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New Panasonic DVD-S55S progressive-scan DVD-Audio player: Just $130! (1 Viewer)

John|Ca

Auditioning
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May 6, 2003
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4
Hello,
I got the dvd-s55 on Sunday. Lot's of features, and the audio/video is great for the price.
Although since Tuesday, for no apparent reason the unit will not power on unless it's unplugged and plugged back in.
I hope it's not a flaw in the design. It did work fantastically for the 2 days though hehe.

Currently I'm waiting for a response from Panasonic, and it seems their customer feedback page isn't working so you have to email them instead.

I just thought you guys might want to know about this.
 

ManW_TheUncool

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Given MikeSRC's response about the S35/S55 compared to the RP91, I think I will just run out to J&R and give one a try to see for myself. I'll have 14 days to return it.

If I like the PQ, then I'll just stick w/ it as my main player. If it turns out to be fine for the majority of my DVD collection, especially the non-16x9 letterbox ones including a bunch of Hong Kong films, but not so good for many others, then I might use it as a 2ndary player just for those non-16x9 letterbox DVDs.

In the latter case, I might just get a Philips 963sa for my primary player and also have SACD access to boot. I suppose I could also try looking for one of the discontinued Panny's w/ Faroudja deinterlacing for the main player, but they don't seem worthwhile hunting down when the Philips can be easily found for $400 and offer much more than just excellent PQ. The down side to running 2 players will be my new need for high quality video switching since I'm all out of HD inputs on my RPTV. :frowning:

It's really a shame that nobody has yet to design/build a
 

JoshuaR

Agent
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Aug 30, 2002
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27
Chris, actually Crutchfields shipping is $10.99, not $11.99... ;)

I just ordered two of the 55's on Tuesday and got them delivered last night!! :emoji_thumbsup: Too bad my room isn't done yet, so I would have a chance to experience the player, more than just sitting there looking at it.
 

Chris Shelly

Second Unit
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Dec 16, 2001
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274
Chris, actually Crutchfields shipping is $10.99, not $11.99...
You are correct. It is $10.99 and not $11.99. Bad memory and it gets worse every day..LOL :)

My unit should be here on Tuesday. My next day off. I plan to set it up and compare it with my RP62 and RP82. Right now the 62 is used for older and normal run of the mill movies. The RP82 is used for classics such as Lord of the Rings and Gladiator or any other major blockbuster. Either the RP62 or S55S will find its way into another room so I can replace a Panny A112 that no longer reads disk.

Chris
 

KeithH

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I saw the 'F85 at Circuit City today. Construction looks to be very solid for the money. They didn't have the 'S55S, and I asked a salesman to look for it in their computer system hoping it might be coming in. It wasn't in the system. My guess is that Circuit City won't be getting it in. That isn't too surprising seeing as they have the 'S35S, 'F65, and 'F85. If I can't find the 'S55S locally, I'll probably go with the 'F85. It probably doesn't pay to get the 'S55S by mail because with shipping, it will likely be around the same price as the 'F85 locally (there's no sales tax in Delaware). I think I could live with the 'F85.
 

TommyL

Supporting Actor
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
590
how do these new units compare to my old rp-56 dvd player? worth the upgrade or not? I use a 55" mitsu myself...I'm debating the rp-91 also...thanks! tom
 

John Knowles

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OK, can someone answer me this? I was in best buy yesterday looking at the new Panny players and I saw the F65. On both the box and the front panel it said DVD Audio ("DVD Video/Audio") but of course it didn't have the normal 6 ch analog outputs (and I've heard people say that the F85 is the one with DVD A)...why would they be calling it DVD-A when it seems not to be???
 

MikeSRC

Second Unit
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Jul 19, 2002
Messages
369
A number of manufacturers list their DVD players as playing "DVD Video/Audio" even though they don't play DVD-A. It refers to the standard stereo track on the DVD and is output through a standard L-R stereo jacks.

With the advent of DVD-A, it makes it confusing and I don't think anyone needs to be told that a DVD player has an stereo audio output.
 

KeithH

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John, I saw this on an 'F65 at my local Circuit City yesterday and found it curious. I assumed the meant "DVD Audio", as in audio from a DVD-Video disc, as opposed to the hi-rez DVD-Audio format.
 

John Knowles

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I figured....and it also had the "re-master" button to further confuse the issue. If I hadn't looked at the back panel, I could have mistaken it for a DVD A deck; especially since they don't have any Panny DVD-A decks right now (or ANYTHING with SACD, what's up with that?!).
 

KeithH

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John, I was suprised to see a Re-Master button on the 'F65. As for the stores, I have found Best Buy to be much better on hi-rez software (both SACD and DVD-Audio), but Circuit City is better on hi-rez hardware at the moment. The Circuit City I was in yesterday had the 'F85 and the Sony DVP-NS755V DVD/SACD player. Best Buy sometimes has the 'NS755V.
 

LanceJ

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After checking out the F65 player I am guessing with this but:

Nowadays almost all major brand dvd-video players use 192khz/24bit DACs so that means they could decode the hi-res (stereo) tracks on a dvd-audio disc. Then I thought, wait a minute, dvd-audio almost always uses the Meridian Lossless Packing (MLP) compression system for its 96 & 192kHz tracks. Then I remembered that the "mega" chip Panasonic uses for all their new players includes dvd-audio decoding capabilities......ta da! So I bet they just didn't include the other four analog output stages like the F85 has.

Ummm, personally I think this will just confuse people and they ought to just dump the F65 player altogether.

Techie (tekkie?) side note: AIX Records' new sampler disc includes some 192kHz plain PCM tracks, i.e. non-MLP encoded PCM. Has anybody tried these on a dvd-video player???

Dvd-audio: confusing, but never boring. :D :b

LJ
 

KeithH

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Lance, excellent thought process on your part. I didn't realize that Panasonic was using the same chipset in all of its players. Knowing that, what you said sounds feasible. So, what if you try to play stereo DVD-Audio tracks on the 'F65? The only problem is that the firmware may be set to default to the DVD-Video layer and make the DVD-Audio layer inaccessible. If I found that stereo DVD-Audio worked flawlessly on the 'F65, I would consider it. I don't need multi-channel DVD-Audio for my second system, just stereo.
 

ManW_TheUncool

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For anyone interested, I posted my brief review of the Panny S35 in this new thread:

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=140045

For those who just want a 2-line comment. Nice little player in most respects, including nice GUI, BUT very disappointing aspect ratio scaling PQ despite being feature-rich in that area. :frowning: Would probably have been good enough for my needs, except for the showstopping PQ on zoom/scaled images. :angry:

_Man_
 

John Knowles

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I would also be interested in whether the F65 outputs the hi-rez 2 channel layer of DVDA discs as my HT reciever doesn't have 6-ch analog inputs...I'll be listening to hi-rez audio in stereo for a while anyhow. I'll bet it's capable, but the question is whether they've disabled it on the F65.
 

JohnnyG

Screenwriter
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Dec 18, 2000
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From what I understand, the F65 will indeed play DVD-Audio discs, but it only outputs 2-channels. I'm not sure if this means that it will downmix 6-channel recordings, but I really can't see it 'throwing away' 4 channels of information.
 

Mike Pollmann

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Feb 14, 2000
Messages
54
Has anyone tried out the F85 yet? I'm seriously considering getting one to replace my very old Sony DVP-S500D and my even older Denon single cd player.

I do not have a HDTV so progressive doesn't matter to me, although I'll still be using the component connection. I do need to use the built in decoder (for now) however. Anyone have any impressions?

Thanks,
Mike
 

LanceJ

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Guessing again: if Panasonic wrote "dvd-audio" on the box and on the website ("DVD-Audio (2-channel only)") it looks like it's going to do just that.

IMO, that sure is rather dumb on their part: the F85 is $150 and the F65 is $130. A dinky $20 price difference--what the.....? :confused:

LJ
 

KeithH

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Lance, thanks for the additional info. It would be odd if the 'F65 would default to the DVD-Audio layer. Could it be the world's first stereo-only DVD-Audio player? That's all I need for my second system, but I still might go with the 'F85. I found it show a bit better build quality than the 'F65 in comparing the two at Circuit City.
 

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