a problem..
Why you should buy the Panasonic DMP-BD35 Blu-ray Player
At around £100 to £150 cheaper than its older brother, the DMP-BD55 we think the DMP-BD35 represents better value for money, and is a fantastic buy at the price point. If you need the audio capabilities you will have to opt for the BD55, but otherwise this is your best option at the moment. Rating:/5