188 of 202 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2011
Before I did anything with this I updated the firmware. Hooking up to my Netflix account was much easier than expected. Played nicely with no freezes and the picture was excellent. Freezes in streaming are usually due to a slow Internet connection or source.
Load times are very fast. Much faster than the Panasonic BD that it replaced. I also appreciate the fact that I don't have to use an external memory source for streaming capabilities such as a USB thumb drive or a card.
I also appreciate the smaller footprint that this unit offers. It's nearly half the size of the typical BD players out there today.
All in all, I would highly recommend this player.
(Note: Later replies from me on this unit should be disregarded as they are base on the BDP BX58 by Sony which replaced this unit.) Sony BDP-BX58 Blu-ray Disc Player 3D Built-in Wireless
134 of 148 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2011
I have had this player for a few weeks now and had no problems with freezes as other people reported.
The player has a nice small size. I thought about placing it vertically but you can not do that because the disc would fall out. Also the design of the case makes it difficult to stand on its side.
The drive is quiet, the remote is compact. Updating the firmware is a breeze with the Ethernet cable connected. Booting does not take too long.
Many video streaming services are installed (hulu plus, vudu, netflix just to name a few - there are many more). pandora is only one of the audio services.
Navigation looks similar to the playstation 3 if that tells you anything.
DVD's upconvert nicely, but of course look no better than on other blu-ray players.
Overall I am very happy with this player.
134 of 149 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2011
If you are looking for a Blu-ray player that provides access to Netflix, Pandora and a host of other streaming media, then Sony has the device for you. See Amazon at: Sony BDP-S185 Blu-Ray Disc Player This player commonly lists for $99.99, but with several Amazon connected vendors, you may wind up paying $10.00 to $15.00 less. I was searching for such a unit for my bedroom to supplement a higher priced Sony, and found this model online. For the price, the S185 does not have WiFi built in, but connects via ethernet to your WiFi router. There is a USB port on the front for connecting cameras and other peripherals; and an HDMI, plus RCA ports on the rear. This is Sony quality, so discs play effortlessly and quietly. The S185 also sports an unusual form factor, as it departs from the traditional boxy design, having a sloping, curved top case. A row of basic button controls on the top compliments an included compact remote control. It is also one of the smallest players I have seen, so will fit easily onto a crowded shelf. Batteries, warranty, manual included.
63 of 70 people found the following review helpful
on December 28, 2011
First off this is a $70, Ethernet wired, blu ray player. It is not 3D and it is not a wireless network player. With that said, what it is, is a very good blu ray player with more online streaming content than any of its rivals in the below $100 price range. The cost of an added wireless dongle moves this player into a price range that it is not made to compete in.
As a blu ray player it has above average video quality and a simple remote. Advanced settings are done through an onscreen menu for both the blu ray player and the streaming media player. The remote also can be programed in one easy step to operate your TV's on/off, video input, and volume. The remote also allows a setting that turns off both the TV and the player at the same time. A button on the remote allows direct access to Netflix and Sony Entertainment Network.
There are 34 video channels and 7 music channels accessible for streaming. Some channels require going through the computer to activate service and Pay on Demand requires a credit card during registration. Many have a limited free trial to see which channels you prefer, however a credit card is required to activate the free trials so don't forget to cancel services you don't want before the trial ends. Crackle, a free classic movie channel, is available without registration. YouTube can be logged on directly from the TV, although not all content is available for streaming at this time. Note that a 5 digit password (numerical) is required to access paid programming, it serves to keep children and guests from running up your bill.
Here is the list of channels available: Sony Entertainment Network, Amazon Instant Video, Hulu Plus, Netflix, Vudu, NHL Vault, YouTube, blip.tv, Crackle, SnagFilms, Dr.Oz, Tara Stiles, Billabong, XOS College Sports, epi, Concierge, CinemaNow, Style.com, Sony Digital Concert Series, Inside Sony Pictures, Sony's Michael Jackson, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, SGNL by Sony, Dailymotion, uStudio, GolfLink.com, Livestrong.com, eHow.com, Flixster, Singing Fool, Podcasts, Terra TV; Sony's Music Unlimited, Slacker, Pandora, Berliner Philharmoniker, Lollapalooza Radio, NPR, Moshcam
For a wired internet, this Sony player offers a lot of variety for TV viewing not available on other units even at higher prices. This is not the fastest blu ray player or media player but it isn't the slowest either. Unlike some of the competition Sony backs this player with a one year warranty, NOT 90 days. For the price I don't believe any other player offers as much as this Sony.
As a footnote: Remember that internet speed effects this and all video streaming players. Regular DSL will struggle to stream video, You need at least 3MPS speed to get minimum video streaming, 10+ MPS is needed for HD. I am getting 15-20 MPS at the player which has allowed uninterrupted streaming of all content. Because this is a wired connection I am receiving the same MPS as my computer.
Media players handle streaming video directly versus computers that handle packets of information and have storage. I would not recommend any brands lower tier media players to anyone using standard DSL. Unless you are right next to a main phone transfer station you will probably have problems streaming video. Check the manufacturers higher end units with on-board memory or upgrade your internet service. Keep in mind that even if you have 3-4MPS every thing connected to your router that is in use will lower your MPS speed at times causing your media player to drop below the minimum speed. This is also true of bottom tier cable because you are sharing the internet with other homes. My internet speed is about 24MPS but will drop as low as 8MPS during peak usage. Blame your internet provider not the media players, I have yet to see a company claim their media players will work below 3MPS. And the 3MPS is the lowest speed you receive, not the normal speed.
318 of 375 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2012
I wrote to Sony customer service: "Please tell me how to turn off the Automatic Power Off function on the BDP-S185. I cannot get through a whole movie."
Sony customer service wrote back: "I'm sorry that the Blu-ray Disc Player turns OFF by itself during playback. Please note that if any button on the Player or Remote Control is not pressed for more than 30 minutes, the Player automatically returns to standby mode. This is normal operation and cannot be disabled."
I wrote back to Sony: "Why would Sony design a movie player that cannot play movies? You are telling me that I must pick up the remote and push an arbitrary button for no good reason 3 to 4 times during any movie just to keep the player on. For one movie. Didn't anyone at Sony realize this was completely retarded during the design of a _Blu-ray movie player_?? Can someone fix this retarded problem with a software update?"
It hasn't gotten better from there.
I also wrote to Sony: "Additionally, while I am writing, I will tell you that the BDP-S185 clearly has a lot of problems. The extremely high frequency of "Content Error" or "Network Error" and "Retry" messages whenever it tries to move from a show to an ad break or back, as well as having to click on Hulu Plus 7 or more times just trying to get onto internet content when the player has just been turned back on is enough to make the player too frustrating to bother with. This thing is not wireless, it has been plugged directly into a great internet modem that nothing else has trouble with. I had considered subscribing to Netflix, but after just two days with Hulu Plus on this player I am going to cancel it because it is foolish to pay money for a service on a device this badly made. Sony should be ashamed to have their name on this.
I would like some kind of return information sent to me, even if it is just a trade-in for a different model."
** When this player does shut off on you-- and I think it was doing it at less than the 30 minutes of non-remote-pushing that Customer Service said it would take to hit Standby mode-- getting it back to where you were is such an extended headache of missing network connection and "Retry" and menus to go through that I end up saying, oh well, I didn't need to see that anyway. None of these shows or movies are worth going through all of that. **
ADDITION: Sony Customer Service would not give me any information about how to return or exchange the worthless player. (I had no receipt to take it to a store.) I kept emailing to ask where to send it, but they refused to ever answer.
31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2012
This is one product that you should really pay attention to when it comes to bad reviews. I purchased one of these things this evening at a local Best Buy and brought it home. I figured the people that had problems with it were just not familiar with technology, or were picking nits. This is not the case. This player is awful. The Blue Ray portion of this device is ok at best. It wont win any awards, but it's not horrible. Where this player really stinks it up is in the internet applications like Netflix and Amazon Instant Video.
First of all, this player doesn't seem to 'realize' there's an internet connection immediately. This is a WIRED player. I prefer wired players to WiFi players because it's faster and you don't have to worry about signal strength. Even so, while being a WIRED player - it stinks. After booting the player, I'd have to wait around 5 minutes - no lie, FIVE MINUTES - for it to 'realize' that the network connection was there. If I tried to access Netflix/Amazon/Hulu/Crackle and so on, it would display a window saying "Connecting to network..." (or something very similar to those words) and then just go back to the main screen, called the Cross Media Bar (XMB). That was it's way of saying it failed to connect. After the FIVE MINUTE wait for it to realize it was connected to a hard line, it would finally attempt to enter one of the apps, only to time out - repeatedly. If, (and that's a big IF) and only if it actually made contact with whichever service you were trying to use, it's response time would drop CONSIDERABLY. It would look as if it was locked up, and it wouldn't respond to commands from the remote. Other times, it would drop it's connection when trying to play something and go back to the XMB. It's interface is kind of nice, very reminiscent of the PlayStation 3 interface (also called the XMB) but it's just not a good player at all. I took it back to Best Buy and sprung for the BDP-S590. They pricematched with Amazon ($105 as of 10/4/12) so it wasn't a bad deal for only a few dollars more. The S590 is MUCH nicer, even though it has the same interface. It's faster, more reliable, and will connect to your preferred streaming service almost immediately. Do NOT buy the BDP-S185 - it is a piece of junk!
42 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on February 23, 2012
With the latest firmware version, much of the "auto shutoff" and many other complaints from earlier poor reviews seem to no longer be valid. There is however a newer problem entirely of Sony's making, and one they seem to have no desire to remedy. It has become a universal complaint across Sony internet products now (seems to have started a few months ago) that Netflix has serious problems during peak hours (6-10 pm central in my case), with it constantly pausing and buffering. Just Google "sony netflix buffering" or check out their forums: [...] to see that, NO it is not a problem with people's networks or even Netflix themselves. It is the fact that Sony pipes everything through their OWN servers, which is why the double sign-up that's been complained about in other reviews. No other device plugged into my network has these problems, and I've tried a Roku, Xbox, numerous PCs, and even another brand Blu-Ray, only the Sony has trouble with Netflix. Seeing as it was my #1 reason for purchasing it, that's why I knock it down 2 stars.
On the plus side it plays Blu-rays and DVDs wonderfully, and other streaming services (Pandora being the other most-used) work well.
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on January 6, 2012
I cannot believe that just a couple of months ago, you had to pay over $150 to get these features: Netflix, Pandora, and many more streaming services. It has faster loading times than most BD players that cost more, and it's smaller.
Now, for the things this player does NOT have:
* It does not do 3D
* It does not have an LCD screen (who uses it anyway?). The only thing it has is a on/off light. If it's on, the player its on.
* The buttons are little, and are placed on top of the player. Depending on where you're gonna place it, it may be a deal breaker for you. In my case, I have it on the lower shelf of my TV stand, and I love it, because it's easier for me to access them. With my old LG, I had to get on my knees to see what button I was pushing.
* It does NOT integrated WI-FI. I don't need it, because I already have an Apple Airport Express MB321LL/A [NEWEST VERSION], which extends my wi-fi network and gives me an extra Ethernet port behind my TV. If WI-FI is a must for you, then this is not your device.
* It's interface is equal to that of the PlayStation 3 and other Sony Blu-ray players. I had a Sony BDP-S480 Blu-ray Disc Player (Black)and I did not see any difference - just the difference in price and wi-fi!
So consider the features of this player and ask yourself which ones matter to you and if you're willing to shed the extra bucks for them. If so, then go for a different player. but if all you need is a cheap Blu-Ray player,don't care for 3D, or if you want to stream content but don't have a need for integrated wi-fi, then this is the one for you!
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2012
In the past year or so I've tried out a few of the cheaper end blu ray players and to be honest they all sucked (we are talking about players that ranged between $80 - $150 store bought). Either they were sluggish, the format/navigation was poorly built, the streaming content would stutter, or some variation of all of the above.
When I saw the price of this unit, it scared me slightly since I've been burned a few times by cheap models. However, after looking at the reviews of this and a few more expensive models offered on Amazon I took a chance.
First off, I have had this blu ray for a few weeks now. This is a great unit for people (such as myself) who don't have 3D capabilities on their TV, or webcam features I will never use. Also, I don't have wifi in my house (personal preference) and this unit doesn't have wifi features, it's all about the Ethernet cables. I realize that many of the fancier players have a lot of these features that I don't need/care about, and it jacks up the price. This player is fantastic at what it does...playing blu rays!
I have tried several blu ray movies (all have worked great so far), one full 30+ hour audio book on CD (I do a lot of work in the room that my player is in, and the sound quality was excellent), regular dvds which looked fantastic and Amazon Videos on Demand Web Application. All in all, I found a great "bare-bones" system for a "bare-bone" price!
I did read a few complaints about this unit and honestly they are trivial at best. One complaint was the Power LCD light was on the top of the unit near the buttons and if you are sitting down you can't tell if your unit is on...there is a simple fix to this...it's called looking at your TV to see if it's on (problem solved)! Honestly I think the design of that is fantastic, I hate starring at annoying lights while watching a movie. Second issue is you have to point your remote (which I admit isn't close to the best controller I've ever held) at the device rather than just "anywhere". It's not that big of a deal, I found the unit to be responsive for most functions.
The Amazon VoD was fine (as was youtube), although they could probably make smoother looking applications, it doesn't have that polished feel that I've had with other higher end units/or even the PS3/360. My only very minor complaint is the built-in software keypad. It was kinda clunky trying to type in email/passwords, not the most intuitive software I've ever tried. However, the good news is once you are logged in, you don't have to worry about it again.
Overall, this is a fantastic machine if you don't need all the frills, bells and whistles of other higher end machines. It plays great, it's light, it looks sleek, and feels sturdy. I would definitely recommend this player, especially for people just getting into blu rays!
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on January 30, 2012
This was my first blu-ray purchase and it's got a lot of things going for it. Super compact size, great value, awesome picture. But I was sad to discover that it doesn't stream closed-captioning on Netflix. For those of us who rely on subtitles, this is a major bummer. Back in the box it goes and returning to Amazon :(