Panasonic UB820 Review – The Ultimate 4K Blu-ray Player for Audiophiles?

For movie enthusiasts and audiophiles alike, the search for the ultimate home cinema experience is a never-ending quest. The Panasonic UB820 4K Blu-ray player emerges as a contender, promising a cinematic journey that transcends pixels and soundtracks. But does it live up to the hype, particularly for the discerning audiophile?

Unpacking the Excellence

  • Dazzling Visuals: The UB820 boasts pristine 4K playback with support for HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision formats. This translates to vibrant colors, deep blacks, and breathtaking clarity, transporting you right into the heart of the action.
  • Audiophile Delight: The UB820 doesn’t just play audio, it delivers an audiophile-grade experience. High-resolution audio formats like FLAC, DSD, and WAV are meticulously decoded, bringing out the nuances and details in your music collection.
  • Built for Quality: The UB820 exudes a sense of premium craftsmanship. Its sleek, minimalist design and solid build quality inspire confidence and suggest a commitment to long-lasting performance.

Exploring the Features

  • Multiple Connection Options: The UB820 features a plethora of connection options, including dual HDMI outputs, dedicated 7.1-channel analog audio outputs, and optical and coaxial digital audio outputs. This allows for flexible integration into virtually any home cinema setup.
  • Advanced Calibration Tools: The UB820 offers a suite of calibration tools for videophiles, including HDR Optimizer and Multi-HDR Format Support. These tools allow you to fine-tune the picture to your liking and ensure the most accurate color reproduction.
  • Extensive Streaming Capabilities: While the UB820 prioritizes physical media experiences, it also offers access to popular streaming services like Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon Prime Video. This allows you to enjoy a diverse range of content without leaving the comfort of your sofa.

The Audiophile’s Perspective

The UB820 shines in its ability to reproduce audio with remarkable fidelity. The dedicated audio circuitry and support for high-resolution formats allow you to hear every instrument, every voice, and every nuance in your music and movie soundtracks.

However, some audiophiles might lament the lack of support for certain niche audio formats like SACD and DVD-Audio. Additionally, the built-in DAC, while decent, might not satisfy those who seek the ultimate audiophile experience.

Overall Verdict

The Panasonic UB820 is a compelling option for movie buffs and audiophiles who demand a premium home cinema experience. Its stunning visuals, robust audio capabilities, and user-friendly features make it a worthy investment for those who appreciate the finer points of audio and video reproduction.

Is it the ultimate 4K Blu-ray player for audiophiles?

While the UB820 excels in many aspects, it may not be the ultimate choice for the most discerning audiophile due to the lack of support for certain niche formats and limitations of the built-in DAC. However, for the vast majority of audiophiles who prioritize excellent audio and video quality, user-friendliness, and value, the UB820 stands as a top contender in the 4K Blu-ray player market.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the pros and cons to help you decide:


  • Stunning 4K picture quality with support for HDR formats
  • High-resolution audio playback for an audiophile-grade experience
  • Premium build quality and sleek design
  • Extensive connection options for flexible integration
  • Advanced calibration tools for videophiles
  • Access to popular streaming services


  • Lacks support for SACD and DVD-Audio formats
  • Built-in DAC might not satisfy the most demanding audiophiles

Ultimately, the decision of whether the UB820 is the right 4K Blu-ray player for you depends on your individual needs and priorities. If you prioritize superb picture and sound quality, user-friendliness, and value, the UB820 is definitely worth considering. However, if you demand the very best in audiophile features, you might want to explore other options.

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