What BD player for slightly-ageing setup?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Pezza, Feb 12, 2009.

  1. Pezza

    Pezza
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    I've been away from these forums for a while enjoying my setup, but I'm now thinking it's time to buy a BluRay player. I've read good things about the Sony 550, although it seems to be in short supply at the moment so I was wondering if there are any alternative, or perhaps better, players I should be considering.

    Connectivity-wise it would have to be:
    * 7.1 analogue audio into the Lexicon, with 1080p24/25 HDMI video into the Crystalio, or
    * PCM into the Lexicon via HDMI, with 1080i48/50/60 looped back out into the Crystalio for reinterlacing.
    (annoyingly the Crystalio doesn't support hi-res PCM via HDMI, and the Lexicon doesn't support 1080p via HDMI, hence the above options)

    I intend to keep my DV29 for CD playback via an analogue link (and probably DVD playback too, via HDMI 480i/576i and coaxial digital connections)

    Things I don't think I need (or want to pay extra for) are:
    * Video "enhancement" or scaling options, I have my Crystalio for that.
    * Audio filtering trickery, as I just send everything full-range into my Audyssey which then handles crossovers etc.

    Budget-wise I guess it should 'fit' with the rest of the components.

    All suggestions very much appreciated!
     
  2. kingfats

    kingfats
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    Hi Pezza. :)
    When you say budget wise how much were you thinking of spending if you don't mind me asking?
    All the best.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2009
  3. Avi

    Avi
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    I'm not that familar with the Cystalio and I don't know if this is possible but if it accepts 1080i it may also support lower bandwidth 1080p/24. The older Lumangen's have a similar issue in that they will not accept 1080p/50/60 due to bandwidth but will support 1080/24.

    To gain maximum benefit from the Lex with analogue will require a source with a good analogue stage. At the moment that's limited Denon (3800) or Pioneer (LX91). There are other players that offer MC analogue output but they may limit the benefit of the lex and don't offer certian audio features i.e. crossover adjustment (LX91 will gain this via FW).

    AVI
     
  4. Scott_Mac

    Scott_Mac
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    Many have reported (and i can now agree) that multi channel analogue can be a pain - unless you can overcome the bass management issues in the amp - and in many ways the Samsung units and their clever re-encode over optical are well worth considering.

    They also happen to be the cheapest brand name players on the market.... obviously this fits with your 'Option 1'

    Samsung BD-P1500/XEU - Blu-ray Disc Player: Amazon.co.uk: Electronics & Photo

    Alternatively, the Denon 3800 does have excellent analogue outs....
     
  5. Pezza

    Pezza
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    Kingfats - I guess I'm open to anything from £200 (Sony 550) to £1500 (Pioneer LX91) really. Sony would probably be more of a "buy it now, enjoy some discs, then buy something special in 2-3yrs", whereas I'd want the Pio to last a long time. Am concerned it's loaded down with stuff I don't need tho'.

    Avi - Think you've misread i for p in my original email. Crystalio supports (I think) everything up to 1080p60, but I can't use it to passthru PCM audio to my amp as it doesn't support it. My connection choice is basically either progressive-video + analogue audio, or interlaced-video + PCM audio.

    Why do I need crossover adjustment? I would have thought, given my Audyssey, that's something I don't need.
     
  6. Ian_S

    Ian_S
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    Unless I read it wrong, I thought all bass crossover etc would all be handled by the dedicated and separate Audessy unit and therefore this isn't a worry as long as the player can spit out the audio over the appropriate channels.

    In which case your options are probably the Sony 5000ES, Denon 3800BD, Pioneer LX91 or the Marantz BD8002. All of which do analogue 7.1, and (post DTS firmware update for the Pioneer) can decode all BD audio formats for output over either analogue or PCM.

    They all carry video processing trickery unfortunately, but you can't divorce that yet from a decent analogue stage and Denon's 2500 can't decode HD audio, else it would have been the better fit.

    The Pioneer LX91 might be more interesting for you as it has a source direct option (the others don't) and also has dual HDMI output too which may help you round the HDMI restrictions you have with your existing kit. I think the caveat with the Pioneer is that I would insist on being able to return it if Pioneer don't deliver on the DTS-HD firmware update, which I'm sure they will, but the LX91's a lot of money.
     
  7. Avi

    Avi
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    Sorry had misread. :oops:

    The Pioneer LX91 has two HDMI outputs. The sub HDMI can output video to your Crystalio and the main HDMI can send PCM to the Lex. You also have the option of decent quality analogue output should you wish to go that route. The crossover is beneficial as some pre-pros/AVR's don't process analogue signals. The downside is internal DTS HD MA decoding requires a FW upgrade that isn't due until March.

    I'm using the above to drive a VP and audio processor via the two HDMI outputs. The LX91 also has source direct which is useful to avoid having to switch player output res if you have a VP.


    AVI
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2009
  8. kingfats

    kingfats
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    Hi. :)
    I posted some user feedback on the 5000 and 91 here. :smashin:
    Sony 5000 is about £885.
     
  9. Pezza

    Pezza
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    Guys, thank you all very much - looks like the Sony and the Pioneer are the ones to audition (and maybe wait until March to see if Pio deliver on their firmware promises!)

    Much appreciated
     
  10. NonPayingMember

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    Hi Stu,

    you should run 1080i HDMI + PCM audio to the Lex then back out 1080i to the Crystalio which will turn deinterlace and scale it to 1360x760 @ 59.94Hz for your Fuji TV. If you had a 1080p24 TV then you would still do the 1080i trick and let the Crystalio deinterlace and FRC to 24p as necessary.

    The Denon 2500BT gives a step up from the Sonys and Panasonics, or even a PS3. But I still think there is more to come so might not be the time to spend too much. Probably just a good excuse to put the Xbox360 to one side and pickup a PS3 controller instead!!! PS3 will decode to PCM and output at 1080i from Blu-Ray no probs.
     
  11. Pezza

    Pezza
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    Hey Liam, long time no speak!

    Thanks for your reply, the Denon does sound like a good compromise now I've read up a bit on it. One thing though, if you read this post (and Ian_S's post after it):

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/deno...-dvd-2500bt-owners-thread-11.html#post8773512

    Then the chaps say that it won't be outputting the HD soundtracks over PCM. According to the Lex manual I should be able to receive a 5.1 96kHz soundtrack over HDMI, will I not get this with this particular Denon? What does the PS3 do in this respect?
     
  12. kingfats

    kingfats
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    The 2500 has no HD decoders,so unless bitstream TrueHD/DTS-MA will be DD/DTS 5.1.
    PS3 fully decodes TrueHD/DTS-MA to PCM over HDMI. :smashin:
     
  13. Avi

    Avi
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    The Denon 2500 has limited internal decoding and can't decode the full (it defaults to a non HD lossy version) lossless HD audio codecs and output as PCM i.e. it can only bitstream Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD MA. The PS3 can decode the full lossless HD audio codecs internally and output as PCM but it doesn't support bitstream i.e. if you want the sink to decode.

    AVI
     
  14. Ian_S

    Ian_S
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    If you are thinking of the PS3 for sound quality, I would audition it against a standalone that decodes to PCM as well. When compared to bitstream, the PS3 was very different and I'd want a comparison on PCM to be certain it wasn't doing something sub-par in the audio department, esp. with your matching equipment.
     
  15. Pezza

    Pezza
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    So are we heading back to the Sony 550 then? Seems like, if one could get hold of one, it'd be a good "use for 2yrs" player.
     
  16. kingfats

    kingfats
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    Great player for the money. :thumbsup:
     
  17. SoOPersOniC

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    I really rate the sony s350. My dad has just got a bd35 and I cant believe how slow it is compared to mine. Not to mention the SD quality is not as good either.

    bluray players have a way to go yet and I think that an s350 is £160 well spent at this early stage. Or the s550 if you need the multi preouts.

    My 2p's worth
     
  18. NonPayingMember

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    Yep sorry completely forgot no internal decoding at all on the 2500BT. Deffo puts the Sony back on for temporary, we use a 550 in the demo room here.
     
  19. Pezza

    Pezza
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    Seems they're like hens teeth at the moment, so do let me know if you want to pass off your demonstration model ;)
     
  20. NonPayingMember

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    Got one in-stock too
     
  21. NonPayingMember

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    That's a 550 by the way not the 350
     
  22. SoOPersOniC

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    TBHI think the price of the 2005bt etc is a scandal. Even the higher priced one that isnt just a transport.

    I sat and watched one for an hour or so when I bought my speakers, The picture/sound quality is no different to my £160 player.

    why spend £800 now for a transport when in 2 years time youll get an all in one player that performs far better for half the money :confused:
     
  23. Pezza

    Pezza
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    Not any more :D

    Spent aaages hooking the thing up, with much head-scratching and frustration. Bought (perhaps mistakenly) a couple of HDMI leads from the local Richer's, but after much trial and error with another cable it turns out the Sony doesn't like the Richer one (some brand called Fusion). So now I have a random lead I found in my 'bag of tricks' (DEAC brand) from the Sony to the amp, then the Fusion one from the amp to my Crystalio. And it all works fine!

    Bought The Dark Knight, the amp shows PCM 48khz, the Crystalio shows 1080i with 3:2 pulldown, and the film sounds and looks fantastic.

    Thanks to all for your help and advice :thumbsup:
     
  24. Pezza

    Pezza
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    (slightly off-topic, but must be a faulty lead... unlike the DEAC branded one, the Fusion one will only do 1280x720p from my laptop - I can't even select 1920x1080 like I could with the DEAC one)

    Grrr....
     

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