Decoding DD/DTS - Amp or DVD player


Active Member
Didn't know where to put this thread so here's a copy of the one in the DVD player section:

Here's a question about the relative merits of decoding of DD and DTS soundtracks.
I've just got a Pioneer 575 which has a digital sound output and 6 analogue outputs plus on-board decoding for DD and DTS.
So the question is, which is the best route - digital output to amp (mine is an Onkyo TXDS 696 - cost about £850 4 years ago) and let the amp do the decoding or let the DVD player decode and output via 6 analogue outputs to the 6 analogue inputs on the amp (as I would to play SACDs)?

Any thoughts? Anyone tried and compared?


Matt Horne

Well-known Member
Amp.. I doubt the ones in the player would be any sort of match for those in the Onkyo.


As Matt said, the decoders in the amp are likely to be better than those in a DVD player. But if you have the analogue connections for SACD etc anyway then try both to see which sounds best to you. If not then don't worry, it's almost certainly not worth buying leads just to check it out.


Eddy Boy

Active Member
Usually the DVD player offers a more dynamic D/A whereas going digital to the amp gives a cleaner sound. Which sound you prefer is up to you though.


Active Member
Tried it out last weekend and the amp was much better.
Surround effects felt much more natural and "real". For example, in House of Flying Daggers, near the end in the bamboo forest it felt like you were actually in the middle of the forest using the amp. With the DVD player, although the effects were similar (i.e. sounds coming from the same places) it just didn't put you in the middle of the forest and so you didn't get sucked into the atmosphere of it.

Hope this helps anyone else that was wondering.

PS Doesn't bode too well for the SACD/DVD-Audio capabilities of the DVD player. In fact, I have a couple of SACDs and was very underwhelmed by them. Guess that's what you get with a cheap player. Maybe there's some settings I need to play with.


Distinguished Member
Could this spell an upgrade to a dvd player and amp with hd digital audio processing :p (i.e. high end denon or pioneer) .

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