If not the 47A, what is best DVDA player?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Rob Roth, May 31, 2002.

  1. Rob Roth

    Rob Roth Stunt Coordinator

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    I've been using the 47A for over two weeks now and, while it has many virtues and I would recommend it to many, my Sony 9000ES does most of what the 47A does- and does it consistently better. I still might keep this player but I was wondering if it would make more sense to return it and get a high quality DVDA player. I am most interested in the DVDA performance, the video section is not a big concern. Which units are well regarded for the quality of DVDA sound?

    BTW, I'm puzzled by seemingly anomalous performance by this unit. The DVDA stuff sounds great on the analog outputs, but when I use the same outputs for CD or DD/DTS (using the onboard decoders) the results are disappointing. Doesn't trhis unit use the same 192k DACs for all sources?

    thanks
     
  2. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Rob, I have little experience with the '47A, but you might want to take a look at the Denon DVD-3800 for around $1200. It looks to be an excellent component. It is said to have a slight chroma bug problem, but I am betting it is excellent on the DVD-Audio side. I would like to hear it, but my local Denon dealers don't have it at this point. The Rotel RDV-1080 for around $1000 gets high marks for DVD-Audio playback too. If you can spend more money, you might also want to look at the Onkyo DV-S939 for around $1500 and the Integra DPS-9.1 for around $1600. Finally, I would bet that the $3500 Denon DVD-9000 and $3000 Integra RDV-1 are excellent too. [​IMG] You definitely have choices!
    Oh, one other player to consider is the $800 Integra DPS-7.2. I've heard it at a store and was impressed. The same goes for the Rotel, Onkyo, and Integra players. Unfortunately, I have never had the opportunity to compare them. I am considering upgrading from my Technics DVD-A10 if DVD-Audio software really starts to flood stores, in which case I will start comparing these players.
    I have read comments from others here and on Audio Asylum stating that the '47A excels with DVD-Audio, but is lackluster with SACD and CD. One would think that the same DACs and analog output circuitry are used when the 5.1-channel outputs are used for DVD-Audio, SACD, and CD, so I don't know why the player would be lackluster with two formats and good with the other. With respect to Dolby Digital and DTS, the quality of the decoders could be an issue, and perhaps the circuitry around those decoders is lacking. Just a thought.
     
  3. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I've seen quite a few reviews in the major mags lately (HTM, SGHT, S&V), and they all liked it. Same for audioreview.com. A review or 2 now on ecoustics.com too. Biggest knock seems to be build quality. Not up to typical Elite standards. I have a Elite DV-05, which is similar in build quality, but even though it is built like a $200 DVD player, it certainly doesn't perform like one. [​IMG]
    For the money *and* included SACD playback, I don't think the 47a is easy to beat...
     
  4. Rob Roth

    Rob Roth Stunt Coordinator

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    I'll admit, or acknowledge, that my opinion of this layer has improved dramatically the last few days. Perhaps this is a function of extended break in. I've been driving Janice crazy (again) with repeated a/b ing. In my particular system the best sound seems to with the upsampling (Legato) set to 'Effect One'- which is described in the manual's typically suspect English as "Bright and lively"- and the Hi bit set.

    I'me content that this player is a good value and I'm not sure I'd want to spend much more on a DVDA player at this point. Still, I have to wonder if the Rotel and other units mentioned (thanks much Keith) can be considered the sonic equals of, say, the XA777ES.
     
  5. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    Rob, I've listened to the Rotel side by side with the Pioneer for several cuts and it certainly is not any better on DVD-A in my opinion. The Rotel has better build quality and gives a nice numerical read-out of the sampling rate. The Meridian DVD-A player may be a better example of what is substantially better. I've changed the power cord on the DV-47A and added Bright Star stick on feet at $12.50 for a set of 4 and just got a Bright Star 'Little Rock 4' to stick on top ($79). From what I've heard so far, CDs have improved dramatically and with the limited DVD-A software I have I feel that there is also an improvement.
     
  6. Rob Roth

    Rob Roth Stunt Coordinator

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    Phil,

    As always you are a couple steps ahead. Thanks much for the info. I also noticed an improvement with the 47A, which I'm going to keep for awhile, when I improved the power. Running it from the PSAudio P300 helped quite a bit. I also put on a short length, 14 ga. PC that came with a PSAudio Ultimate Outlet. Not an audiophile cord but better than stock. Which PC did you use? May also try the Bright Stars as a cheap tweak. I suspect that the light weight of this unit is, in part, an indication of inadequate power supplies.
     
  7. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    Rob, I make all my power cords and cables. When I get done with my main system, I will likely have one or two things in it I did not make. I have stuff that was bought that is decent too laying around. I put the Bright Star little stick on feet underneath the Pioneer feet. Info from their site is as follows:

    "IsoNodeTM isolation feet




    The new IsoNode isolation feet provide the most cost-effective upgrade in the industry!
    The unique IsoNode polymer rejects a wide range of vibration
    trying to enter from underneath the component.
    The highly compliant IsoNode acts as both a liquid and a solid
    for superior vibration control. Adhesive backing included.

    The large size are 1.25 " X 3/4" tall, hold 42 lbs and $19.95 for a set of four.
    FREE SHIPPING to the U.S. and Canada. To order click here.

    The small size are 3/4" x 3/8" tall , hold 30 lbs and a set of four is only $12.50!!
    FREE SHIPPING to the U.S. and Canada. "

    You could also try the little stick on things they sell at Home Depot. In place of the Little Rock tweak, you can try a small phone book or year book on top of the DV-47A. I am putting back together the main system and have an ultimate outlet for my projector. There are lots of reasonable things you can get or use as a power cord that won't break the bank. The $4 or $5 cord that comes with even expensive audio equipment is a good thing to upgrade. The manufacturers are getting the product out there at a paticular price point.
     
  8. PomingF

    PomingF Second Unit

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    Phil, it's funny you & I came to notice the Isonodes soon after Stereophile's recent tweak article. I got myself 4 sets of the small ones from audioadvisor for my MC music setup (Rogue tube pre, Adcom CD player, Sony TA-P pre & Pioneer DV-47A) in an upstair room due to the fact that the wood floor tend to give out quite a bit of resonance from the floor standing speakers near by. Can't tell you if I notice much difference but least this should give me the peace of mind knowing by isolating my gear from all these pounding will hopefully keep those tubes plus may be who knows what else from dying pre-maturely. [​IMG]
    PF
     
  9. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    I noticed mine (Isonodes) only because my bedroom system sits on Can-Am stuff (www.can-am.ca). I have the 3-drawer unit on a caddy with CDs and then the 20 inch cabinet with a shelf. The TV (40 inch Samsung LCD) sits on top. I only have room for 4 components so I have a Sony 444ES receiver on one side and an Adcom 4-speaker selector (that feeds other places) on top of it which is only a few inches deep and allows air to circulate. On the side I have an Onkyo 6 disc changer and the DV-47A on top of it. The center channel barely fits on the shelf above that and I nudged some Blue Tack stuff between it and the shelf. I use to use Can-Am stuff in my main system and although it is great for media storage, I am not fond of it for components, but it fits in the bedroom. The back of it only has a small opening for wires and I had to hack the back of the bedroom one up with a hole saw and hack saw so I can get to the back of things. Lousy cutting thru that metal. Anyway, the point being is that even locking the wheels on the caddy, one is dealing with metal file cabinet-like surfaces and I know from days when I had a Rega Planet CD player in my main system, it had that squishy feet which did much better than cones or other equipment on hard feed. It is a magnet for transmitting vibrations. Besides the center channel (Thiel SCS2) in the bedroom, I have 2 Thiel SCS2s mounted on the wall on Omnimounts and of course a sub. So there are all these things that cause vibrations and the surfaces of the Can-Am can cause problems. I did not notice those problems as much when I had the Sony 9000ES in the bedroom, which of course has a much better build quality. The tweaks on my Pioneer compensate for that nicely.
     
  10. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Rob said:

     

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