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Marantz 8400


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#1 of 21 Barry Lieberman

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Posted May 08 2003 - 04:50 AM

Has anyone gone ahead and picked up this player? I was all set to purchase the Denon 2900, but its lack of a DVI/HDCP output gives me the feeling that I'm buying a machine that is already out of date. So I can either wait for the 3900 to come out (and even it may not have a DVI output) or pickup the Marantz.

I was just wondering if anyone had any first impressions of this player.

Thanks,
Barry

#2 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 08 2003 - 09:06 AM

Not out yet, afaik...

This one will probably not have it either. Still based on the Pioneer 47a from what I've seen.
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#3 of 21 ManojM

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Posted May 08 2003 - 09:58 AM

Marantz tells me that they just got them in. I expect a review sample within a couple of weeks. Word is they massaged the SACD side a bit more and it does have the DVI output. I just set up the 2900, and it will be interesting to see how the 8400 is...
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#4 of 21 Phil A

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Posted May 08 2003 - 10:10 AM

The DVI output per the manual I looked at quickly in a store is not active. It says something about being for future use with a software upgrade.

#5 of 21 ManojM

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Posted May 08 2003 - 10:23 AM

The issue of a non-active DVI out has been raised more than once lately, but when I talked to the Marantz folks about the DVI out they never mentioned that it was not active. We actually talked at length about it. I will put in a call and ask them specifically.
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#6 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 08 2003 - 01:27 PM

Manoj! Good to "see" you here... Posted Image

Also looks like it still doesn't have BM for DVD-A?

http://www.marantz.c....e=sadvd&cat=hf

Quote:
Audio “Bass-Management” function for SACD

Any report on the chroma bug?

If they'd "fix" those two issues from the 8300, I'd be all over this player...
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#7 of 21 ManojM

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Posted May 08 2003 - 02:47 PM

Chroma bug is supposedly still present. I received an email that tells me that DVI out is not active at this time, but I will know more tomorrow about when it will be. I will ask if there is BM for DVD-A.

Kevin,
Ouch, another "see" joke...Posted Image
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#8 of 21 KeithH

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Posted May 09 2003 - 02:37 AM

Manoj said:

Quote:
Chroma bug is supposedly still present.


For crying out loud! I'm sorry, but that is inexcusable. Marantz is a company that prides itself on turning out a quality product. Isn't it time that a company like Marantz stopped releasing a high-priced component with the chroma bug? The chroma bug is old news, and there are ways around it. Furthermore, for Marantz to borrow a design from Pioneer for a $1500 component rather than design the player in house is bothersome. I don't care how good the '8400 is with audio. Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image
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#9 of 21 Barry Lieberman

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Posted May 09 2003 - 03:38 PM

I am a custom dealer, and my Marantz rep says (as of thursday at noon) that they have them in stock should I require one.

Barry

#10 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 09 2003 - 07:26 PM

Barry- Not that I'm curious or anything Posted Image, but what is the list?
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#11 of 21 KeithH

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Posted May 10 2003 - 12:33 AM

Kevin, nah. You're just trying to increase your knowledge base. Posted Image
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#12 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 10 2003 - 07:11 AM

Keith- You're *mostly* right. Posted Image

It would be a trade off between the list, the street, and if it still does have the chroma bug and no DVD-A BM.

Unfortuntely, I have read too many of your posts, and I think I have traded my enthusiasm for the 2900 for the 3900... Posted Image

And, I'm still hoping that Marantz might do a "souped" up version (9400?) closer to the old 12s1 (?) players.

I'd still be curious on your take on the "low sub output" 'problem' of the 2900. I personally don't think it exists. I think it's the difference between DD/DTS and DVD-A/SACD LFE levels, but every time I bring it up, people who don't have the proper test discs disagree. Posted Image
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#13 of 21 Rob Tomlin

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Posted May 18 2003 - 04:00 AM

I agree with Keith. For Marantz to release a "high quality" player like this with the chroma bug is inexcusable!

Marantz will, no doubt, lose out on potential sales because of this issue. They certainly will not get my business even though it means I will have to wait for a top notch universal player with DVI output to come out.

And why isn't the DVI out "active"???

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#14 of 21 ReggieW

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Posted May 18 2003 - 06:42 AM

I read a review in this month's Absolute Sound on the audio capability of the 8300 and they said the SACD was surprisingly lackluster, redbook playback was good but nothing to crow about, and the DVD-A playback was excellent. This is quite surprising for a company that was known to make among the best audio-only SACD players on the market. I know it is always assumed by most here that Marantz should be "better" than Denon for audio, but from what I hear, the 2900 provides better video quality, SACD playback, and build quality for $600.00 less. DVD-A and redbook playback may be a coin toss between the two. I can only assume that the 8400 will cost more but will retain some of the same problems that plagued the 8300. I agree with Keith that the chroma bug should not exist in any player at this price point. I think that those considering the 8400 should wait and see what the forthcoming Denon 3900 offers. If the 2900 can match the Sony ES changers in SACD playback, how much better sounding will the 3900 be? I can't wait to see a universal shootout of some sort.

Reg
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#15 of 21 Sach

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Posted May 18 2003 - 07:13 AM

Quote:
I read a review in this month's Absolute Sound on the audio capability of the 8300 and they said the SACD was surprisingly lackluster, redbook playback was good but nothing to crow about, and the DVD-A playback was excellent


I won't go by the review of the Absolute Sound or the Perfect Vision - they just like Sony players. They even gave high marks to the Sony 999es video quality. The Marantz DV 8300 audio has been praised a lot - just check ecoustics.com for reviews; however the video is based on the Pioneer units.

#16 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 18 2003 - 09:28 AM

There have been other reviews out about the 8300, and they all liked it's audio output.
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#17 of 21 ManojM

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Posted May 18 2003 - 10:22 AM

I too read The Absolute Sound review on the 8300 where they liked the DVD-A but said the SACD sounded digital. I use the 8300 as my DVD-A/SACD player in a system that has had multiple processors (McIntosh, Krell Showcase, Anthem, Parasound C2), Classe and Parasound A51 amps, and a Krell DVD Standard for 2 channel sound. My speakers were B&W Nautilus 804/805/HTM2, and are now the even more resolving KEF Reference 207/204c/201 with a REL Strata III sub. If any of you have read my reviews, you also know that I use very high quality cables such as Audioquest Pythons and Wireworld Silver Eclipses.

Although I respect The Absolute Sound's excellent reputation, and the reviewer's opinion, I have to disagree with their conclusion concerning the SACD audio quality. I do not find the SACD quality to be "digital" sounding, I find it to be very close to the DVD-A in openness, transparency, and musicality. In fact, I actually own more SACDs than DVD-As, so I listen to this format on a regular basis. If the DVD-A quality was judged to be "excellent," it stands to reason that if the SACD quality was markedly inferior it would be quite noticeable, yet in a system that is fairly resolving as mine is, I cannot say that about the SACD audio quality of the 8300.

As for the 8400, I understand that SACD quality has been further improved, it will be interesting to see if it does match the DVD-A quality even more closely now. The DVI output is not active at this time because it has not been approved by the DVD forum.
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#18 of 21 ReggieW

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Posted May 18 2003 - 12:13 PM

Thanks guys for the responses. I have checked reviews from other publishers and it does appear that Absolute Sound is indeed in the minority in regards to the 8300's SACD playback. This does still make things all the interesting when compared to the Denon 2900, which still triumphs in the video department. I would like to see a no-holds barred comparison between the 8400 and the Denon 3900 when it becomes available. My understanding is that the 3900 will also include better DAC's and HDCD decoding, which will probably be a first for a universal player to have ALL formats with HDCD. I am glad to hear the 8300's audio quality is great, because I was starting to wonder what exactly did Marantz do right in this $1,600.00 player. I still think they should get the video in order. It faired much to poorly in the Secrets shootout considering its asking price imho.

Reg
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#19 of 21 Kevin C Brown

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Posted May 18 2003 - 06:24 PM

I still have a *hope* that Marantz maybe replaced the chroma bug part of the 8400's video processing with non-chroma bug processing. Posted Image
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#20 of 21 Brian Fitterman

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Posted May 18 2003 - 11:51 PM

One thing I did notice in that article was he loved the sound of DVD-A from it, but did not like the CD sound.

This brings up a question: If DVD-A is just using MLP to compress (lossless) a PCM signal, and CD is PCM, my guess is that the chain of signal processing after the MPL decompression is the same for both formats. Of course DVD-A is a higher resolution. But my point is, if CD sounded bad, wouldn't DVD-A not sound that good either, when compared to other players that is?

I could be wrong, but dont image two different PCM signal paths in the same unit. That is where DVD-A has a big advantage over SACD. All the exsiting chipsets are used to dealing with PCM, not DSD.
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