Wow, what a difference between my Denon 2900 and my Panny DVD Recorder!

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by John Pine, Jun 22, 2005.

  1. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Recently I sent my Denon 2900 in for repairs for not being able to play CD-R’s. So, I moved my Panasonic DMR-E95H DVD Recorder from the bedroom for temporary HT duty. I plugged it in using the same TosLink connection. This is the first time it’s been connected to my HT. I was very surprised how different my system sounded on concert DVD’s. The Panny had a compressed or thinner sound compared to my 2900. I played concert DVD’s in DD and DTS with the same result. Also, the wonderful “3D imaging” effect of my 2900 on the front sound stage was gone. I do have the outputs set to bitstream. Both players are using the same optic out connection, so you wouldn't think there would be a “Night & Day” difference, but there was. If I’m not using the players’ DAC’s, why is there such a dramatic difference?


    My 5.1 setup:

    Toshiba 35"
    harman/kardon AVR 525 (preamp)
    Parasound HCA-2003 (mains & center)
    harman/kardon PA 2000 (rears)
    Denon DVD-2900
    Paradigm Reference Studio 60 v.2
    Paradigm Reference Studio CC v.2
    JBL S36-II's
    SVS PC-Ultra
    All Better Cable interconnects,
    Panamax MAX 4300
    18'x 23'x12' vaulted ceiling (LxWxH)
     
  2. John S

    John S Producer

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    All I can say, is there has to be a reason the Denon is so highly rated on sound quality.....
     
  3. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    The difference between my 2900 and my Panny RP91 playing DVD-A is like night and day, in favour of the 2900. I'm not suprised....
     
  4. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, but if it's the same optic out connection, why is there such a difference?
     
  5. Marc LaPalme

    Marc LaPalme Agent

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    my guess would be just overall better component specs, tolerances, and higher quality manufacturing.

    maybe something to do with digital processing also. with computers these days, the chips used make a big difference in the end sound.
     
  6. chuckg

    chuckg Supporting Actor

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    Oh, my brain hurts.


    If the player is just sending out a bunch of bits, then how could there possibly be any difference in the sound quality? The receiver or pre/pro is doing the conversion to analog, right?
     
  7. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Marc: That may be the only explaination.

    chuckg: Exactly! There shouldn't be a huge difference because the same pre-amp is decoding the signal. Right?
     
  8. John S

    John S Producer

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    This is an interesting quandry... Stuff like this sort of makes VooDoo audio stuff at least slightly possible.

    I'd bank if you took test measurements, you wouldn't notice much if any differences in the measurements. But really sometimes you have to believe your ears.....

    I'd think somebody really up on high end CD gear could offer some insight into why transports can make such a difference.
     
  9. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    John S: "I'd bank if you took test measurements, you wouldn't notice much if any differences in the measurements. But really sometimes you have to believe your ears....."

    Agreed.

    "I'd think somebody really up on high end CD gear could offer some insight into why transports can make such a difference."

    Could the transport and input/output sections of a player make that much of a difference? I'd love to hear some details on how.
     
  10. John S

    John S Producer

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    High end CD gear people. Will pay a lot of money for those better transports. But, I'm not one of them. I use a basic Sony 400 disk CD Juke myself. Would be considered lower end mid-fi at best. I think it sounds good enough, I'm using my Denon 4802 DACs. I do seem to notice differences CD's playing from my LD Player, my DVD player, and my CD player though, all of course using the same Denon 4802 DACs. I really have no explanation of it, except referring back to the guys that go for these ultra high CD transports.

    People honestly report differences going from Optical to COAX and visa-versa for their digital connection as well by the way. So more to it than meets the eye or ear if you will, that's for sure.
     
  11. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    So John, I'm curious, which one sounds better for Redbook music playback. Your LD, your jukebox or your CD player?
     
  12. Kwang Suh

    Kwang Suh Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, it's odd. I've had the exact same thing happen to me as well.
     
  13. John S

    John S Producer

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    Not so cut and dry.. While I could tell differences, all I did was make sure that my DVD player and LD Player didn't blwo away my CD player which is used for convienience more than anything. I wouldn't say any of them were really better than the other, just sounded a tad different to me, very very subtle. The LD player was notice-ably louder. The DVD player may have felt a tad compressed for lack of a better term. The Cd player just seemed most normal I suppose.
     
  14. amatala

    amatala Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello,

    I am no 'high end CD gear' person, but I can throw in my 2 euro cents:
    I have recently replaced my Marantz CD5400 OSE CD player (priced at around 300 euro in Europe) by a Marantz SA8400 player (which is around 1000 euro) and I can confirm that the SA8400 sounds way better than the CD5400 OSE when connected on optical to my H/K AVR430 receiver (of course the best results are obtained by connecting the SA8400 on analogue to the receiver, but this is only natural ...).
    So I cannot tell why does this happen but higher end players do indeed sound better even on a digital connection than lower end models...
     

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