First, have you done a search? That player has been around for a couple years, and there was a lot of discussion starting in late '02.
I have one, so I will give you a short run down.
Its a great player for hi-rez audio and standard CD. The crossover is a bit high for my tastes (100 Hz), but subjectively it sounds very, very good with good software.
You will have a problem if your system lacks a sub (it does not redirect the .1 channel to the mains) but if you have a typical 5.1 system, you will probably be pretty happy.
For video, it gets very poor marks in the Secrets bench tests. It does not have a very good deinterlacer (its a flag reader), and will drop into video mode with poorly authored software, and it will also comb severely with certain other poorly authored stuff.
It also is said to the chroma upsampling bug.
Put all that aside, pop in a well authored disc (5the Element for example) and it does throw up a nice picture. Depending on the quality and set-up of your display, some of the problems may not be apparent.
I still have it, but I do not use it for video (I bought Denon 1600 for that). And I solved its BM issues with an Outlaw ICBM BM box.
I can't say of the 45a you buy today is the same one that came out over 2 years ago, but if I were on the market for a uni player today, I might consider some of the newer machines, like the Denon 2200, which is said to have decent audio and video performance, although it is more expensive.
I am not sure that is correct, Rob. It does have its quirks, but in a normal all "small + sub" set-up, its does work for all formats.
I don't know if any of those old posts are in the archive somewhere, but there were a lot of users (Tony Genovese, Steve_AS, Kevin C. Brown, myself) that posted extensively on the subject.
It was also reviewed in S&V in December of '02 (have a copy on my lap as I type), and it confirms this, although the crossover slope for SACD changes to a shallow 6dB. Don't know if thats in the S&V archive.
Where it will fail for sure is if you do the test on the Chesky Ultimate DVD-A, which calls for a setting of large/sub off. When you play that test tone, it should be redirected, but it does not; thus if you don't have a sub, you are hosed.
Seems to me that Tony or Steve reported on some bugs when you had 4.0 content too? Its been a while.
Suffice to say that I wanted to get it right, so I went with an ICBM, which cured all that ails it WRT BM performance.
Putting all that aside, and going off on a tangent, it surprises me that its still available. Seems like most A/V giants update their stuff every 6 months or so it seems, this thing came out in mid '02, and its still in production.
Just hooked up this bad boy last night. Pq was alright. I did not get into teh setup though.. I'll save that for tonight.
One questions though. I have my Avia disc to calibrate. I notice that I can set the preferences through this player (i.e. contrast.. hue..) Whats the difference in doing this between my hs-10 or the dvd player itself? Any benefits either way?
I had a Denon 1600 before I bought my Elite 59AVi, there is no comparison, the 59AVi blows away the 1600. Nothing wrong with ther 1600 if you're happy with it, but there are far better players on the market nowadays.
I've been thrilled with my Denon 2900. I've never put a disc in it that it wouldn't play. Won't play has been an issue with alot of players out there including some I've owned. When I auditioned the Pioneer 47 it wouldn't play Boz Scaggs DIG (DVD-A) and another disc I do not recall momentarily. I frequenly read threads about Pioneer players and won't play issues. Denon has been good for me...
God, I hope that there would be no comparison between a Denon 1600 and a Pioneer Elite 59AVi. With all due respect man, that is like comparing the Onkyo 1000 to a Pioneer AV45. There is no comparison here. Now, try talking the 59AVi to the Denon 5900, or the new 5910. That would be fair. Please, when trying to give advice, keep things in their proper perspective. And, for what it is worth, I would trade you straight up tonight between my Denon 2900 and your 59AVi. However, I think the 2900 will become the player in my second system and if I can get get one at the right price, the Onkyo will join the ranks.