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Sony DVP 999ES or Pioneer DV-47Ai

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Miguel Stanic, Dec 22, 2002.

  1. Miguel Stanic

    Miguel Stanic Stunt Coordinator

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    I want to get a player that does DVDA and/or SACD. The Pioneer will do both and is available. The Sony is just about to hit our retailers any moment now here in Canada.

    Which model would you choose and why? Any other players worth considering at this price range or slightly below. I have a Sony KPHW51 16X9 TV and will be running it via component video of course. It will connect to an Anthem AVM20.

    Please help me choose. Does the Sony have firewire/i-link?
     
  2. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I had a 45a and just moved up to the 47ai. I can find absolutely nothing to complain about. [​IMG]
    Build quality, video performance, audio performance, are all excellent. Especially for the price. (I had been looking at the Marantz 8300 again based on the latest review in S&V.)
    Sony ES stuff is to die for. I would give my left nut for a Sony ES machine that does CD/SACD/DVD-A/DVD-V. But this one doesn't do DVD-A, so that was a deal breaker for me.
    Also, if you ever need it, I have had much better experience with Pioneer's customer service that Sony's.
    Be aware that an *proprietary* digital link is just that: proprietary. So Pioneer only works with Pioneer, and Denon only works with Denon. Sony doesn't have one yet.
     
  3. Miguel Stanic

    Miguel Stanic Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Kevin.

    I thought Pioneer's i-link is to be the standard that will be adopted. I know Denon's is definitely propietary, but I thought Pioneer's connection was/will be more universal.

    Does the DV-47Ai have the Chroma Bug?
     
  4. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Miguel,
    My understanding is that the '47Ai shows the chroma bug. I believe the 'NS999ES does as well.
    The '47Ai wins in terms of features since it offers DVD-Audio, but you ought to compare the two players' audio and video capabilities and see which one works for you. I've played with the 'NS999ES a bit at a local dealer and have been quite impressed with it. Unfortunately they did not have the '47Ai for comparison. They still had the '47A. [​IMG]
    Kevin,
    Wow, that was a quick upgrade. [​IMG] What drove you to do it? Did you find the '45A particularly lacking in one or more areas? I remember you being impressed with it. Am I correct in assuming that you have found the '47Ai to be noticeably better than the '45A? Are improvements more readily evident on the audio side than the video side? Just curious.
     
  5. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Miguel- I know that the Pioneer does have the chroma bug, but I believe that Keith is correct that the Sony does too. I *think* the only Sony that didn't have it was the original 7000.
    Keith- I got a deal on the 47ai I couldn't refuse! [​IMG] (Remember my dying DV-05? Took a little tenacity on my part, but I got Pioneer to take it back for a "good" deal on the 47ai. I bought the 05 as a refurb, and when they checked, turned out it had been repaired *more than once* before I ended up with it.)
    As far as performance, I can attest that audio is no worse than the 45a (but I haven't done a lot of critical listening yet to be honest), but video does seem a little "sharper". (May be due to the fact that it has a preset set of video settings for std analog CRT-type TVs.)
    And, it does "heft" a lot more than the 45a. 11 lbs 3 oz vs 5 lbs 12 oz. More than twice as much. I'll have this one for a while. [​IMG]
     
  6. Steve_Corrick

    Steve_Corrick Stunt Coordinator

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    You might check out the new Marantz 8300, It is based on the Pioneer 47 with improved audio circuitry. Corrected link to review of Marantz 8300 SACD-DVD
    Sorry folks there was a downloadable PDF review from DVD.com on the marantz site last month / Old link. It was a bit more detailed than this review.
     
  7. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Kevin, thanks. Glad to hear you got a nice deal on the '47Ai. Nice going. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  8. Phil Tomaskovic

    Phil Tomaskovic Supporting Actor

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    That review link points to a remote control!
     
  9. Jeff Kleinberg

    Jeff Kleinberg Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi,
    I have spent considerable time with both of these machines. The sony has a much better picture(on an ISF calibrated 57inch rptv)than the pioneer, far more three dimensional with better color saturation. The sacd performance is also much better on the sony, but I had the 47a and not the ai , so the burr brown dac's might have improved the sacd sound. Sony also gives you bass management and speaker delays in the digital domain for sacd(your anthem does this too, but there is an extra A/D D/A conversion). For sheer video and audio quality the sony wins hands down, its user interface and features are also more elaborate and easier to use. BUT it doesn't do DVDA, and for me that was a deal breaker. I ended up with the onkyo 800, which I felt had as good a picture as the sony, with a little less sacd clarity. They both have the chroma bug, but I still have not seen it(and to be I honest I dont care to,it will just distract me from my viewing.
     
  10. Sach

    Sach Stunt Coordinator

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    The 47Ai does not have a proprietary ilink. It is based on the standards recently approved by the DVD forum, which is a big plus.

    The 47Ai plays all formats extremely well. As for the chroma bug, I haven't seen the same; I tried but couldn't see.

    The 47Ai can be probably had for about $400 less than the Sony and with its ability to play all formats really great, is to me the sweetest thing of all.
     
  11. Miguel Stanic

    Miguel Stanic Stunt Coordinator

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    I just bought the Pioneer DV-47Ai.

    I'm anxious to hook it up. I couldn't wait for the Sony and it would have cost me a lot more I'm sure. Actually, I think I got a pretty good deal on the Pioneer DV-47Ai.
     
  12. Miguel Stanic

    Miguel Stanic Stunt Coordinator

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    Hooked it up......

    All I can say is, OH MY GOD!!!, this Pioneer DV-47Ai DVD player is killer. It has opened up the soundstage on the Anthem ten fold. It's like a whole new system. I can't believe a DVD player would make that much of a difference on the audio. The picture is impeccable but the audio is out of this world. My other DVD player is a Sony 7700 which is no slouch even though it's a few years old. It's amazing.....now I've just got to get an SACD and DVD-A cd to see what that's like.
     
  13. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Sach- I do believe that the Pioneer link is proprietary. The 49txi actually came out before the standards were agreed upon. I guess we'll know for sure if and when the 47ai can be interfaced digitally with a pre/pro/reciever other than Pioneer's 49txi... [​IMG]
    For example, the 47ai won't work with the Denon 5803.
    Miguel- Congrats! Keith knows... I'm a still awaitin' a Sony ES universal player, but until then, the 47ai will do just fine... [​IMG]
     
  14. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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    Real Name:
    Lee
    I am glad you purchased the 47Ai and have enjoyed it.
    I do think the 999ES has amazing video quality. I saw it recently with a top line DLP projector and the image was stunning.
    The good thing is you can enjoy DVD Audio with the 47 as well.
    Try some SACDs and DVDAs and tell us how you like them...
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Ron_N

    Ron_N Extra

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    Miguel, may I offer you some choices for DVD-A & SACD:
    DVD-A:
    Bjork Vespertine
    Steely Dan Two Against Nature
    Donald Fagen Nightfly
    And if you really want to put your system through some serious changes I would suggest Morton Subotnick Vol. 1: Electronic Works/ Touch; A Sky of Cloudless Sulphur; Gestures from www.mode.com/catalog/097subotnick.html
    SACD:
    David Bowie Heathen
    Rebecca Pidgeon The Raven
    Chris Lomheim Trio The Bridge
    Pete Whitman Quintet The Sound of Water
    The last two can be ordered from www.artegra.org
     
  16. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Sach is indeed correct. Info about the i.Link interface is in the 47ai's manual. Believe it or not, it's a trademarked Sony name. Just a Firewire connection (and protocols). Cool... (Might prove to be a useful connection to a pre/pro with it sometime down the line). But the Sony doesn't even have this, right? Wierd.
     
  17. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Miguel, congratulations on the purchase. Glad you are happy with the '47Ai. What kind of music do you like? Here are some SACDs and DVD-Audio discs I recommend for both great music and sound:
    SACD
    * Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Couldn't Stand the Weather
    * The Rolling Stones Hot Rocks 1964-1971
    * Creedence Clearwater Revival Willy and the Poorboys
    * The Dave Brubeck Quartet Time Out
    * Any Miles Davis
    DVD-Audio
    * Fleetwood Mac Rumours
    * Eagles Hotel California
    * Metallica Metallica
    * Steely Dan Two Against Nature
    * The Doors L.A. Woman
     
  18. BrianChim

    BrianChim Agent

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  19. Miguel Stanic

    Miguel Stanic Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Keith, Ron and everybody else.

    I'll definitely check out some of your suggestions. I plan on hitting some record stores today and throughout the Boxing Day madness over the next few days.

    I appreciate everyone's input.

    Happy Holidays everybody!!!
     
  20. TanD

    TanD Stunt Coordinator

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    the following info is from another user review of the 999es with denon 3800 and phillips 963sa

    __________________________________
    Well, I did an A/B comparison last week, when I was in California (I took a 963SA with me for a friend that lives in Sunnyvale).

    It was a quite interesting experience. The really tricky part was to adjust the settings of all three models to their best. What we really found unbelieveable is how much we had to tweak the three models to give out their best performance with the projector we used (a Sony VPL-VW11HT). We used the same component cabling, and we always used 480p, to keep the ground even, and to test the three model's deinterlacers (since they use three different deinterlacers).

    Before you ask, the 3800 in question is the latest revision available, with both the chroma bug and the drive mechanical problems (heating, locking up, etc.) solved.

    If you only care about pure video quality, the 3800 is definitely the best. Not by too much, but its superiority is quite noticeable. The 963SA is the second. The 999ES could be comparable to the 963SA if it weren't for the horrible deinterlacer, which has way too many problems with some discs (shimmering, for example).

    In terms of sound, you can't really compare the three of them in anything but CD, because the 3800 does DVD-Audio only, and the 963SA and 999ES are SACD only. In that respect - CD playback - funilly enough, the 3800 is the worst. The 999ES is the best, followed closely by the 963SA. Our feeling was that the differences were subtle, especially between the 963SA and the 999ES. Probably the only reason the 963SA doesn't sound just as good as the 999ES is because the 999ES has slightly better mechanical quality (chassis, shielding, etc.). The DACs and electronic circuitry in general should be equivalent (if not identical).

    If you aren't confused enough, then get a load of this: the features. The 999ES and the 963SA are much more tweakeable - namely in terms of chroma delay; on the other hand, the 963SA is easily found/made multiregion and PAL progressive, closely followed by the 3800, while with the 999ES it is not possible at all to do it currently.

    So, basically, it's a question of what you prefer to have; personally, we though the 963SA is the best balanced of the three, in terms of video, audio and features. However, it is edged by the 3800 in video and by the 999ES in audio. It's quite frustrating...

    If you're an american videophile, or someone who already has a good machine for CD/SACD playback (like an XA777ES), and doesn't need chroma delay setting, I'd go for the 3800; if you're an american audiophile that doesn't want to buy a dedicated XA777ES and doesn't care about deinterlacing artifacts, I'd go for the 999ES.

    If you're neither, and you don't mind not having the absolute best video and audio available, go for the 963SA, or, if you do mind, wait for the next series of players from Denon and Sony in Q3 2003

    By the way, for the americans that still want to go for the 963SA, but don't want to buy it from Europe, be ready for what can be a long wait; Philips and Sony have a more or less "secret" agreement of Philips not releasing the 963SA in the US and not releasing the Sony 999ES in Europe until they're convinced the either market is big enough for both models. Of course, they can decide it's a good time in 1 month, but they can also decide to wait 6 months... or forever.

    Hope this helps!

    Best regards,

    Afonso. "
    ________________________________________________
     

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