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2016 was a statement year for 4K UHD Blu-ray. Disc sales outpaced industry expectations and early adopters were showered with a handful of first-gen player options. Initially pricy and questionably incomplete, we ended the year with five official 4K UHD Blu-ray player releases (with only one – OPPO’s UDP-203 – primed to handle the coming onslaught of Dolby Vision content). Of course, reveals at CES 2017 have changed the model landscape, and the field of 4K player models is beginning to look a bit more crowded (not to mention more competent).

As last year progressed, one of the biggest questions became OPPO’s planned release date for its highly anticipated 4K player. Curiosity intensified at CEDIA 2016 as OPPO quietly revealed a prototype unit to various members of the press. Rumors on the show floor were hot and heavy, and catching a glimpse of the unit was akin to seeing Sasquatch darting through the woods. It was secretive and, quite frankly, cool.

OPPO ultimately stuck to its guns and didn’t rush its player to market. The company, you see, understands the importance of its own sterling reputation as an industry leader; damaging goodwill by taking an incomplete product to market was never an option. They did manage to officially announce the player just before the Holidays. As it sits, OPPO’s UDP-203 ($549 through OPPO.com) is the best 4K UHD Blu-ray player money can currently buy. And true to the company’s desire to manufacture enthusiast-grade gear, the 203 is more than just a video player, it also doubles as a Hi-Res audio device.


 

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I have read on another forum from users which have had problems with this unit. I realize that eventually these bugs will be eliminated, but when my PS3 died late last month, I decided not to purchase a UHD player at this time. I will probable purchase a second generation UHD player later this year.
 

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Thanks for the review, Todd. I was really looking forward to this unit, however reading up on people's experience, people are having so many issues, like lock ups and such, that I am not sure this is the right time to jump on the player.

I am confident that Oppo will fix them, but I just can't justify having a finnicky player. Did you experience any problems when you were using it?
 
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Drool, drool! Sign me up! Well actually, I may hold out for the full-blown-bells-and-whistles version that's in the works (UDP-205).

I have read on another forum from users which have had problems with this unit. I realize that eventually these bugs will be eliminated, but when my PS3 died late last month, I decided not to purchase a UHD player at this time. I will probable purchase a second generation UHD player later this year.
Yup, early adopters will probably absorb their lumps at the School of Hard Knocks.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the review, Todd. I was really looking forward to this unit, however reading up on people's experience, people are having so many issues, like lock ups and such, that I am not sure this is the right time to jump on the player.

I am confident that Oppo will fix them, but I just can't justify having a finnicky player. Did you experience any problems when you were using it?
Hi Jon -

No, I did not encounter any issues with the player. It could be that there are some issues with specific gear that other owners are attempting to use?

I've had this player in possession for a month, it has performed perfectly. Beautiful film images...handled network connection, disc and USB audio playback, etc, all without a hiccup.

OPPO did just release its first firmware update, which will override the Beta firmware that the 203 ships with. Knowing OPPO, they are probably working swiftly to address problems as they are reported. Unfortunately, that release isn't applicable to my review. So, safe to assume that improvements are already in motion for folks that have experienced issues.
 

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Drool, drool! Sign me up! Well actually, I may hold out for the full-blown-bells-and-whistles version that's in the works (UDP-205).


Yup, early adopters will probably absorb their lumps at the School of Hard Knocks.
No confirmed date on the 205 yet, but it should be coming soon.
 

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I'd get one if I had a 4k tv. My Oppo 103D loader failed and Oppo fixed it for $79. They cleaned the unit, replaced the loader and came back with the latest firmware. I sent Oppo my unit with the original box and came back wrapped inside the Oppo bag like if the unit was brand new. Turn around time was also very fast. They offer excellent customer service and that is a plus for me when investing in something that can be expensive. If something goes wrong you know you are in great hands.
 

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I'd like to upgrade from my Samsung but I've read many owners are not happy with the Oppo. Many of which are longtime Oppo fans but general consensus seems to think the 203 was rushed. Luckily this is software related and not hardware so I'm sure it will be fixed through firmware updates. I'll be waiting a bit before investing.
 

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Hi Jon -

No, I did not encounter any issues with the player. It could be that there are some issues with specific gear that other owners are attempting to use?

I've had this player in possession for a month, it has performed perfectly. Beautiful film images...handled network connection, disc and USB audio playback, etc, all without a hiccup.

OPPO did just release its first firmware update, which will override the Beta firmware that the 203 ships with. Knowing OPPO, they are probably working swiftly to address problems as they are reported. Unfortunately, that release isn't applicable to my review. So, safe to assume that improvements are already in motion for folks that have experienced issues.
Thanks for chiming back in, Todd! There certainly could be an issue with the combination of gear people are using. Either way, it seems just a little more uncharacteristic for an Oppo product to have as many people I've been seeing to being reporting problems and even as many people have been commenting that they had returned their units.

I've had an Oppo product (or multiple) in one way or another since they first started coming out with DVD players here in the US, over a decade ago. I had about 3 different of their DVD players. Then came the BDP-83. My original BDP-83 blu-ray player had some issues, tray loading mechanical problems and a couple other minor problems, but it was still a good experience overall, mainly because they actively try to work to fix the problems. My current 103 is serving our family's purpose fantastically with very little problems. My Oppo PM-1 Headphones are used and enjoyed nearly every day since I got them.

With my previous experience with their products, I feel confident that they will fix the problems, however this time around I'm kind of torn. While I don't entirely feel the urgency to be an "early adopter" to work through the kinks they might have, I also hear that there are a good amount of people who don't have problems, similar to your experience, so... decisions decisions!

I've got a handful of UHD movies that are just sitting and waiting to be watched, too. So that doesn't help... :)
 

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Thanks for chiming back in, Todd! There certainly could be an issue with the combination of gear people are using. Either way, it seems just a little more uncharacteristic for an Oppo product to have as many people I've been seeing to being reporting problems and even as many people have been commenting that they had returned their units.

I've had an Oppo product (or multiple) in one way or another since they first started coming out with DVD players here in the US, over a decade ago. I had about 3 different of their DVD players. Then came the BDP-83. My original BDP-83 blu-ray player had some issues, tray loading mechanical problems and a couple other minor problems, but it was still a good experience overall, mainly because they actively try to work to fix the problems. My current 103 is serving our family's purpose fantastically with very little problems. My Oppo PM-1 Headphones are used and enjoyed nearly every day since I got them.

With my previous experience with their products, I feel confident that they will fix the problems, however this time around I'm kind of torn. While I don't entirely feel the urgency to be an "early adopter" to work through the kinks they might have, I also hear that there are a good amount of people who don't have problems, similar to your experience, so... decisions decisions!

I've got a handful of UHD movies that are just sitting and waiting to be watched, too. So that doesn't help... :)

It's understandable that reading so-so firsthand reports gives you pause. That's the one of the great benefits and problems with the internet... nice to get user accounts, but it's very hard to know true circumstances.

This 4K business (mixed with HDR) is a difficult trick to pull off. Having seen pros somewhat struggle with getting some 4K equipment to play nicely with other 4K equipment (at industry events), it makes me wonder if some of the issues discussed on the net have resulted from incompatible gear, associated gear that has old firmware...or poorly supported firmware...,or (more likely) needs to tweak some internal settings to make things work perfectly. Certainly not accusing anyone of being deceitful or dishonest...

On my end, the 203 seemed to like my LG B6... and the older 1080p gear. I just quickly scanned through the other reviews that have been published for the 203, and no major glaring issues seemed to come about in those professional settings. Yes, there may have been a few hiccups, but it looks like everything was worked-out.
 

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Well, I guess this is the machine for me when I go 4k. Looking forward to it. Should happen this year. I've been saying that for a couple years now, but it should be this year . . . ;)
 

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I'm loving mine. ;)
 

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for nervous purchasers,

I havent had any issues with mine.
Im using a denon x4300h and a vizio p65(the older one)
I have it plugged into denon and out the the vizio's [email protected] port if that matters to anyone
 

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Bummer. Next thing we'll read is 4K Blu-ray player's manufacturers dropping the 3D feature from their UHD BR players. Then 4K front projectors doing the same. Then 3D will be truly dead going forward in our homes.

It's ok though, 8K will come, and it should add some more field-of-death in this full picture. I mean ... field-of-depth.
Like a more 3-dimensional picture, but without the 3D glasses.

That would also make the 2D people more ... happy. A life without glasses is like being there Live.

I used to work up the mountains; in some days the sky was blue transparent without a single cloud, only the sun making the snow caps so bright that if you were not wearing sunglasses it would burn your eyes down to behind their retinas.

Speaking of brightness and 3D: http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/tvs-entertainment/1405568/sony-bravia-kd-65zd9-review-the-brightest-and-best-hdr-yet

Read on, it's a short review anyway, very.
 

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I recently purchased this player. I used Jason Bourne blu ray and 4k blu ray as my litmus test. Sadly, the 4k looks worse. I have take pictures of it too. Crutchfield can not figure it out. They said best guess is that it's because TV is not HDR but I shouldn't see pixelation regardless. Any help is appreciated.
 
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