Might actually be worth money this time.
There are many things we could refer to LG’s BH-100 multi HD format player as, unfortunately none of the accurate ones are publishable, so we’ll settle with “disappointing” and avoid any controversy. The upcoming sequel, on the other hand, sounds rather promising. Better still, it could be with us as soon as next month, although that would assume a simultaneous worldwide launch and we know how hard that seems to be for CE manufacturers.
So, fixing the omissions of the original Super Multi Blue, the BH-200 will support HDi, without needing “proprietary software” from LG to do so. It also seems that Blu-ray Profile 1.1 is being complied to as BD-Java compatibility is apparently on the bill which is good. An Ethernet port makes an appearance, giving both formats online functionality – assuming BD Live ever appears of course.
Audio support is up to scratch, with all the usual formats supported including Linear PCM, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD on the cards. Video output of, perhaps obviously, 1080p at 60hz is definitely in, but no mention is made of 24fps playback so cine-philes may not be able to get the benefits of “True Cinema” playback. Connectivity will obviously be via an HDMI 1.3 port for preference, although other options are likely to be included as well.
The best thing, though, is the price. Considering the original, rubbish, BH-100 costs upwards of £850, the $1000 suggested price of the BH-200 should please many, although once again the price of one of each stand alone player is gong to set you back less. Even more poignantly, the LG player now has a rival, in the form of Samsung’s BD-U5000, so it needs to offer something special to persuade customers to part with their hard-earned cash.