Time for an upgrade... Need suggestions!

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by MarcoBiscotti, Jul 11, 2010.

  1. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

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    It's time to upgrade my old Pioneer Elite DV59-AVi to an HD unit and I would like some suggestions on the best possible options...


    I have not really made the plunge to Blu Ray (save few exception) as my HT viewing tends to lean towards the old and obscure, arthouse, b-grade, etc. of which the BD market has yet to really tackle. However, I realize that my hardware is outdated and it's time to step up and enable maximum performance from my setup. Here's what I'm working with and the budget allocated...


    Right now I am passing DVI from the Pio Elite DV59-AVi, through an HD Leeza scaler, and then out to a Digital Projection iVision HDX front DLP projector.


    The first thing that's got to get upgraded is the DVD unit itself, so I am definitely in the market for a new player but with reservation... I still MOSTLY source standard definition DVD's for viewing. The bulk of my collection is in SD and there is very little interest in the Blu Ray market, yet I do not want to cut off or limit my options!


    Another feature of great importance is region compliance... I understand this is not so much an issue with Blu Ray but I own many Standard Definition DVD's from multiple regions and need to be able to get the most reliable playback quality out of these, as well as region/zone-free BR! I don't mind going the way of chipset or remote hacks... so long as I get UNIVERSAL playback with all of my old DVDs, upconverted via the new player!


    So what I am looking for is a really sturdy and well-built, lasting quality player that will really push upconverted SD to the next level while still allowing me to take maximum advantage of the few BR Criterions and MOC titles on my shelves, as well as any future Blu Ray discs I test out. Furthermore, I'd like something that looks as great as my old Pioneer Elite does on my AV rack! And I'm sure it goes without saying as it'd likely be a default with all units these days, but top quality audio playback is a must also (incl. CD-R compatibility).


    I've got an Arcam FMJ AV8 & P7 seperates connected and want to be able to take full advantage whether through movie or cd/stereo playback, and that was one area my old Pioneer Elite really excelled, and still does to this day! So whatever unit I would be looking to upgrade would have to offer at least the equivalent, which I'm sure shouldn't be difficult in this generation of high def a/v playback...


    I would not like to spend more than $700 and preferably less though my flexibility will be determined by the flexibility of the product itself. This one will have to last as I do not plan to purchase another high end player again within this decade!


    Any and all help is extremely appreciated!!!
     
  2. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

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    The next thing to go is my outdated HD Leeza scaler as it's starting to cause headaches due to it's non-user friendly interface (lack of HDMI upconversion, unable to bring up menu screens while searching for inputs, etc)


    To be honest I was really only using this scaler for one sole purpose: it's extensive range of aspect ratio control, which is something that is really important to me! Well... that and SD deinterlacing of course!!!


    But I would like to find something that offers the specifics to switch between a 1.18:1 pillarboxed a.r. on old silent films to the opposite spectrum at a 2.90:1 Scope frame for extreme widescreen, and everything else inbetween.

    The 1:1 pixel mapping was useful for colour detail and probably slightly sharper image, as well as eliminating overscan... and having the freedom to switch between NTSC and PAL resolutions, Hz, etc. is still equally important to me as I own many standard-def DVD's from all regions and would like to program and customize my setup for optimal usage.

    But one of the main functions of signifigance for me is the control over aspect ratios! Is there any hardware currently on the market that would allow me such range in adjustments, without a lot of unnecessary features, while upgrading from my old Leeza scaler? What is out there that would allow for this kind of control and adjustment over the image and frame rate conversion while still providing the maximum utmost deinterlacing capabilities for SD sources??

    Thanks!
     
  3. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer
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    For the BD player, I would suggest an Oppo BDP-83 player, which is also one of the best players for upconverting SD-DVD material on the market. I believe there is a region-free hack available for the player.


    If/when my old Sony BDP-S350 Blu-Ray player dies, I plan on getting the Oppo.
     

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