Samsung BD-C8500M Blu-ray player/Freeview HD recorder review

Freeview HD recording and Blu-ray playback: has Samsung created the ultimate all-in-one?

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Pictures from any Freeview channel are excellent. Standard definition channels are upscaled very well indeed, producing a clean picture with only a small dose of picture noise and jagged edges to get in the way of an otherwise enjoyable picture. Tune into one of the three Freeview HD channels and the results improve significantly, with recordings made on the hard disk exquisite and identical to the original broadcasts.


Activate the deck's Movie Frame 24Fs mode and Blu-ray playback is smooth and detailed, though this is a noisy machine; it starts-up quickly yet audibly shudders between chapters on a Blu-ray or DVD disc.

DivX HD files – whether played from a DVD-R, CD-R, via a PC using DLNA, or from a USB stick – are excellent, though there is the occasional scanning and jerkiness issue and there were significant lip-sync issue on some trailers we tried.

Although the interface contains moving thumbnails of recordings and video files, they only kick-in after you've viewed the file, which doesn't make much sense.