HardwarePhilips has opted for a rather traditional design: long and thin, with painted steel, it's very different to the sleek looks of the Samsung BD-7500. At least the front panel stands out by using the same touch-sensitive interface as Philips' latest collection of TVs.
The minimalist looks hide a rather wide range of inputs and outputs though. Music fans will be glad to hear that there are two optical audio outputs, via coaxial or optical cables, as well as both 5.1 and stereo analogue ports. HDMI and composite video outputs are included, as is an Ethernet port. And while Philips was sensible enough to include an SD card reader, it put it at the back rather than at the front. It's only useable for VOD content and storage for BD-Live discs; if you want to look at photos, you'll have to fall back on the USB port, which this time is at the front. Interestingly, the USB port works with a keyboard—wireless keyboards included—meaning you can easily use Net TV from the comfort of your sofa.
Having VOD and a media player is all well and good, but we're also interested in this device's main feature: playing Blu-ray discs! It takes four seconds for the drawer to open, and another 24 seconds before your disc starts playing. That's less than 30 seconds before the film starts which is perfectly acceptable.
Image QualityLike with all our Blu-ray player tests, we've compared the results of the Philips BDP7600 with our standard reference, the Sony PS3 Slim console:
We have no complaints about the colour temperature, gamma curve or colour reproduction either. The BDP7600 accurately reproduces the image in the video source just as the director of the original work intended.
With SD video, the PS3 Slim (left) produces smoother, more natural results. The BDP7600's upscaled video is a little pixellated.
Energy ConsumptionWith 13 W during playback and almost nothing on standby, this is one of the most energy efficient Blu-ray players we've seen.
- Net TV works well with a wireless keyboard (but you'll have to provide your own)
- Media player compatible with lots of formats
- Accurate colours
- Very low energy consumption of 13 W during playback
- Lots of inputs and outputs
- Net TV a little slow
- Design is too boring
The Philips BDP7600 might have a plain exterior, but that hides a powerful Blu-ray player. The Net TV platform is a little slow, but it really comes into its own if you use it with a wireless keyboard. The media player can do almost as good job as a dedicated device and the image quality is quite simply perfect. This is THE Blu-ray player we've been waiting for!