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Having smart functions, like an internet connection, is one of the new standards in owning the best TV. However, almost any regular modern TV can be made smart by using a set-top box. This capability is why we will analyze and compare smart Blu-ray Players vs smart TVs and help you discover what is right for you.
Also, for a further look into the world of smart TVs, you can read either our articles that compare Smart TVs to Android TVs or Apple TV vs Smart TVs.
Owning a smart Blu-ray player is not for the casual viewer because to tap into the device’s full potential, owners must commit to buying physical discs. However, while Blu-ray technology comes with unique costs, it also comes with unique benefits in the overall viewing experience quality. But still, smart Blu-ray players, like other streaming devices, can connect to a TV and access the internet to stream content just as you would with any smart TV. Additionally, when looking for these devices to go with your TV, make sure to check for CEC-compatible devices. If you don’t know what that is, you can read about what CEC is on TV and how it can benefit you.
Dolby Atmos works with any speaker format, but the more you add to the surround sound system, the better the overall quality.
So, how do you know which one is right between a Blu-ray and smart TV? Below, we’ll look into the finer details.
4K UHD Blu-ray players come with Dolby Vision and have better quality images because they have a higher compression rate. When you break down the math by how many megabits per second it can process, Blu-ray 4K streaming provides 6x the quality of the average smart TV and streaming device. However, the perceived difference is negligible to the human eye unless the picture being viewed is highly technical and detailed.
Physical Blu-ray discs are better than using a smart TV to access the content because internet connections don’t have the bandwidth required to deliver an image as clear as a disc. However, as Wi-Fi connections get stronger, the Blu-ray disc’s advantage over internet streamed content diminishes.
When it comes to sound quality, Blu-ray discs offer a richer and deeper audio experience than the average smart TV. Through Dolby Atmos audio compatibility, Blu-ray discs give you some of the best sounds available for home use. Many of the applications used to stream content on smart TVs aren’t compatible with Dolby Atmos. However, keep in mind that Dolby Atmos is only relevant if you have a surround sound system hooked up to your TV. And if you don’t have surround sound, you can check out these best sounding TVs.
Owning a Smart 4K Blu-ray player isn’t cheap. A top-notch Blu-ray disc player will run around $300 (with cheaper options starting at closer to $100), and purchasing additional Blu-ray discs will be anywhere from $25-30 a unit. In contrast, the most affordable Smart TVs will start at around $200, and high-end models can cost thousands of dollars.
Not every 4K Blu-ray player connects to the internet. Check to see if it’s network-enabled before purchasing.
Which is better for cord-cutting, a smart TV or a streaming player?
If you’re happy with your smart TV’s UI and smart features, you’ll do a better cord-cutting job sticking with the TV.
What Is a network-enabled Blu-ray Disc player?
A network-enabled Blu-ray player means that it can connect to Wi-Fi. So if you have a network-enabled 4K Blu-ray disc player, you can use it to access smart features as you would on any smart TV.
Should I rush and buy a 4K Blu-ray player?
Unless the type of content you’re consuming is highly detailed, you most likely won’t need a 4k Blu-ray player.
STAT: The global Blu-ray market is forecasted to grow by 13.70% over the next few years. (source)