A DD Laserdisc Question.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Derek Duncan, Nov 14, 2001.

  1. Derek Duncan

    Derek Duncan Stunt Coordinator

    Mar 17, 1999
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    I know a good bit about DVD(I am not a J6P)But am pretty dumb when it comes to LD. I havn't had a LD player for too long. I bought one very cheap on e-bay. It is an RCA player, it's from the HOME THEATER SERIES. I don't know how old it is. The book was not included. It doesn't have an DD logo on it, and when you switch to DD it makes that awful noise, so I assume that it is an old player, and doesn't play DD. I don't have a DD reciever, it is DD ready, but my DVD player has a built in decoder. So I have DD, just not in the player itself. The reason I am asking is that I am geting a new reciever with DD built in. My big question is what do you need to play DD laserdiscs. There is an optical digital out on the back of my LD player, is this for DD or does this just make PCM stereo sound better, it is just like the one on my DVD player, when you remove the cover, a red lite shines out. Just curious if this is for DD. Thanks
  2. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

    Dec 15, 1998
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    The player needs to have an AC-3RF output on the back for DD. This will be a standard RCA jack, possibly with an orange insert. You'll need a separate RD Demodulator, or a receiver with one built in, which typically is only in the higher end receivers. The optical digital out will work for PCM and DTS. Most LDs (all but the earlies I believe) include a digital PCM track, some LDs contain DTS in place of the PCM and should be clearly labeled as DTS. DD discs have the DD signal encoded in one of the analog tracks, and will have the standard PCM tracks also.
  3. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

    Jun 5, 2000
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    Knocksville, TN
    Real Name:
    Rachael Bellomy
    Derek, your player is a Pie-auh-near clone. It's rougly equivelent to a CLD-503 from 1994. Try to aqquire a couple of DTS LD's you'll get a kick out of them. They'll numeralize right out the player's optical output.
    All players before 1995 and even some after, lack the dedicated AC-3 output needed for Dolby Digital. Like previously stated you also need a demodulator to process the sound too.
    The AC-3 signal on LD is buried in the analog channel that was previously used for mono sound and Radio Frequency video, for if all your TV had was a cable/antenae plug or set of wires.
    Really old LD players, early 80's models, which only have RF video out can't play DD LDs. The picture is gone and the sound is symphonic digital static. Any LD player with composite and/or S-Video out can play AC-3 LDs.
    AC-3 was done this way to maintain the PCM soundtrack and one of the analog soundtracks. Non-AC-3 LD's CAN have 2 analog soundtracks. Some discs have a fur-in language on one analog channel and a commentary track on the other.
    Criterion's MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL is a great example. It has a commentary track on one analog channel and a Japanese soundtrack on the other. You can put a language track on the left and a commentary on right side with your remote, you cycle thru the possibilties with your remote. The button will be labeled D/A or Sound.
    You must use the player's analog otputs for analog tracks too. So, you need to hook it up both ways. Many LDs even from as late as 1990 only have analog sound. Actually the analog sound is generally pretty good on LDs. All LDs have analog sound, even DTS LDs. When I got my first couple of DTS LDs, I didn't have a decoder and had to listen to the analog sound, which was well, OK.
    Have fun with your new LD player!
    Rachael, the big disc cat! "...in a democracy it don't matter how stupid you are you stille get an equal share..."
    I survived the AFI top 100 Film Challenge! I've seen them all.

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