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New Blu-Ray player

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by JeremyR, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    I'm interested in getting my first Blu-ray player. It will be hooked up to my Onkyo TX-SR805 which decodes all of the high definition audio formats. My HD-D3 HDDVD player wont' bitstream, so I'm wanting a Blu-ray player that will bitstream the DTS-HD and TrueHD formats to my TX-SR805 for it to decode. Is there any good place to go to compare the units to see if they bitstream. I've been looking at a couple of players, and either I'm blind, or I'm just missing the obvious, but I can't find any information on the players that claim they bitstream. They all claim to decode in teh players, and that's fine and all but I'd rather the receiver do it. I've been looking at a couple of players, specifically the JVC XV-BP1, which is currently on sale for $199 at a local retailer, and the Sharp BD-HP22U which is also available there for $199, and I can't figure out by looking at the company website if they bitstream. Or if anybody has any better suggestions for a blu-ray player, I'm all ears. I don't mind spending a little bit more money if I'm getting a substantially better player, but I don't really care about upscaling as I will assume that my HD-D3 and HD-A2 (backup player) will do a better job.
     
  2. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    Whoops.. just found the info on JVC. It claims HD-Audio bitstream output, so that one is a go. Do pretty much all of them bitstream anymore? I know most of the earlier ones didn't. Does anybody have any experience with either this JVC, or Sharp? Or again, I'm all ears on recommendations, or if anybody has any insight as why not to look into the JVC or Sharp.
     
  3. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Director
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    Actually, with the exception of the PS3 which still can't bitstream the advanced codecs, I think most players (at least lately) have been able to bitstream the advanced codecs. It's decoding in the players that was often lacking, but it seems most new players can do both (I think I did read that the Pioneer couldn't do DTS-HD MA internally yet), but I'd be REALLY surprised if there were any new players that couldn't bitstream these.
     
  4. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    Thanks alot. So.. if you were going to spend around $200-$300 on a Blu-ray player, which one would you get?
     
  5. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    You can get the Sony BDP-S350 for $199 right now here. It is a very good player for the price. I've owned one for about 9 months, and had absolutely no issues playing any disc
     
  6. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Director
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    Six months ago I would have said the Panasonic BD35, but its replacement the BD60 seems to have a few more problems, so I'd likely go with the Sony as well.
     
  7. Captain Spaulding

    Captain Spaulding Second Unit

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    Although it has gotten very little press so far and is not discussed much on internet forms, I think the JVC XV-BP1 is currently the best stand alone Blu-ray player available. It loads discs extremely fast. Although I have not actually timed it, the speeds are similar to PS3 loading times. It both bitstreams and decodes Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio. Blu-ray discs look great and upscaled DVDs also look excellent. It is solidly built, quiet, and the price is right. In my opinion, it is as good or better than any current player in its price range, or any price range! Its only "flaw" is the rather bright blue lights on the front panel. They look cool for about five minutes, then they can become distracting. They can not be dimmed or turned off. Other than that, the player is perfect!
     
  8. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    I'm kind of getting that impression from some of the things I've read. I'm concerned it's just their first try at a Blu-ray player, but apparently it's quick, and the PQ is great. I just wonder how it compares in picture quality to the Panasonic DMP-BD60K which seems to be the best regarded player for PQ, but sounds like it's painfully slow to load.
     
  9. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    My main concern with a JVC would be how committed the manufacturer is to issuing firmware updates when needed. Both Panasonic and Sony have a history of issuing timely firmware updates.
     
  10. David_B_K

    David_B_K Advanced Member

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    Yes, the Pioneer 05 and 51 can both bitstream the HD formats, but cannot decode DTS HD MA internally. The 1.27 firmware, promised this month, is supposed to finally add internal decoding of DTS HD MA to those players. I had a Pioneer 51 and returned it because it could not play discs that play in other players. I had other issues with it as well, but audio was not one as I bitstreamed it.

    I now have the Panasonic BD60, and it can bitstream or decode the HD audio internally. I bitstream to my Onkyo TX SR606. Some of the players have had an issue with "random freezing", in which the picture will pause for a few seconds like a long layer change. It is not a lock-up, as the Pioneer had, and it apparently resumes on its own, or you rewind it a few frames and it is OK. I personally have not experienced this freezing, but several over at the AVS forum have. A new firmware for the BD60 was released yesterday, which may have fixed that problem, but it is too early to say.

    I am going to watch some Blu-rays this weekend to see if my player exhibits that problem before my 30-day return window closes. I have liked the player so far. I cannot say its picture is better than anyone else's, but I have enjoyed the Blu-rays and SD DVDs I have watched on it. The HD sound formats are awesome.
     
  11. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    That's definitely a valid concern. My experience with JVC products has been mixed at best. I've had a couple of CD players and a car deck that were outstanding, but I was very unhappy with the television that I owned, and even had it replaced and still had the same issue so I bought a different TV.
     
  12. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the info. If you think about it, you might post on here and let us know if you do have the problem with the pauses.
     
  13. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Director
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    I second that request. I'm very anxious to read all the user comments I can about the reliability of the Panasonic BD60 as I've been seriously considering adding it to my equipment stack.
     
  14. Jeff

    Jeff Supporting Actor

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    There's another issue besides *possible* support problems, and that is the lights on the player are way too bright and they can't be dimmed or turned off. That goes for the front display too. If the player is in a rack in front of you, I assure anyone that it will drive them crazy after awhile.
     
  15. David_B_K

    David_B_K Advanced Member

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    So far, not a lot of people @ AVS have chimed in with reports of random freezing on the Panasonic BD60 after the firmware update. I doubt I will have a chance to watch a complete Blu-ray until Saturday. I bought Glory today, so that will likely be my next movie.

    The JVC player is getting a lot of positive comments. As Jeff says, there is an issue with the front panel lights. they are annoyingly bright, and include a vertical bar that serves no purpose:

    [​IMG]

    If my Panasonic craps out (so far, it's been great), I might get that JVC player. I'd just put some black electrical tape over the blue bar. I have an external hard drive connected to my DISH receiver, and i have electrical tape over an overly bright blue light on it as well, so the light is no deal breaker for me.
     
  16. David_B_K

    David_B_K Advanced Member

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    Starting Friday night, and through today (Saturday), I have watched 4 more Blu-rays with no freezing or any problems at all. Over all, I watched about 8 Blu-rays on the BD-60 with no problems.

    ---EDIT---

    Just finished Glory. That's 5 movies this weekend with no freezes.

    ---EDIT AGAIN---

    My Blu-ray marathon ended tonight with L.A. Confidential. That's six Blu-rays in one weekend. Again, no freezes, pauses, hiccups or glitches of any kind. I know some people have had issues with the BD60, but mine looks to be one of the good ones.
     
  17. mikeyd2007

    mikeyd2007 Auditioning

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    no issues here
     
  18. JeremyR

    JeremyR Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the great info!
     
  19. TheBat

    TheBat Producer

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    I also have the panasonic 60. which is the 605 from sam's club. its a very nice player. yes there are some freezing problem. I had it happen once with clone wars animated movie.. I would still recommend the player. I also had the 30. panasonic has been great with the firmware updates. which says alot about the other companies.

    Jacob
     
  20. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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    Up until a few weeks ago I thought that the best Blu-ray player out there was the PS3 (and it's still great if you want to combine a player with a gaming device). The only downside (minor) was that it requires bluetooth control for on/off functionality with universal remote macros. It was the only Blu-ray player that has always been in step with all the latest BR profiles (including 2.0) thanks to Ethernet connectivity right out of the box in 2006. It was also the fastest in terms of loading times and light years ahead of other first and second generation BR players.

    However, my new Oppo BDP-83 takes Blu-ray players to a new level. (I paid $499 direct from Oppo so it might be pricey to some but definitely a bargain to those looking for a full-featured player). It's the fastest BR player that I own (which also includes some Panasonics and the PS3) - even besting the PS3. In fact, this is the first BR player that I own which reminds me of how quickly all of my earlier DVD players loaded and played. It also cuts down noticeably on the "blue screens" that other BR players - especially the PS3 - throw at you during non-playing transitions. They're not gone entirely, but they are far less intrusive and if you blink you'd probably miss them.

    The BDP-83 is well constructed, has a great backlit remote and not only plays all DVDs but also handles SACD and DVD-A as well (which is important to me because I have sizeable collections of both). Oppo has great customer support (I've owned earlier Oppo models) and it's the player I'm currently recommending to those who want the finest for a bargain price compared to some of the other high-spec models. If you're looking for the cheapest BR player, it's not the BDP-83. But if you're looking for the best (or at least the best bang-for-the-buck) with the most features, the Oppo BDP-83 has to be on your short list.

    My two cents.
     

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