Well, I finally received and hooked up the 970. For some reason, after posting (and waiting for a response) to this and the plasma forum, I couldn't get an answer as to how the 970 performed into the 6th generation Pios. So I pulled the trigger myself and I am pleased to report that running the 970 at 480i HDMI into my Elite 1130, produces the finest dvd picture that I have ever seen on this display (I have tried many of the usual suspects, including the Sony 75/85, Pio 52, Toshiba 4990, a Samsung, along with my venerable old Pio RP91)
The 970 trumps them all - less noise, more detail, greater depth - so far have viewed Toy Story, LOTR, Fifth Element (Superbit), Spiderman, and The Hulk. All looked better than I had ever seen them.
Additionally, although my sound system is not high end, the sound of the Oppo equalled the sound of the Sony (which was a clear improvement over my RP91).
Also, (purists don't read this!) I found the zoom on the Oppo to at least be useable.
The Oppo 970 appears to play all manner of discs, (I have tried R+, R-, RW+ and RW-), and the jpeg picture navigator is also quite useable (along with the Sony, one of the few devices which allows for computer altered jpegs to be played).
Don't like the tray - not the fact that its "flimsy", which I really don't think it is, but the fact that no indentation exists to easily remove the disc - find I have to reach under and pop it up from the bottom.
Both the deck and the remote appear well made and durable.
For me, I finally found "a keeper!"