Malata owners: How is your Malata dooooin'?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ronald Epstein, May 21, 2002.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder
    Owner

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    I bought a Malata N996 Progressive Scan

    player a few months ago. I don't use it much

    except to play PAL discs, and when I do, it

    seems to work very well.

    I just ordered my second Malata player for

    the bedroom. This time I went with the N960

    model. I don't need a progressive scan model

    for my bedroom 20" TV. While it does not have

    progressive scan, the tradeoff is that it does

    defeat Macrovision. It also plays and converts

    PAL to NTSC.

    Just curious with two things....

    1. Anyone own the N960 model? How well does

    it defeat Macrovision? I am not intending to

    make illegal copies, so don't even go there.

    2. How are the Malata players (N996 and N960)

    holding up with all you owners? Any repair

    problems?

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. Brajesh Upadhyay

    Brajesh Upadhyay Supporting Actor

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    Ron, my N996 is holding up very well with pretty regular use. I've had it for a year now. No problems, except on rare instances when the unit doesn't power on via remote from 'standby'--I need to push it to off & back on in front panel. Then, things are hunky-dory again.
     
  3. Jay Blair

    Jay Blair Second Unit

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    Ron

    I have two of the N996s, both are doing quite well, one being in my bedroom and one in my main theater. However, I did have to add a few heatsinks to the circuit boards to keep them from overheating and eventually shutting down when using progressive scan. They never overheated to the point of shutdown with my old TV that was interlaced only, but as soon as I replaced it with a Sony Hi-Scan TV and starting using progressive, both units would overheat and lock up after anywhere from an hour and a half to three hours. I was ready to send the first unit back for repairs after it starting acting up until I found both units doing the same thing and decided I'd take care of things for myself. It appears to be something common with this model. Hopefully the replacement model coming out next week will fix this.

    I could be wrong here, but it seems to me that I've read while researching the purchase of my first N996 that the N960 does not do very high quality PAL to NTSC conversion, being more in line with the numerous players like the Apex units that do the conversion by throwing out lines to get close (but a bit squished) to the proper aspect ratios. These types of units also don't work properly with anamorphic titles on standard 4x3 TVs, giving you an unsqueezed aspect ratio which is unwatchable to most. Again, I'm not certain of this with the N960, but it's something you might want to check out further. It is not, in other words, just an N996 without progressive scan or X-Y scaling but with the ability to defeat macrovision.
     
  4. Nathan_R

    Nathan_R Supporting Actor

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    Ron,
    While I can't tell you anything about the N960, I am a happy owner of the 996. After the customary setup issues (X-Y scaling, zoom, etc.) with the 996, I must say I could not be happier with the player. I'm not using the progressive out feature on this player. Instead I'm sending the s-video out to an iscan v2. I actually prefer this arrangement to the Malata's progressive capabilities.
    However, I do have one issue. The 996 has a habit of turning itself on and starting up a disc on its own for no apparent reason. I've walked downstairs many, many times in the morning and after work to find the Malata's OSD displaying an ever-changing chapter play time. This is just a minor nuisance, but a nuisance all the same. [​IMG]
    Still, after 6 months with a second-hand player, I can't complain. Oh, and those PAL capabilities make the player oh-so-worthwhile. I couldn't live without "Taxi" and "Taxi 2."
    Best regards,
    ~~Nathan
     
  5. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Ron, I'm using mine the same way as Nathan through a iscan V2. I would use it's progressive if I wasn't just flat out of component inputs. I have alot of sources. I used the 996 for everything for the first two weeks I owned it. It can't compete with my RP91 or 9000ES but it serves it's purpose. Now, like you, I only use it for out-of-region discs. I watched THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP R2 last night. Now if THE DAMBUSTERS would pop up in R2 I'd be real happy. Thank goodness that Matt Stevens is around when I have a Malata question! Best wishes!
     
  6. Jason_H

    Jason_H Second Unit

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    I have a 996 I use for mutli-region playback only, I use the RP91 for everything else. It has served me very well in the past year I've had it, I have had no problems. Here's hoping for many more years of service...I am so happy I can watch the R2 PAL discs I otherwise would be missing out on!
     
  7. Phil Nichols

    Phil Nichols Second Unit

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    Rachael,

    "The Dambusters" just keeps popping up doesn't it!?

    Do you have a VHS version of it to pacify you in the meantime? BTW in case I haven't mentioned it, my VHS of it is the best SAT or VHS or SVHS black and white image quality I've ever seen on my Elite RPTV (.........don't have a DVD player yet so that I can compare my VHS Dambusters with the superb North by Northwest black and white in DVD).
     
  8. Jay Blair

    Jay Blair Second Unit

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    Rachel,

    Hi!

    I run the Malata into an Iscan Pro and also run my Panasonic E20 into the Iscan (since it does not have progressive scan) with component out of both through a $40 Sony video switcher using the composite video connector for green and the audio connectors for red and blue. I'm amazed that there seems to be no degradation of the image using this simple and cheap solution. My Pioneer Elite DV-37 goes into the TV's 2nd component line. Since many people seem to not use the Malata as their primary player, this solution can come in handy.

    By the way, I was probably watching my R2 Blimp at about the same time you were. A fine DVD, and one great film. I love the beautiful mini-candybox packaging too. Another Criterion laserdisc to get rid of. Still haven't watched the documentary.
     
  9. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Phil, I found out on a U.K. forum that THE DAMBUSTERS is one of four films in a boxset that comes out next tuesday. It's called the British War Collection, wee-jun 2 of course. I'm getting it!!!!!![​IMG]
    Jay, if I had the iscan Pro I'd try that. I have a bored JVC JX-100 passive switcher. I'm having to exchange my copy of BLIMP. The case may be smart looking but the spindle is absolutely insecure. My disc arrived loose and scratched to holy hell. I watched it but it frooz up in about a half dozen places. I didn't think the pic was any better than the LD, but the sound was worlds better.
    Blackstone is going to stuff the box with "bubblegum wrap" to keep the disc stille when they ship me my replacement disc. Actually they've already shipped it. They are a pleasure to deal with. Best wishes guyz!
    P.S.- Phil, did I get that right, you don't have a DVD player?
     
  10. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

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    I've had my Malata since last summer, but was initially using it only as my multi-region player. There've been a couple of issues that surfaced from Day 1. First off, the splash screen when the player first turns on and some DVD menus will be displayed in 4:3 on my 16:9 display--even though I've specified that my set is 16:9. The odd thing is that once the movie starts playing, the aspect ratio returns to normal. Weird and a little annoying, but doesn't get in the way of actual viewing. Anyone else had this problem? It's been minor enough that I've never posted about it.

    Overheating and locking up--this happened twice with my Sopranos Season 2 discs and I was going to send it back, but I had one of my other players stacked above it at the time. I decided to put the Malata on its own shelf and it's been doing fine ever since. I've also had the powering up problem described by Brajesh above, but like him, it's always sorted out by a hard restart.

    It's been my main player for the last couple of months now, as I decided that I really didn't need the other two players in my system (RP56 and XV-SA75). Hopefully, nothing untoward will crop up with more use.
     
  11. Tulli

    Tulli Stunt Coordinator

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    I have two, the last one purchased just three weeks ago, with upgrade switch and new firmware and, up to now, blameless in performance (yes, the 4:3 menu's in 16:9 mode are still there).

    I too bought the Malata to be my second player for multi-zone and Pal sources but has actually become the main one over my Panny RP-56, which to my eyes is only better with badly flagged Video sources.

    The scaling features of the Malata - besides its perfect PAL/NTSC conversion - are the best, the most flexible I've seen so far, inexplicably unavailable in every DVD player out there.
     
  12. Phil Nichols

    Phil Nichols Second Unit

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    Rachael,

    Yes ........ I do not have a DVD player.

    I think I'll pick up either the Pany RP82 or Pany XP50, finally, this summer when they both are scheduled for release.

    P.S. Are you sure the British War Collection Dambusters is the movie version with the black dog?
     
  13. Jay Blair

    Jay Blair Second Unit

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    Rachel

    Sorry to hear about your Blimp. I've had several discs come loose and get scratched in shipping from overseas but so far have not had to return any and been able to buff out most of the sratches using Scotch Brite cloths and a little rubbing compound. Everything I've received from overseas(approaching two hundred discs by now) has been able to play on my Malata. Now let me go knock on wood...

    Back...

    Sure, if I had the laserdisc players you have, I might be able to say the same thing about the image quality of my Blimp, that it doesn't look any better than the laserdisc, but I still have the CLD-D704 (though I was able to fix it myself--so that it doesn't self-destruct at the end of full CAV discs anymore--by just battening down the hatches on the transport mechanism inside the housing, and this has also slightly improved the image quality on all my laserdiscs). On my system the DVD of Blimp is a big improvement.

    I have one of those JVC JX-100 switchers in storage. I found it degraded the picture too much, whereas the cheaper Sony unit doesn't have (to my eye) any noticeable degradation. I got the JX-100 because unlike the Sony it has more than one output. I have now replaced the JVC with another passive switcher from partsexpress.com that has two s-video outs and it seems to work as well as the Sony.

    I keep hearing you talk about that Dam Busters movie, which I'm not familiar with, I might just have to pick that one up even though Time Out (my favorite source of reviews for British films) isn't overly enthusiastic (but Mr. Maltin gives it 3.5 stars).
     
  14. Tulli

    Tulli Stunt Coordinator

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    The JVC JX-S111 is an excellent and affordable component video selector (3 inputs). I even use it to switch coaxial digital inputs.
     

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