Looking to upgrade my DVD Player. Recommendations?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Gabe Goddard, Jan 4, 2005.

  1. Gabe Goddard

    Gabe Goddard Auditioning

    Feb 9, 2001
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    Ok...it's time for me to upgrade my DVD player as the Pioneer that I bought 7 years ago doesn't even have progressive scan. I just picked up my dad's "old" (i.e. 2 years) Sony 32XBR450. It's HD ready and has a good picture. BUT, with the DVD player, because the TV is better, the DVD pic isn't all that great (even with component cables hooked up).

    I'd like to get a new DVD player. I'm seriously considering a "universal" player (DVD-V, DVD-Audio and SACD) to go along with my B&K AVR 307 and B&W Nautilus Speakers.

    I don't want to break the bank (nor can I with a new baby in the house). I looked pretty hard at the Pioneer DV-578A-S, but the reviews spoke about internal problems and suggested that I look elsewhere (www.audioreview.com). I'm also looking at the Onkyo DV-SP502 and the Marantz DV6500. Any suggestions regarding these DVD players or any others is greatly appreciated.

    I've also toyed with the idea of getting a player with a DVI/HDMI output that I will use on a new TV, once I get it (although that's several years down the road). My thought is that the DVI technology will have improved (if not have been replaced) in several years and because my TV does not accept DVI/HDMI connections, it may not be worth getting a DVI-capable DVD player right now. Of course, when I upgrade the TV, that means I also need to upgrade the DVD player...which is one of the reasons that I don't want to spend a lot of money on a new DVD player now.

    I'm also wondering weather DVD-A and SACD is worth looking at.

    All comments are appreciated.

  2. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Feb 11, 2004
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    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Gabe, you should consider a "budget" DVD player now, and then upgrade when the HD-DVD players come out.
    Hometheaterhifi.com rated the Toshiba 3960 as the best budget DVD player, check out the review. It's very popular at Avsforum.com.
  3. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

    Sep 26, 1999
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    After dealing with Toshiba on 2 recalled players, I'm not willing to get another so I've been looking myself.

    The new Yamaha changer looks interesting($299) if you want to go the changer route. They have a single disc as well.
    Might not be worth it for him considering he doesn't have an HDMI input or a DVI/HDCP input on his set. All indications point to the fact that you need that in order to get HD DVD or Blu Ray.

    If you can spend near $600 then the Denon 2900 is a knockout and has fantastic 480P PQ. If that is too much, then I'd look at the Yamaha options myself.
  4. Howard_You

    Howard_You Stunt Coordinator

    Sep 16, 2003
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    I can vouch for the new Yamaha DVD-C750 player. I've owned mine for about a month now and am quite impressed with it. Previously I had the Pioneer 578a which was good for DVD-A and SACD (although the disclaimer on the packaging about not playing all DVD-A disks bothered me) however I found it lacking for redbook CD playback. It's not that CD playback was particularly bad it's just that it was no better than my 6-year old Sony DVP-670D player and for some CDs seemed worse.

    I find the audio excellent with the Yamaha for DVD-A, SACD and redbook CD playback both when using the changer's DACs or when using it as a transport with my receiver's DACs. The crossover is fixed at 120Hz (variable would have been nice) and the disk change time is verrrry slow (depends on what type of disk you're changing to but it can be in the 10 second range), much slower than my older Sony changer.

    There are a few quirks:
    It always resets the audio output of CDs to DPLII (there's a choice of DPLII, stereo and Virtual-Surround) when you change disks --- fortunately there's a button on the remote to cycle between the formats, no need to go into the on-screen menu everytime.
    It also resets the CD upsampling setting to off. You do have to go into the menu to change this each time.
    There's an incompatibility between this unit, my receiver (NAD T742) and my TV (10 year old 32" JVC) as far as S-Video goes. If I run the S-Video through my receiver I get distorted/black picture in between certain areas of a DVD (i.e. just before the main menu gets displayed). If I run it directly from the changer to the TV it's fine.

    Can't comment too much about video, I don't have an HDTV. I noticed on the remote it mentions c750/c950, I'm guessing when the c950 gets released it will likely have Farjouda processing (based on the c740/c940 differences) and maybe even DVI or HDMI output.
  5. anthony_b

    anthony_b Screenwriter

    Aug 18, 2000
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    If you do not want to break the bank, Pioneer is releasing a new universal player (Non-elite) with DivX support included.
  6. GabeP

    GabeP Stunt Coordinator

    Dec 11, 2004
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    my name is gabe too [​IMG]

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