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How does the build quality of the Panasonic DVD-S55S compare to the 'S35S?


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#1 of 5 OFFLINE   KeithH

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Posted May 11 2003 - 05:14 AM

As I have stated here a number of times, I am looking for an inexpensive DVD-Audio player for my second stereo system. Two players that interest me are the Panasonic DVD-S55S ($130) and the 'F85 ($150). I went into Circuit City yesterday looking for these players, and they had the 'F85 on display. A salesman looked in their computer system, and it looks like they will not be getting the 'S55S.

I was quite impressed with the build quality of the 'F85. The chassis felt very solid for a $150 player, and the changer mechanism was fast, smooth, and quiet. Circuit City also had the non-DVD-Audio-capable 'S35S and 'F65 on display. In comparing the build quality of the 'F65 and 'F85, I found the 'F65 to be more "tinny". When I tapped the side of the 'F65, it seemed to rattle a bit, whereas the 'F85 was solid. The changer mechanism appeared to be the same on the two units.

After comparing changers, I checked out the build quality of the 'S35S and was thoroughly unimpressed. It feels very thin and hollow. Now, the 'S35S is only $100. For the extra $30, do you get better build quality with the 'S55S? If the 'S55S feels the same as the 'S35S, I don't want it. I know it's what's under the hood that counts, but I don't want a component that feels flimsy. I expect the 'S55S and 'F85 to give similar performance with DVD-Audio, so I will go with the 'F85 if it is built better.

Any comments you can share would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
My:
Main Stereo and HT Systems ;
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Planned Upgrades and Additions "You know, the tomato never took off as a handfruit."- George Costanza

#2 of 5 OFFLINE   Danny Tse

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Posted May 11 2003 - 07:00 AM

Keith,

Remember my post about getting a DVD player for my mom?? I purchased the S35S from Best Buy, and after a couple of days of checking out the machines's performance on her Sony hi def-capable big screen, I returned it. The picture quality wasn't all that great when compared to her previous Pioneer DV-414. Audio quality? Typical....nothing special. The remote was horrible....not shaped well for the hand (at least not for my hands or my mom's). I don't know whether the Pioneer was a really good machine or the Panasonic was just not so good.

Any opinions about Toshibas??
SACD not listed at sa-cd.net (updated 8/26/2009)

#3 of 5 OFFLINE   John Knowles

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Posted May 11 2003 - 07:16 AM

That's interesting since I'm looking at a prog-scan player to use instead of the Pioneer DVL-919, which I believe is the same DVD section as the 414. I will get something better but I was going to get one of the Pannys until I can save up for a good universal SACD/DVDA machine, but if the picture quality isn't much better than what I get out of the Pioneer now (my hd set doesn't do 3:2 pulldown), then I might as well wait. Or perhaps the new Sony 725 might be better?
So turn in your shoes...FOR INDUSTRY!!!

#4 of 5 OFFLINE   KeithH

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Posted May 11 2003 - 09:13 AM

Danny, thanks for the information. I wonder if the 'S55S is a better audio component than the 'S35S simply because the 'S55S handles DVD-Audio. Still, I appreciate your comments.

I don't want to spend much on a DVD-Audio player for my second system, so I hope one of the budget Panasonic players will suffice. This is my second system, and I am only looking for a component for stereo DVD-Audio. I do not have a TV in the room, so I do not really care about video quality. Also, I am set in terms of CD players in this system, so a good DVD-Audio player is all I am after. I'd love to get a Denon DVD-1600, but if I came home with that player at $500, a month after getting the Denon '3800 for $1200 for the main system, I think my fiancee would have some words for me. Posted Image
My:
Main Stereo and HT Systems ;
Second Stereo System ;
Equipment List ; DVDs, SACDs, and more ;
Planned Upgrades and Additions "You know, the tomato never took off as a handfruit."- George Costanza

#5 of 5 OFFLINE   KeithH

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Posted May 12 2003 - 11:20 PM

Anyone else on the build quality of the 'S55S compared to the 'S35S?
My:
Main Stereo and HT Systems ;
Second Stereo System ;
Equipment List ; DVDs, SACDs, and more ;
Planned Upgrades and Additions "You know, the tomato never took off as a handfruit."- George Costanza