We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Storage Devices Reviews
15,611 Reviews

Panasonic DMP-BD80 review

£279 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Panasonic

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5

The Panasonic DMP-BD80 is a top brass Blu-ray player with a respectable brace of bells and whistles.

The Panasonic DMP-BD80 is a top brass Blu-ray player with a respectable brace of bells and whistles.

The Panasonic DMP-BD80 is a high-end Blu-ray player packed with oodles of features. Some of the standouts include inbuilt Picasa/YouTube browsing, an SD card slot for easy media file access, 7.1ch surround sound, an optical digital audio output and advanced 1080p upscaling.

Having been recently discounted, the Panasonic DMP-BD80 represents good value for money. However, you might be better off buying the Panasonic DMP-BD60 - a similar model that's even more affordable.

In most ways, the Panasonic DMP-BD80 is identical to the cheaper DMP-BD60.

For the Panasonic DMP-BD80 Panasonic has thrown in DivX playback and multichannel analogue audio outputs - otherwise, both models provide the same core components and functionality. If you're not an avid audiophile and rarely muck around with compressed video files, then there's very little reason to stump up the extra cash: go for the Panasonic DMP-BD60 instead. That said, the DMP-BD80 remains a top-notch Blu-ray player that excels in most areas.

Panasonic has taken an "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach to the DMP-BD80's design. We stacked it on top of the Panasonic DMP-BD60 and were hard pressed to tell them apart (the DMP-BD80's extra ports at the back were the only giveaway).

Both models are as sleek, glossy and attractive as each other - though it would have been nice to have an extra badge or something. Measuring a relatively compact 49x430x249mm, the Panasonic DMP-BD80 Blu-ray player should fit anywhere you want it.

Related articles: Digital World

A mirrored faceplate covers the tray-loading disc drive, while a flip out door conceals the Panasonic DMP-BD80's playback buttons, SD card slot and USB port. The power and eject buttons are large and well-placed; this allows lazy parents to offload disc-swapping duties to their tots (a big plus).

The Panasonic DMP-BD80's programmable remote is up to the usual Panasonic standard. That is to say, it's large and responsive but needlessly obtuse.

With the exception of the directional pad and okay button, most of the controls are difficult to distinguish in the dark due to their similar size and shape. This can get frustrating if you're fond of watching movies with the lights off (the buttons aren't backlit either). To be fair, though, the same charge can be laid at the feet of most Blu-ray remotes.

The Panasonic DMP-BD80's on-screen menu is identical to the DMP-BD60's. Some menu options are a little complicated and may require you to consult the manual, but for the most part you can simply leap right in, with a host of handy on-screen explanations.

This includes a handy playback information window, which displays details about the current disc being played (native resolution, frame rate, video codec, etc.) All up, we had very few issues with the Panasonic DMP-BD80's interface - it gets the job done and looks good to boot.

As mentioned, the Panasonic DMP-BD80 comes with both a USB port and an SD memory card slot. The card slot is able to receive AVCHD video and photos, while the USB port handles JPEG and MP3 files. You can also play DivX files directly from the USB drive or CD/DVD.

To test the Panasonic DMP-BD80's playback performance, we hooked it up to a 50in Pioneer KURO PDP-C509A307112 plasma TV and watched a handful of Blu-ray movies as well as some standard-definition DVDs. In both cases, the DMP-BD80 produced vibrant, razor-sharp images with plenty of intricate detail. The player's P4HD processing chip is capable of processing more than 15 billion pixels per second (it says here). The Panasonic DMR-BD80 also did a great job of upscaling standard-definition video to 1080p.

The Panasonic DMP-BD80 required around 50 seconds of prep time before it began playing a disc - a little on the sluggish side. Once the disc was playing, skipping chapters produced a slight lag, though nothing we couldn't live with. Pausing, on the other hand, seemed immediate.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

PCWorld.idg.com.au

Panasonic DMP-BD80 Expert Verdict »
Panasonic DMP-BD80 Scores 9.3 out of 10 based on 22 reviews
Audio Type
Dolby Digital Plus, DTS Extended Surround (DTS-ES), DTS DVD Options
Blu-Ray Player/DVD Player/CD Player
249x430x49mm
2.6kg
supports: Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC), Secure Digital (SD), AVCHD, DivX, JPEG
plays: CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-RAM, DVD±R (+R double layer), DVD±RW (dual layer), SVCD, BD-RE, BD-R
Remote Control
AV Output, DC In, Coaxial Digital Output, Component Video Input, Composite Video Output, HDMI Output, Optical Digital Output, USB 2.0
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

In conclusion, there is a lot to like about the Panasonic DMP-BD80. While it doesn't lift itself head-and-shoulders above the DMP-BD60, the extras that are on offer make for a better overall product.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
  • Panasonic DMP-BD65 review

    Panasonic DMP-BD65

    The Panasonic DMP-BD65 is an affordable Blu-ray Disc player with a plethora of built-in features.

  • Panasonic DMP-BD55K review

    Panasonic DMP-BD55K

    At £280, the Panasonic DMP-BD55K is expensive even for a Blu-ray Disc player.

  • Panasonic DMP-BD85 review

    Panasonic DMP-BD85

    The Panasonic DMP-BD85 (or Panasonic DMP-BD85EB-K to give it its full name) is a high-end Blu-ray player aimed at serious movie aficionados.

  • Panasonic DMP-BD30 review

    Panasonic DMP-BD30

    Panasonic's DMP-BD30 was one of the first Blu-ray Disc players to support BonusView, the Blu-ray specification for watching picture-in-picture content.

  • Panasonic DMP-B15 review

    Panasonic DMP-B15

    The Panasonic DMP-B15 is the world's first portable Blu-ray player.


IDG UK Sites

45 Best Android games: top Android games for your smartphone or tablet in 2014 (24 are free!)

IDG UK Sites

How Apple, Adobe, Microsoft and others have let us down over UltraHD and hiDPI screens

IDG UK Sites

Miranda July's Somebody app offers a very unusual take on messaging

IDG UK Sites

iPad Pro release date, rumours and leaked images - 12.9 screen 'coming in 2015'