Arcam DiVA dvd, Brief first impression

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Gordon @ Convergent AV, Oct 12, 2000.

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  1. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Just a quick post to say we got our first Arcam DiVA dvd players today. We'
    just plugged one in to a system comprising Denon AVC1DSE and Snell
    E5/C5/SR5/PS10 speakers.

    I compared it to the £1000 Denon DVD-Audio player. Both were feeding the AMP
    through their digital co-ax outputs so the dacs in each DVD player weren't
    being used for audio. With the two discs we used, Notting Hill (aint no
    sunshine) and Big Lebowski (Jesus) the Arcam sounded very obviously better.
    Music was much more natural and the clarity of speech was better on the Big
    Lebowski.

    I was also surprised how much better the picture seemed to look at the
    beginning of The Big Lebowski scene on the Arcam. The detail on the hand dryer
    in the bowling alley was much better and we were only running the composite
    output!

    I'm off to feed the s-vid out to our Runco projector now and compare its video
    output to our current reference, the Denon 5000. We'll do a comparison of the
    component video outputs as soon as we've got our Focus Enhancements Quadscan
    scaler back from customer loan.

    Incidentally, the Arcam can output RGB from the Component sockets or from
    Scart. If using the component sockets you must also use the composite socket
    for the "sync" signal. I'm going to try feeding my own NEC data projector at
    home this way at the weekend.

    More as it happens,

    Gordon


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  2. ReTrO

    ReTrO
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    The DiVA range seems to be quite good. I will be able to take a peek at the DVD on Saturday. The build quality seems to be a bit dodgy though, which is a shame. Your opinion on this Gordon?

    Rick

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  3. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Rick,

    Actually I don't think the build quality is poor. It's rather good. We stuck the DVD besdie our FMJ cinema stuff to see how it matched, cosmetically and physically. No problems. Much much better than the alpha stuff.

    The home cinema amp we have seems good too, even although it's not made in Cambridge. I've got to say though that the thing I really want to hear is there top DiVA hi-fi amp. We don't really sell that much two channel hi-fi anymore but when I saw it and saw the specs at the launch I actaully got quite excited...... Sad I know but I love music too.

    Gordon

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  4. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    PeteM: Interesting post. Of course it is only valid if the S-Video output of the Arcam is worse than the RGB output of its competitors. I am of course just playing devils advocate here as I haven't compared it in such a way yet.

    Perhaps you shouldn't put a line through it just yet....

    Gordon

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  5. PeteM

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    I saw this player at Live 2000 (one of the reasons I went there). My first impressions were yes, finally a quality DVD player, possibly worthy of partnering with my Alpha 10 / Dave setup.

    However then I looked round the back and saw horror of horrors something that was unforgivable on a high end product such as this - a single scart socket :-(

    Obviously if you have a DVD player and a Sky Digibox or On Digital decoder, then to maximise picture quality you'd want to connect both via an RGB feed to your TV.

    However as most TVs only allow an RGB feed by one of their scarts (such as my Sony WEGA) you need to daisy chain and personally I'd want the DVD player closest to the TV, being the premium video source, hence 2 scarts for passthru is a necesity, not a luxury item.

    Its such a shame, Arcam have rulled themselves out of consideration as a replacement for my Sony 715, I guess its a case of better luck next time!
     
  6. PeteM

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    Actually I'm partly playing Devil's advocate myself!

    My prefered connection mechanism for a Digibox would be via an RGB to S-Video converter fed into the Dave module, basically so I could record onto my SVHS deck and hence I would never in practice daisy chain it via my DVD player. The Dave module effectively then acts as an S-Video switch box for the video, Digibox (and for recording purposes DVD).

    So the lack of a second scart doesn't rule anything out, it simply reduces flexibility.
     
  7. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Well Pete, great minds think alike and fools seldom differ! My preferred conection is by rgb-svid box or composite to svideo adaptor then everything through the amp on svideo. You do get some picture degradation but it does make everything much easier to use!

    All the best,

    Gordon
    (Looking forward ot his trip to Bradford tomorrow for the Seleco Launch)

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  8. Richard46

    Richard46
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    Gordon Thanks for your information re the Arcam.
    I have been putting off buying a DVD until one come along that combined being a great DVD and CD player with DVD Audio capacity (or in this case potential; I believe a DVD Audio board will be available next year.) I am more restricted by space than cash so have to keep the box count down!
    Looks like this could be it at last.
     
  9. Tracey

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    Gordon, (or anyone else that knows).I have an Arcam Alpha 9 amp and I love the sound of it BUT I think it looks a bit ugly, the thing that I hate the most about it, is that it's not actually black, in the light it's a bland greyish colour. So, my question is, what colour is the Diva range, I know it's available in silver but is the black version a proper black, or an off black greyish colour like the Alpha range? I'm dying to know becuase I need a new CD player and I'd like it to match my amp, so the Diva range could be for me.

    Thanks,
    Tracey
     
  10. ReTrO

    ReTrO
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    Yes the DiVA range is available in a 'proper' colour. The black model is similar in style to the Tag range of stereo amps.

    Rick

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  11. Tracey

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    Thanks for the info Rick, I think I'll definitely be auditioning one then.

    Tracey
     
  12. Richard46

    Richard46
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  13. ReTrO

    ReTrO
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    I noticed banding of blue, green, yellow and red streaks on our DV88, with RGB connection on an Aconda. Don't know why.

    Will try to find out.

    Rick

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  14. Tracey

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    Richard, thanks for the info on the CD player, sounds like it's worth an audition, I want to listen to the top of the range diva amp A85 and the CD player that you've got, my nearest dealer is Rayleigh Hi-fi, so I may have to give them a ring and see if they've got any in yet.

    Tracey
     
  15. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Tracey,

    Arcam are making silver products first. I've yet to see a black unit beside the alpha products so can't comment on similarity of finish.

    The hi-fi amps are being made this week I believe so you might find an A85 around next weekend. From what I saw of it I suspect it'll be great!

    Gordon

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  16. Richard46

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  17. asimm

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    I got the 7se and the sony strdb940 on Saturday, together they sound really good. I did have a few qualms about putting the 7se through an a/v amp however after hearing it and having also listened to it through a Denon stereo only amp I opted for the Sony.
     
  18. Tracey

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    Gordon, please let me know as soon as you get any of the integrated amps in, I basically just want one that's as good as or better than the Alpha 9 and I'll be happy.

    Richard, sorry I realised after I posted my message that you meant you had the DVD player, it must sound good if they say it's better than the Alpah 8SE, becuase a friend of mine has got one and it's excellent.

    Tracey
     
  19. ReTrO

    ReTrO
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    We have black Arcam DiVA gear in our shop, which looks a bit cheap compared to the FMJ stuff, better than the Alpha stuff, but I still don't really like its' build that much. As I said before, its' asthetics are almost identical to that of the Tag gear, same designer apparently.

    Rick

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  20. Tracey

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    thanks Rick, as long as it looks better than the Alpha stuff I'll be happy, I have seen the brochures and I like the look of the black models, I've got an Alpha 9 at the moment but friend of mine wants to buy this off me for exactly what I paid for it so I won't be losing any money and I'm sure it will sound better than the Alpha 9.

    Tracey
     

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