Over the last few weeks, there has been a lot of speculation regarding the status of Samsung's upcoming Blu-ray/HD DVD combo player--the BD-UP5000--and the high-end Blu-ray player, the BD-P2400. Finally, Samsung has made an official announcement. First, the bad news: The BD-P2400 is officially canceled. The BD-P2400 was supposed to be the step-up to the BD-1400, adding HQV video processing, but now those who want HQV will have to go for the combo player.
Now for the good news. Here's exactly what Samsung told us about the BD-UP5000:
Status of BD-UP5000 Duo HD Player:
- The Duo HD Player will ship from Samsung factories at the end of October and will be available to consumers at retail by mid- to late December.
- The Duo HD Player will be BD Profile 1.1 ready--this means it will include the necessary hardware to play BD Profile 1.1 discs.
- A firmware update will be available at the end of January 2008 to allow playback of BD Profile 1.1 discs.***
*** Profile 1.1 discs are currently not available and compatibility must be fully tested before we can assure complete compliance to BD Profile 1.1 requirements.
Besides the delayed release date, this should be (mostly) good news for enthusiasts looking to get a single player to handle both HD DVD and Blu-ray. Blu-ray profile 1.1 means that it will support picture-in-picture functionality--for example, watching a director discuss a scene in the small window with the movie behind it. As Samsung mentions, profile 1.1 discs aren't available yet, but at least we know the BD-UP5000 will be able to handle them.