• New Patreon Tier and Early Access Content available. If you would like to support AVForums, we now have a new Patreon Tier which gives you access to selected news, reviews and articles before they are available to the public. Read more.

Cambridge Audio DVD79

sceptic

Active Member
Anyone know anything about?
I'm interested in getting one for the DVI output it has to use with my plasma.
(£200 at Richer Sounds)
 
A

alpappy

Guest
HI I am also interested Cannot find out if it upscales or not Heard there are problems with lip sync as well
alan
 

MickyGee

Active Member
Anyone know whos scaling chipset this uses ? Does it suffer with macroblocking ?

Any reviews on this one ?
 

MickyGee

Active Member
Found off a US website that it has a Faroudja Genesis FL-2310 Scaler (720p & 1080i). So I guess its similar to the Pana S97 and Denon 1910 with associated macroblocking.

Also means no component upscaling I guess.

Apparently has pretty good CD audio though.
 

johnsagem

Standard Member
sceptic said:
Anyone know anything about?
I'm interested in getting one for the DVI output it has to use with my plasma.
(£200 at Richer Sounds)

I bought one yesterday, and initial impressions are good running on my Sagem Axium 50" using the DVI port.

Firstly, there are a couple of quirks, the default dvi resolution isn't supported by my screen. Not a biggie, it just means after switching on I need to press the DVI button on the remote to cycle through resolutions until it gets to a supported one. It would be nice if when you switched it off it retained the last selection though :-/

Additionally, you can't change the resolution once a disk is playing (this may be the case on other players too).

Also, when going through my "problem" disks it had a tendancy to skip back chapters, though to be fair, one of these disks wouldn't play at all in 2 of my previous players.

However I've got a High Definition JVC D-VHS machine I bought from the US on Ebay, and comparing T2 at 720p between D-VHS and DVD on the Cambridge, although the D-VHS is better as you would expect, the difference is surprisingly small. :clap:

If your DVI port doesn't support HDCP (like the Sagem) apparently the likes of the Denons won't work, but the Cambridge one does, the main reason I bought it.

I was a bit worried because Cambridge Audio seem to have a reputation for poor build quality, but since Richer Sounds do a 3 year warranty for £19.95, it's not too big a worry. Also, they said they would take it back if I'm not happy with it within the next fortnight.

I'll post back if I find any major problems.
 

PJTX100

Distinguished Member
I purchased this player a few months ago (I think only a day or two after it was released). Went into Richer for the Pio 575 and walked out with this 'cause the guy said DVI would give me far better resolution(?). Anyway, not having the DVI cable at the time I tried it with S-video and Component to my PJ. I was disappointed. The pic was less detailed / noisier than my existing (aging) Pio 525. Add to that it only outputs progressive to the DVI, not component. In its favour build quality seemed good, but the on-screen menu's seemed old fashioned.
In the end I took it back and went for the 575 I originally wanted, and its the best 100 quid I've spent - superb pics. Must stress I didn't get to the stage of trying out the DVI on the DVD79, and I didn't put it through its audio paces, hence it may be an OK machine.

As an aside, I've asked on another thread which DVI machines I should be looking at - no-one seems to have any suggestions though...PJ
 

johnsagem

Standard Member
PJTX100 said:
I purchased this player a few months ago (I think only a day or two after it was released). Went into Richer for the Pio 575 and walked out with this 'cause the guy said DVI would give me far better resolution(?). Anyway, not having the DVI cable at the time I tried it with S-video and Component to my PJ. I was disappointed. The pic was less detailed / noisier than my existing (aging) Pio 525. Add to that it only outputs progressive to the DVI, not component. In its favour build quality seemed good, but the on-screen menu's seemed old fashioned.
In the end I took it back and went for the 575 I originally wanted, and its the best 100 quid I've spent - superb pics. Must stress I didn't get to the stage of trying out the DVI on the DVD79, and I didn't put it through its audio paces, hence it may be an OK machine.

Pretty much the same story. I wanted a Denon but the DVI socket won't work with the Sagem as they haven't implemented HDCP so I went in for a 575 and spotted the DV79. Initially the DVI didn't work (as I didn't know I had to select a different resolution) and I hooked it up with the Component inputs which looked absolutely dreadful, much poorer than my old Pioneer 525.

However, with the DVI connected, set to 720p and changing PAL/NTSC to Auto rather than PAL, it looks pretty stunning.

That said, at half the price, the Pioneer has had some pretty excellent reviews, and does SACD as well as DVD-Audio if that's any interest to you.
 

PJTX100

Distinguished Member
johnsagem said:
However, with the DVI connected, set to 720p and changing PAL/NTSC to Auto rather than PAL, it looks pretty stunning.

Very interesting, I may revisit this machine if nothing better comes along in the near future...PJ
 

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
alpappy said:
HI I am also interested Cannot find out if it upscales or not Heard there are problems with lip sync as well
alan

Thus far this seems limited to Hitachi panels.
 

MickyGee

Active Member
Bought one today from RS. PQ on DVI is absolutely awesome better than the Denon 1910 I previewed, with no evidence of macroblocking. Build quality and CD audio very good. Seems to play most DVD R and CD R with no probs - unlike my Tosh !

RGB performance is similar to my old Tosh.

No prog scan on component though. Will feed back more once set up properly.

Well pleased !
 

sceptic

Active Member
MickyGee said:
Bought one today from RS. PQ on DVI is absolutely awesome better than the Denon 1910 I previewed, with no evidence of macroblocking. Build quality and CD audio very good. Seems to play most DVD R and CD R with no probs - unlike my Tosh !

RGB performance is similar to my old Tosh.

No prog scan on component though. Will feed back more once set up properly.

Well pleased !
Sounds good. I think I'll give it a go. RS have reserved one and I'll pick it up on Thursday when the DVI leads come in.
Incidentally I'm having a lipsynch problem with my new Hitachi. Is thare anything I can do about it?
 

MickyGee

Active Member
Sorry no experience on your Hitachi. Can confirm no lip synch issues on my sharp with the DVD79.(yet !)
 

johnsagem

Standard Member
MickyGee said:
Bought one today from RS. PQ on DVI is absolutely awesome better than the Denon 1910 I previewed

That's good to hear. I wanted to go for a 1910, but it implements HDCP on the DVI port, which my Sagem Axium can't handle.

Having played around with it over the weekend here is what I've found:

Good points:

Excellent Picture via DVI

Excellent Sound (not quite as good as my old Arcam but not surprising considering the price difference).

Handles problems disks relatively well.

As well as Zoom in, it has a Zoom out facility. I have some DVDs of old TV programs originally recorded from the TV in the 70s on to VHS. Needless to say picture quality isn't great, but when Zoomed in to a 25% window in the middle of the screen, becomes quite watchable.

Bad Points:

Lip sync problem on some disks. Although it has an option to change the delay, it only occurs on bits of disks. For example, on my R1 Shrek 2 DVD, on the Madagascar trailer the lip sync is well out, but on the film itself is fine.

When watching Martha meet Frank Daniel an Lawrence, the lip sync was noticably out for about an hour or so. Then I paused it to make a cup of tea, and it was fine for the rest of the film.

I didn't have problems with either of these films on my Arcam.

I tried quite a lot of disks over the course of the weekend on the Cambridge, and all the others were fine.

It does not remember the last resolution selected. Default mode cannot be displayed on my TV, and cannot be changed while a disk is playing. Likewise, I set "Auto" for Pal/NTSC but it has a tendancy to revert back to PAL unless I explicitly set it. When playing an NTSC disk in PAL mode the quality is very bad.

If you forget to change the resolution / tv system mode, eject the disk, change it and reload the disk, it has a tendency to lock up - only way around it is to turn it off/on.

Overall, the resolution/tv system changing is just a minor annoyance, but the lip sync issue is more worrying. If it wasn't for the fact that I particularly wanted a DVI connection, or if my TV supported HDCP correctly, then I'd probably be looking at another player.

I'm hoping there will be a firmware upgrade at some point - but looking at their website, all that is under the support section is PDFs of the use(less)r manuals. Anyone know if their machines can be firmware updated?
 

sceptic

Active Member
johnsagem said:
Lip sync problem on some disks. Although it has an option to change the delay, it only occurs on bits of disks.
Have I understood you correctly? Does the Cambridge DVD79 has an option to change the time delay? If so, that's excellent news.
 

johnsagem

Standard Member
sceptic said:
Have I understood you correctly? Does the Cambridge DVD79 has an option to change the time delay? If so, that's excellent news.

There is an option labelled delay under the audio options, but rather than allow you to select delay in milliseconds as I was expecting, it asks you to select the distance in cm for each speaker. After pausing the disk and continuing the lip sync seemed to fix itself, so I didn't play around with that setting yet.

When you change from Raw to PCM the delay option dissapears.

I'll give it some more testing over the week and post back.
 

MickyGee

Active Member
I have watched four movies to date, Both Kill Bill's and , Shrek2, King Arthur.

Had lip sync issues with King Arthur R2 and Shrek 2 R1 both reset by stopping and restarting. The problem was most severe on the trailers rather than the movies themselves. No probs with Kill Bills and the other clips of DVD's I have tested. Spoke to RS help desk and they said return it as it isn't a known issue ! There is no firmware update planned for the DVD79 either.

Will try some more movies tonights but if this a regular problem, I will have go for a refund and get a Denon 1910.

Alsos 1080i doesn't appear to work, can get nothing but a blank screen on my Sharp. 720p is fine.

Pity as I was very happy with PQ.
 

sceptic

Active Member
johnsagem said:
There is an option labelled delay under the audio options, but rather than allow you to select delay in milliseconds as I was expecting, it asks you to select the distance in cm for each speaker. After pausing the disk and continuing the lip sync seemed to fix itself, so I didn't play around with that setting yet.

When you change from Raw to PCM the delay option dissapears.

I'll give it some more testing over the week and post back.
That's good news. The option for speaker distances is avilable on my amp as well but haven't tried playing with it. Hopefully I'll sort the problem.
 

MickyGee

Active Member
Got refund from Richers sounds on DVD79 after informing their technical help desk of the lip synch issues (they didn't seem concerned). They advised that there is no firmware update available to address this problem at the moment.

So in the interim steer clear.
 

johnsagem

Standard Member
I'm still waiting on them getting back to me, but looks like I'll be returning mine too. Shame, because it looked promising at first.
 
L

Loewe

Guest
The delay-option on DVD79 is for DVD-audio I guess, not for movies. Buy a Yamaha-receiver, all have delay for lip-sync, a must for LCDs and plasmas!
 
A

ajc347

Guest
I purchased a DVD79 a couple of days ago and have, as yet, found no evidence of either lip sync or macroblocking problems from R2 dvd's. Its connected to a hitachi plasma (32pd5200 via DVI and set to 1080i).

The picture is superb (although the best I can compare it against is a pioneer 575 running on a component progressive signal so I would expect some improvement). :)

I wonder if only certain Hitachi screens are affected?
 

jon_mendel

Active Member
If you're happy to buy secondhand, it's worth looking on ebay, or RS trade counter - you often get older models of Cambridge Audio DVD players for a lot less than their original selling price... An added bonus is that, if you're buying an old model, they're likely to have sorted out a firmware update for any known issues by now ;) (they did have some maddening firmware problems, too - until the firmware was updated, my DVD300 used to pause between every track on a CD and most on a DVD...not good when your playing a mix CD :mad: )

Jon
 

MickyGee

Active Member
ajc347 said:
I purchased a DVD79 a couple of days ago and have, as yet, found no evidence of either lip sync or macroblocking problems from R2 dvd's. I wonder if only certain Hitachi screens are affected?

Unfortunately it afflicted my Sharp 32GA4 LCD. Not all movies had the lip synch problem, but enough for me to get a refund.

Try King Arthur R2, lots of repeatable lip synch issues through the movie.

Also my Sharp wouldn't display at 1080i with the DVD79. No such problems with HD745.

PQ was very good though on the DVD79, marginally better than the Samsung.
 

barongreenback

Active Member
I have just returned this model to RS today. The lip synch issue was so bad that when I did the THX optimiser test it looked as if the sound was coming from the wrong speaker. Not particularly impressed at RS's attempts to make me exchange rather than get a refund considering it was the only DVI/HDMI enabled machine they stock.
 

sceptic

Active Member
barongreenback said:
I have just returned this model to RS today. The lip synch issue was so bad that when I did the THX optimiser test it looked as if the sound was coming from the wrong speaker. Not particularly impressed at RS's attempts to make me exchange rather than get a refund considering it was the only DVI/HDMI enabled machine they stock.
I also returned this model to RS. It seems that it had the same problem with the THX optimiser as yours. The sound was coming out of a different speaker to that on the graphic.
I exchanged it for a Cambridge Audio 540 which I'm pleased with.
 

The latest video from AVForums

Fidelity in Motion's David Mackenzie talks about his work on disc encoding & the future of Blu-ray
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom