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DVD Player advice

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Chippy99, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. Chippy99

    Chippy99
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    I wonder if some of you helpful chaps could offer me some advice.

    Back in 2000 I came into a bit of cash and was fortunate enough to be able to splash out on some new (and expensive!) AV gear. So I treated myself to a Panasonic TH-42PW3 plasma and some Tag McLaren stuff (AV32R, DVD32R and 100x5R).

    The picture quality at the time was simply outstanding and easily the best I had ever seen. And as an added benefit, the CD replay quality of the DVD32R is utterly fabulous, and I do listen to a lot of music too.

    Unfortunately a while back, I tried my PC hooked up to the plasma and tested out a few DVD's played via my videocard (then a Radeon 9700 Pro). To my amazement, the picture quality was even better. Not a little concerning, since the DVD player cost me £4000! The PC was clearly doing a better job at scaliing than the Panasonics own internal electronics and there was less "flicker" and line-twitching (or whatever its called).

    The basic picture quality from the Tag is still excellent in terms of detail, black levels, colour reproduction, noise etc. Stunning. But overall, the PC was better.

    Now, I would like to find a way to reproduce that PC-quality, but I do not want an HTPC. I just want something I can switch on and watch.

    Is there any DVD player out there that can give me what I want? My plasma doesn't have any digital inputs. I connected my PC via the VGA port - I don't know if this is important? Or would I get the same quality if I fed a good upscaled (720p?) signal via component?

    Or do I want a standalone scaler? Is that what I need? One of the downsides of the Tag DVD player is that it will not play *any* DVD-R's or DVD+R's at all. Only DVD's. So a new DVD player would be my preference over a scaler, but only if it gives my the best possible picture quality. If not, then it will have to be a scaler.

    I guess if I bought a new DVD, I could keep the TAG for CD playing only. Or if the new DVD player was sufficiently good, I could sell the Tag and use the new one exclusively.

    Budget isn't really too much of an issue. If I had to spend perhaps £2k then I would, but obviously £1k would be better (and £100 would be better still!).

    What advice can you guys offer me?

    Thanks

    Chip

    EDIT: I should add, I bought a cheapie Chinese play-anything DVD player with VGA output and progressive scan etc. some months back. Its utter crap. Yes, it outputs prog scan via VGA, but the basic picture quality is rubbish. And the de-interlacing is pretty poor too, with visible artefacts that I don't even get with the Panasonic's own scaling. And ergonomically the Chinese thing is rubbish as well. Altogether a complete waste of time. I don't want a repeat performance of this. I don't know whether the "Yamakawa's" of this world suffer from similiar problem? They seem *incredibly* cheap for what they offer and I wonder if they are trying to do too much for too little money and the quality might be poor? Dunno.
     

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