Friday, January 30, 2009

Sony BDP-S350 firmware 015

Firmware version 015 was made available January 29th 2009 for the Sony BDP-S350 Blu-ray player. The S350 automatically detected that a new firmware version was available. Downloading over the Internet and updating was very simple and took about 7 minutes. I really like the way that some networked AV components make firmware upgrades so easy and painless.

Improvements over firmware version 010:
  • Improves BD-Java compatibility to enhance interactivity with some BD-ROMs.
  • Improves BD-Live performance to enhance interactivity.

Some people have reported that the 015 update fixes the Baraka Blu-ray freezing problem. I am skeptical that something that appears to be a laser layer focus/transition problem could be fixed via firmware. I will update this section when more Baraka user reports are in.

The new 015 firmware did not fix the Wall-E Blu-ray DTS audio glitches that I was having with my Lexicon DC-1 pre-amp/processor. The Lexicon DC-1 has DTS firmware from 1997 so it is probably something that can't/won't be fixed externally. It's time for me to upgrade my old DC-1 to something newer that is HDMI compatible with the newer lossless codecs.

The higher end Sony BDP-S550 model also has firmware 015 available with the same improvements listed. The S350 and S550 firmware download files both have files sizes of 51,822,592 bytes but they have different md5sum checksums so they are not the same. I will update this section when I compare the contents of both firmwares and determine what is different.

It has been 4 months since the 010 firmware came out September 30th 2008 that added BD-Live support to the BDP-S350. At this rate the S350 will probably get a couple more firmware updates this year. They will likely only be bug fixes as Sony hasn't announced any future features like their competition has for streaming Netflix, YouTube, and Picassa support. This is sort of discouraging since Sony has such a great track record of adding new features and functionality to the PS3. Time will tell how this affects Sony's AV consumer business.


John Beasley said...

Hi Eric,

I am having a freezing issue on "The Bourne Identity", part of The Bourne Trilogy Blu-Ray Box Set. Your story about the Baracka disc is exactly the same as mine. I had to exchange mine at Amazon and the second one had the same issue. The other two films in the set, Supremacy and Ultimatum do not freeze up. I wonder if the disc was damaged by the magnet in the case? I am not sure. I will put the disc in a jewel case and conduct the same test you did. If you have this set and an S350, try the Bourne Identity and let me know if you have the same issue. I am upgraded to this latest firmware version that you mention in this blog post. Thanks!


Erik said...

Since a Blu-ray disc is optical the magnet should have no effect on it. Scratching and bending can damage a Blu-ray disc though.

Sorry but I don't have the Bourne box set. I plan on renting it and I'll report back if I have any playback problems with my Sony S350.