I picked up the DP-5000 from World Import
and finally hooked it up to do backup copies of some DVDs (ok, ok, Carl Sagan's Cosmos
TV series). I ran the composite video and L/R audio outputs from an Oppo 971 to the DP-5000, then from the stabilizer to the front inputs of my Panasonic DMR-E85. At first I got some annoying herringbone interference patterns on the image the E85 was getting. Playing a hunch, I plugged the DP-5000's power transformer into a different wall outlet from the one the Oppo was on, and the problem went away. Under close scrutiny, the copy PQ was clearly not as good as the original, but more than adequate for my purposes.
The audio connections on the DP-5000 appear to be entirely passive. If I unplug the power cord, the video disappears but the audio keeps coming through. So it appears they're just there to simplify the logic of the connections for the user. Next time I'll cut them out of the loop and run the audio straight from the Oppo to the E85. Probably won't make a major diff, but why add extra connection points to the circuit?
BTW, before I started, I tried a direct connection from the Oppo to the E85 and got an "Unable to Record" no-go.
Bottom line: the DP-5000 performed as advertised. I can play the heck outta the copies and not worry about having an oops with the originals; if a copy does get scratched or something, I can just make a new one. The real goal is actually to dub some of my old VHS stuff to DVD, so I don't have to buy them again.