News / Media

Readers' Choice Awards 2011: Gaming Consoles, Blu-ray Players, DVRs and Streaming Media Devices

By Ben Gottesman October 31, 2011



Click here to view the full article

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2395518,00.asp#fbid=lJQUvDW-7lP

Apple doesn’t make Blu-ray players, but if it did, we have a feeling that OPPO Digital would still beat it in customer satisfaction. The small Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of Blu-ray disc players earns a Readers’ Choice award, having received the highest satisfaction scores of any company in all of our satisfaction surveys this year. Respondents rated overall satisfaction at 9.5 on a scale of 0 (worst) to 10 (best). That was actually the lowest of its major ratings: Overall reliability was a 9.7 and likelihood to recommend was 9.6. For comparison, the highest rated products in 2011 to date were Apple’s desktops and notebooks which rated 9.2 for overall satisfaction.

OPPO currently only has two products on the market, the $499 BDP-93 and the $999 BDP-95. In addition to being designed to meet the demands of audiophiles and videophiles, both provide access to a diverse selection of content including Blu-ray discs and Blu-ray 3D, as well as a variety of streaming sources, including Netflix, Blockbuster, VUDU, YouTube, Pandora, and more.

Not everyone is prepared to spend that much on a Blu-ray player. That’s why we also award a Readers’ Choice to Sony for its Blu-ray players. Sony, the company that first developed Blu-ray technology, makes an extensive line of players. Some are available for under $100 and many more list under $200. Respondents rated Sony’s overall satisfaction at 8.4 and reliability was an 8.8—both strong scores, but paltry compared to OPPO. In addition, Sony’s technical support was rated best among the Blu-ray manufacturers who had enough units needing support to be included in our evaluation, though at only a 6.6 on a scale of 0 to 10, there’s still plenty of room for improvement.

Fortunately, consumers have a lot of good choices when it comes to Blu-ray players. Four other brands also received overall satisfaction ratings over 8.0: LG, Panasonic, Samsung, and Pioneer. LG’s overall satisfaction rating of 8.3 helps it earn an Honorable Mention designation. In addition, LG, along with Vizio, had the highest rating for satisfaction of the Blu-ray players as a streaming media device at 8.0. In general, the streaming ratings for all of the manufacturers were very tightly grouped together. Respondents don’t seem to perceive large difference among brands, but they’re generally happy with their ability to stream content to their television through their Blu-ray player.

Of course, when it comes to Blu-ray players, the elephant in the room is Sony’s PlayStation 3 (PS3). Starting at $250, not only do you get the highest-rated gaming console, you also get an excellent Blu-ray player. Even though we asked respondents to only tell us about their standalone player, many went ahead and rated their PlayStation as a Blu-ray player and actually gave it higher marks for satisfaction and reliability than Sony’s standalone players or anyone else’s players except OPPO. Based on its satisfaction ratings, we recommend you take a close look at the PlayStation before you purchase a standalone Blu-ray player.

Click here to view the full article

<strong><a href="http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2395518,00.asp#fbid=lJQUvDW-7lP" target="_blank">http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2395518,00.asp#fbid=lJQUvDW-7lP</a></strong></p>

Posted by chantal Wed, 16 Nov 2011 17:15:00 GMT