Need a new DVD player...

xardion

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Nov 25, 2006
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chuck
My DVD player just died and I am looking to replace it. I do not want to spend too much $$$ right now, but I would like DVD-A and SACD support along with p-scan and possibly up-conversion to 1080i. I have an older RP HDTV (Toshiba 56H80) that only has component inputs. I was looking at the Onkyo DV-SP502, but really can not find any reviews on it. I did stumble on another post that recommended the Oppo DV-970HD, but most reviews seem to be using HDMI. Can anyone recommend a decent DVD player for only a few hundred dollars? Thanks!

Chuck
 

Nick:G

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Jun 17, 2006
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Nick Gallegos
HD upconversion actually requires an HDCP-compliant digital video output to work on the majority of commercial DVDs because the encryption on the discs. It is actually illegal for a manufacturer to ship a player that can output resolution above 480p over analog component video (even though it's "technically" possible).

The Oppo players are actually surprising bargains @ $199 for their flagship player (the OPDV971H). Another good alternative with the features you want that wasn't mentioned is the Denon DVD-1930CI (about $349 street).
 

xardion

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Nov 25, 2006
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chuck
I wasn't sure about the up-conversion. I thought they may have limited only the newer HD and Blu-ray players, I was hoping they didn't care about the older analog only SD DVD players. So the best I can hope for off of component cables would be 480p? The Oppo is pretty tempting, but the only thing holding me back is that I can get the Onkyo for the same price. Not sure which one I should go with.
 

xardion

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Nov 25, 2006
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chuck
I think I am going to go with the Oppo; it has DVD-A and SACD support, thought I am still considering the Onkyo. Price wise they are almost exactly the same shipped to my door, but I am slightly hesitant to go with a brand I have never heard of vs Onkyo. One more question, how important are the DACs? I noticed (mostly with the video) that they have different ratings as far as bit and MHz.

Chuck
 

Nick:G

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Nick Gallegos
In video DACs, the bit width (12-bit, 14-bit, etc.) measures resolution, very much like audio. First-generation DVD players were equipped with 8-bit DACs, matching the precision of a typical DVD's encoded Y/Cb/Cr color data. Higher bit width allows for more "headroom", thus allowing the DAC to oversample the data for better video resolution. The clock speed (MHz) of the actual DAC will determine how fast all of this can be done. The need to make video DACs more precise and faster was a result of progressive scan technology. DVD players that upscale to HD resolutions need REALLY fast DACs (usually in excess of 200 MHz) to accurately scale the video (which is natively 480i on the disc) to the increased resolution. Those are only the basics, as video scaling is a very DEEP subject... Haha

And just as an FYI, the current HD-DVD and Blu-Ray titles allow for up to 1080i output over analog component video, but they can change this any time they want by adding encryption flags to future software. Toshiba's current HD-DVD players actually aren't even capable of passing 1080p (only 1080i), even over HDMI.
 

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