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Denon DVD-3800 vs Arcam DV88+

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by graham.myers, Oct 15, 2002.

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  1. graham.myers

    graham.myers
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    This is a technical question on video/audio not a subjective personal question.

    So if we ignore the chroma bug/firmware issues that either machine may or may not have I'd like to understand the merrits of the hardware actually employed.

    Arcam's fact sheet states that it uses 6x10bit 54Mhz DACs (12-bit internal) for Video, whilst the denon states it uses 2x12bit 108Mhz

    what are the pros/cons of these two.

    JD from arcam says that there is very little between the Zoran chip set and the SiL chipset - would we notice if there was?

    The audio side of things, the DV88+ uses twin 24bit 192Mhz Wolfson audio DACs, the Denon statws a 24bit/192Mhz DAC.

    comments on any of the above?
     
  2. gringottsdirect

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    Disregarding subjective opinions, the SI 504 is used by Denon for the £2500 DVD-A1, by Tag McLaren and other upscale makers.
    The previous SI 503 is used by Arcam in their £1600 range topper.
    The Zoran is to be found in players costing less than jake.
    Two points spring to mind,
    1. How much does an SI chipset cost in comparison with most others ?
    2. The easiest test is to try them back to back oneself.


    With regard to audio DACs, Arcam are widely held as the best sounding DVD players, but a co-axial link straight into an amplifier makes them redundant until DVD-Audio ( for most ? ).
     
  3. John Dawson

    John Dawson
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    To put the record straight, it is erroneous to assume that having DACs in a receiver or processor negates the DACs in the player.

    The DACs in the player can benefit from having an audio master clock next to them with extremely low levels of jitter. All other things being equal this benefits audio quality. Of course you need a player that can do this - that will be the Arcams and er.... not much else.

    The SPDIF digital interface is notorious for compromising jitter or, more to the point, it is not easy to build a receiver that can reconstruct a low jitter master clock from the datastream. The IC SPDIF receivers are frankly not very good here and are employed "as is" in just about all commercial AV amps/receivers. A really good crystal controlled phase locked loop (PLL) circuit can fix this (TAG, Arcam and a few expensive others); otherwise for stereo reproduction I suggest you will be better off using the DACs in a decent player, good interconnects and the analogue inputs of the AV amp/receiver. Of course the latter unit needs a decent analogue path and it is usually unhelpful if it reconverts the precious analogue signal back to digital again :-(

    HTH clear things up a bit.

    John Dawson (Arcam)
     
  4. graham.myers

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    John in another thread says there is little difference in performance between the 503 and 504. The 503 is built on .35 micron silicon rather than the lower power .18 micron the 504 is built on. I'm sure theres more but probably not too siginicicant.

    thanks for the clarification on the audio side John.

    So does the SiL vs Zoran argument turn into a Pentium vs Athlon argument? ie a 1ghz Athlon outperforms a 1.4ghz pentium in some tests but not in others.

    If its swings and roundabouts then I cant use the actual hardware as a reason for buying one or the other - its back to a subjective choice and support from the manufacturers.

    Also if the Sil chipset is better will I get the benefit plugging it into a Sony VW10HT. As the machines are approx. the same price going for better may help in the long run if i replace the 10TH (with 2xbarcos I wish!)


    descisions, descisions
     
  5. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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    Having listened to an Arcam DV27 playing CDs (through an Arcam AV8/P7 combination) I can say that it definitely sounds better if you use the DACs in the player and shut down all the digital circuitry in the processor. It's not a huge difference, but it's quite perceptible.

    Most reviews that I've read seem to think that the DV27 is actually rather a remarkable CD player, possibly the best CD player that Arcam makes, which is quite an achievement. I haven't heard enough £1000+ CD players to offer an informed comparison, but the DV27 certainly sounds pretty good.
     
  6. Plump

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    I used to have FMJDV27 and compared it to FMJCD23 twice.
    It is not better, definitely not!
    It is somehow different , but I can not explain it in words and some might even like it more than CD23 but for me CD23 wins.
    (Same like TAG AV32R + DVD32R win now for me, but for much much more money)
    Cheers
     
  7. John Dawson

    John Dawson
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    I have to agree with Plump here - the CD23 is still the best CD player we make, though the 27 runs it fairly close.

    However we will continue to develop both pure CD and DVD technologies and it is not inconceivable that one day one of our DVD players will exceed the audio performance of our best CD players (though for more money, I hope!).

    John Dawson (Arcam)
     
  8. DJBlade

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    Mr Dawson, i own a diva cd92, i've also just bought a plasma display, and am thinking about the dv27, does it play cd's as good as the 92, because i'd have to sell this to raise funds, thanks
     
  9. John Dawson

    John Dawson
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    I personally have not done that comparison for a very long time - but from memory I would say they are comparable overall but not identical. I think it unlikely that you would see it as a step backwards if you changed your CD 92 for a DV27 in terms of CD replay, and there is the little matter of playing all those DVDs in PS!

    HTH.

    John Dawson (Arcam)
     

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