Samsung BD-D6900 review
- Stylish design
- Solid performance
- Loads of features
- Single Freeview tuner
- USB memory needed to record
- 2D conversion unconvincing
The Samsung BD-D6900 Blu-ray player is a deck that’s also fitted with a Freeview HD receiver, bringing you HD movies and telly in one remarkably slim case. But typically for a Samsung player, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Samsung BD-D6900: Features
The Samsung BD-D6900 features a Smart Hub, which zaps a wide range of content from the internet direct to your TV. This is a smart, slick interface designed to mimic an iPhone or Android phone with its grid of ‘apps’.
This DLNA-certified Blu-ray player can also stream a wide range of media formats (DivX HD, MKV, MP3, WMA, WMV, JPEG and XviD) over your home network, or play them from USB sticks. Throw in built-in Wi-Fi, 3D support, 2D-to-3D conversion (which works with Freeview pictures) and built-in BD Live memory and you’ve got one well-equipped Blu-ray deck.
It falls down on the Freeview side though, as there’s only one Freeview tuner and you need to plug in a USB memory device in order to record anything, which is restrictive. Best to view the Freeview side as an added bonus.
Samsung BD-D6900: Design
The Samsung BD-D6900 stands out from the crowd with an alluring silver top plate and abnormally slim bodywork.
Also impressive is the central disc slot, which is combined with a panel of touch-sensitive controls and a large display panel. It’s a stunning look that rewrites the rulebook.
On the back you’ll find a standard array of sockets, including HDMI, component, composite, optical digital audio and analogue stereo outputs. Expecting a second HDMI for non-3D receivers and/or multichannel analogue outputs is wishful thinking perhaps, but not unheard of at this price.
Samsung BD-D6900: Performance
The funky onscreen design and dumbed-down remote make the BD-D6900 a joy to use, and disc loading is fast. We can’t fault its pictures either, reproducing Blu-ray discs with the sort of dazzling, pin-sharp clarity we’ve come to expect from the format.
Black level, motion, detail retrieval, colour accuracy – all right on the money. 3D material is equally smooth, although converted 2D material isn’t always convincing.
Switching to Freeview, hi-def channels look lucid and punchy, although standard definition channels are noisier than hoped.
Samsung BD-D6900: Verdict
With Freeview HD and Blu-ray in a single box, the BD-D6900 is an unusual but appealing solution. It’s convenient, stylish, easy to use and delivers knockout 3D and 2D pictures, plus the Smart Hub web portal provides loads of bonus entertainment.
It’s not cheap though, plus the lack of a hard-disk and a single Freeview tuner are restrictions, but this deck doesn’t set out to be a PVR – the Freeview tuner is just an added bonus that might come in handy in the bedroom.
Samsung BD-D6900 Availability: Out now
Samsung BD-D6900 price: £230