The Oppo BDP-95 has been reviewed extensively and exhaustively by professionals and consumers. All concur that this universal disc player -- which means that it can play back almost any video or audio disc currently made -- provides exemplary performance. On the video side, capabilities and performance are virtually identical to the Oppo BDP-93 (*Est. $500), which regularly wins raves as just about the best Blu-ray player you can buy. For $500 over that already pricy but well-regarded universal player, owners of the BDP-95 get audio-processing circuitry and performance that would typically cost much more -- think professional-grade or high-end audiophile equipment. That leads some of the toughest-to-please experts to say that even at its $1,000 price tag, if you care deeply about audio quality, the Oppo BDP-95 is a bargain.
Reviewers praise the player's ability to bring out the best in film soundtracks and CDs alike, and they are hard-pressed to find significant flaws. Among the player's many technical advantages are its compatibility with a wide range of disc formats, including SACD, HDCD and DVD-Audio, and its ability to play back files from an external storage device via its USB and eSATA inputs. Digital and analog connectivity is comprehensive, including multichannel (7.1) analog audio. Experts do caution, however, that to appreciate the BDP-95's audio prowess, you need to link it to your receiver or amplifier via analog only; as is the case with all disc players, using the digital connections (HDMI, digital optical, etc.) passes on the signal processing duties to that next piece of gear.
Quibbles are small. The whirring of the player's cooling fan, while nearly undetectable to most listeners, is a source of complaint among a few serious audiophiles. Wireless networking is not built in, but a Wi-Fi adapter is included in the box. Those who want to partake of OTT (over the top) video/audio content from the Internet will find that the roster of streaming partners is small, but Netflix, Vudu, Blockbuster on Demand, YouTube and Pandora are supported. The BDP-95 is DLNA certified, so you can stream content wirelessly or via Ethernet from another DLNA device, such as a computer or laptop. The price can be an obstacle. If you don't need the BDP-95's video capabilities, the Emotiva ERC-2 (*Est. $450) costs less than half as much and draws raves for its audio performance.
The quantity of reviews for the Oppo BDP-95 is matched by their quality. Among the most in-depth, technical and comparative evaluations are those found at EnjoytheMusic.com, Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity, and HomeTheaterReview.com. More good coverage can be found at The Perfect Vision, Audioholics.com and CNET. British sites such as AVForums.com and What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision magazine look at the nearly identical European version of the BDP-95. Lots of user comments, questions and analysis can be found on forums such as AVSForum.com.
Instead of technical bench testing, this reviewer gathers a panel of film- and music-lovers to conduct rigorous listening sessions, including comparisons with pricier equipment. After trying out a variety of disc formats, the panel concludes that the Oppo BDP-95 offers an intense listening experience; for audiophiles, it is a major step up from the BDP-93. The BDP-95 also earns a Best of 2011 Award from the site.
Review: Oppo BDP-95 Universal Disc Player: First-Class Audio Playback and Surround, Leonard Norwitz, May 2011
2. Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity
This highly technical review offers comprehensive bench-testing of the Oppo BDP-95 and two versions of the Oppo BDP-93, with evaluation of their performance with a variety of disc and music file formats, including CD-A, DVD and SACD. The BDP-95's audio performance is deemed "nothing short of superb." The BDP-95 receives the site's Best Universal Player of 2011 award.
Review: OPPO BDP-93, BDP-93NE (NuForce Edition), and BDP-95 Universal 3D Blu-ray Players, John Johnson, Chris Heinonen, Stephen Hornbrook, Feb. 7, 2011
This review offers a clear technical explanation of the player's digital-to-analog technology, but it is most valuable for its lengthy listening evaluation. Kahn tests a variety of disc and file formats, offering frank comparison with several other players and detailing areas where the Oppo BDP-95 is edged out by competitors. He explains that, for buyers who are uninterested in analog audio performance, the Oppo BDP-93 offers identical digital performance at half the price.
Review: Oppo Digital BDP-95 Universal Disc Player Reviewed, Brian Kahn, Aug 1, 2011
In addition to a balanced narrative report, this British site handily scores the Oppo BDP-95EU -- the nearly identical version of the BDP-95 that is sold in Europe -- according to specific criteria. Chief among the cited weaknesses is limited Internet and networking capability. The review also offers a thorough comparison to the Oppo BDP-93. AVForums.com grants the BDP-95 its Reference Status award.
Review: Oppo BDP-95EU Universal 3D Blu-ray Player Review, Steve Withers, April 25, 2011
5. The Perfect Vision
The Perfect Vision, hosted at AVGuide.com, gives the Oppo BDP-95 its Recommended award. The thorough and accessible review praises the detail, smoothness and three-dimensionality of the player's sound for both CD music and film soundtracks. It also details key features that distinguish the BDP-95 from the BDP-93 and explains why that cheaper model might suit many users needs instead.
Review: Oppo's Best Player Ever, Chris Martens, May 18, 2011
This review tests the Oppo BDP-95 using a variety of music formats, including SACD and high-resolution digital files burned to DVDs. In every case, the reviewer finds the sound remarkable. Unsurprisingly, the Oppo cannot beat a system six times as expensive, but it still holds its own considering its price.
Review: Oppo's Awesome-Sounding Blu-ray Player, Steve Guttenberg, April 23, 2011
7. What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision
This review compares the European edition of the Oppo BDP-95 with the Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD, noting technical similarities but highlighting sonic differences. The reviewer finds the BDP-95EU's sound to be detailed, full and expressive, though in the player's "even-handed" approach to music, it is less "exciting" than other players. The review is balanced but quite brief.
Review: Oppo BDP-95EU, Editors of What Hi-Fi?
This is a fairly technical review that compares the sound quality of the Oppo BDP-95 with the cheaper Oppo BDP-93 and finds both disc players to be excellent. The comment thread on this review, and discussion threads elsewhere on the site, offers some useful insights from Oppo owners.
Review: Oppo BDP-93 & BDP-95 Universal Blu-ray Player Measurements Report, Gene DellaSala, March 15, 2011
This forum is perhaps the most active online discussion area for Oppo BDP-95 owners. While there are plenty of unvarnished users' reviews and impressions, along with some lively and instructive debates, the thread – at more than 200 pages – makes information difficult to access.
Review: Official OPPO BDP-95 Owner's Thread, Contributors to AVSForum.com