Listning to cd's on dvd player..digital or analogue ?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by jonnyv, Apr 17, 2002.

  1. jonnyv

    jonnyv
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    I listen to cd's on my sony dvd-s725d DVD player and would like to know , Is it best to use the digital coax cable or analogue phonos to my pioneer VSX 859 RDS amp ?

    I know its either a choice of dvd player decoding the digital signal to analogue or the amp decoding the digital signal ?


    Which gives 'best' quality ?


    thanks
     
  2. Electric Mayhem

    Electric Mayhem
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    jonnyv

    It depends on the quality of the DAC´s in each of the units. The Sony is a pretty good cd spinner so you may find its better using the analog connection rather than the digital.

    Its worth connecting both and then just switching between the two. Have the analog outs of the dvd player connected to the cd input (analog) on the amp, then you can switch more easily and dont have to faff about with changing from digital to analog etc.
     
  3. jonnyv

    jonnyv
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    Thanks for the reply jase, I have done just that...

    cheers
     
  4. andyk

    andyk
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    and what did you find?
     
  5. jonnyv

    jonnyv
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    I meant i have both digital and analogue wired up....

    I have compared the analogue with the digital briefly ..and the analogue sounds best with my amp...
     
  6. wiz

    wiz
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    Thats what I found!
     
  7. paiger

    paiger
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    Yep, I have a 735 and have QED phonos to the CD channel for music and a coax digital for movies. Analogue is miles ahead for music in my book with these players.

    S
     
  8. Reiner

    Reiner
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    I prefer the "digital" sound of my system, DVD and amp are linked via optical (no coax available). Tried the analog connection but it sounds "hazy", the digital is clearer and more detailed.
    Have used the analog with the one and only 24/96 DVD and it sounds much better than CD, but teh music doesn't really suit my taste and other titles are rare.

    So you see it may depend on make and/or model or personal preference, no general rule here.
     
  9. lynx

    lynx
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    I have found the digital coax to give a bright, aggresive sound whereas the analogue interconect was more laid back and smoother.This is Tosh player to Sony rec.
     
  10. Reiner

    Reiner
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    I used coax (75Ohm) before with my old DVD player but again I would describe it as "detailed and clearer", not bright. Compared to analog or a normal interconnect (50 Ohm) it sounded much better to me. May depend on amp (DAC) and speakers though, too. And everyones taste, so I am not saying this must apply to everyone. :)

    Maybe next time I try my old player with coax vs optical, haven't done that yet. Would be interesting to see if there is any difference - or rather if I can hear any ...
     
  11. Stuart M. Robinson

    Stuart M. Robinson
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    Guys,

    Unless your amp or receiver has a true analogue bypass or you use the front channels of the 5.1 external input, all analogue sources undergo A/D conversion for processing then pass through the unit’s D/A converters. That means if you use the analogue outputs of a CD or DVD player, the signal passes through D/A (in the player), A/D and then another D/A step in the receiver.

    These days most receivers use 96/24 A/D, but even so all the additional conversions are to be avoided.


    Stuart M. Robinson
    SMR Group – http://www.smr-group.co.uk/
     
  12. Raveun2

    Raveun2
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    With my amp I can't record a cd if I go the digital route but phono route I can ofcourse so if you go digital route and record from a cd you'd better check that it does record.

    Good interconnects make a difference too.
     
  13. coulcher

    coulcher
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    I know this isn't what you were asking but DVD players play CDs as emulators rather than being DVD players with a CD player inside. As a result their sound for CDs is fairly poor.

    I was auditioning a Denon AV3802 amp today for movies and music. I asked the guy to fix up a CD player for the music after putting a CD through the DVD player as it isn't fair to judge an AV amp on music with a DVD player. The difference was huge. If you can, borrow a CD player to hear the difference yourself. The DVD player being used was no budget one either - the Denon DVD2800.

    You don't have to spend very much on a CD player to get a much better unit for CDs than a DVD player.
     
  14. Raveun2

    Raveun2
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    Agree with that.
     
  15. Stuart M. Robinson

    Stuart M. Robinson
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    Guys,

    DVD players used as transports can be just as good as any CD player. There is absolutely no difference between reading CD data in a DVD drive and reading it in a CD drive, especially if the DVD player is a dual-laser model. In fact, the DVD player may have a more precise transport given the smaller tolerances required for accurate DVD playback. There’s no such thing as a DVD player “emulating” CD playback.

    If one listens to the analogue outputs of the DVD player then the audible quality comes down to the D/A and analogue stage within it and any additional A/D stages; there is nothing to say either has to be inherently inferior to that within a stand-alone CD player. There are in fact some superb-sounding DVD players (when playing CDs). The Meridian 596 comes to mind. Coulcher’s reported “huge” differences could come down to set-up; was the DVD player using the Denon’s D/A, was the CD player on an analogue bypass loop, were the mode parameters the same, were the two sources the same volume to within 0.1dB… etc.

    And… before someone mentions jitter: Most press and subjective reviewers grossly over-exaggerate the effects of jitter, only huge amounts of which are actually audible. See ‘Theoretical and Audible Effects of Jitter on Digital Audio Quality’ by Eric Benjamin and Benjamin Gannon, AES Pre-print 4826.


    Stuart M. Robinson
    SMR Group – http://www.smr-group.co.uk/
     
  16. paiger

    paiger
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    Thanks Stuart. I currently have a Sony 735 DVD and 940 reciever. This amp has a true analogue bypass which I think I'm right in saying is only available with analogue inputs. Anyway, there is a definate difference in sound with phonos than digital coax. Although the digital sound is more suitable for movies, I find it too harsh for music. I guess you could put this down to the digital processing in the 940 not being as good as it might. Still a great budget reciever though, fantastic at DD and DTS and the Analogue Direct mode helps with CD's. I would be interested in listening to a Tag system and seeing if there was a difference.

    Steve
     
  17. Stuart M. Robinson

    Stuart M. Robinson
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    Paiger,

    “This amp has a true analogue bypass which I think I'm right in saying is only available with analogue inputs. Anyway, there is a definate difference in sound with phonos than digital coax. Although the digital sound is more suitable for movies, I find it too harsh for music.”

    There’s lots of reasons why one hook-up method might sound different from another, but at the end of the day you can just to listen to the one you like best.

    Remember though, that if an analogue bypass is used, there won’t be any bass management. Sometimes (unusually) the sub-woofer output will remain active, but more often than not all bass routing, time alignment etc., will be taken out of the loop. That’s just one more thing to consider if one’s system uses a set of small loudspeakers.


    Stuart M. Robinson
    SMR Group – http://www.smr-group.co.uk/
     
  18. paiger

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    I don't yet have a sub and my Ruarks Preludes can handle enough bass for my current living room. I guess with SACD or DVDA you might need a good digital sound.
     
  19. Stuart M. Robinson

    Stuart M. Robinson
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    Paiger,

    “I don't yet have a sub and my Ruarks Preludes can handle enough bass for my current living room.”

    -3dB at 42Hz is fine, but you’d still hear a noticeable difference with the addition of a subwoofer, regardless of the size of the room.

    “I guess with SACD or DVDA you might need a good digital sound.”

    Guess again. Unfortunately, SACD and DVD-Audio are analogue-only formats at the moment. Unless all six channels undergo additional A/D and D/A steps you have to use an analogue signal path and full-range loudspeakers.


    Stuart M. Robinson
    SMR Group – http://www.smr-group.co.uk/
     
  20. Taz69

    Taz69
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    I use a Pioneer DV340 connected to a Marantz SR4200 via Coax, Music is detailed and accurate, more so than with the analogue cable.

    Taz
     

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