Buying a player now: common dilemma?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by av_master, Sep 7, 2005.

  1. av_master

    av_master
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    Perhaps there might be many people in my situation, and in any case I'd love to hear your opinions on this:
    Just bought a new 32" LCD with HDMI and the lot (sharp GD7), now looking for a dvd player. Not prepared to spend lots since it'll be blu-ray time in just a year anyway. So after lots of forum reading (v. helpful) and looking at what's available in shops etc here's the shortlist (accurate?):

    toshiba 240E: very cheap (i), only component. Unsure about quality of the video DAC. neutral design, nothing special.

    Pioneer 575a: more expensive, but allegedly very good video DAC. Once cable added, will be as expensive as the thing below. Also nice design.

    samsung HD950: quite expensive for something that'll be obsolete in a year or so, but nice looking. Has HDMI. And cable included

    So what do you think? spend the extra to connect via HDMI, or go for one of the analogue options? Would the samsung be any good via component in case another source is used for the single hdmi socket? At the moment inclined to go for the samsung option.

    PS: Don't believe in upsampling (samsung HD950 has it, but can be switched off).

    Comments very much appreciated! Thanks a lot!
     
  2. daz1976

    daz1976
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    av_master, having had a Samsung HD850 for a week (essentialy same as 950 minus DVD-A etc but same video side) and today buying a Pioneer 575a. Ran both side by side through my Hitachi 7200 lcd (pretty revealing set), Sammy HDMI (component output no where near HDMI output in quality) and the Pioneer connected by component, I must say that the Pioneer wins hands down in every aspect. Cleaner picture, crisper, better colours, and had a wow factor that the Sammy was missing. I'm not saying the Samsung was poor but just was missing something special to bring the picture alive. Yes you are right in that the upscaling is a waste of time on the Samsung as picture became more noisy and bad colour repro, skin tones etc. I can recomend the Pioneer fully. Great picture and sound, not fussy with discs, quiet and slick in operation (the sammy fast forward is a nightmare).
    Would also consider the Toshiba 350E as a few here have them but have heard of them being picky with poor discs, but would check arounf the forum.

    Hope that helps.

    Daz
     
  3. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I would rule out the sammy
     
  4. av_master

    av_master
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    Thanks a lot for the feedback guys, much appreciated. I'd been following the discussion on upscaling etc, and the scepticism seemed pretty much justified to me, in the sense that creating information that's not on the disc, and then rescaling again in the TV seems all pretty much hit and miss (or hit, of course) to me.

    I'm quite surprised about your opinions about the samsung, in that I was reasoning "the less D/A and back A/D conversion the better", but that of course doesn't take into account that the analogue circuitry technology has had a long time to mature. So it looks like it'll be the Pioneer, then. (not in stock at richer's, you know another place?). Or perhaps the Oppo, which just got a convincing review here?
    A pity, coz I thought the samsung in black is exquisite design, unlike the atrocities samsung usually produces.

    So you reckon the tosh SD350E is a viable option which can match the pioneer on component? That'd be the best of both worlds, then. Read some not so favourable posts in particular re: build quality.
     
  5. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I always like Tosh plaers, right from the word go in DVD history. Oppo I haven't seen but 'seems' to be doing much correct. I have limited experience of the Pioneers at the moment. I bought the Panny 950, waste of money. It does look great though :) Panny 97 is great, now moved on (mistake). I suspect there are some other good ones around.
     
  6. daz1976

    daz1976
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    Don't know if you have a local Richer but got mine today from the Norwich branch and he said they had a few so might be able to do a brach transfer. Just an idea?

    Daz
     
  7. av_master

    av_master
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    Thanks for the suggestions. I see the SD350 got a good review in a magazine - well, if you take these seriously anyway. So perhaps really worth considering?
    I'll ask RS about getting new ones in.
     
  8. PJTX100

    PJTX100
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    If you can find a Pioneer 575 grab it, I can't emphasise enough how good a player this is for the money. If you had a PJ I'd recommend the Oppo, but on a 32" LCD the Pioneer will be just as good...PJ :)
     
  9. av_master

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    OK, you talked me into it. I'll get the pioneer.
    At the risk of going somewhat off-topic for this forum: is the pioneer sensitive on the choice of cable to your knowledge? Researching the issue, but it all seems a bit of a mystery to me. RS do a component cable for £50, which is just too much for my liking.
     
  10. PJTX100

    PJTX100
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    I bought a 15m component cable for below £15 and it looks great. Try one of the forum sponsors - tvcables.co.uk i think I got mine from.

    Also check out Mark Grant's prices (cables forum) if you want premium quality stuff.

    Richer are great for the kit but they try to stiff you on the cables...PJ :)
     
  11. theo cupier

    theo cupier
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    Like AV_Master, I'm treading water until Blu-ray / HD-DVD but I currently have a Toshiba SD220E which is not prog scan and does not upscale.

    I have a CRT at the moment which only accepts scart or composite but am (hopefully) soon to be getting a HD 42in plasma (PHD8 or 436XDE).

    Would it be worth upgrading my SD220E to a Pioneer 575, in terms of PQ (either on the CRT or plasma) or am I better keeping my £100 saved towards an HD DVD/Blu-ray player?
     
  12. daz1976

    daz1976
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    Hi Theo

    When Blue ray/HD DVD comes through to the uk consumer and at a reasonable price point would be a question in whether to change your player or not. I'm not sure of the prices for next year on the new stuff but will probably be out of my price range (meaning what the wife will allow me to spend!) so I'm probably looking at the year after, maybe wrong but just preparing myself. I think I know the model Tosh you have and seem to remember it getting good reviews so if you are happy with it then stick with it. On the other hand I have just got a Pio 575 and hooked up to my Hitachi 7200 (to be replaced tomorrow by a Panni 500 because of Buzzing) it is nothing short of spectacular. Have been in Av for some years and have never said wow so many times in an hour when watching some dvd's earlier. I can't give you an opinion on its scart output though as I have it connected by component. Richer will let you do a 14 day home trial anyway so if you want to dable and have a play!!!

    Cheers

    Daz
     
  13. Eivind

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    i upgraded from a 220e and the difference is clearly noticable, at least on a projector. the 575 is much sharper and with less colourbleeding than the 220e.
    is it worth it? i would say yes, definately. at least if your display can use progressive input. :smashin:

    edit: and by the way, there seems likely it is going to be an all out war between blueray and hd/dvd:

    "BERLIN (Reuters)---Chances looked slim that consumers will be spared a DVD format war, as the backers of one standard said Friday there was no common ground for a unified format and it was on track for a market launch within a year.
    "If we want a unified standard, it has to be better than the sum of the parts. We would like to find something that's better in the other standard than ours, but we haven't found it," said Frank Simonis, a spokesman for backers of the Blu-ray standard."

    so you might want to bring a cushion if you want to sit on the fence until a standard is decided upon. ;)
     
  14. wolfgang

    wolfgang
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    http://www.avrev.com/news/0905/08.dualplayer.html

    IMHO this is one war that I would not be aparticipating. I would be more then happy to sit back and let both camp fight it out, while enjoying my own DVD & CD collection. These 2 formats become so successful worldwide are purely down to the universal acceptance of a single standard. The regional differences forced on DVD luckily got by past easily and has now become more then a joke.
     
  15. PJTX100

    PJTX100
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    I've sorta resigned myself to the fact that by the time some clarity of format appears and prices stabilise it's gonna be 2007 before I take the HD plunge. Hence why I picked up an Oppo player which looks excellent via DVI.

    If you only need component however the 575 is an amazing machine.

    I won't be buying another DVD player now until HD arrives...PJ :)
     

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