The Samsung BD-J7500 Blu-ray Disc Player Reviewed

Check out what the Samsung BD-J7500 Blu-ray Disc Player has to offer

Samsung BD-J7500
Wikimedia Commons

It is hard to believe that Blu-ray Disc players have been with us for over a decade. What started out as an expensive alternative to DVD, has not only become very affordable but one of the most versatile components you can have in a home theater setup.

One example is the Samsung BD-J7500, which provides an abundance of features and great performance, inside its stylish, slim exterior. Let's take a closer look.

Samsung BD-J7500 Features

  • Network Connectivity: Ethernet, WiFi, as well as both Miracast and Wifi Direct.
  • USB: One USB port for access to digital photo, video, music content via flash drives or other compatible USB storage devices.
  • Profile 2.0 (BD-Live): Allows access to additional supplementary online content associated with specific Blu-ray Disc titles.
  • Control Options: A Wireless Infrared Remote Control and full-color high definition onscreen GUI (Graphical User Interface) is provided for easy setup and function access.
  • Dimensions (WHD): 14.17 x 1.57 x 7.72-inches
  • Weight: 3.75 lbs.

Additional Capabilities and Notations

The BD-J7500's onscreen menu provides direct access to online audio and video content sources, including Amazon Video, Netflix, VUDU, Pandora, and more...

DLNA/Samsung Link - Provides the ability to access digital media files from a compatible network-connected device, such as PCs and media servers.

Samsung Multi-Room Audio Streaming (also referred to as SHAPE) - You can play a disc or other content file on the BD-J7500 and wirelessly stream it to other Samsung multi-room link compatible playback devices (such as wireless speakers) you can place elsewhere in your home.

NOTE: the BD-J7500 is also Cinavia-enabled, making it compliant with required copy-protection regulations.

Video Performance

Blu-ray Disc players have matured over the years and it is rare to find a player that doesn't provide good video performance, especially for Blu-ray discs, and the Samsung BD-J7500 is right up there with the best of them - However, there a couple of things to take into consideration.

The Samsung BD-J7500 can be manually set to output 480p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p, or AUTO, for Streaming, DVD, and Blu-ray Disc playback depending on the native display resolution of your TV.

However, if you have a 4K Ultra HD TV, there is a limitation on the BD-J7500 with regards to 4K upscaling. In order for the BD-J7500 to upscale to 4K, it has to be from a source that is 1080p/24 encoded. This means that not all content can be upscaled to 4K. However, since most Blu-ray Discs are encoded with a 1080p/24 signal on the disc, that means that if the BD-J7500 resolution output is set to AUTO, and it is connected to a 4K Ultra HD TV, then the player will provide the desired 4K upscaling signal to the TV.

However, there is another important qualifier, even though 3D Blu-ray discs are also encoded at 1080p/24, the 3D-encoding prevents the player from upscaling that content to 4K - it is output from the player in 1080p.

For all other sources (DVD, internet streaming, or USB), the upscaled video output is limited to 1080p - with another qualifier. If you go into the J7500's picture settings menu and select DVD 24Fs Conversion - then the player will upscale DVD content to 4K output. However, using this setting may reveal some slight motion lag on fast action scenes.

With those limitations and qualifiers in mind, the Samsung BD-J7500 does do an excellent job of playing both 2D and 3D Blu-ray Discs, and its 4K upscaling capability, when it is applied (4K Ultra HD TV required - for Blu-ray playback, an extra detail boost that is noticeable).

On the other hand, the 1080p upscaled signal for DVD and other less-than 1080p/24 sources, output was very good - with minimal upscaling artifacts when shown on a 1080p TV. However, when combined with when combined with a 4K Ultra HD TV, there was some pastiness and slight edge roughness.

Video performance on streaming content looked good with services such as Netflix delivering a DVD quality image (the BD-J7500 does upscale streaming content). However, it is important to note that consumers may see different quality results in this area as factors such as video compression used by content providers, as well as internet speed, which is independent of the video processing capabilities of the player, does affect the quality of what you finally see on your TV screen. For more on this: Internet Speed Requirements for Video Streaming.

The only video performance downside is that Samsung incorporates a permanent video noise reduction setting that is higher than necessary that can make some images (including Blu-ray) look slightly "pasty" and sometimes have a minor ring or halo along some edges.

Audio Performance

The BD-J7500 offers extensive onboard audio decoding (which can be output via HDMI or the 5.1/7.1 channel analog audio outputs) for most Dolby and DTS surround sound formats, as well as undecoded bitstream output that as allows the decoding process to be done by compatible home theater receivers.

Unlike most new Blu-ray Disc players these days, the BD-J7500 provides both digital, and analog audio output capability, which provides added connection flexibility between the player and a home theater receiver.

Whether using the bitstream output via HDMI or Digital optical or using the two or multi-channel analog audio output options, the sound quality was excellent, taking into account the capabilities of each connection option. For dedicated music listening, the analog audio outputs provide a more traditional, uncompressed, audio listening option.

Internet Streaming

Internet streaming is so common now on Blu-ray Disc players, it is hard to find one without it. For accessing internet streaming content, the BD-J7500 provides the option to connect using either Ethernet or WiFii - both of which I found worked well in my setup. However, if you find that you have trouble streaming using WiFi, the Ethernet connection option is more stable, even though you may have to put up with a long cable run.

Using the onscreen menu, users can access streaming content from sites such as Netflix, VUDU, CinemaNow, YouTube, Crackle, Twit, and a lot more...

Also, the Samsung Apps section provides some additional content offerings - which may be expanded via periodic applicable firmware updates. However, just with all internet streaming devices, keep in mind that while most of the available services can be added to your list free of charge, the actual content provided by some services may require an actual paid subscription.

Video quality varies on internet streaming content as it is dependent on the quality of source material and speed of your internet connection. However, the video processing capability of the BD-J7500 makes streaming content look as good as possible, cleaning up artifacts, such as jagged or coarse edges.

In addition to content services, the BD-J7500 also provides access to social media services, such as Twitter and Facebook, as well as providing a full Web Browser.

The Web Browser can work with the provided remote or a standard windows USB plug-in keyboard. Using a plug-in keyboard make web browsing easier as you can type just as would on your PC or laptop. When using the remote control web-browsing you have to use the onscreen virtual keyboard that only allows one character to be entered in at a time.

Media Player Functions

The BD-J7500 has the added ability to play audio, video, and image files stored on USB flash drives or content stored on a DLNA compatible home network via ethernet or wi-fi (such as PCs and media servers). However, for full functionality, you may have to install Samsung Link software on your PC (also referred to as Samsung AllShare).

The media player functions were very straightforward. The onscreen control menus load fast and scrolling through the menus and accessing content was fairly intuitive.

However, keep in mind that not all digital media file types are playback compatible - a complete list is provided in the user guide, which is available for free download

Wireless Portable Device Integration

Another great aspect of the BD-J7500 is the ability to access content on portable devices via a connected home network or Wi-Fi Direct. Ideally, the devices should be Samsung AllShare (Samsung Link) compatible, such as the Samsung line of Galaxy Phones, Tablets, and digital cameras.

Audio, video, and still images from an HTC One M8 Smartphone could be sent easily to the BD-J7500  via home wifi network for viewing on TV (including the selected phone app playback menu) or listening on a home theater audio system.

CD-to-USB Ripping

One additional feature that is provided is CD-to-USB Ripping. This enables you able to rip the contents of a CD containing music, photos, and/or non-copy protected videos, to a compatible USB storage device. Just plug in a compatible USB storage device, such as flash drive, place the CD you want to copy into the player, and in the player's settings menu, click on Rip - select the tracks/photos/video (or select all) and let it rip. If copying a full disc, the process takes about 10 minutes.

BD-J7500 - Pros:

  • Excellent Blu-ray Disc and DVD playback.
  • Excellent 1080p upscaling - 4K Upscaling very good when applied.
  • An abundant selection of Internet streaming content.
  • Fast Blu-ray, DVD, and CD disc loading.
  • The on-screen menu system (Smart Hub) has a good visual look and is easy to navigate.
  • Ability to connect standard Windows keyboard to USB port for easier web browsing.
  • The buttons on the remote glow in the dark.

BD-J7500 - Cons:

  • 4K Upscaling is not available for all content sources.
  • Non-defeatable video noise reduction.
  • Lightweight, flimsy-looking, build quality.
  • Only one USB input (would be nice not to have to unplug an external keyboard if you want to play files from a USB drive).

The Bottom Line

The Samsung BD-J7500 Blu-ray Disc player provides lots of content access options. In addition to playing Blu-ray/DVDs, and CDs, the BD-J7500 integrates well with the internet, your PC, USB flash drives, and, in most cases, your smartphone or tablet. If you have an HD or 4K Ultra HD TVs (or video projector), and Home Theater Receiver/Speaker/Subwoofer setup, the BD-J7500 is the only added component you might need to fill out the home theater experience.

The BD-J7500 does an excellent job for 2D/3D Bu-ray Disc player, and provides very good upscaling for 1080p TVs - You just have to remember the limitations with it 4K upscaling feature, but if you have a 4k Ultra HD TV with good onboard 4K upscaling, the TV would be able to take any incoming 1080p signals coming from the player, and upscale the rest of the way to 4K.

NOTE: The Samsung Multiroom Link feature (also referred to as SHAPE) was not tested as Samsung did not provide the compatible wireless speaker products that can take advantage of that feature.

For more on setting up and using the Samsung BD-J7500, also check out our companion photo profile.

Although the Samsung BD-J7500 was introduced in 2015, it has not been replaced by Samsung as, beginning in the 2016 model year, Samsung has only released 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc players. However, if you are not interested in making that jump, as of 2018, the BD-J7500 is still listed as part of Samsung's product offerings as a standard Blu-ray Disc player and is available through select retailers both new and used.