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OPPO BDP-831 Blu-ray Player review



  • Recommended by TR
OPPO BDP-831 Blu-ray Player


Our Score


Review Price free/subscription

OPPO has built up a cult following among home cinema fans with a succession of feature-packed yet affordable DVD players, and is now taking the next logical step by moving into the Blu-ray market.

We've been salivating over OPPO's debut Blu-ray player (not literally, it invalidates the warranty) ever since it appeared on the company's US website last year as the BDP-83. But at long last the company has launched a European version (adding an extra 1 to the model number for good measure), giving us a chance to find out how well OPPO's talents transfer to the world of hi-def.

Why are we so excited by this Profile 2.0 player? Well, not only does it boast one of the most extensive feature lists of any hi-def deck we've encountered, but the on-board electronics also have a distinct high-end flavour - plus the £450 price tag is a lot less than you'd normally expect to pay for such a well-endowed deck.

The look and feel of the BDP-831 befits a player with lofty aspirations. The casing is solid and reassuringly weighty, and the brushed aluminium fascia is bereft of any crowd-pleasing embellishments - it's understated, esoteric and seriously stylish. We love the cluster of silver buttons on the right, alongside a USB port designed to play digital media from flash drives - and as we'll discover, the OPPO supports a dizzying array of formats.

Equally pleasing is the rear panel which leaves no stone unturned. Naturally you get HDMI v1.3, component and composite video outputs, while the audio line-up includes a set of 7.1-channel analogue outputs, separate analogue stereo outputs, plus optical and coaxial digital audio ports.

This comprehensive set of sonic sockets, combined with the OPPO's on-board HD audio decoders, means the OPPO is ready to serve any sound system. It will output Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio bitstreams to cutting-edge receivers boasting HDMI v1.3 inputs and the relevant decoding, or output them as PCM from the HDMI or multichannel analogue outputs for less sophisticated amps.

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david brook

October 16, 2009, 1:55 pm

Bit late with your rave reviews guys, av forums and what hi-fi beat you by weeks. Problem is NO ONE CAN BUY IT, the oppo web store is not open yet, promised early october!!!

Danny P

October 16, 2009, 2:22 pm

We've had the OPPO player for about two months now but they asked everyone to hold off reviewing it until the online store went live. But given that the online store has been delayed (it was originally supposed to be up early September), other sites started reviewing it beforehand. What Hi-Fi hasn't reviewed it yet though.


October 16, 2009, 3:26 pm

In my view this is all fine and dandy having companies bringing out lots of lovely new high performing blue ray players, but when are we going to start seeing more people following companies like Panasonic and start producing blue ray recorders? The public have got very used to seeing blue ray players and i think most would agree that the technology for them has come on in leaps and bounds and the prices have generally fallen to a much more acceptable level for the average punter which is good. But the only way i'll be investing my hard earned is on a player that incorporates a recorder, preferably with twin Freesat tuners inside.

Matt Ross

October 16, 2009, 4:47 pm

I have a BDP-83 and it's sweet!


October 16, 2009, 5:04 pm

Good review as always but there's just one thing that'd be handy. With DVD players there was a massive gulf in quality between what the early devices could do and, say, the current mid-range decks. There seems to be very little info on how that applies to Blu-Ray players. Any chance of mentioning the major differences between, say, this player and a PS3 with the latest updates in terms of audio and visual quality?


October 16, 2009, 5:27 pm

I have to admit that unless you have money pouring out of several orifices I just don't see the point of buying an expensive standalone BR player.

For way less money than this you can have a PS3 and the quality of BR itself is already so high that quibbling over small differences in picture quality is getting less and less relevant.

Admittedly it does look better in the Hi-Fi rack than a PS3.

Personally I have Sky for most of my HD needs and still buy DVD's over BR as the price difference is big and the quality differences are often not.


October 16, 2009, 6:11 pm

What TV('s) does TR use to test new Blu-ray players? Do you use more than one TV to see how the picture differs or is it whatever you have available at the time of review?

I imagine you'd get far better results hooking the BDP-831 up to a 50" Kuro than a 32" Bravia for example. But that said, at the price of this player it's only going to apply to enthusiasts with decent TV's.

Great review though :)


October 16, 2009, 7:24 pm

@Mike Why on earth do you want a blu-ray recorder? You actually think it's a good idea to spend £5 on 25GB write-once discs.. that might or might fail when they are burned? You do know that you can get a 1.5TB hard drive for £72 and put that in a DVR? That's sixty silly little single layer BD-R's. If you want to take the video somewhere out of the DVR, then flash pen drives are £1 per GB now, they are much faster, more reliable and can be reused over and over. Plus they work in any device with a USB port. Surely that's the way to go?


October 18, 2009, 9:16 pm


Those individuals who wanted a PS3 have bought a PS3. The differences between the PS3 and the Oppo are more than just blu-ray picture quality. For me there are significantly more plusses to owning the Oppo than the PS3. I briefly owned a PS3 and it looked out of place in my rack.

Last, you don’t have to have money pouring out of several orifices to buy this player. (lol) Also, everyone has their own opinion about what is considered an expensive standalone BR player. Those who are buying the Oppo evidently don’t see it as expensive or can actually see its value. The only other players that support the same recorded media as the Oppo are significantly more expensive.


October 19, 2009, 9:03 am

Well the Oppo has been available here in Australia now for a shade over $1,000 AUS. Consider the following points, one, your going to struggle to find anything in this price bracket that betters it with BR discs, two, it's on a par with the Oppo DV-983H and Denon DVD-3930 in its ability to upscale DVD to 1080p, and three, its rather handy with CD, thus making it a genuine Universal player.

Oh I almost forgot (not), one other point, in Australia the Oppo can be purchased as a region free player with both BD & DVD discs. Factor all that in and the asking price for the Oppo is a steal, by comparison the PS3 isn't even in the hunt, in fact once you see what the Oppo brings to the table the PS3 is left looking like little more than a jumped-up games console.

Timbo 1

October 19, 2009, 2:32 pm

So, why no DLNA? If your going to stick and Ethernet port on something, you may as well use it for something other than just BR 2.0!

david brook

October 21, 2009, 12:46 pm

this player was reviewed by andrew everard on the what hi-fi forum quite a while ago, it supposedly beats £3k players in certain key areas and is a no brainer IMHO, pity we cannot buy it! OPPO, what is wrong with you guys, all the rest of the world has it but not us!!!


October 22, 2009, 12:50 pm

Hi Folks,

any chance of a review of the Sony 760? Now that What Hifi have rated that as a best-buy over the Oppo 831, it would be very useful to have a comparative review of how they compare for audio and picture quality....


October 22, 2009, 12:54 pm

p.s. does the Oppo play either FLAC or OGG format files (either from disc or USB) and does it have the 5 disc memory function that the import BDP83 has? Cheers!


November 27, 2009, 10:40 pm

Sadly Oppo has indefinitely postponed the BDP-831 indefinitely, and when I last looked no Oppo Blu-Ray players were for sale at all on opposhop.

Perhaps it is worth adding a paragraph in bold to the start of the review highlighting this fact?

Steve 38

February 4, 2010, 8:35 pm

I am in the US at the mo and already owned a 980H I bought a Panasonic BD60 rather than buy the more expensive new OPPO. I then read a review in Consumer Reports (the US "which" magazine) praising it. So I caved in and forked out $500. Am I glad I did, not only is the Blu ray excellent but the upverting of DVDs is phenomenal. A copy of Pearl harbour which refused to play because it had a scratch played flawlessly. I am using a panasonic 720p and I have to say I cannot see a vast difference between DVDs & Bluray so maybe when I return to the UK with the 83 I will see even greater picture on my 1080p.

Finally when comparing the oppo to the Panny BD60 the panny really is only 7 out of 10 but over here the panny now cost $98 yep 65 quid.


December 15, 2011, 10:41 am

Merry Christmas in advance for you!

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