Pioneer Elite BDP-52FD Blu-Ray Player
After an admittedly disappointing run with rebadged Sharp Blu-ray players, Pioneer has altered their game plan and are back to producing their own devices. Because of this, the 'Elite' Blu-ray players are once again a true alternative to Oppo's award-winning lineup. As with anything else bearing the 'Elite' badge, the BDP-52FD carries serious-looking styling and solid build quality. A quick peek at the internal components reveals that the BDP-52FD is built on a Mediatek chipset and the spec sheet is seeded with Pioneer's own performance-enhancing technologies.
Video performance is excellent with quick load times and responsive operation. The BDP-52FD supports 1080/24p output and can play back DVD and SA-CD content as well. Unfortunately, there’s no sign of component video or multi-channel analog audio outputs, leaving only a single HDMI-out, composite video, and optical audio to connect to your TV or A/V receiver. However, the BDP-52FD comes in at a full $100 less than Oppo's competing BDP-103, making it a more attractive choice for budget-minded buyers. BDP-52FD signals Pioneer's return to the high-end home theater market with a product worthy of carrying the 'Elite' name.