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DVD Audio Player under $1,200 (1 Viewer)

Lee Scoggins

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Friends,

What is the current thinking about the best sounding DVD Audio player under $1,200?

I want to upgrade my home rig a bit. Would like good convenience features as well such as digital outs.

Thanks!
 

John Kotches

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US$1200 or under?

I would say check out these players:

Denon 3800 (MSRP US$1200)

Kenwood DV-5700 (MSRP US$1200)

Denon 4800 (MSRP under your budget, don't know by how much)

Pioneer DV-38A (list over budget, street under budget).

Pioneer DV-47A (list US$1200 -- who says it can't play SACD as well?)

Toshiba SD-9200

If you want exceptional video as well, the Kenwood is the best of the lot.

Regards,
 

John Kotches

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Hmmm... Another one I left off the list inadvertently is Rotel's DVD-A player. It should list for under US$1200 as well.

Regards,
 

Phil A

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Actually, I believe they lowered the list on the Rotel to something like $950. It was $1,300. I particularly like the fact that Rotel gives you a read-out of what resolution you have. Both SACD and DVD-A have not done the best job of labeling things.
 

KeithH

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Lee, this is a subject that interests me as well. The Toshiba '9200 gets high marks on the audio side, but as you may have read on this board recently, some people have reported a problem with transport noise. I like the '9200, and $500 is a great price, but the noise issue is more common than I am comfortable with. In addition, Toshiba is replacing the '9200 with the '9500 later this year, so you may want to hold off to see what the '9500 offers.

I've read on Audio Asylum that the Rotel RDV-1080 is a very good audio component, and I like what I have heard at a local dealer. Unfortunately, it is based on the original JVC XV-D723GD/D721BK, and the external build quality is a bit lacking for a $1000 player, in my opinion. I don't feel the drawer is as smooth as it should be for the price, for example. Just my opinion. Rotel may have dropped the price of the '1080 because a replacement is in the works. The '1080 has been out awhile. As I said, it is based on a first-generation JVC player.

One other player that should be added to the list is the Integra DPS-7.2. It sells for around $800. A local dealer has it, but I haven't heard it. The build quality is quite solid. However, the '7.2 is just an interlaced player. I feel it is inexcusable these days to offer a DVD player for $800 and not include progressive-scan output. I asked a salesman at my local dealer about that, and he said that with a quality display, you absolutely don't need progressive-scan capability in the player. He said that Integra knows this. I'm not sure I agree, and if I am going to spend $800 on a player, it had better be progressive-scan.
 

John Tillman

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I haven't examined the digital specs that should result in a one cable solution for upcoming players. But knowing the first players should be released by years end my trigger finger is idle (currently use a RP-91).

Does the audiophile mind set lack confidence in the digital interface and covet the best analog units available now?

One potential issue with my logic to wait is a receiver does not have external-bypass for digital. So, excluding the bass/time alignment issue, are we better off with todays' best? Will there be, should there be, a difference in sound quality between todays' analog and the new digital interface?
 

Lee Scoggins

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Does the audiophile mind set lack confidence in the digital interface and covet the best analog units available now?
John,

It depends but usually the answer is yes. You get all sorts of nasty jitter issues with digital interfaces and they are very audible.

The best thing is to buy a player with good analog out and then plug in some quality high end cable to the receiver or preamp inputs.
 

Phil A

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I agree with Lee. I suspect that if and when the digital interfaces start, which could be a year to two, it will likely be a few more years before anything reasonable priced does the digital in an appropriate manner. My guess is that the between the release of a digital DVD-A out (Meridian excluded), and the cleaning up of digital problems over a few model years that it could likely to be a minimum of 5 years before one can discuss a reasonably priced player that will do it the way it should be done. So for now the consideration is analog outs or wait for who knows how long.
 
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KeithH is right about the transport issues on the 9200, as various threads reveal. However, $499 + $130 for a 5-year warranty = $630. That is not a bad price for a widely acclaimed audio section that the Toshiba has.
 

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