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Onkyo BD-SP807 Blu-ray Player - Onkyo BD-SP807 Blu-ray Player

By Danny Phillips



Our Score:


We also ran through the DVD version of this disc to check its upscaling prowess and again the results are impressive. Diagonals are processed without stepping on the rotating bar and flag clips, plus fine detail is sharp and stable. Switching to our DVD copy of Sin City, the picture boasts pleasing depth and detail clarity, but after enjoying the razor-sharp Blu-ray pictures these fuzzier SD images are inevitably a bit of a come-down.

One of the areas that usually sets pricey players apart from their budget rivals is sound quality, and the BD-SP807 is no exception. Hooked up to Onkyo’s TX-NR807 receiver with analogue cables, we give it a work out with a performance of ‘They Can’t Take That Away From Me’ by Jane Monheit and John Pizzarelli in Dolby True HD, found on a Dolby sampler disc.

The quality is spellbinding – it digs out high frequencies and subtle detail with conviction and adds richness and body to the double bass. Monheit’s voice is also conveyed with a spine-tinglingly smooth and pure tone. Our favourite movie test scenes also sound great, particularly the tense finale of Children of Men – with crisp gunshots and meaty explosions going off all round the soundstage, you really get lost in the scene.

Using the HDMI output garners similarly thrilling results, and we were blown away by the quality of CD playback too, which sounds as good as a decent dedicated CD player.


Star Wars prequels aside, George Lucas usually shows impeccable judgement on all things cinema related, and sure enough his company’s endorsement of this Onkyo deck’s performance is completely justified.

It displays hi-def discs with meticulous detail and delivers sensational audio quality with both hi-res soundtracks and CDs. It’s clearly aimed at buyers with plenty of cash to splash who want the best pictures, sound and build quality but can live without the latest, flashiest Blu-ray features.

That may be the case, but we can’t let the lack of features slip by completely unnoticed – yes performance is important, but don’t high-end shoppers deserve things like Wi-Fi, PC streaming and built-in memory too? If LG and Panasonic can manage it at much lower prices, why not Onkyo?

That’s not our only complaint with the SP807. Disc loading is tediously slow, the cheapo remote is an eyesore and there isn’t really enough to distinguish it from rival players from the likes of Denon and Marantz.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Performance 9
  • Value 7
  • Features 8
  • Design 9


March 19, 2010, 1:31 pm

I second that opinion of installed memory. Especially when you are paying a premium price for this product, would it have really cost that much to have 1GB of internal memory?

I for one don't use the BD Live functions on my Blu-ray Player, but that's because I just want the player to play Blu-ray movies really well whilst anything in addition I can just go online and check it out. I think all this BD Live business will go the way that multiple angles on DVD movies ending up going, a novelty that will not be really taken advantage of by the mainstream Studios.


March 20, 2010, 12:27 pm

I'd argue that George Lucas is totally overated as far as cinema goes. He stumbled across the early Star Wars hits, totally failed to understand their appeal, as ably demonstrated by the truly appalling prequels, relies on Spielberg for the Indy franchise and makes his money from merchandising (which was what the Star Wars prequels were really about), dodgy TV spin offs and exorbitant THX 'endorsment' licencing fees.

THX brings nothing to the table in the way of technology (unlike Dolby). It's just a self declared set of 'standards' for which you pay handsomely for licensing their logo.

Which brings us around to the Blu-ray player.

I'd like to applaud Onkyo for concentrating on the quality of video and audio reproduction which are by far the most important features to me.

However, do yourself a favour Onkyo - drop the THX badge and spend the money on adding a few extra features or dropping the price of your player.

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