Onkyo are about to launch a new, high specification profile 2.0 Bluray player, which is shaping up to be a strong contender in the sub £1,000 price point. Boasting their usual battleship build quality, the player sports a simple, uncluttered facia, but still managing to look pretty serious.
Onkyo have looked at the player as a whole in order to achieve better results. The centre mounted mechanism sits lower than usual to help weight distribution, and components that cause even tiny vibrations have been placed closer to the feet of the player to reduce this.
Even though some manufacturers have chosen to omit onboard decoding, Onkyo has included this, widening it's appeal to those who aren't using HD AV receivers, allowing them to take full advantage of 7.1 HD audio. The HDMI output is full 1.3a specification, capable of Deep Colour, CEC, and x.v.Colour.
Video upscaling is performed by Anchor Bay's ABT1030 "Video reference Series" chip, ensuring high quality upscaling of standard definition DVD discs, which also benefit from 3D Noise Reduction. The 12 bit video DAC features NSV technology ensures any HD video is as pure as possible, and even sports an HDMI "Source Direct Mode" allowing pure, untouched HD video to be sent from the player. One good feature of this player is the ability to use the HDMI and the component video output at the same time.
Independent circuit blocks for audio, digital video, and analogue video ensure improved stability by reducing electromagnetic interference.
All in all this looks a very promising player, and well worth it's asking price given the features and promised performance on offer. It's also going to be a strong addition to their AV receivers, and especially to the pre/power AV package that's it's been designed to be used with. And it's not plastic :)
I've saved the best for last - THX certification! And you still get change from £600......