Pioneer BDP-440

Pioneer appears to be going for the serious enthusiast crowd over the mainstream one with this mid-range model, with DVD-Audio and SACD playback as standard. However, the new BDP-440 lacks built-in Wi-Fi, which reduces its value to the average consumer.


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Upside

The new BDP-440 has great disc-playback compatibility, including DVD-Audio, and supports a wide variety of digital compressed files. It also comes with PQLS (Precision Quartz Lock System), a feature that's meant to reduce signal jitter for better audio fidelity.

If DVD-Audio playback is important, then this AU$499 unit is one of the most affordable players available that can handle the audiophile format. However, higher-end home theatre system owners will note that it lacks the triple-layered chassis, improved internal circuitry and a 192kHz/32-bit digital-to-analog converter that are available in other Pioneer players overseas.

Other features it has includes DLNA compatibility, SACD playback and access to YouTube and Picasa, as well as compatibility with the iControlAV2 app for Android and iOS devices. This app allows users to control media playback, and make other audio and video tweaks from tablets and smartphones.

Downside

As a mid-range model, this 3D Blu-ray spinner is reasonably priced, but it also doesn't quite give that many improvements over the cheaper BDP-140, aside from DVD-Audio playback.

Notable omissions include dual-HDMI outputs, and an RS-232C connector that allows remote control of the device in custom home theatre set-ups. The BDP-440 player also lacks a built-in Wi-Fi module, which is becoming increasingly common on mid-range and high-end players.

Outlook

Pioneer appears to be going for the serious enthusiast crowd over the mainstream one with this mid-range model, with DVD-Audio and SACD playback as standard. However, the new BDP-440 lacks built-in Wi-Fi, which reduces its value to the average consumer.

Via CNET Asia



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