|Denon DBP-4010UDCI Blu-ray Player Review|
|Home Theater Video Players Blu-ray Players|
|Written by Thomas Spurlin|
|Wednesday, 17 February 2010|
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Track 15, the string quartet piece, tests a nice breadth of sound pitches, from flickering highs to very graceful middle-lows with the deeper notes, and they’re immensely satisfying on this unit. Naturally, the LFE and surround channels are deactivated during musical tracks where they’re not viable. On the flipside of things, the DTS Master Audio and PCM Tracks of the same samples also sounded wonderful, offering robust multichannel varietals of the tracks to sublime degrees. Copies of Sigur Ros’ “( )” and “Von” albums also barreled through the player, hitting very controlled, mindful lows and razor-sharp high points. It’s certainly an impressive audio device, even if the GUI is a shade on the bland side and the load times are wishy-washy.
Denon’s DBP-4010UDCI touts the words “universal” and “reference” along with its product description, and it earns the accolades. It boasts slack-jawed astounding quality with Blu-ray discs, both with visual and astounding audio presentation, as well as handling upscaled standard-definition DVDs to robust degrees. Along with that, Denon’s flagship player also becomes versatile when you’re popping in Super Audio CDs, standard CDs, high-resolution music presentations, and a slew of other shiny-surfaced discs, presenting musical quality to an impressive degree for a mostly BD-centric unit. It’s thus transformed into a highly multifaceted piece of equipment, sizing it up more as the cornerstone for a media center instead of as a separate deck – especially with the level of adjustability it offers with visual and aural tailoring. Moreover, Denon’s player operates at a tolerably cool temperature, as well as staying fairly quiet aside from a few initial boot-up gears whirring with entry of a disc. Finally, bear in mind that buying this bulky unit ensures that you’re purchasing a player that’s going to be alive for quite some time, as the construction quality is absolutely top-shelf.
Cons: Price, Bulky, Load Times, HDMI Handshake Troubles, No USB Port
One thing that’ll cause a bit of trepidation with Denon’s heavy, large player is the price tag, sitting right at $2,000. The level of quality when the player is running smoothly can really impress at times, but whether it’s worth the step above the other highly-proficient “universal” players, such as Oppo’s BDP-83, is highly suspect. That’s where the load time issues might come in as a deciding factor, and they’re plentiful with the DBP-4010UDCI; it oftentimes leaves the user waiting, and waiting, for a disc to load, both at initial boot and with actual access to the BD-Java applications. However, the load times also become problematic with DVDs and other media, rendering the unit as one that’s basically slow. On top of that, it also has some HDMI handshake issues regarding sound whenever the source is mildly tinkered with, an issue that was aided by the Denon tech support crew but still present with the unit. And, though a SD card port is available on the player, the lack of a USB port – a more commonplace digital storage medium in-use today – is an added yet middling concern.
The Denon DBP-4010UDCI is an outstanding player when considering its prowess in audiovisual quality, boasting great imagery and superb sound as an HDMI / analog “universal” flagship player. However, the required investment into the player makes it difficult to overlook the poor load times, bulky size, and manageable yet present communication issues – especially when other units on the market are just as versatile at nearly the same quality, but at a fraction of the cost. Denon’s quality is certainly here in this player, even if there are a few issues that steer it away from receiving a more confident seal of approval.