Recommended BD player with SACD capability (HDMI only)

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Mr_Sukebe, Aug 20, 2012.

  1. Mr_Sukebe

    Mr_Sukebe
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    I've been using a PS3 as a BD player for several years now, but have a "slim", non-SACD capable player.

    Either way, I quite fancy trying SACD again as the rest of my system will now support SACD audio over HDMI from a BD player that's capable.
    My AV processor is a Meridian 568.2mm with HD621, so no need for any analogue capabilities in the BD player.

    I know the obvious reponse will be "oppo" whatever. However, as I only need the player to give me a HDMI digital output, seems pointless blowing a shed load of unnecessary cash on an Oppo93, if say a Sony 390 can do the same.

    So, thoughts? From checking the Sony 390, does look like it'll output SACD audio, and will also be able to add in niceties like iPlayer, which we most certainly do use at home.
    Can anyone make an alternative suggestion and give a genuine reason why I should spend more on a different player to the Sony?
     
  2. Mr_Sukebe

    Mr_Sukebe
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    For anyone interested, bought a Pioneer BDP-140 this morning for all of £50.
    Haven't had much chance to play with it. Put it in my rack, connected it up, updated the firmware and then gave it a try with one of my three SACDs (Nick Drake). Have to say that it seems like a no brainer for the dosh. Very smooth mid-range, and the wonderful bass control that all 24 bit recordings that I've so far amassed have had.
    Thumbs up if you have a processor capable of facilitating the use of these dirt cheap BD players as SACD transports.
     
  3. Avi

    Avi
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    It sounds like you're sorted but I guess by SACD you don't mean DSD but DSD converted to LPCM by the player. The decimation process can vary in term of LPCM sample rate i.e. 88.2Khz, 176kHz etc but the HD621 is limited to 96kHz output LPCM output and doesn't support DSD.
     
  4. Mr_Sukebe

    Mr_Sukebe
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    Agreed. The HD621 will supposedly deal with upto 192khz, but will then downsample to 96khz for the processor.
    I see the biggest issues occurring when the pioneer converts dsd to lpcm, got any idea of how it does that and the implications?

    Regardless of all the theory and maths, does sound rather good.
     
  5. Avi

    Avi
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    As with most things AV there are lots of variables and some of those are content related i.e. end to end DSD v DSD created from LPCM, content mastering for the DSD version, no of channels etc. For 2 channel material the difference between CD/SACD version close masters properly level matched may not be as readily indefinable. Often difference in mastering and level may account for a most of the difference people perceive. Unfortunately HDMI may be a necessary evil and adds another variable as does the the replay system etc.

    I'm not familiar with the Pio but my guess is it probably uses pretty generic SRC characteristics provided by the SoC supplier.
     
  6. Mr_Sukebe

    Mr_Sukebe
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    Maybe I'll go google that sometime next week, thanks AVI.
    As mentioned, the key point is that it's allowing the actual digital to analogue conversion to be completed by a somewhere better set of kit than you're typical boggo SACD player, and does sound rather good.
    Time to buy some interesting music now.
     
  7. Avi

    Avi
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    I guess it depends what titles and format i.e. stereo/surround you're after. For stereo there's lots of stuff available at higher sample rate LPCM. It's also possible to rip SACD's to native DSD files and convert these using a software SRC to LPCM at different sample sample rates and/or dither characteristics.

    The resulting high sample rate data files can be stored on different media and output from a device such as some Blu-ray players, computer etc and can avoid using HDMI.
     
  8. Mr_Sukebe

    Mr_Sukebe
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    I'm guessing that it should be possible to downmix my SACD disks to stereo, then output that via the digital output from my HD621 in 24/96, thus allowing me to input it via a digital in to a PC soundcard. Not that I have a soundcard capable of that, but it's a potential option.
     
  9. Avi

    Avi
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    It should be possible to select the stereo version of the SACD track for output. Usually this preference is an option on the player. Not all SACD titles provide a multi-channel option so this would override the player preference forcing stereo.

    The HD621 LPCM output forces proprietary Meridian encryption at a sample rate greater than 48khz. Unless your sound card can decipher Meridian encryption it unlikely to work with higher sample rate content.

    Avi
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2012

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