SACD vs. DVD-Audio

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Robert Franklin, Jun 18, 2001.

  1. Robert Franklin

    Robert Franklin Stunt Coordinator

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    Has anyone heard any type of music on both of these two formats? If so, which format would you invest buying music on? At the Stereophile/HT Show in New York I heard SACD and was completely amazed at the sonic detail captured on SACD. I heard DVD-Audio at a local retailer, and according to what I heard I wasn't impressed. It sounded a little better than ordinary cds, but not to the level where SACD stood. Now, I must admit; maybe it had something to do with the speakers that were connected to it; I don't know. According to a few publications that I subscribe to everyone seems to be in favor of SACD. For me right now would not be an appropriate time for me to invest into either format, due to the fact that either format does not have enough software. SACD has just a few labels, and of course Sony Music and all of its subsidiaries. Where as DVD-Audio has a few more big record labels supporting it, but still not enough music on it. If I had to chose between the two, I would pick SACD. How do you feel about the two formats?
     
  2. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    I have listened to 2-channel stuff with good separates for an extended period of time. With DVD Audio, the only source component I listened to was the Rotel $1500 player. For SACD I have heard the discontinued Marantz Reference Player (about $7000), the current Marantz SA-14 ($2700) and the Sony 9000 ES. Used with DSD, SACD is clearly better than DVD-A in 2-channel. My bedroom system shares a wall with my reference system and for now I am using the Sony as a progressive scan DVD source for the bedroom and with its 2 analog outs, SACD in both systems. I bought the Sony since I had a use for it as a DVD player anyway. There are more titles right now that are available on SACD but it should be interesting to see the next generation of players and what software is released in the coming year. The SACD camp seems definitely opposed to digital outputs due to copy protection and it DVD-A resolves this question and gets more software out there it may limit the market for SACD by lowering the cost of players even more, including the better ones, not to mention the cost of multiple cables required to hook it up. I would not run out and buy something just for DVD-A or SACD. If you get something now it should be something that you can use now. For example, the Marantz SA-14 is an excellent CD player. If one was in the market for a CD player for their music collection in this price range, I would regard the SACD as a bonus.
     
  3. Steve T

    Steve T Stunt Coordinator

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    Phil has a good point. If you decide to invest now in DVD-A or SACD, buy a machine that offers the new format as a bonus. I bought the Panasonic DVD-A7 because I was looking for a DVD player that also sounded good playing CD. IMO, none of the DVD players I had purchased previously were good at redbook CD playback.
    I do not believe that DVD-A or SACD will ever compete with CD in the mass marketplace. If surround sound really catches on maybe there is some chance, but there are just too many people with their portable boomboxes and MP3 players who are just not interested in high resolution audio. Why have DADs never really caught on? It could be because only audiophile type labels ever produced them. From what I have read DTS CDs have never been a big seller either.
    It will be interesting to see what happens, but at the present time there are not enough SACD titles that spark my interest enough to invest in it.
     
  4. Jeff Adams

    Jeff Adams Screenwriter

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    I agree with Steve about not going out and buying a stand alone dvd-audio or SACD player. When I bought my dvd-audio player I was in the market for a new progressive scan dvd player. So I bought the JVC XV-723GD. It has progressive scan and as a bonus has dvd-audio. I only paid $399 for it so it is well worth it. I have not yet found a dvd player that is progressive scan and SACD for that reasonable of a price. And as far as the audio difference between the 2,I do have to say that SACD in 2 channel form is better than dvd-audio. I took home the Sony 9000es and played with it for a week. I was very impressed but was not about to spend $1400 on it. And as far as dvd-audio only sounding slightly better than cd, I would have to strongly disagree with that. Dvd-audio sounds so much better than cd. I have both Metallica and Steely Dan on dvd-audio and regular cd and play both formats to compare. When I play dvd-audio the sound is much more detailed, open and spacious. The cd sounds confined and grasping for air. Now some dvd-audio titles sound pretty much the same as cd such as Stone Temple Pilots. Now to sum this all up, I hope that both formats survive an coexist with one another. Both formats are great and are far superior to cd and to the dreaded mp3. They just need to iron out some problems with the formats and get alot more titles out. I cant wait until I can go out and buy a stand alone player for both formats but for right now I will hold off.
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    "I'm your Huckelberry"
     
  5. Tom Oh

    Tom Oh Second Unit

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    I'm inagreement with you guys. I bought a Sony 9000ES for its progressive ability. SACD was a bonus. I have purchased several, well 4 SACDs and I am hooked. I'm no audiophile but it sounds great on my system. I am now more actively looking for SACDs than DVDs. I can't say comment on DVD-A since I don't have it. I would love to hear Metallica though. Some SACDs I enjoyed are (as recommended by fellow HTF members) Jacintha: Tribute to Ben and FIM SACD sampler. I also bought Joe Satiani: Engine Emotion? This I did not like as much as I thought. I would definetly wait for the Surfing With the Aliens. 9000ES is a pretty sweet.
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  6. Jeremy Illingworth

    Jeremy Illingworth Supporting Actor

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    I thought that DVDA would have an advantage in that more and more DVD players will included DVDA abilities but I did a bit of looking into and SACDs will play in ordinary CD players. I think that's what I read. I looked on Sony's site at SACD software and was surprised at the number of new pop artist's albums on SACD. Unfortunately they all seem to be limited to Sony's label. I don't think it matters format one is better. I think software will determine who wins, if they can't coexist.
    jeremy
     
  7. Thomas Newton

    Thomas Newton Screenwriter

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    Some SACDs will play on ordinary CD players. A SACD will always have a high-density SACD layer that an ordinary CD player cannot read. It may optionally have a second Red Book audio CD layer for the sake of backwards compatibility.
     

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