What separates a $100 Sony and a $1,000 Oppo? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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What separates a $100 Sony and a $1,000 Oppo?

I have a couple Sony Bluray players and just getting into HT. I know Sony is getting very cheap, and I see Marantz and Oppo both make $500 and $1,000 players. McIntosh even makes a $5,000 Bluray player.
What qualities separate the low end from the high end? What have I been missing out on all these years with my Sony? And why does everyone love Oppo?
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post #2 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 03:06 PM
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Just looking at the subject like I was going to say the difference is apprently $900.

Oppo has a reputation. But you always need to check. Even Oppo units have had some irritating bugs. Often times people that need/have Oppo know why they need/have it.... or are simply wanting what many feel is "the best". IMHO, if you're happy with your Sony players.... stay happy. However if Sony bugs you here and there, maybe you can find a used Oppo or borrow somebody's and see if it makes a $900 difference to you.
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post #3 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 03:10 PM
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I have a rather pedestrian older Panasonic BluRay player and I won't replace it unless it fails.

Oppos are bought because of their "superior" image qualities and "superior" DAC's.

Now, whether you or I would notice a difference is up for debate.

If you spent $1,000 on a BluRay player the chances that you would admit that you didn't notice much difference are slim to none.

For me the type of TV makes the biggest impact on picture, (Plasma fan until it fails), and the speakers make the biggest impact on sound.

I'm a diminishing returns kind of consumer and am more than happy with my 5.1 setup that I paid $5,000 or so for.

Is it head and shoulders better than a $2,500 5.1 system?

Perhaps not but I'm happy with it and won't replace anything in the setup until it fails to the point of not being repairable for a reasonable price.
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post #4 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 03:15 PM
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Well considering people are saying Samsungs UHD 4k bluray player has a better picture and sound over current offerings from Oppo is one example but that is newest tech to what is not old tech and Im sure when Oppo releases their UHD 4k player it will manage to top Samsung but I too am in the same boat, I always question myself will I even notice or be able to notice an actual difference.

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post #5 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 03:50 PM
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Well, I have a BDP-83. It's older now, but I love it. The 83 is one of the best at upconvering DVD's to HD. They're universal players, big bonus.They can be quirky I guess. Myself, I've never had any issues. Outside of quality, the biggest part about Oppo, is their customer service. Unparralled. I was just reading the 83 thread the other day, they fixed his unit free of charge. It was a known problem, but long out of warranty. My next player will be another Oppo.

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post #6 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 04:21 PM - Thread Starter
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I wouldn't necessarily say I'm happy with Sony.
I like that it updates firmware over the internet.
I don't like how slow Sony players can be. On my current bluray player it could only not play one bluray, I don't know why. I've had some bigger compatibility problems with older DVD players and my first bluray player which was either $400 or $800 ( I don't remember).
I've never A/B tested a Bluray player in my life so I don't know what I'm missing.

My 4K TV upscales 1080P content , but since I've never side by side tested it I'd never know if it's doing a good job. compared to another TV or against a different bluray player.
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post #7 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by gajCA View Post
Oppos are bought because of their "superior" image qualities and "superior" DAC's.
That's exactly the answer I was looking for. If I were to test out an oppo, I want to know exactly why before wasting my time. If I did test an Oppo I want to know exactly what I should notice rather than take a sales guy's word for it.
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post #8 of 22 Old 04-29-2016, 04:56 PM
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Its pretty easy by image comparisons, particularity the rear view of $100 Sony player versus $1000 Oppo player.



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post #9 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 05:39 AM
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I own two Oppo players, the BDP-103 & 105D. The 103 is in my living room HT, the 105D resides in my 2ch audio system. Customer service is the best in the business and their firmware updates are detailed in full as to what was updated. I also own the Samsung UHD player which has been great (build quality nothing compared to Oppo) but Samsung doesn't like to reveal what their firmware updates include. As soon as Oppo releases their upcoming UHD player(s) which will probably be 4th quarter I will be selling off my Samsung.

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post #10 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioQuestions View Post
That's exactly the answer I was looking for. If I were to test out an oppo, I want to know exactly why before wasting my time. If I did test an Oppo I want to know exactly what I should notice rather than take a sales guy's word for it.
They do sound pretty darn good. I use my 83 for a CD/SACD player almost as much as a BD player.

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post #11 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 09:01 AM
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Oppos are bought because of their "superior" image qualities and "superior" DAC's.
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Originally Posted by AudioQuestions View Post
That's exactly the answer I was looking for. If I were to test out an oppo, I want to know exactly why before wasting my time. If I did test an Oppo I want to know exactly what I should notice rather than take a sales guy's word for it.
This isn't really true. While the improvement of A-V quality is one reason, the single most compelling reason for buying Oppo is that they are universal players supporting a wide range of media and disc playback. Second most common reason is brand loyalty and customer service which is second to none. If you're only interested in BD playback then most any player will do and money is better spent on display calibration.
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post #12 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by AudioQuestions View Post
I have a couple Sony Bluray players and just getting into HT. I know Sony is getting very cheap, and I see Marantz and Oppo both make $500 and $1,000 players. McIntosh even makes a $5,000 Bluray player.
What qualities separate the low end from the high end? What have I been missing out on all these years with my Sony? And why does everyone love Oppo?
Some models of Oppo and others have high quality DACs for music with balanced XLR outputs. They also do more complex video scaling and processing, play every format including SACD etc. They used to even support playing ISO files off a HDD. They can play nearly every file type from a NAS server as well. Some people like to plug their cable or satellite box into them via HDMI and let the Oppo player do it's image processing on the picture before it gets output to the TV.

They just offer more options, especially for someone who is an audiophile. If you only plan to run HDMI to your AVR and out to your TV for Blu-Rays then you probably don't need one of the high end players.

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post #13 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by yanknuck View Post
They do sound pretty darn good. I use my 83 for a CD/SACD player almost as much as a BD player.
I have been through all but the latest formats, (VHS, SVHS, Laserdisc, DVD, Superbit DVD, upconverting to HD DVD, HDDVD, BluRay), and each and every one of them was "wow" compared to the prior one.

Not sure if the brand matters as much from a known player as the technology itself and what you are displaying it on.

Will an Oppo BluRay look better on LCD than a Samsung BluRay on Plasma?

Certainly the functionality is far greater on the Oppo, 2 HDMI's, audio inputs, SACD), but I use my BluRay player as a BluRay player.

Someone mentioned loading times, that is my major complaint with my old Panasonic.

One movie took 1/2 hour to load but the average is about 2 minutes.

Do Oppo's load almost instantaneously?

EDIT: When I got the expensive Denon upconverting DVD player before HD DVD came out I had a Mitsu RP HD TV and had it calibrated; a must do for RPTV's, (had it done twice in the 8 years I had it....didn't bother with the Plasma though as a calibration I found on line had the same "wow" effect).

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post #14 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 09:19 AM
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Oppo players are known to be very fast when loading a disc yes.

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post #15 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 11:34 AM
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what separates them ?

Vibration , Vibration ,Vibration had to send one back after selling an Oppo 105 and replaced it with one of those $500 Marantz jobs and as happy as could be. Will admit the PQ and all else was fine
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post #16 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gajCA View Post
I have been through all but the latest formats, (VHS, SVHS, Laserdisc, DVD, Superbit DVD, upconverting to HD DVD, HDDVD, BluRay), and each and every one of them was "wow" compared to the prior one.

Not sure if the brand matters as much from a known player as the technology itself and what you are displaying it on.

Will an Oppo BluRay look better on LCD than a Samsung BluRay on Plasma?

Certainly the functionality is far greater on the Oppo, 2 HDMI's, audio inputs, SACD), but I use my BluRay player as a BluRay player.

Someone mentioned loading times, that is my major complaint with my old Panasonic.

One movie took 1/2 hour to load but the average is about 2 minutes.

Do Oppo's load almost instantaneously?

EDIT: When I got the expensive Denon upconverting DVD player before HD DVD came out I had a Mitsu RP HD TV and had it calibrated; a must do for RPTV's, (had it done twice in the 8 years I had it....didn't bother with the Plasma though as a calibration I found on line had the same "wow" effect).
If using it as for Blu-ray's only, you could definitely go cheaper. As someone pointed out, the Oppo's are one of the faster loading machines.

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post #17 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 04:07 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm not exactly trying to save money, I'm trying to be talked into spending it
I'm not exactly looking to take me 1980's mouse and plug it into the serial port
The XLR connections are interesting. Is this to bypass a Preamp and go straight to the amplifier in stereo only?
While I'm looking for the HDMI solution found on the 100-200 sony, I am looking for the best sound and picture quality, but perhaps I'll wait for the newest batch of 4k. I hope those are backwards compatible with 3d bluray.
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post #18 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 04:20 PM
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If you are using HDMI audio and not the audio outs then really there is no difference between a $50 drive blu-ray drive or a $10k blu-ray player, since its all in the digital domain and the player hw/sw has nothing to do. If you are using image or audio processing then those things start to matter.
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post #19 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioQuestions View Post
I'm not exactly trying to save money, I'm trying to be talked into spending it
I'm not exactly looking to take me 1980's mouse and plug it into the serial port
The XLR connections are interesting. Is this to bypass a Preamp and go straight to the amplifier in stereo only?
While I'm looking for the HDMI solution found on the 100-200 sony, I am looking for the best sound and picture quality, but perhaps I'll wait for the newest batch of 4k. I hope those are backwards compatible with 3d bluray.
No one should need to be talked into spending money. That should come naturally :-)

You can use the Oppos as pre-amps, especially the 105/105D models which have better quality analog outputs and which can also serve as a DAC for other devices. There are 2 things you need to consider.

The first is that you can run into problems matching the Oppo to some power amps, just as you can matching a given pre-amp to some power amps. Not every combination works as well as others so if you already have a power amp you could use that way then I would recommend a try before you buy approach. It can work very well or it can work less well.

Second, you're after video plus audio by the sound of it. If you want to use an AVR or AV pre-pro and you're going to use HDMI for audio output, forget about the audio output quality of the Oppo players because you won't be using their DACs, you'll be using the DAC in your AVR or pre-pro. If you're using something like Audyssey or some other digital room correction process in your AVR/pre-pro, forget about the analog outputs. You want to stay with HDMI output for audio. If you're prepared to do full manual setups, balancing output levels for each channel and sub plus setting crossover frequency manually and you can do a good job of doing that, you can probably get better sound quality from an Oppo and power amps than you can using a cheaper AVR to deliver your audio but you have to put the time and effort into it. If you're already using an AVR/pre-pro with digital room correction engaged, then you may not end up being happy with the result. Digital room correction can deliver benefits that really good audio setup without that room correction may not be able to match, you can end up gaining some benefits by going with the analog audio output from an Oppo and lose other benefits by losing the room correction advantages. A lot can depend on your room and how your system is set up in it.

So there can be audio benefits, even some significant audio benefits, and there can be disadvantages. A lot depends on what you want to do.

If you want to get video with HDMI output for audio and you're not interested in using the player as a network audio device , go for the 103/103D rather than the 105D but also consider the players from other manufacturers. The 103/1-3D deliver the same quality video output as the more expensive 105D. The only difference between the 103s and the 105D is in the quality of the analog audio output and the added inputs for networked audio. If you want to use the player as a full featured network audio/video player as well as a disc player and/or if you want high quality analog audio output then go for the 105D but there is no point at all in going for the 105D over the 103 models if you're going to use HDMI for your audio output and you aren't going to use any of the added networking features. You would be paying extra for features you aren't going to use.

And the price of the 103 and 103D are $499/599 respectively, a lot less than $1000. The main difference between them is that you get a Darbee processing included in the 103D which saves you buying an external Darbee Darblet if you want Darbee processing. The $1000, actually $1299, Oppo is the 105D.

For the record I have an Oppo 105 and I'm really happy with it but I bought it specifically because I wanted the high quality analog audio output it offered. Since buying it a few years ago I've changed my setup and I'm now using an AVR and I'm no longer using the analog audio outputs. If I were buying an Oppo now I'd buy the 103D, not the 105D, but I'd probably wait for Oppo to deliver their next models with UHD Blu-ray instead of getting a 103D now. Having said that, I also expect the next models to be dearer than their current equivalents.
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post #20 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 04:55 PM - Thread Starter
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If you are using HDMI audio and not the audio outs then really there is no difference between a $50 drive blu-ray drive or a $10k blu-ray player, since its all in the digital domain and the player hw/sw has nothing to do. If you are using image or audio processing then those things start to matter.
Good to know. I'm intrigued by finer things but it sounds like it makes no difference in my application.

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Second, you're after video plus audio by the sound of it. If you want to use an AVR or AV pre-pro and you're going to use HDMI for audio output, forget about the audio output quality of the Oppo players because you won't be using their DACs, you'll be using the DAC in your AVR or pre-pro. If you're using something like Audyssey or some other digital room correction process in your AVR/pre-pro, forget about the analog outputs. You want to stay with HDMI output for audio. If you're prepared to do full manual setups, balancing output levels for each channel and sub plus setting crossover frequency manually and you can do a good job of doing that, you can probably get better sound quality from an Oppo and power amps than you can using a cheaper AVR to deliver your audio but you have to put the time and effort into it. If you're already using an AVR/pre-pro with digital room correction engaged, then you may not end up being happy with the result. Digital room correction can deliver benefits that really good audio setup without that room correction may not be able to match, you can end up gaining some benefits by going with the analog audio output from an Oppo and lose other benefits by losing the room correction advantages. A lot can depend on your room and how your system is set up in it.
I ask sales guys about what benefit I'll see and they tell me better video and upscale processing, but no salesman said it's pointless when using a preamp/pro or AVR. Good to know. I was planning on an AVR or preamp/pro and actually looking for my system to look matchy-matchy. I'm a little OCD about it, and it may drive my decision to purchase one brand over another. It's amazing that the general consensus is that these expensive players up sound and video quality, and no one seems to mention it's useless unless you meticulously bypass HDMI. Do AVRs and Preamps do as good of a job as Oppo?

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If you want to get video with HDMI output for audio and you're not interested in using the player as a network audio device.......
I'm curious how to stream internet music without a computer.

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but I'd probably wait for Oppo to deliver their next models with UHD Blu-ray instead of getting a 103D now. Having said that, I also expect the next models to be dearer than their current equivalents.
I'm likely going to hold out for 4K and use my Sony's after all of your wise advice.
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post #21 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 05:43 PM
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I'm curious how to stream internet music without a computer.
The easiest way to do this is to buy a streaming player for which there are many options such as Roku, Chromecast, Amazon Fire tv/stick and others. Most receivers made in last 4-5 years also have some kind of streaming function built in as do tv's/players etc, but the dedicated streamers are a cheap option as well.
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post #22 of 22 Old 04-30-2016, 06:49 PM
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Thread closed. If you are seeking a new player, please use the dedicated Help Me Choose thread. If you have questions about specific players, please use the dedicated player threads. If you are interested in streaming, there is a forum for streaming devices. There are also many threads on differences between consumer and high end models. Please use the search function before starting a new thread.

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