Toshiba 4700: Initial impressions...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Page, Nov 1, 2001.

  1. Page

    Page Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I played around with this machine for about three hours tonight, testing it with different discs.
    Video-wise, I'd say it performs exactly like the 3750 (which I had for a while and returned). I returned the 3750 because I also had a Pansonic RP-56 which I preferred because the picture was a little sharper and the colors were a tad richer. By no means, did the 4700 or the 3750 put out a bad picture. The Panny just edged out the Toshiba in my eyes. (Among the discs I played was "Toy Story" and there was no flicker in the solid reds. I'm not real susceptible to the chroma bug so I can't tell you if it's there. I DO notice combing effects and I didn't see any on the material I viewed. I had a friend watch a few scenes and she thought the Panasonic looked a little sharper also.)
    In the box in addition to the manual is a "Supplement for correction" ("Uh-oh, I thought...) In the supplement were some features that appear in the manual and are crossed out due to the fact that these features either never made it into the player or were taken out later.
    (Example: "This DVD player uses the NTSC color sytem. PAL signals in a playable disc are converted to NTSC signals to be output. (They cannot be in the progressive output format.) This conversion may cause slight picture deterioration." Everything after the first sentence is crossed out. (Was this player once meant to play PAL discs and convert them? I have a few PAL discs and gave them a try. The player read the disc, BUT the picture was in a continuous roll. The sound was fine as I tried to watch. (for a brief second I thought I had myself a cheaper, but better built Malata on my hands...)
    Other statements in the correction supplement help to claify sentences which might prove to be confusing: "The total playing time is not displayed"--the timer is showing the elapsed time and not the TOTAL time of a disc; "The programmed selections will be cleared when you turn off the DVD player." (Programmed tracks of a DVD/CD do not remain in the player's memory when you shut the player off. Does any player do this?)
    ---The Enhanced Audio Mode does not work for DVD audio discs.
    ---The clear button does not perform as an exit/enter button.
    If you are familiar with the remote from the 6200, you will be right at home with the 4700s. (However it is not backlit nor does it have glow in the dark keys. Gone also is that little wheel/tab on the side that controlled fast forward and reverse modes.) The fast forward and reverse modes are pretty smooth. The Zoom mode is excellent IMHO. It works well and allows you to zoom in nice and tight on some aspect of the picture you want to investigate further. There is a button on the remote to change from interlaced to progressive mode. (There is also a switch on the back of the player.)
    Sound wise--well, my receiver is doing all the decoding so it sounds good to me. No built in DTS, but it does have DD. A four page supplement gives guidelines for playback of MP-3 discs.
    A cardboard features strip taped to the top of the players states: 10 bit 54 MHz Video DAC with 8:8:8 processing. 540 lines of video resolution. The player can play DVD-Video/DVD-R/CD/VCD/CD-R/CD-W/MP3 and DVD Audio.
    What else? Well, all those niffty little features which I never use like strobe, virtual remote, preview, etc. are included. No enhanced black level. (There were some questions about DACs and DVD Audio. I really don't know much about DVD Audio but the manual says sound through the bitstream/audio/PCM jacks range from 44.1 kHz/16bit to 192 kHz/24 bit. Don't know if that helps anybody or not.)
    I'll mess around with this player some more, but picture is the deciding factor for me and at this point I prefer the Panasonic even though it has a "flicker-problem" for a very few seconds on a very few discs. To me the 4700 is a 3750 with a better remote, a Dolby Digital decoder (which I won't use), and the ability to play DVD Audio discs (which I don't own). But the price is right for a player that does all this--I picked it up for $250 from a place that doesn't discount its products that much.
    I'll be interested to hear what other owners of this player think.
     
  2. Andrew P

    Andrew P Second Unit

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    Good review. I am not surprised in the least. I havent expected much out of Toshiba DVD players lately. I think they peaked around the 5109 (in its time of course) and since then the improvements to their players have been subtle at best (once again my opinion).
    I have the Sony DVPNS900V arriving today. Im hoping this player is a step-up from the 700p. Only time will tell. Im not sure when im going to get to the review because of the Yankees though! :)
    Andy
     
  3. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    Page,
    Thanks for the initial review!
    So, there's no enhanced black level? I wonder why. Even my lowly 1600 has that feature!
    One question...are there adjustable picture settings?
    Ron
     
  4. JohnnyG

    JohnnyG Screenwriter

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    I find the absence of 'Enhanced Blacks' puzzling. Toshiba has had this in their players for as long as I can remember. Technically, 480p should have a zero IRE black level to begin with.
    Page, what TV are you using?
     
  5. Kwang Suh

    Kwang Suh Supporting Actor

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    In Toshiba's defense, let me state that I also have a 3750. I previously had an RP-56.
    1) IMHO, the Toshiba has a sharper picture than the RP-56. The RP-56 definitely had some high-freq roll-off. I did enjoy the picture from both players though.
    2) The flicker bug. The RP-56 has it. The 3750 doesn't. It's, IMHO, annoying.
    3) The chroma bug. The 3750 has it. The RP-56 doesn't. Having said that, the severity of the chroma bug on the 3750 is extremely small. The Denon 2800 has it much more severely, for instance. The 5109 has it in spades (in addition to the flicker bug).
    4) Ergonomics. Flat out, the RP-56 sucks to use. I hate menus with a zillion icons. I hate the fact that I can't just stop a movie and then resume later. I hated the layout of the menus. I love the 3750's front panel navigation. I love that I can use Avia while in front of my TV, and navigate the DVD using the player instead of the remote.
    5) Scaling. The 3750 has it. The RP-56 doesn't. I used to think it wasn't necessary. Now, I can't live without it.
    Having said all this, I would get a RP-91 if I could justify spending that much on a DVD player [​IMG]
    [Edited last by Kwang Suh on November 01, 2001 at 12:57 PM]
     
  6. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

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    Try throwing the JVC XV-S60 into the mix. I tested that, the RP-56 and the NS700p. The JVC put out the best progressive picture of the trio, add to that, auto-upscaling, very easy menu system, good options for tweaking, solid built unit, remote is decent, coax/optical outs and dts out. I am still amazed at the picture this machine puts out. Video material is not as good as the others, but that was of little concern to me. For the price range of $300.00 and under, the JVC, IMO is the clear winner. Viewed on a Mits 46" 16:9.
    Peace Out~ [​IMG]
    ------------------
    http://home.earthlink.net/~peregrinefalcon
     
  7. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    Double post...my bad!
    [Edited last by Ron Reda on November 01, 2001 at 03:15 PM]
     
  8. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    Ron-P,
    I think we need an in-depth "Ron-P" review of the 4700 and 5700 [​IMG]
    ~~~~~~~~~~~
    Kwang Suh,
    "I hate the fact that I can't just stop a movie and then resume later."
    I love this feature about the Toshiba players. It may not seem like a big deal to other people, but it is to me...definitely a selling point IMO.
    "Having said all this, I would get a RP-91 if I could justify spending that much on a DVD player."
    My sentiments exactly...I just don't have $600+ to spend on a DVDP, so I have to look elsewhere, hence the interest in the 4700/5700/RP56/JVC Whatever/Sony NS700P.
     
  9. Page

    Page Stunt Coordinator

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    Ron,
    Yes, there are are separate picture settings (Contrast, brightness, etc.)
    Johnny,
    I used a Toshiba 61H71. (I'll try it tonight with a Panasonic Tau.)
    Kwang,
    I can't disagree with your assessment of both players. (That flicker is quite bothersome, but I've only seen it on one disc and that was for only a brief amount of time.) After I've played around with Toshbia some more, I might return the Panasonic. (I like the Pansonic menus, but then again, I'm very used to them.) The scaling is very nice, but I've had no need for it as of yet.
    Both players are six of one and half a dozen of the other. Both very good players are great prices. (This time last year the price was about a thousand bucks for a progressive player that didn't perform as well.)
     
  10. Kwang Suh

    Kwang Suh Supporting Actor

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  11. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

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    quote: I just can't take a risk with JVC. I've heard so many bad things about them, and when the salespeople shake their heads when I ask them about JVC stuff, I stay away.[/quote]
    I have never owned a JVC product before. I have done some searching and reveiws of there newer models seem good. If the reliability is anything like the build quality, should be a long lasting machine.
    For a Progressive player well under $300.00 I don't think you can do much better. I will add the 3 year extended warranty for $30.00, so for that price there is no risk. If it doesn't last I get my money and go with a different model.
    For me, it is worth the risk considering the excellent picture this player produces.
    Peace Out~ [​IMG]
    ------------------
    http://home.earthlink.net/~peregrinefalcon
    [Edited last by Ron-P on November 01, 2001 at 05:21 PM]
     
  12. Randy_M

    Randy_M Supporting Actor

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    Ron-P,
    Have you experienced any difficulties with specific discs? I had to return my 723 because it didn't like some of my discs. For example, it went into an infinite loop on one of the Chicken Run menus...hopefully, all that is fixed..
     
  13. JohnnyG

    JohnnyG Screenwriter

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    Can anybody tell me how a semiconductor manufacturer could be so stupid as to build an MPEG2 decoder today that STILL doesn't do proper chroma upsampling?
    ------------------
    John Golitsis
    Next Big Thing Electronics
     
  14. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    I had two different Toshiba 3750 and after reading the review from RonP, I decided I would give the JVC a try. Six months ago, I NEVER would have considered a JVC product, but I really do trust the input of people in the forum. And for $210, I thought I could give the JVC a try. I have been very impressed with it. The colors are richer and the picture has more depth to it compared to the Toshiba.
    I did not buy the extended warranty, they wanted $60 for it! I thought that if I ever need work on it, I can just pick up the latest and greatest.
    One thing I noticed on the JVC, the subtitles in Star Wars I do not come on when Ani and Watto are talking. I have not had time to mess with it too much so I sure that it is in the setup somewhere. I did re-calibrate my TV when I hooked up the JVC though.
    Jeff
     
  15. Neil Weinstock

    Neil Weinstock Stunt Coordinator

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    The 3750 thread reveals the use of a Zoran chip for deinterlacing in these new Toshiba players. Can anyone comment on how well it works relative to either the Genesis or Sage chips? For me the Sage chip is a huge plus for the RP-56, but there are other things about the Tosh that are sounding good to me right now...
    Does the 4700 have any kind of bass management on DVD-A?
     

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