It definitely holds it's own and more with PQ compared to my limited BDP experience. Why anyone would sell this is hard to understand, unless spending much, much more. Plus they switched to the ABT VRS chip for the new model, which I'm sure is good too.
This is definitely a well designed/built BDP. I think they got it right with their first attempt and put a lot into it (like Pioneer did with the PRO-FHD1). The follow up models just don't compare except for having more inputs and bells-and-whistles. I think I can also appreciate it more with having just purchased it as compared to those who bought it when first released and now feel the need to upgrade because it's been discontinued. Anyone else out there with an older, cheaper BDP should seriously consider buying this. Who cares if it doesn't have ethernet, VOD streaming, or commercial marketing/advertising BD-Live. If you want to watch Blu-ray, this is all you need. Wait until the newer models become obsolete and then move on up again.
I enjoyed removing it from the box too, feeling the mass/weight of it told me right away it meant business, especially after the flimsy-light BD7004. It's bigger then I imagined from pictures too, extending beyond the shelf. Don't care for the new styling either, even though I'm new to Marantz.
There has been some minor functional behavior issues with a couple BD's. But Marantz Customer Support has been quick to reply/help, even wrote a firmware update. I knew going into it (buying an older model) there could be the potential for issues like this. It's a compromise. It also took some re-acclimating to the slower response times (Load, play, FFW, Skip...) coming from a computer based media-server (Apple TV). But now I have access to more titles (both BD/DVD), as well as movies in their theatrical release, not dubbed in English, and I can rent or own them, not limited to only SD with some titles, or only for rent, or own,..etc.
I've already noticed how some BD transfers exceed others. You do get lost in the picture, details, colors, especially with a plasma. If only all HD transfers were flawless.
I just bought a PS Audio AC3 Power Cord for both the BDP and the plasma. A very noticeable improvement over the stock cords. The picture has such a stillness to it now, with improved depth and clarity and that liquidity that plasma have. I plan to replace the fuse also (HiFi Tuning SilverStar). Video really responds well to power upgrades. I was even thinking about the RAM PS upgrade. I think I'll focus on a PC instead.