DVD-A & SACD for 2 channel?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Garrett Lundy, Jul 7, 2004.

  1. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2002
    Messages:
    3,764
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have a 2-channel system which is currently only accepting CD and HDCD.
    I would like to add the Hi-Rez SACD and DVD-A formats to my system but do not want multichannel.

    What are good, bang-for-the-buck SACD and DVD-A players?

    My Integerated amp is a NAD c370 and I really don't want to buy a $3000 player to go with it. So I'm going to set my budget at $500 (I can live with one or the other formats).

    Also: would I have more choices for my money around Christmas time? when do new players hit market?
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    Personally, I'd go with a universal player, even if you will not use it for video. This opens up the most titles to you. While I was happy having SACD only, I was disappointed that there were some titles I wanted that were on DVD-A and not SACD. So I replaced my aging DVD with a universal (Denon 2200, which is pretty close to your budget) just to get a good picture with DVD-A as a bonus, but I found that DVD-A sounds quite good too.

    If you are going to do video with this unit as well, then there is no question in my mind, the 2200 is the way to go. For audio only, you might want to wait for the new SonyES SACD only player.
     
  3. Adam.Heckman

    Adam.Heckman Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2003
    Messages:
    322
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Pioneer 563a. I own one. Stepped up my video a bunch and hi-res destroys the old redbook CDs.
    You can pick one up for 150. Look for sales tho. This is a shade under your budget, but if you like it, then you have some extra cash.
     
  4. PaulDA

    PaulDA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    2,696
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    St. Hubert, Quebec, Canada
    Real Name:
    Paul
    If you're looking for audio bang for the buck and DVD-A only is acceptable, you have to audition the Cambridge Audio 540D. It is so good at redbook playback that it is my dedicated CD player. Retail 389$. If you want universal (which I recommend to not be left out on titles) I have a Marantz DV6400 that has been doing some 2 channel hi-res work for me and is quite nice, particularly with SACD. I believe it can be had for around your budget stateside. I also considered the Denon 2200 that John has, and probably would have gone with that as it has better bass management (important to me, perhaps not to you) and has a better reviewed video section, but here in Canada it retails for 50% more than the Marantz (unlike the US where it retails for about the same) and I wanted a dedicated CD player (intended to buy the CA 540C but a head to head comparo with the 540D left the D a winner--the 540C and 540D retail for exactly the same price).
     
  5. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I might have to go give the 540D a listen, I'm looking to replace my old CDP in my 2ch system. Most of the players I have liked have been more than I would like to spend, though the Arcam CD73 seemed pretty good for the price. I tried out the 6400, but only with video, I didn't get to try any hires with it, will have to go back and check it out as well. OUCH, 50% more for Marantz in Canada? Sorry to hear that.
     
  6. PaulDA

    PaulDA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    2,696
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    St. Hubert, Quebec, Canada
    Real Name:
    Paul


    Actually, it's 50% more for the Denon in Canada--in this particular case, not across all products. The 2200 retails for 1195$CDN, 2900 retails for 1895$CDN while the Marantz DV6400 retails for 799$CDN. However, the DV8400 retails for about 2500$CDN, and while Marantz would compare it to the Denon 5900, I think it more accurately compares (IMO) to the 2900.
     
  7. EricRWem

    EricRWem Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2004
    Messages:
    1,097
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    Adrik
    HK DVD 31 for DVD-A should be very nice.

    I am in the same boat. I want a universal audio player for all audio as well without blowing out my budget. $500 or so would be my ceiling. I could go for a Denon 2900 at Ecost or wait until Fall/Winter for the new batch of players.


    Thoughts?
     
  8. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    7,270
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Damn, they screw you guys north of the border Paul!
     
  9. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 1999
    Messages:
    6,017
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    We get screwed on Canadian products. It's not surprise why you see many folks drive across the border to buy Paradigms.

    Garrett,
    One thing to keep in mind is that not all DVD-A titles have a 2 channel Hi-res track on them. ALL SACD titles have one.

    I want a universal player but I'm thinking of either giong with the 2910 which is coming out September or so for $699 from Denon which is above your budget or I might pick up a Panasonic S97 which has Dvd Audio and then buy an ES Sony SACD Changer that is coming out soon for $399. If you just want SACD 2 channel and a solid redbook player, I'd strongly consider this player. My current ES changer is a tank but I want SACD. It's the only reason I'm thinking of replacing it. After hearing SACD on my system, I can't live w/o it.
     
  10. Robert A. Willis Jr.

    Robert A. Willis Jr. Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 1999
    Messages:
    306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Get a universal player. Both formats sound great and you will have enough titles to keep you satisfied for some time.
     
  11. PaulDA

    PaulDA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    2,696
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    St. Hubert, Quebec, Canada
    Real Name:
    Paul


    Well, to be fair, as Shane pointed out, we get great deals on Canadian speakers (of which there are a surprising number, given our population).

    Totem
    Paradigm
    PSB
    Mirage
    Athena
    Energy

    and I know I'm forgetting some.

    Also, not all manufacturers gouge us. My Cambridge Audio 540D retails for 479$ CDN, which, more or less by a couple of points, is simply the exchange rate for 389$US, the retail south of the border. Same for the Marantz DV6400, though not most of their other products. NAD is also largely priced according to the exchange rate.

    In Quebec mid-fi stores, Denon has something of a mythical reputation and I think they (stores and manufacturer) take advantage of that for pricing. Volume of sales also likely plays a role. Not knocking Denon quality, I had an AVR-1600 for several years and it worked flawlessly (still working at my brother-in-law's place) and I picked up a used AVR3600 for my secondary system. Also have a 14 year old DCM-460 CD player that still plays well and sounds good. It does have some trouble with newer discs, especially those with a lot of paint on them--can't read the TOC, for some reason. But for the discs it can play, it sounds pretty good for such an old unit.

    Sorry for straying so far off topic.

    As to the thread heading, Shane is correct that not all DVD-As have a hi-res stereo group, but I believe most DVD-A players can be configured to mix the multichannel tracks to two channel, much like DD 5.1 can be mixed to two channel output. Probably not ideal, though.
     
  12. EricRWem

    EricRWem Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2004
    Messages:
    1,097
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    Adrik
    What happens to us, then, when about 2007 or so rolls around and someone like me already has two players and HD-DVD is out there?

    That's kind of the devil's advocate I am running against myself...
     
  13. PaulDA

    PaulDA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    2,696
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    St. Hubert, Quebec, Canada
    Real Name:
    Paul
    There are a couple of scenarios that suggest themselves.

    The HD-DVD players are both backwards compatible and hi-res audio universal. This would be the ideal (second only to a "universal" HD player that accommodates competing HD formats).

    Upconverting players, such as those already out, get better and do to HD-DVD what CD is still doing to hi-res audio. The picture is "good enough" for the masses (the difference between upconverted DVD and HD-DVD is not dramatic enough for the masses to care) and HD-DVD is as much a niche product as D-VHS appears to be right now. (Will you replace your DVD collection with HD-DVDs--I am a fan of hi-res audio and, with few exceptions, I've not replaced my cds with the equivalent hi-res discs, I've just purchased new discs in hi-res. I would do the same with DVDs and HD-DVDs.)

    I don't know which way these things will go. I think the second scenario is more likely, but hey, what do I know? To answer your question, unless you adopt every format immediately as it emerges, I think you'll make it to 2008 or 2009 before having to worry about this, and by then something else may have grabbed our attention.
     
  14. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 1999
    Messages:
    6,017
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    How do you know if it will be affordable by 2007 or even 2009?

    Right now its anyones guess when and if HD DVD will hit and how much it will be.

    Right now I've living for today and worrying about tomorrow when it arrives. Right now I'd be happy just to get a reliable dvd player. Most of the ones coming out now in the affordable range all have issues(lots of them).
     
  15. ross ish

    ross ish Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2002
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I use the Philips 962sa for sacd and the JVC XV-D723GD for DVD-A. Both units have noise levels at theoretical best of 16bits for CD and a full 19bits for hi rez. The Philips have jitter
     
  16. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2001
    Messages:
    1,081
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If you're looking for best bang for the buck on the audio side, then consider getting an inexpensive universal player (possibly used or refurbished to save $) and then getting it modded. The extra money spent on the mods goes into the audio exclusively, so you generally get more for your incremental $ versus stepping up models if audio is your only concern. The fact that this is for a 2ch system will reduce the cost of the mod vs adding mods to all 5 channels. For example, you can get the Pioneer 563A mentioned above plus a Modwright Basic 2ch Mod for less than $500 combined.

    Since this is for an audio-only system, be sensitive to user interface issues if you have no video display hooked up.

    Doug
     
  17. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2002
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If you're interested in a multi-disc player, check out this thread.
     
  18. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2000
    Messages:
    937
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0


    For a stock player, take a look at the Yamaha DVD-S1500. MSRP is $450 and street should be around $375-$400. Click here for some info. This player should hit the streets any day now.

    An alternative along the lines suggested by Doug is this modded Pioneer 563a from Underwood Hi-Fi. Since you are only interested in 2 channel, the level 1 mod should give you everything you are looking for. It is higher than your budget, but it does include the player for less than $700. Here's a thread on this player over at HTT.
     

Share This Page