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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Although there have been numerous posts on this product in the forums I have not been able to find a proper/full review and thus would like to solicit opinions on the following:


I'm running a Meridian 861V4 + 621 on the audio side and a Runco video processor + Runco plasma display on the video side. From what I have been able to ascertain , the Ayre is unlikely to offer me much (if any) benefit in terms of Blu-Ray video presentation versus the OPPO. Is this a correct assumption or am i missing something?


On the audio side, given that I'm using the 861 + 621 I am also assuming that the Ayre will not provide me with materially better/higher quality audio when watching Blu-Ray or DVDs? Is that also a correct assumption or am I again missing something?


I want to change my Blu-Ray player and the Ayre has caught my eye but I'm concerned that the engineering/value added that Ayre is providing over the standard OPPO may be lost on my system given the fact that I'm using the 861 + 621 combination as opposed to an analog orientated set-up.


I'd be interested in the thoughts of those members who are familiar with the 861V4 +621 combo only and have experience with the OPPO and/or Ayre DX-5


Many thanks in advance.
 

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I don't think there are yet many people who have direct experience with the Ayre. There is a review in the most recent issue of Stereophile by Fremmer; and one coming from Kal R. in the January issue. I just skimmed the Fremmer article, so need to go back and re-read it a bit more carefully, but two things struck me: first, he seems to have used the Ayre a a full player rather than as a transport (which is what you'd be doing with your setup), and second, he seemed somewhat underwhlemed by the unit as a SACD player (which is important to me).


I've had extensive experience with the Oppo BDP-83 as a transport with both the Meridian 861v4 and the 861v6, in each case along with a Meridian HD621 and Radiance XE. The only comaprison I have made was between the Oppo and my Meridian 800 as a CD and DVD-A player. In both cases I felt the Meridian was slightly superior, but given its price, the Oppo performs magnificently.


I confess to being somewhat skeptical that what Ayre and Theta have done with the Oppo will be audible/visible in my system. Neither is a sham like the Lexicon, but I've become increasingly of the view that components like the HD621 and Radiance reduce the impact of the transport. I've been toying with getting the Theta as I need another player, and it's price is far less than the Ayre, but, at this point, I'm inclined to wait a bit to see what the new Oppo BDP-93 brings to the table, as opposed to the hiend players based on the BDP-83.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lepin /forum/post/19502763


Although there have been numerous posts on this product in the forums I have not been able to find a proper/full review and thus would like to solicit opinions on the following:


I'm running a Meridian 861V4 + 621 on the audio side and a Runco video processor + Runco plasma display on the video side. From what I have been able to ascertain , the Ayre is unlikely to offer me much (if any) benefit in terms of Blu-Ray video presentation versus the OPPO. Is this a correct assumption or am i missing something?


On the audio side, given that I'm using the 861 + 621 I am also assuming that the Ayre will not provide me with materially better/higher quality audio when watching Blu-Ray or DVDs? Is that also a correct assumption or am I again missing something?


I want to change my Blu-Ray player and the Ayre has caught my eye but I'm concerned that the engineering/value added that Ayre is providing over the standard OPPO may be lost on my system given the fact that I'm using the 861 + 621 combination as opposed to an analog orientated set-up.


I'd be interested in the thoughts of those members who are familiar with the 861V4 +621 combo only and have experience with the OPPO and/or Ayre DX-5


Many thanks in advance.


To take some risk out of this 10K gamble you would indeed have to wait until Kal's review comes out in in January. However, as you mentioned most of the $9,500 premium over the standard Oppo has gone into improvement of the analog playback, which for you would completely go to waste. Some folks have reported good things about the Compli BR as an HDMI transport so you could give that a try instead - at least you would not be wasting money on stuff you don't use, because Theta has left the DACs untouched.


I would wait for the Oppo 93 to come out. You could try one of those risk free because second hand units sell for $50 below new. The 93 has dual HDMI outputs, so I presume you could use one for audio only, which may be an improvement over the 83. I would also expect prices on 83 based players to take a hit when the 93 comes out, so all the more reason to wait.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by edorr /forum/post/19504103


Some folks have reported good things about the Compli BR as an HDMI transport so you could give that a try instead - at least you would not be wasting money on stuff you don't use, because Theta has left the DACs untouched.


I would wait for the Oppo 93 to come out. You could try one of those risk free because second hand units sell for $50 below new. The 93 has dual HDMI outputs, so I presume you could use one for audio only, which may be an improvement over the 83.

Fully agree on the Compliblu - although I did not realize the Ayre was so focussed on analog output.


I do think, regardless of the dual HDMI outputs, that the HD621 will likely be the best lace to separate audio from video.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the posts guys. It would appear that based on the available information out there the three of us are coming to pretty much the same conclusion (i.e. the areas in which Ayre has boosted the performance of the OPPO is more or less a non-event for people running systems such as mine). I would only use the new player for BD as I would retain my Meridian DVD player for DVD-A playback as well as SD DVD playback. I never built up an SACD library due to my system being Meridian based and thus I'm indifferent to this format.


I need, effectively, the best transport out there that can convert Dolby True HD and DTS Master Audio before sending the audio data to the 621. It does not seem like the Ayre is that product but that the upcoming OPPO 93 might be. Any other suggestions of top quality BD transports that will internally decode True HD and Master Audio? Perhaps I can fix/purchase my requirement at a much lower price than the Ayre and put the money saved towards swapping my V4 for a V6.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lepin /forum/post/19504385


I need, effectively, the best transport out there that can convert Dolby True HD and DTS Master Audio before sending the audio data to the 621.

The Ayre may still be "the best transport out there", but the question is how much better than the 2nd best is it (considering the 2nd best sells for a fraction of the price). Either way, I based on what v6 users are saying applying the funds towards getting a v6 will give you far more bang for the buck.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lepin /forum/post/19504385


I would only use the new player for BD as I would retain my Meridian DVD player for DVD-A playback as well as SD DVD playback.
You may want to consider using the BD player for SD-DVD also. I haven't used my 800 for DVD in a long time as it is incapable of sending out native 480i. The Oppo is significantly better IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
ca1ore/edorr: once again i take both your comments fully onboard and agree with both of you. thanks for your time + comments. much appreciated.
 
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