updated 08:15 pm EST, Thu January 6, 2011
Top player offers 2D-3D upscaling, DNLA, Skype
Sony has launched its 2011 line of Blu-ray players at CES, with four stand-alone models and three integrated 5.1 channel home theater versions. The company also launched a portable Blu-ray player. All the 2011 models offer Internet access to over 40 services such as Netflix, Pandora, YouTube, Hulu Plus, and Sony's Video On Demand.
Most of the 2011 players handle 3D content and can stream audio over Wi-Fi. All but one player work with mobile apps that provide remote control for iPhone and Android, which additionally supports voice control, and all the players offer additional DVD and CD playback.
The BDP-S780 plays 3D and standard Blu-ray discs, offering upconversion from 2D to 3D and video upscaling for other sources, and offers SACD capability. It includes Wi-Fi Wireless 802.11 n and WPS security. Its DNLA client allows it to share audio, photos and video from a PC over a user's home network and it supports Skype to Skype Video calling.
Sony's BDP-S580 has a similar feature set but lacks the 2D to 3D upconversion and video upscaling capability of the S780. The BDP-S480 model also loses built-in Wi-Fi, requiring an optional adapter, and the entry-level BDP-S380 lacks 3D playback.
The home theater systems all have iPhone docks and two HDMI inputs, sending 1000 watts to a 5.1 speaker system. The top of the line BDV-E780W has 3D playback, wireless rear speakers and front speakers that deliver an extended soundstage. The midrange BDV-E580 plays Blu-ray 3D and 2D disks, alongside SACD playback. It also supports DNLA client playback and has an integrated Wi-Fi 802.11 n receiver. The BDV-E280 model eschews the built in Wi-Fi and DNLA capabilities and doesn't work with the remote control app for iPhone or Android.
Sony's first portable Blu-ray player, the BDP-SX1000 has a 10.1-inch display and works with Blu-rays, DVDs and USB media. The unit's display swivels 180 degrees, it has a five-hour rechargeable battery and both built-in speakers and a headphone jack.
Sony also launched a 5.1 audio system, the HT-SS380, which has 1000 watts for the five channels and three HDMI inputs with 3D pass through. It is designed to match with a standalone Blu-ray player and includes an iPhone dock.
The BDP-S780 will be available in April for about $250, the BDP-S580 is due in March for $200, the BDP-S480 will arrive in March for $180 and the BDP S380 lands first in February for $150. The BDV-E780W is due in May at a price of $600, the BDV-E580 in March for $500 and the BDV-E280 in April for $400. The Portable lands in the Spring for $300 and the Audio system arrives in Spring for $350.
Sony also introduced 27 TV models earlier at CES. The company's website has not been updated with the new models.