Blu-Ray Buying Guide for Black Friday 2009

Blu-ray has been growing in popularity since around 2007. Both Blu-ray players and discs have substantially dropped in price since last year. This Black Friday will be the first time that many stores will be offering enticing deals on Blu-ray Players, and the first time we will see a Blu-ray player sold well under $100.

Unless you're looking for a non-standard feature, such as wireless internet connectivity, or a package deal that comes with speakers or other extras, there aren't a lot of differences to look for between different models. We're going to take a look at our favorite pick for a basic player, and then the best package deal that we've seen this year.

Blu-ray Players - Under $100
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Magnavox Blu-ray Disc Player
  • Model: NB500MG1F
  • Plays Blu-ray and standard DVD's
$78.00
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Insignia Blu-ray Disc Player
$99.99


While both the Magnavox and Insignia play Blu-ray and regular DVD discs just fine, we think the Insignia is worth the extra $20 investment.

The Insignia can be connected to the Internet connection in your home and used to watch Netflix Instant Streaming. Netflix has thousands of movies online that you can stream to your TV from the Internet simply using the Insignia player. It's easy and inexpensive (Netflix prices start at $8.99 / month ). Even if you only rent a few movies per month, Netflix is not going to cost much more than what you are already spending at your local video rental store.

BD Live is a Blu-ray disc feature that brings content from the Internet to your Blu-ray movies. This has previously included games, downloadable features, quizzes, and movie trailers. The Insignia is capable of getting online and accessing the content, whereas the Magnavox is unable to get online.

If you do not require the Internet features that the Insignia provides, the Magnavox player is still a very functional Blu-ray player, and will still play your Blu-ray movies just as well as the Insignia would.

Blu-ray Player and Home Theater System
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Samsung 5.1 Channel Blu-ray Disc Home Theater System
  • Model: HT-BD1250
  • Plays Blu-ray and standard DVD's
  • All-in-one receiver and Blu-ray player
  • Includes speakers
$397.99


This Blu-ray home theater bundle from Samsung is a good deal if you are looking for both a home theater setup and Blu-ray player. The Blu-ray player also supports Netflix Instant Streaming, BD Live, and additionally offers Pandora Music Streaming and the ability to watch YouTube on your TV.

November 23, 2009

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