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DVD-A: they got the compatibility thing all wrong! (1 Viewer)

Javier_Huerta

Supporting Actor
Joined
Mar 9, 2002
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619
From a producer's / hardware standpoint, that is.

Let's face it. I *had* to buy a SACD in order to listen to DSOTM in multichannel surround. No ifs, ands or butts (oops!). Or else, I'd have to face a remastered CD layer.

So I bought it.

Last year, I bought Queen's "A Night at the Opera" in DVD-A. Basically, one of my top 3 albums ever. Did I buy a DVD-A?

Heck, no! That's why they put the DTS / DD layer on it!

Before you bash me to death, yeah, I know all about the increased fidelity of DVD-A. But I just wanted to listen to ANATO in multichannel; and let's face it, I doubt the original master tapes can really sound any better than what they already do in DTS. I did so without paying an extra cent.

I can *assure* you, I'd have bought a DVD-A on spot if it hadn't had the DTS layer on it.

Bad business move, although they make me a happy customer. I own a SACD player, *yet* I own more DVD-As.

What do you think?
 

RobBenton

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Mar 21, 2003
Messages
159
Actually if you have good speakers there is a bit of a difference between dvd-a and dts one that is noticeable. I agree though that if i didn't have a dvd-a player it wouldn't be worth paying the extra money for the slight increase in sound quality.
 

Al B. C

Supporting Actor
Joined
Apr 25, 2002
Messages
644
Javier, that's the same argument that was bandied about a whole lot before "Dark Side" was released on SACD.

More people could have enjoyed the surround mix with no additional hardware upgrade if it was released on DVD-A.
 

LanceJ

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2002
Messages
3,168
I still have this totally irrational hope that DTS Entertainment will release a "music disc" version of the original Quad DSOTM. :crazy: No dumbass menus to mess with or lack of bass management--just push play.

Speaking of dumbasses: I was reading in S&V last night (in the surround music reveiw section) about the Elv1s disc. They were whining that it had NO operating menus! Their logic was that dvd was a menu-based format so it should use on-screen menus. Arrrgh! :angry: Menus are they only thing I really hate about dvd-audio.

Question: besides Warner discs, what other dvd-audio labels DON'T let you use the number buttons to directly access a track? This is really irritating on discs with lots of songs. Thanks.

LJ
 

RobBenton

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Mar 21, 2003
Messages
159
Maybe you werent informed about dvd-a but almost all dvd-a's do not require you to use the menu system. All dvd-a's that i own automatically play the mlp 5.1 track as soon as it is inserted in the player requiring no menu navigation or tv at all. You can use the menu as an optional thing but is not required. It plays just as easily as an SACD.
 

Philip Hamm

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jan 23, 1999
Messages
6,874
Yeah, DTS sounds fantastic. DTS-CDs sound wonderful, I'm with Lance, I'd buy a Quad Dark Side DTS CD in a heartbeat. The latest DTS CD Midnight Oil "Capricornia" is probably the single best sounding multichannel album I've ever heard on any format.

As far as I'm concerned DVD-A got the compatibility right, letting you enjoy multichannel with your existing system without forcing you to buy new hardware. Once your collection is sizable enough that you want to hear better quality, you can buy a DVD-A player.
 

Justin Lane

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2000
Messages
2,149
Because the music and Hardware companies are seperate companies on the DVD-A side it is understandable why there was not collaboration.

From a music provider this compatibility makes perfect sense. They get to sell their DVD-A to anyone whom owns any type of DVD player, thus moving more units in the process without having to rely on hardware sales.

As time goes on, DVD-A is becoming a standard feature on many DVD players (especially if it really takes hold). As it is now, you can get players from $100-150 with DVD-A compatibility. The format becomes established by early adopters and those curious who have DVD only players. If those with DVD only players enjoy DVD-A you can be sure they will make sure that feature is part of their next player, or go right out and buy a new player with DVD-A compatibility.

J
 

Rich Malloy

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2000
Messages
3,998
Before you bash me to death, yeah, I know all about the increased fidelity of DVD-A. But I just wanted to listen to ANATO in multichannel; and let's face it, I doubt the original master tapes can really sound any better than what they already do in DTS. I did so without paying an extra cent.
Javier, have you ever heard the DCC gold disc of "A Night at the Opera"? I ask because its plainly evident that master tapes can sound vastly different, with a wide range of fidelity, depending upon how they are mastered and to what medium/format. Working from the same master tapes as were used for the studio release, Steve Hoffman simply brought them to life in a way I'd never heard before.

Simply put, it's among the finest masterings of any rock album I've heard, and I've always wondered whether the DVD-A sounded better (particularly, the 24/192 two channel track, but I'd also love to compare the multichannel track).

As a general principle, I accept that DVD-A (and SACD) are capable of greater fidelity than the CD, but there are simply too many other factors that weigh on the final product to simply accept that this DVD-A or that SACD would necessarily sound better than it's "low-fi" CD alternative.

A big part of what's kept me from plunging into DVD-A is the lack of comparison reviews. I can easily find reviews and long threads comparing an SACD to its various CD and LP incarnations. But when I look for such comparisons of DVD-A titles, I invariably come up short. I've asked a million times "do the DVD-As of the Grateful Dead titles sound better than the latest HDCD remasters?"; "does the "ANATO" DVD-A sound better than the DCC gold disc?"; "is the DVD-A of "Vespertine" an improvement over the (IMO sonically lacking) CD?"; "what about The Last Waltz and Big Pink?" etc. And I'll be asking the same question when and if Joni Mitchell's "Blue" is released on DVD-A (I like the DCC gold disc of that title even better than "ANATO").

I know what DVD-A is capable of, but I'm having a hard time finding out whether it's meeting its potential with regard to specific titles.
 

Javier_Huerta

Supporting Actor
Joined
Mar 9, 2002
Messages
619
Rich, to answer your question... OF COURSE I own the ANATO DCC! Hey, I'm a fan (I own the Hollywood remaster, Japanese mini-LP remaster, Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs remaster, the DCC remaster, and the DTS DVD-A).

Since I don't own a DVD-A, I can't comment on the high-resolution DVD-A track. But as far as stereo is concerned, I find the MoFi and the DCC album run neck to neck, with the DCC coming up ahead in terms of general fidelity. Both albums are light years ahead of the Japanese and the Hollywood remasters; MoFi & DCC did their homework and they seem to have found the master tapes, while the other two versions are so badly recorded you can hear tape drops, hiss, and noise everywhere. The MoFi version sounds a bit duller and less dynamic than the DCC, which really shines as the definitive stereo version (IMHO). Funnily enough, the MoFi version is now pretty valuable. I've seen it go for $150-$200 *used*. Go figure :D

STILL, I now think the definitive version of the album is the DTS one. ANATO is one of the most playful albums ever in terms of sonics, and the multichannel treatment suits it incredibly well. Just like DSOTM, I now consider ANATO to have been born for multichannel sound.
 

ReggieW

Screenwriter
Joined
Mar 6, 2001
Messages
1,571
...I think the definitive version of ANATO is the 24/96 multi-channel MLP track on the DTS disc. The DTS version sounds great but the MLP version is more detailed and immersive, eventhough the DTS track naturally has better bass management - helpful, if you only have bookshelf speakers.

Reg
 

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