Lawrence Stansberry

Lawrence Stansberry studied film production at San Jose State University. He loves movies and enjoys studying technology. Outside of those interest, Lawrence likes to travel and eat great food made with a lot of love.

The Equalizer Blu-ray Unboxing

The Equalizer Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This set includes Blu-ray disc and a digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed through UltraViolet. The Blu-ray disc has the movie in 1080p video with DTS-HD surround sound. It currently cost $24.45










The Equalizer Blu-ray Special Features

  • Vengeance mode
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Wes Ball
  • Navigating the Maze: The Making of the Maze Runner Documentary
  • The Chuck Diaries
  • Gag Reel
  • Visual Effects Reel
  • Ruin Short Film
  • Still Galleries and Storyboards

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

The Maze Runner Blu-ray Unboxing

The Maze Runner Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This set includes Blu-ray disc, DVD and digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed through iTunes or UltraViolet. The Blu-ray disc has the movie in 1080p video with DTS-HD surround sound. It currently cost $17.99










The Maze Runner Blu-ray Special Features

  • Audio Commentary by Director Wes Ball and Co-Screenwriter T.S. Nowlin
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Wes Ball
  • Navigating the Maze: The Making of the Maze Runner Documentary
  • The Chuck Diaries
  • Gag Reel
  • Visual Effects Reel
  • Ruin Short Film
  • Still Galleries and Storyboards

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

Guardians of the Galaxy Blu-ray Unboxing

Guardians of the Galaxy Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This set includes 3D Blu-ray disc, Blu-ray disc and digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed through iTunes or UltraViolet or Disney Movie Anywhere. The Blu-ray disc has the movie in 1080p video with DTS-HD surround sound. It cost $19.99










Guardians of the Galaxy Blu-ray Special Features

  • Audio Commentary
  • Guide to the Galaxy with James Gunn
  • The Intergalactic Visual Effects
  • Deleted & Extended Scenes
  • Exclusive Look at Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron
  • Gag Reel

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

Terminator Anthology Blu-ray Disc Set Unboxing

Terminator Anthology Blu-ray Disc Set


Buy From Amazon

This set includes 5 Blu-ray disc. The Blu-ray disc has each movie in 1080p video with DTS-HD surround sound. It cost $47.50










Terminator Anthology Blu-ray Special Features

  • Disc 1: The Terminator
  • Creating The Terminator: Visual Effects and Music
  • Terminator: A Retrospective
  • Terminated Scenes
  • Humans and Apes: The Cast of Dawn
  • Disc 2: Terminator 2: Judgment Day
  • Audio Commentaries
  • Interactive Modes
  • Terminated Data
  • Trailers
  • Skynet Access
  • Disc 3: Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
  • In-Movie Picture-in-Picture Experience
  • Audio Commentaries
  • Behind the Story
  • Additional Footage
  • Fun & Games
  • Trailers
  • Disc 4 and 5: Terminator Salvation
  • Maximum Movie Mode
  • Focus Points
  • Reforging the Future
  • The Moto-Terminator

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

Edge of Tomorrow Blu-ray Unboxing

Edge Of Tomorrow Blu-ray


Buy From Amazon

This set includes a Blu-ray disc, DVD and a digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed with UltraViolet or iTunes. The Blu-ray disc has the movie in 1080p video with DTS Master Audio 7.1 surround sound. It cost $23.28.








Edge Of Tomorrow Blu-ray Special Features

  • Storming the Beach
  • Weapons Of The Future
  • Creatures Not Of This World
  • On The Edge With Doug Liman
  • Deleted Scenes

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Blu-ray Unboxing

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Blu-ray Exclusive


Buy From Amazon

This set includes a Blu-ray disc and a digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed with UltraViolet or iTunes. The Blu-ray disc has the movie in 1080p video with DTS Master Audio 7.1 surround sound. It cost $19.99.








Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Blu-ray Special Features

  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Matt Reeves
  • Journey to Dawn
  • Andy Serkis: Rediscovering Caesar
  • Humans and Apes: The Cast of Dawn
  • The World of Dawn
  • The Ape Community
  • Move Like an Ape: An Artist’s Medium
  • Weta and Dawn
  • The Fight for a New Dawn
  • Audio Commentary by Matt Reeves

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Ender’s Game Buyer’s Guide

How To Train Your Dragon 2 Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Buyer’s Guide

how_to_train_your_dragon_2b_feature

How To Train Your Dragon 2, the sequel to the 2010 Dreamworks Animation blockbuster, builds on the great story established in the first film. Audiences responded well to seeing Hiccup and his friends as older teens coming into their own. With its success at the box office How To Train Your Dragon 3 has been planned for a 2016 release.

How To Train Your Dragon 2 will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on November 11, 2014. This buyer’s guide will include Blu-ray, DVD and digital options.

How To Train Your Dragon 2 On 3D Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This includes a 3D Blu-ray disc, Blu-ray disc, DVD and digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed with UltraViolet. The Blu-ray disc displays the film in 1080p video with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The price of How To Train Your Dragon 2 is $29.99 from Amazon.com. Included with this disc set is an additional featurette, Dawn Of The Dragon Racers.


How To Train Your Dragon 2 Blu-ray Special Features

  • TBA

How To Train Your Dragon 2 On Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This includes a Blu-ray disc, DVD and digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed with UltraViolet. The Blu-ray disc displays the film in 1080p video with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The price of How To Train Your Dragon 2 is $24.99 from Amazon.com. Like the 3D Blu-ray disc set Dawn Of The Dragon Racers is an included featurette.


How To Train Your Dragon 2 Blu-ray Special Features

  • TBA

How To Train Your Dragon 2 On DVD

Buy From Amazon

This case only includes the DVD. The video is in standard definition with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The DVD does not come with a digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed through UltraViolet. The DVD cost $19.99.










How To Train Your Dragon 2 DVD Special Features

  • TBA

The Target Blu-ray Exclusive of How To Train Your Dragon 2

Buy From Target
Buy From Target

The Target exclusive of How To Train Your Dragon 2 contains all of the disc and information that the Blu-ray disc set contains plus it includes a mini dragon toy. This exclusive from Target cost $25.99.







How To Train Your Dragon 2 From Vudu

Buy From Vudu
Buy From Vudu

How To Train Your Dragon 2 from Vudu cost $22.99. It comes in 1080p resolution with Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound. This purchase can play on various devices, such as Blu-ray players, Smart TVs, current and previous generation game consoles, iOS devices, Roku and Android devices.











How To Train Your Dragon 2 Vudu Special Features

  • TBA

How To Train Your Dragon 2 From iTunes

Buy From iTunes
Buy From iTunes

iTunes offers How To Train Your Dragon 2 for $19.99. How To Train Your Dragon 2 from iTunes comes in 1080p video with Dolby 5.1 surround sound. This purchase can be played on iOS devices, Apple TV, Macs and PCs. You can download or stream this purchase.











How To Train Your Dragon 2 iTunes Extras

  • TBA

How To Train Your Dragon 2 From Amazon Instant

Buy From Amazon Instant

How To Train Your Dragon 2 from Amazon Instant is competitively priced at $17.99. It comes in 1080p resolution with stereo sound. How To Train Your Dragon 2 from Amazon Instant does not come with any extras. This purchase can play on various devices. The main devices that this purchase can be played on is Amazon’s line of Kindle tablets. This purchase can also be played through Blu-ray players, Smart TVs, current and previous generation game consoles, iOS devices, Macs, PCs Amazon Fire TV and Roku. It will not play on non-Kindle Android devices.




Wrap Up

How To Train Your Dragon has become a large franchise spanning various forms of media. If you want more How To Train Your Dragon, after buying the movie, there are books and direct-to-video short films you can also enjoy.



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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Buyer’s Guide

disney_frozen_feature
Frozen Buyer’s Guide

Oculus Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Buyer’s Guide

oculus_feature

Following a proven pattern of low budget, high production value and high return on investment, Oculus was well received by horror movie fans. Oculus was made for only $5 million and raked in over $40 million at the box office.

Oculus will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on August 5, 2014. This buyer’s guide will include Blu-ray, DVD and digital options.

Oculus On Blu-ray

Buy From Amazon

This includes a Blu-ray disc, DVD and digital copy. The digital copy can be redeemed with UltraViolet. The Blu-ray disc displays the film in 1080p video with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The price of Oculus is $19.96 from Amazon.com.








Oculus Blu-ray Special Features

  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy
  • Inside The Mirror: Creating Oculus
  • Original Oculus 33 Minute Short Film with Optional Commentary by Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy
  • Commentary by Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy
  • Theatrical Trailer

Oculus On DVD

Buy From Amazon

This case only includes the DVD. The video is in standard definition with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The DVD does not come with a digital copy and it cost $14.96. The DVD comes with the following special features.








Oculus From Vudu

Buy From Vudu
Buy From Vudu

Oculus from Vudu cost $14.99. It comes in 1080p resolution with Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound. This purchase can play on various devices, such as Blu-ray players, Smart TVs, current and previous generation game consoles, iOS devices, Roku and Android devices. Oculus from Vudu does not come with any extras.










Oculus From iTunes

Buy From iTunes
Buy From iTunes

iTunes offers Oculus for $14.99. Oculus from iTunes comes in 1080p video with Dolby 5.1 surround sound. Oculus from iTunes does not come with any extras.
This purchase can be played on iOS devices, Apple TV, Macs and PCs. You can download or stream this purchase.










Oculus From Amazon Instant

Buy From Amazon Instant

Oculus from Amazon Instant cost $14.99. It comes in 1080p resolution with stereo sound. With this purchase you will get a few extras. Oculus from Amazon Instant does not come with any extras. This purchase can play on various devices. The main devices that this purchase can be played on is Amazon’s line of Kindle tablets. This purchase can also be played through Blu-ray players, Smart TVs, current and previous generation game consoles, iOS devices, Macs, PCs Amazon Fire TV and Roku. It will not play on non-Kindle Android devices.





Wrap Up

Oculus comes from the producers of Paranormal Activity and Insidious, so you can be sure to expect a sequel.



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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Buyer's Guide- Which will you choose?
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Buyer’s Guide- Which will you choose?

Click To Read My Review
Click To Read My Review

Samsung BD-HM59C 3D Blu-ray Player Review

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Performance


Buy From Amazon
Buy From Amazon

If you are upgrading from a previous Blu-ray player, the first thing you will notice about the BD-HM59C is its speed. This is one of the fastest Blu-ray players I have reviewed. Blu-ray disc loading is quick; it does not test your patience. What bothered me occasionally was that the Blu-ray player would not respond to the remote control.




Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Connectivity

Audio and Video

Samsung BD-HM59C Connections
Samsung BD-HM59C Connections

There are only a few connections available on the Samsung BD-HM59C. For video output there is a single HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) connector. HDMI carries an audio signal. There is also a coaxial connector. These digital audio connections transmit stereo or up to 7.1 surround sound.

Samsung BD-HM59C Wi-Fi
Samsung BD-HM59C Wi-Fi

Wireless

It comes with Wi-Fi or 802.11 b/g/n. I could confirm that it worked with a 802.11n wireless router, but I have read some reviews that state that the BD-HM59C does not actually support the faster 802.11ac 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz standard.

LAN 100

When it comes to a consistent connection this one works best. The local area network or LAN port allows you to connect the Blu-ray player directly to you cable or DSL modem.

Samsung BD-HM59C USB
Samsung BD-HM59C USB

USB

There is one USB port on the front. Unlike most Sony Blu-ray players the Samsung Blu-ray BD-M59C includes internal memory. So, you can start using streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu Plus, straight out of the box.

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Screen Mirroring

Samsung’s “Screen Mirroring” is their implementation of the Miracast standard. Currently, Android and Windows devices support Miracast. Miracast was established largely as a competitor to Apple’s Airplay. Airplay works flawlessly. This is not the case with Miracast. In practice, this standard suffers from having too many cooks in the kitchen. Every company that adopts the standard gives it a unique name and not every Android or Windows device supports Miracast. Conceptually, this feature is great, however it may or may not work well for you.

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Streaming channels

Samsung BD-HM59C Popular Streaming Services
Samsung BD-HM59C Popular Streaming Services

First of all, on the box it is stated that the BD-HM59C offers “100+” streaming services. Here is the problem with that statement, I could not find more than 13 streaming services. I looked, but could not find any option to download more services. I made sure to update the software for the Blu-ray player and still only 13 were available. Now, for most people this will not be an issue because the most popular video streaming services are included: Netflix, Vudu, Youtube and Hulu Plus.

After looking around a bit more, I discovered the “100+” streaming services largely reside within the Opera TV Store. Most of the content is not worth listing and some streaming services are outdated. Sony’s Crackle and Amazon’s Instant Video are not available on this player.

Youtube On The Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C

Youtube Pair
Youtube Pair

Watching Youtube on a television is usually a pain, but that is not the case with the BD-HM59C. The feature I am highlighting is not actually a feature of the BD-HM59C itself, but a feature Youtube has made available through many streaming devices. When you launch the Youtube app on the BD-HM59C it gives you a notification to visit Youtube on your tablet or phone and input a code. The code is displayed on your television screen.

Youtube Pair
Youtube Pair
Once you input the code you are able to navigate Youtube on your touch device and watch the video on your television. This is a superior navigation experience when compared to using the included remote.







Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C streaming channels:

  • Netflix
  • Hulu Plus
  • Youtube
  • Pandora
  • Vudu
  • Cinema Now
  • Amazon Instant Video
  • TechCrunch
  • CelebTV
  • Revision3

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Value

Blu-ray is Still The Best

Samsung_BD-HM59C_value

Currently priced at $88.95, the Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C is a quick Blu-ray player with a few quality streaming services. It offers a high quality viewing experience at home.

I own Pacific Rim, the 2013 science fiction mech movie, on Blu-ray and from the Vudu streaming service. Watching this visually arresting movie on Blu-ray is, without question, the best way to watch movies at home. And the BD-HM59C delivers that experience.

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Design

Samsung_BD-HM59C_design

The design of the BD-HM59C is fairly typical with the exception of the curved front right corner. The on-unit controls are on the top within a circle. The display on the front is large and clear.


Blu-ray offers the most Special Features

Blu-ray still, without comparison, offers the most content when it comes to special features, bonus content and extras. iTunes and other streaming services offer extra content with their movies, but rarely do they offer a comparable amount. Blu-ray continues to be the ideal medium for movie fans who want to gain insight into the development and making of a movie.

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C 3D Playback

The BD-HM59C will play any 3D disc you put into it. Keep in mind that you will also need a 3D television.

The major television manufactures, including Samsung, continue to build 3D televisions even though most consumers and tech reviewers consider 3D a gimmick. 3D on HD does little to improve your home viewing experience. As long as it is perceived by manufacturers to add margins to televisions, those manufacturers will continue to add 3D to their televisions. However, smaller niche brands, like Vizio, are leaving 3D behind.

Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C User Interface

Samsung BD-HM59C Main Interface
Samsung BD-HM59C Main Interface

Samsung’s user interface is uniform and easy to navigate. All apps are laid out using squares and rectangles. Installed apps use the same UI layout but are limited to two rows on the bottom of the screen while the top half of the screen is filled with relevant information and imagery. Visually, it is better than the Netflix layout in iOS, but not necessarily more efficient when browsing.



Samsung Blu-ray BD-HM59C Remote

Samsung BD-HM59C Remote AK59-00149A
Samsung BD-HM59C Remote AK59-00149A

The Samsung AK59-00149A remote has a medium length and a narrow width. The back is curved which complements your hand. The button layout takes some getting used to. Most of the buttons are rectangular and are difficult to distinguish by touch.






Wrap Up

The Samsung BD-HM59C is a great Blu-ray player with mediocre streaming services. If you want a superior viewing experience and only need the most popular streaming services this is a good choice for you.