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41 replies to this topic

#1 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted February 23 2007 - 04:40 PM

My name is Wayne. I live in Oakville, Ontario. I'm having my basement finished and I'm planning to put in a home theatre system. I have bought most of my components in stages. I have the receiver with all the speakers and I just purchased the plasma TV.

I need to buy a dvd player to complete the system.

My questions are:

1. I want a dvd/vcr combo unit. Do any manufacturers make them with HDMI upconversion technology and digital optical cable output?
My Kenwood receiver is about 3 years old; (Model #VR-6070/KRF-X9060D) has two input jacks to support digital optical cable inputs.
I did find a dvd/vcr combo from Samsung that does have HD upconversion technology (DVD-V9650) but it does not have optical cable outputs.

2. Is optical cable outputs the only way to truly enjoy digital cable sound? Or is this old technology?

3. If I can find a dvd/vcr combo with optical outputs, can I still plug in the dvd/vcr combo directly into Plasma tv with HDMI cables for the video and then plug in the optical cables into the receiver for digital sound? Will this work or will I have to hook it up some other way?

Any advice greatly appreciated.

#2 of 42 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted February 24 2007 - 04:04 AM

Quote:
1. I want a dvd/vcr combo unit. Do any manufacturers make them with HDMI upconversion technology and digital optical cable output?
My Kenwood receiver is about 3 years old; (Model #VR-6070/KRF-X9060D) has two input jacks to support digital optical cable inputs.
I did find a dvd/vcr combo from Samsung that does have HD upconversion technology (DVD-V9650) but it does not have optical cable outputs.
Don't know of any combo players, but Oppo has what you're looking for, otherwise. See them here: http://www.oppodigital.com/

Quote:
2. Is optical cable outputs the only way to truly enjoy digital cable sound? Or is this old technology?
No. You can get discreet surround sound from optical (toslink), digital coaxial, and HDMI (with HDMI receiver).

Quote:
3. If I can find a dvd/vcr combo with optical outputs, can I still plug in the dvd/vcr combo directly into Plasma tv with HDMI cables for the video and then plug in the optical cables into the receiver for digital sound? Will this work or will I have to hook it up some other way?
That will work. In fact, if you don't have an HDMI capable receiver, that's how you HAVE to hook it up, to get surround sound.

I did a Google search for "combo players with HDMI", and came up with this:http://www.google.co....ient=firefox-a
I'll let you look through the pages! Posted Image
Good luck!
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#3 of 42 OFFLINE   Bob McElfresh

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Posted February 24 2007 - 07:16 AM

Hi Wayne.

I would NOT recommend getting a combo DVD/VCR unit right now. VCR's are cheap/easy to buy.

But we are on the edge of a major change in DVD with Blu-Ray and HD-DVD machines coming out. You are going to want to be able to upgrade the DVD player in the near future and buying a DVD/VCR combo unit means you might have to replace 2 devices.

Just my .02 Posted Image

#4 of 42 OFFLINE   JohnRice

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Posted February 24 2007 - 07:26 AM

I second Bob's feedback. In the long run and unless there is some absolute reason for it, combo components are almost always a mistake in the long run. The fact is, you can probably get exactly what you want in separates for less than a combo, or you will have to live with significant limitations with the combo. This is on top of the fact that one part of the combo unit will invariably die before the other. Just get separate units.

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The Music Part: Emotiva XSP-1, Thiel CS 3.6, Emotiva XPA-2, Marantz SA8004, Emotiva ERC-3, SVS PB-12 Plus 2

The Surround Part: Sherbourn PT-7030, Thiel SCS3, Emotiva XPA-5, Polk & Emotiva Surrounds.


#5 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted February 24 2007 - 09:47 AM

Hello all,

Thanks for your quick and informative replies. My first post on this site, by the way! Posted Image

In response to Ed(Anyone else can respond if they wish):
1. Are Oppo dvd players easy to find? Can I find them at big box stores like best buy?

2. My Kenwood reciever has two options for audio digital output. The Optical fiber cable or Coaxial digital cable. Which would you recommend?

3. Unfortunately, my Kenwood reciever does not appear to have an HDMI input. The other thing I was thinking was is it possible that someone makes an adaptor to plug in an HDMI cable (possibly audio AND video?!) into my reciever? Any ideas on that? Would that mean I could plug in all my components into my Receiver and then out from my reciever into my T.V. with HDMI cable?

In response to Bob and John, the only reason I am even considering a combo unit is that I have alot of movies (and Star Trek NG episodes) that I love on VHS (probably 40-50) and I don't want to have to get DVD's to replace them.

I wanted a combo to avoid having two components so to save space on the T.V. stand (which I have yet to purchase; waiting to buy components) and to make hooking up to T.V. easier. However, based on your replies, I just might go with two components anyway. If I do, which HDMI upconversion dvd player(s) would you all recommend? And could you also incorporate answers to my other questions: For example, should I get a dvd player with optical digital audio outputs to connect to my Kenwood receiver and then connect HDMI cable to T.V. directly? Or do they make an adaptor for my old reciever so I can hook all into recevier and then from there into T.V.?

Also, wondering if anyone knows somebody in the Oakville (or Greater Toronto Area) of Ontario that I can hire to help me hook it all up once I get all the components? Not sure if I trust those guys at Best Buy or Future Shop.

Thanks all again!

Wayne

#6 of 42 OFFLINE   ThomasC

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Posted February 24 2007 - 10:34 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by gojays_1
1. Are Oppo dvd players easy to find? Can I find them at big box stores like best buy?
I think they only do Internet-direct sales on their website.

http://www.oppodigital.com/

#7 of 42 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted February 24 2007 - 02:34 PM

I agree with ThomasC........ you can only buy Oppo players online.
As far as optical or digital coax.........either one. You won't notice a difference with either one. Some prefer digital coax because they're usually cheaper, and have a better connection. They say that optical is better for long runs. Just don't turn a corner too sharply, or you'll break the glass fibers, and ruin the cable.

Sorry....... no adapters for HDMI to connect to a non HDMI receiver. But running the HDMI to the tv, and the optical or coax to the receiver, will work just fine. Your receiver probably has component inputs and output. You can use that, instead of HDMI, and go to the receiver and then out to the tv, for easier switching between sources. I've heard, (but can't say for sure since I don't have personal experience with HDMI), that you may not notice any difference between HDMI and component video.

As far as hooking stuff up, most of it is just common sense. You go from the output of the source, to the input of receiver and/or tv. Where things can get a little tricky, is assigning digital inputs on the receiver, to be for the dvd or digital cable/satellite, etc...... Your owner's manual will walk you through it. Remember to set the distances for your speakers (delay), from the sweet spot (your sitting position), and set the speaker levels (volume) for each speaker, so the volume sounds identical, from each speaker, to the sweet spot. An SPL meter is best for this adjustment. If you have Radio Shacks in Canada, you can get one there.

I do make a few bucks on the side, hooking people's stuff up for them, but Canada is WAY too far for me! Posted Image
Good luck!
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#8 of 42 OFFLINE   Bob McElfresh

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Posted February 25 2007 - 04:00 AM

Quote:
..and to make hooking up to T.V. easier.

I hooked up a combo unit for a friend. The DVD player part had separate outputs from the VCR part. This is because the way VCR's are encoded, it can only output composite video and the electronics to up-convert to SVideo or Component is a major/expensive part of your television electronics.

My advice: hit eBay/Craigslist to find used DVD's to replace your VHS.

(Hypocrite that I am, I have been cleaning the garrage and tossing out all my old VHS tapes whenever I find them, but ... I have the DS9 "Trouble with Tribbles" box set with a tribble and the shows are ... VHS. I just cannot bring myself to toss it.). Posted Image

#9 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted February 26 2007 - 04:05 AM

In response to Ed:

Thanks again for the advice. Too bad you don't live in Canada to help me out!Posted Image

Questions: is component video cable the rca jack connection or something else? Or should I hook up the video through the S-Video jack? I found a cable supplier online that has a dual optical digital cable and an s-video cable all in one. I know I'm looking at the cables before the Dvd player is even purchased, but I thought I'd do that research as well.

#2. Oppo dvd players seem to have what I want. Unfortunately, they seem to be only available online. I'd rather not have to deal with the shipping and customs issues as I am in Canada, especially if I have a warranty issue with it.
Can you recommend any other dvd player(s) that have optical or coaxial audio outputs? I'd prefer something I could purchase here in Canada; like something I could purchase at a big box store or specialty shop. Thanks again.

In response to Bob:

After viewing your post and some of the others, I don't think I will buy the combo unit. Sounds like too much trouble! It might take me years to replace my vhs collection, but in the meantime I'll probably hook up a vcr anyway.

Don't toss the 'Trouble with Tribbles' set! It's a classic! Posted Image
Even though I'm not a big DS9 fan, you gotta keep that!

Wayne

#10 of 42 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted February 26 2007 - 04:36 AM

Component cables have rca connectors on the ends. The cables are color coded as red, green and blue. You'll get better picture with the component cables, vs. s-video. S-video will not carry HD signals at all. Component will.

About every dvd player made, now days, have digital coax and/or optical outputs for audio. Just find one with the other features you want, and you should be good to go.
Good luck! Posted Image
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#11 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted February 27 2007 - 03:30 AM

Ed,

Just wondering if I even need to hook up the component video from the dvd player to the receiver? You mentioned it's makes switching over easier. If I connect the dvd player to the recevier with coax or optical cable for audio and connect an HDMI connection from the dvd player to the T.V. (the one I bought has two HDMI inputs), why would I even bother to connect the video part from the dvd to the receiver? Is there some thing there that I'm missing?

Unless what you're saying is I can connect the High Defintion up-conversion dvd player to the receiver with a coax or optical for audio and then connect the component video to the receiver and from the receiver into the T.V. through the component video out jack? Will I get HD reception that way or must it be from the HDMI connection only?


One other dilema I might have is if I connect the T.V. directly from the digital cable box, I will only be listening to sound from T.V. I'm guessing there might be output audio jacks on the T.V. that I can connect to receiver. Any thoughts on that?

My head is starting to spin now! Posted Image

Thanks

#12 of 42 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted February 27 2007 - 04:36 AM

You can get HD going from cable box to receiver to tv, with component cables, but not from the dvd player to receiver to tv. The dvd player will upconvert from HDMI only (I forgot we were talking about an upconverting dvd player....sorry).

Quote:
One other dilema I might have is if I connect the T.V. directly from the digital cable box, I will only be listening to sound from T.V. I'm guessing there might be output audio jacks on the T.V. that I can connect to receiver. Any thoughts on that?
Don't use the audio out from tv. Use the audio out from the cable box, to the receiver. Video out from cable box to tv, if cable box has HDMI output. If cable box doesn't have HDMI, use the component cables to receiver, and from receiver to tv.
If you get upconverting dvd player, use HDMI out to tv, and coax or optical out to receiver.
Whichever one is using HDMI (maybe both), you'll change the input on the tv, to watch that source, plus the button on the receiver, to hear that source.

In other words..............
Let's say your upconverting dvd player is hooked up to tv with HDMI for picture, and optical cable for sound. To watch a dvd, you'll put the tv's input on Video 1 (or whatever input you used for dvd player), and push the "DVD" button on your receiver or remote. Then, after dvd is finished, to go back to tv, you'll put the tv's input on the one you used for cable box, and press the button for "TV/DBS", on receiver or remote.

Now, let's say you don't have an upconverting dvd player, and player and cable box have component cables going to the receiver's inputs, and then going to tv's Video 1 input. You put the tv's input on Video 1, and leave it there. Then you have digital coax or optical going to receiver (from both), for audio. When you want to watch a dvd, you push the "DVD" button on the receiver or remote. Then to switch back to tv, you push the "TV/DBS" button on receiver or remote. That's all. See how the switching between sources is easier, going to receiver first? Since your receiver doesn't have HDMI inputs or output, you won't be able to go to receiver first, using HDMI.
I hope this helps you understand a little better, instead of confusing you more?
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#13 of 42 OFFLINE   JaceTheAce

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Posted February 27 2007 - 08:01 AM

I would not recommend buying a DVD/VCR combo. If one of them breaks, you have to replace the whole entire thing. You're also limited to a small amount of available DVD/VCR combo options.

#14 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted March 01 2007 - 03:41 PM

I need time to think about your response. That's why I'm taking a while to respond. Also, we've had a major snowstorm here today. And did I mention wife and I are expecting our second child! We're real busy.

w

#15 of 42 OFFLINE   Bob McElfresh

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Posted March 01 2007 - 04:51 PM

Congrats on the 'upgrade' you are making to the family! Posted Image Start collectiong those limited-edition Disney DVD's.

#16 of 42 OFFLINE   Star Wars Guy

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Posted March 02 2007 - 12:21 AM

I don't know if Amazon is any easier for you to deal with in Canada, but that's where I got my Oppo. I also got free shipping, but it may be different for you up there.

#17 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted March 02 2007 - 03:37 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Star Wars Guy
I don't know if Amazon is any easier for you to deal with in Canada, but that's where I got my Oppo. I also got free shipping, but it may be different for you up there.

I'd rather not deal with shipping across the border issues. I had a problem with some lands end products once and I don't want the hassle again. I'm probably going with a toshiba.

#18 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted March 02 2007 - 04:08 AM

Star Wars: I don't want to deal with the cross border customs issues. I had a problem once with land end and don't want the hassle again.


Bob: Thanks for the congrats. It's our second child so we are well stocked with Baby Einstein, Dora and LeapFrog DVD's. Not too many Disney ones yet.

Jace: After all the advice I've received I've decided not to go with the combo. Sounds like too much hassle. I'll leave a vcr connected to another T.V upstairs. The HD T.V. and my receiver will probably just highlight all the flaws of VHS tapes anyway.

Ed:
After reading your response at least three times (remember I'm new at this stuff!)Posted Image I think I get it.

Assuming I'm getting an HD upconversion DVD player and will have a digital cable box, this is what I should do:
-Connect cable box HDMI to T.V. for video(I also believe it's for non-HD signal
-Connect cable box audio out to reciever(assuming it will have one)
-Connect dvd HDMI to T.V. for video(again I believe it will carry non-HDsignal
-Connect dvd coaxial or optical to receiver for audio

To view dvd just go to video 1 (or whatever I hook it to) on T.V. and dvd on receiver (which is what I do now anyway).
To switch back to T.V. just go to T.V. on T.V and T.V./DBS on reciever if I want to listen to it through the speakers.

Do I have that right? Or am I missing anything?

Now I've got a lead on good upconversion HD DVD player. It's the Toshiba
SD6980. It's got all the outputs I need, including ColourStream Pro Component Video output(not sure if I need that if I have HDMI output) and the coax and optical audio ones. It's got great reviews on several opinion websites I've checked. The only two negatives so far is that I have not been able to find a dealer in Canada that sells it yet.
The other negative I read is that when the dvd is hooked up to receiver with the coax cable it did not play CD's for some reason. The guy had to hook up the analog output.

Is this a common problem or just specific to this Toshiba player? I ask because I'd like to play CD's as well.

Thanks again!

#19 of 42 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted March 02 2007 - 06:12 AM

Quote:
To switch back to T.V. just go to T.V. on T.V and T.V./DBS on reciever if I want to listen to it through the speakers.
To switch back to tv, just go to input on tv, that you used for cable box (probably Video 2, if you used Video 1 for dvd), and push TV/DBS button on receiver.

Quote:
The other negative I read is that when the dvd is hooked up to receiver with the coax cable it did not play CD's for some reason. The guy had to hook up the analog output.
He may have had a setting wrong, in the player's setup menus. Redbook cds should play ok through the digital connection.

Isn't Amazon also in Canada, so you don't have to deal with "across border" shipments? Seems like I had heard there was.............

Yes, you basically have it.
Good luck!
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#20 of 42 OFFLINE   gojays_1

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Posted March 04 2007 - 01:11 AM

We do have Amazon in Canada, however they don't sell electronics. Just DVD's, books, etc. I found the Toshiba DVD player I want in the American Amazon but it was unavailable at the time.

My Kenwood receiver's instruction manual shows a diagram of 'Connecting a DVD player-6-Channel input)'. It shows the connection with the coaxial digital output in addition to the front l/r, surround l/r, center and sub-woofer connections. Why are all these necessary if you have the coaxial output? I thought the coaxial replaces them all? Are they all necessary if you connect the optical instead of the coaxial?

Also wondering if the ColourStream pro component jacks are necessary to connect to receiver (from DVD player) if I connect the DVD player directly to the T.V. with the HDMI jack for video? Am I safe in assuming that the HDMI connection carries the HD signal as well as analog(?) signals making the component connection redundant?

Have any of you ever heard of 110220volts.com? It's an online retailer of electronics including DVD players. It's got the Toshiba DVD player I want at half the price. Don't know if I trust them however. Anyone ever deal with them. They have mixed reviews with the BBB and online opinion sites.

thanks


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