updated 04:05 pm EDT, Tue May 6, 2008
Panasonic BD50 Priced
Panasonic on Tuesday came closer to launching its anticipated DMP-BD50 Blu-ray player by setting its price and reaffirming its launch window. The BD50 will stand as Panasonic's flagship with a $700 price tag and is still on track to launch before the end of the spring as an eventual replacement for the current BD30. Panasonic hasn't yet revealed a phase-out plan for the older device.
The new player is Panasonic's third-generation HD movie reader and is the first from the company to support the Blu-ray spec's Final Standard Profile 2.0, which gives the device support for Internet-based extras on newer movie discs, including in-movie features such as subtitles for extra languages or multiplayer games. It also adds the ability to play AVCHD (H.264) videos and JPEG photos loaded from SD cards and supports both the more advanced deep color and sound features of HDMI 1.3 as well as native 24 frames per second playback for certain movies.