The Sony BDP-S380 is a decent budget Blu-ray player with a couple of eye-catching features and terrific performance, but if you’ve got a little more money to burn then it might be worth taking a look at this step-up version. The Sony BDP-S480 comes in the same slim form factor, but boasts a few extra features under the bonnet for those who want more from their movie viewing experience – and with a £20 difference between them, it’s hardly going to break the bank.
The key upgrade from the S380 is 3D compatibility. Provided you’re lucky enough to own a 3D TV and glasses, this deck will allow you to view Full HD 3D movies in all their glory thanks to the inclusion of an HDMI v1.4 output.
In terms of design the BDP-S480 is attractive enough with its ‘Monolithic’ black finish and 36mm height, but it’s nowhere near as glamorous or sturdy as the Philips BDP7600, for example. The little curved lip at the bottom of the fascia houses a few playback buttons, while one of two USB ports can be found on the right hand side. There is a small display panel that provides basic running time information and other choice messages.
The BDP-S480 offers the same line-up of sockets as the S380. Joining the crucial HDMI port on the back panel is a set of component video outputs, alongside the usual composite video, stereo audio and coaxial digital outputs. An Ethernet port is provided for your BD Live and networking needs, but if you’d rather go down the wireless route there’s a second USB port designed to house Sony’s UWA-BR100 wireless LAN adapter – that £20 premium doesn’t quite stretch to built-in Wi-Fi we’re afraid. Still the provision of a dedicated USB for the adapter means you don’t have to unplug it every time you want to view some media content on a USB stick.