updated 01:45 pm EDT, Thu August 30, 2007
Sony's European division today provided a glimpse of new range-topping Blu-Ray player destined for the US. The BDP-S500 improves on the foundation of the S300 by adding Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD support for enhanced 7.1-channel surround with supporting movies and audio systems; it also brings HDMI 1.3 to output these compressed signals to external receivers and support the full color range of the newest HDTV sets.
It otherwise shares the same x.V.Color (deep color), 24p frame rate support, and 1080p DVD upscaling. Bravia Theater Sync lets the S500's remote trigger CEC-based devices, such as turning on a TV and immediately setting the player as the active source.
The S500 will first become available in Europe, where it will arrive in October for 899 Euros ($1,228) with a free copy of the Spiderman trilogy in HD. Sony hasn't set a timetable for a North American release but is expected to announce an equivalent shortly and is likely to price the Blu-Ray device closer to $899 US.