Upgraded to a DVD player with HDCD (questions inside)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bill Adlhoch, Jun 17, 2002.

  1. Bill Adlhoch

    Bill Adlhoch Stunt Coordinator

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    H/K upgraded my dvd player tot he dvd 50 model which has HDCD decoding and I have some early observations and questions.

    I have a Yamaha RX-V3000 receiver and turned all DSP effects OFF, as well as using the processor direct function

    I played a HDCD disc (the mamma mia sountrack)and 2 things stand out...when using the digital connection the sound was much LOUDER than using the analog connection ( I use monster cable interconnects for everything) and reason for this, is it a receiver thing or a dvd player thing? (any way to adjust?)

    even when trying to make each way sound the same loudness I couldnt dicern any additional clarity thru the analog outlets (HDCD 24 bit) over the digital (normal 16 bit).

    now what exactly should i be listening for, should i just discard the analog outputs completely and the HDCD circuitry of the player? or is there a subtlety that when found is something i should like

    your thoughts are very welcome and appreciated
     
  2. AaronD

    AaronD Stunt Coordinator

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    Bill,
    I've never really had HDCD gear of my own, but other than the technology and implementation the benifit might really be in the disc's themselves. If the HDCD logo is on a disc you can be reasonably sure it was well mastered, and this should make the difference between having HDCD encoding on or off smaller. Perhaps the best comparison would be to find a disc with an HDCD version and a standard version. This is flawed though, as the mastering process will just stick out more because of this. [​IMG]
    -Aaron
     
  3. Craig Robertson

    Craig Robertson Supporting Actor

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    HDCD decoding is done along with the A to D conversion, so unless your rcvr has HDCD decoding (very few do), you must use the analog connection between your player and rcvr to get HDCD. there are relatively few HDCD releases.
     
  4. Bill Adlhoch

    Bill Adlhoch Stunt Coordinator

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    craig,

    i thought i spelled it out in detail that i DO have an HDCD disc (the momma mia sound track) and that i am using the analog outs from the dvd player to let the dvd player do the decoding

    where have i confused you?
     
  5. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

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    I couldn't really hear any great benefit on my friend's HDCD system. It sounded very nice on his very nice 5-digit $ system, but then again, so did his 16-bit CDs.

    I did notice however, that for a few CDs, the volumes were not the same as the original non-HD disc.
     
  6. Craig Robertson

    Craig Robertson Supporting Actor

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  7. Bill Adlhoch

    Bill Adlhoch Stunt Coordinator

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    ok Craig, understood

    so anyone, should i be listening more critically?
     
  8. Bill Kane

    Bill Kane Screenwriter

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    well, bill, I take a pragmatic approach to my HDCD, and just listen to it with analog output.
    (pls dont snap at me if I dont respond PRECISELY to your question; I remember our spkr LARGE vs SMALL thread)[​IMG]
    I say that you'll hear what you'll hear. Since your DVDp enables HDCD, then the path is analog to AVR. Sure, you can A/B by switching over to the coax feed, thus using the DACs in the rcvr, but why, on HDCD?
    OK, my CD/HDCD player is only connected analog to my Yamaha; I dont use the digital coax output. I'm just gonna trust the CDp DACs over the Yamaha's, which probably are perfectly adequate for 16-bit other than 24-bit HDCD. That's why I got a good stand-alone CD changer.
    As I see it, the real-world difficulty is FINDING HDCD discs -- they dont make it easy with the HDCD logo relegated to TINY TYPEFACE on the rear of the case! I dont have the patience to prowl thru stacks of CDs in the racks, squinting at the cases.
    In response to my last, HTFer KeithH recommends THISonline playlist, FWIW.
     
  9. Bill Adlhoch

    Bill Adlhoch Stunt Coordinator

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    bill, thanks for the reply, your last link didnt take me anywhere for HDCD lists......

    i am just sort of wondering if i am actually wasting away the extra resolution of HDCD by using the analogue outs as opposed to the digital out of the player thats NOT hdcd encoded

    by the way, can you buy a stand alone hdcd decoder (box) that accepts a digital input, and outputs digitally tot he receiver ( or would that put me back to square 1 with a receiver thats not hdcd compatible?)
     
  10. Daryl Furkalo

    Daryl Furkalo Second Unit

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    Bill,

    If your receiver doesn't have an HDCD decoder built-in, then the only way that you will actually get HDCD decoding is from the analog outs of the CD player. I used to have a Toshiba DVD player with HDCD decoding, but I never noticed any substantial difference in the one HDCD CD that I had. I wouldn't worry about the volume level being different between the digital and analog sources, you will have to turn one up or one down to your listening level preference anyway, the dial number on the receiver means nothing to me.
     
  11. Bill Kane

    Bill Kane Screenwriter

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  12. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Bill, I absolutely agree with Aaron. I look for the HDCD logo on CDs from labels that I know are issuing HDCD discs (e.g., Warner). In my experience, the HDCD logo is usually a good sign that a disc has been well mastered. However, one does not need an HDCD-compatible player to realize good sound. A couple of years ago, I bought a Denon DCM-370 carousel changer for recording CDs to minidiscs. The '370 has an HDCD chip. At the time, I also owned a Sony CDP-CA80ES carousel changer that has no HDCD chip. I found that HDCD discs (and non-HDCD discs) sounded better on the Sony unit. Overall, I found the Sony to be the better player. I have also demoed other HDCD-compatible players, and I don't feel HDCD should be an overriding reason to buy a player. That is not to say that the H/K DVD 50 is not a worthy component. It could very well be, but not because it has an HDCD chip. Just my $0.02.
     
  13. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

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  14. Michael Lomker

    Michael Lomker Stunt Coordinator

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    I've recently listened to some "audiophile" quality CD's from Chesky. I must say that they sound much better than most of the CD's that I've ever heard before and they are only 16-bit.
    My opinion is that a poorly recorded HDCD is not going to sound better than a well recorded 16-bit CD. A higher resolution disc full of cr*p is still going to sound like cr*p. [​IMG]
     
  15. Mike-grouse

    Mike-grouse Stunt Coordinator

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    HDCD does sound better, but it is very slight.

    You just find a bit more air in the sound.

    Take HDCD with a grain of salt.

    Good recording are simply good recording while bad ones make for great coasters
     
  16. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Michael said:
     

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