Originally Posted by mmus77
It was so easy to setup and connect the 95. I liked that the user interface was so similar to my 83, so it was easy to navigate through all the setup options and configure everything very quickly. I started with basically the same setup options I used for the 83. I was able to connect to the internet (wired connection to my router); a check for firmware upgrades was super quick, and, as expected, showed that my Oppo was up to date.
For movies, I'm running from HDMI 1 to my projector, and from HDMI 2 to my receiver for audio. For SACD listening, I'm using the 'audio out' 5.1 connections. Yeah, I know this may not be the most appropriate technical terminology like you guys would use, but it's the level of detail I understand!
I've had the 95 running for about 6 hours now and here are my initial impressions.
Picture quality: wow. Mind-boggling. I thought the 83 was really good (and it was) but the 95 is far better. I guess I'll attribute it mostly to the video processor, although hopefully the dedicated video connection to the projector adds value. But whatever the reason, I can tell a big difference from the 83. I sampled scenes from Monsters Inc, Up, Star Trek (2009), X-Men, and a few other movies (all blu-ray). The level of detail was astounding, especially with the Pixar movies. I'm incredibly happy with the PQ. Tomorrow I'll have to watch Avatar again; it's bound to look wonderful.
I have not tried any standard DVDs yet. I'm not interested in 3D, nor do I have any other 3D-compatible components, so I won't be testing that. And I don't plan to stream movies from Netflix or anywhere else.
Audio: it is just so hard to describe what we hear. It's just so subjective. But here goes my feeble attempt. I think the human voice is the most difficult instrument to reproduce well. So I started with 'a cappella' performances, including an SACD called 'Music for Compline' by a group called stile antico, an ensemble of 13 British singers performing music from the 16th and 17th century. The best I can describe my impression while listening to this SACD was 'pure' and 'clean'. NOTHING got in the way of the music. I loved this SACD before, but now, it's beyond gorgeous.
Next I pulled out an old warhorse, Handel's Messiah, on SACD from harmonia mundi, directed by Rene Jacobs. The clarity was astounding. I've heard the overture more times than I can count, but never like this. Every instrument was present and accounted for. Instrumentals, solos, and choral selections were all gorgeous.
Next was Camille Saint-Saens Symphony no. 3 ("Organ"). Again, very clear, even all the crazy piano runs that often get overshadowed by the rest of the orchestra. If you're looking for something to rattle the rafters, the "Maestoso" movement, where the organ really kicks in, is a good one. I confess I did not crank it up as loud as I would have liked... my husband was trying to work in his office down the hall, poor guy...
Then for something completely different, I tried some selections from Bonnie Raitt, a studio recording (not a live performance). I felt like I was right there in the studio.
When I tried an older CD, I found it unlistenable (is that a word?)... I was hearing stuff I did not want to hear.... is the Oppo TOO GOOD, highlighting all the noise, etc. on that old CD? (insert winking smiley face here) Hopefully only that one disc was awful... I'll try some others tomorrow. I'm not saying the Oppo was doing anything wrong; I'm just saying I heard garbage that had been on that disk for who knows how long, maybe forever, but I had not noticed it before.
I don't have any DVD-Audio disks so I can't comment on that medium.
If you are looking for a fat, fluffy sound that wraps you in a blanket, the Oppo 95 may not be for you. But if you're looking for clean, clear, precise, pure audio and video, you might just love it. So far, I'm thrilled.
If I can get the camera set up tomorrow, I'll try to get some good screen shots showing the impressive level of detail in scenes from Monsters Inc or Up.
And now, back to the 95!