Samsung DVD-HD931 Early Impressions

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by MikeSRC, May 10, 2003.

  1. MikeSRC

    MikeSRC Second Unit

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    Just started playing around with the HD931 whh has just been released. Here's a few early observations:

    - The MSRP was raised to $399.95 on the product price sheet I received.
    - The player does not play DVD-A as was previously stated in press releases.
    - Scaling to 720p or 1080i (selectable) is only available through the DVI output and requires HDCP (per the manual)
    - It has zoom features (not tried yet).
    - The Faroudja chip is only used with the DVI output.
    - The component outputs use the LSI Logic Ziva 5 chip for deinterlacing, which is also the MPEG decoder.
    - The player does not have the chroma bug, but does have some other less noticeable chroma problems in interlaced mode. (more on that later)
    - It will play MP3s and JPEGs on CD-Rs
    - It should play DVD-RAM, ROM, DVD-R, +R, DVD+RW and -RW (haven't tried any though)
    - It has both optical and coaxial digital outputs.
     
  2. Phil L

    Phil L Supporting Actor

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    Eagerly awaiting your review Mike.
     
  3. Michael Mathius

    Michael Mathius Supporting Actor

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    I'm surprise that there is not much talk about this player around here. I thought that with the constant search of a better picture, more people would be interested in the Bravo $199 and this player.

    Once the Sammy is available locally I will definitely be testing it with my Sony RPTV and FP.
     
  4. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Mike, what kind of display are you using?

    I'm very curious how well this DVD player performs with a Samsung DLP television. This would give you a totally digital pathway from the DVD to the screen. I'm also hoping that Samsung TESTED the unit with their own televisions in mind.
     
  5. Michael Mathius

    Michael Mathius Supporting Actor

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    Bob:

    I'm using a Sony HS10 projector which has a dvi input. I was going to get the Bravo but it quickly got sold out.

    There was a rumor that the Sammy was also a Dvd Audio player. Seems this is not the case. Still I believe that as a stand alone dvd player with the right monitors it will blow out most of the other dvd players. BTW I also own the Panasonic 82 which has been given many favorable reviews but at 720p or 1080i the Sammy should be in a different league.

    Michael
     
  6. MikeSRC

    MikeSRC Second Unit

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    Bob -

    So far, I've tried the Sammy on a highly tweaked Mits WS-55807 (component inputs) and a Fujitsu plasma P50XHA10US (DVI/HDCP input). Unfortunately, I wasn't able to compare the DVI (which was at a local dealer) to my RP-82 (at home). Since most of the local dealers are pretty busy during the weekend, I'm going to try and find a location where I can do a little comparing tomorrow. The picture on the Fujitsu was stunning however.

    In general, the best use of this player would be with a fixed-pixel display like a plasma, DLP or LCD projector. CRT displays with DVI inputs should also look good, but can't take full advantage of the pixel-to-pixel mapping.
     
  7. Joe6pack99

    Joe6pack99 Second Unit

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    Well i am about to buy either the Samsung or the Bravo.....waiting on the comparisons bring them on!
     
  8. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Hmmm... I would be interested to know about the PQ via analog component output, especially if it offers aspect ratio scaling. I tried the cheapy, new Panny S35, and the scaled image PQ was very disappointing.

    _Man_
     
  9. MikeSRC

    MikeSRC Second Unit

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  10. Phil L

    Phil L Supporting Actor

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    Mike,

    Do you see any edge enhancement?
     
  11. Chris Shelly

    Chris Shelly Second Unit

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    I stopped by my dealer tonight. Yesterday they said they had one in route but it was the display model. They had it hooked up to a Sony 42" plasma. The picture looked absolutly stunning. Not only did it look cleaner but the color depth was far superior. This was all demonstrated using 720P. 1080I would only show up as snow in this monitor. I did switch between 480P and 720P and 480P it did not look nearly as good. Its not really true HD because the resolution is not there from the original source. You still tell you are dealing with an original 480P source. It definently looked good however. I thought it looked very film like.

    Chris
     
  12. MikeSRC

    MikeSRC Second Unit

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    Man -

    I tried the zoom feature on the component output last night and was not impressed. There are two steps: 2X - too much picture loss and degradation, and 4X - totally useless, horrible picture. The "Screen Fit' feature is for expanding a letterboxed film on a 4:3 set.

    Phil -

    I don't see the edge enhancement issues that some others do. As was stated on another forum, some people are more sensitive to this than others. I find that with any SVM turned off and the proper sharpness setting, the Faroudja PQ is outstanding. If the trade-off is some minimal, IMO, edge enhancement, then I'll take that over the variety of artifacts seen with many other processors.
     
  13. JimmyK

    JimmyK Second Unit

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  14. Joe Reed

    Joe Reed Stunt Coordinator

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    Does anyone know if the Sony KV-36xbr800 has DVI-HDCP?
     
  15. Ernie S

    Ernie S Auditioning

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    The Bravo D1 will output 720p and 1080i to non-HDCP equipped displays whereas the Samsung 931 will not. That's a huge issue for owners of older equipment.
     
  16. Chris Shelly

    Chris Shelly Second Unit

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    Possible problem with this player. On my 57HDX82 set the only mode that works is 720P. When selecting 480P a picture shows up for a few seconds and then goes blank. When 1080I is selected all I get is snow. My dealer is having the same problem with 1080I.

    I searched for problems with HD decoder boxes on Toshiba TV's and came up empty. 1080I and 480P should work but does not.

    I have picked up on other forums with with 1080I problems. I suspect as more people receive these we will hear more about it.
     
  17. Scott_Lip

    Scott_Lip Agent

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    I have the same HDX series TV. So how does it look in 720P? Please let me know, because I am about to buy this player, but was waiting on an opinion!
     
  18. Chris Shelly

    Chris Shelly Second Unit

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    The HD931 looks really good on my 57HDX82. Even from 6 inches away I can't see any scan lines and very little if any video noise. If I see any at all it is most likely from the original source. It is definitely in a league of its own. Easily out doing the RP82. I would not call it true HD because the original source is still 480p. But it is so clean and sharp. Color depth is also much improved.

    As for build quality it is pretty good. Not much different then most other models. We must remember this is a $299 player so I am not expecting a tank. I also can't hear the drive motor unless i am standing in front of it.

    Now if I can just get 480p and 1080i to work as it should... [​IMG]

    Chris
     
  19. Joe Reed

    Joe Reed Stunt Coordinator

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    Chris, did you purchase yours online? If so where?
     
  20. Brian Schucher

    Brian Schucher Supporting Actor

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    LIl confused here. It was my understanding that the Toshibas do not display 720p natively...
     

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