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Cheap Blu-ray Players and Where to Buy Them

written by: •edited by: Tricia Goss•updated: 12/30/2009

A look into the prices and selection of the cheapest Blu-ray players on the market, and where to find them.

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    Cheap Blu-ray Players

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    Blu-ray is slowly taking over as the next new format in home media. It is superior to DVD in terms of image and sound quality as well as storage capacity. Thanks to the PlayStation 3 video game console and the steadily dropping price of Blu-ray players and movies, this format is only going to get bigger as time goes by. With more people adopting the Blu-ray format, one big question is where to find the cheapest Blu-ray disc player.

    For this article, a variety of online retailers were researched to find who had the cheapest Blu-ray player including Amazon, Wal-Mart, Crutchfield, Best Buy, Circuit City, and a few others. The goal was to look only at Blu-ray players that were priced closest to $100. Keep in mind that none of these players comes with HDMI cables, so you will need to purchase them separately.

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    Amazon, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, and More

    On Amazon.com, the cheapest Blu-ray player found was the Magnavox NB500MB1F for $109.95. It doesn’t sell directly from Amazon, but the retailer still offers free shipping. This no-frills player does not have very good ratings (3/5 stars with six reviews), but Magnavox is a decent brand name. On Walmart.com, you can get a slightly different model - Magnavox NB500MG1F - for $98.00. Just remember that with Wal-Mart you will have to pay sales tax. It currently has no ratings on Walmart.com.

    The cheapest Blu-ray player on Crutchfield.com is the Panasonic DMP-BD60K, which sells for $129.99 and has a high overall rating. It also has the ability to stream video from Amazon, YouTube, and other sites, which is an added bonus. It does not, however, support Netflix streaming. The BD60 model, which seems to be the same, sells for $124.99 on Amazon.com.

    At Best Buy the cheapest Blu-ray player is the Insignia NS-BRDVD3, which sells for $119.99. You can also get this player free if you purchase one of two qualifying Insignia brand HDTV models. As of this writing, this Blu-ray player has a decent 3.9/5 star overall rating after 79 reviews. One big bonus to this player is that it has Netflix streaming video support, whereas many others do not.

    Circuit City is now an online-only retailer and has a half dozen cheaply priced Blu-ray players from brand names like Magnavox, Sharp, and Samsung, but most of them seem to be refurbished instead of brand new. For a factory refurb, the discount just is not big enough to include, especially since Circuit City already went out of business once.

    Sam’s Club, which is a wholesale retailer, has a Philips BDP7200 Blu-ray player for just $99.81. It doesn’t offer any online access, but for a basic home Blu-ray disc player it is a good deal for the money. For $10 more, Sam’s Club also has the JVC XVBP10 with all the same features. Both are available in stores or for purchase online to pick up at your local store.

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    Cheapest Blu-ray Players

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    Conclusion

    If all you want is a basic Blu-ray player to watch Blu-ray movies, the best deal is the Magnavox model from Wal-Mart. Your second choice would be the Philips from Sam’s Club. Not only are both priced below $100, but also both Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club have excellent return policies in case there is a problem with your player. You would not have to pay shipping costs to return defective items.

    Overall, the best value for your money is the Insignia Blu-ray player at Best Buy, mainly because it supports Netflix online streaming. If you are a Netflix subscriber, you could use that Insignia player to watch movies streamed over the Internet and directly to your TV.