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What is the best DVD player out there that is being modded w/ an SDI input?


I am currently using a Panasonic RP56 which I think is OK, but there are a few things that bother me about it (especially the fact that there are no reliable discrete power commands).


Also, has anyone found any quality differences with different modded DVD players - in other words is there any reason to upgrade to a better one?


David
 

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Bad question. You mean to ask modded "with an SDI output" not "with an SDI input". I use a Denon DVD 3300 modded to have an SDI out. It suites me fine. Whether it is the best out there I have no idea. I suspect the TAW Digilink at $2500 is a better SDI machine.
 

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As long as it doesn't have the chroma bug, I would have to say the differences are small. Since you are getting the SDI right after the MPEG2 decode (which I was under the impression is not that varied) PQ doesn't seem like it would vary much. I'd go for one with the right audio output and nice interface.
 

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this may or may not be an issue in your case, but some (the r-56) only have optical digital audio out; a few processors might have too few optical digital audio inputs to accomodate: sat; cable and the dvd player. the technics A-10 also has coax digital audio out for an alternative, and is sdi-able by immersive.
 

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Because they all have the chroma bug.


Generally speaking, we do not modify players with the bug since most folks will not buy it. One recent exception, the Pioneer 47A, was only added due to it being a DVD-A/SACD player too.
 

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Guys, we have a newbie here. So lets explain the lingo a little.


The chroma bug (do a search for a discussion of what is) appears to be a function of the mpeg decoder used in the DVD player. The Panasonic and Denon machines use the Panasonic mpg decoder which does not have the bug.


iImersive is a company associated with AVS that modifies DVD players to install SDI outputs. It does other things as well. Immersive modified my personal Denon DVD 3300.


On a modified machine, as far as video is concerned, you use only the DVD drive and controls and the mpeg decoder. All else is part of the mod, essentially a serializer chip and an output connector. Of course you still end up using the audio circuitry in the DVD machine although most use only the digital audio out converting to analog elsewhere. Any machine can be made better. There are people out there who can beef up a DVD 3300 to substantially improve its performace. The TAW machine is a substantially beefed up machine with an SDI output added all in a cool and substantial new box.
 

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There is a quality difference between the MPEG decoder in the RP91 and the RP56. The RP91 does some extra stuff that, for some people, will make all the difference. the problem is the RP91 is a nightmare to mod and I don't think Tom is offering that player anymore.
 

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Stacey,


From what I heard, they are both similarly difficult to modify (I couldn't help but open my own modified RP56 to see what was involved). There were tiny wire-wrap cables (silver coated tiny cables) soldered into the tiniest SMT slot holes. You'd need to be a heart surgean to soldier them in there. I certainly wouldn't do it myself, and I do an average amount of soldering.


Basically, you need to get to the bus between the MPEG decoder and DAC. I guess it could be possible for one to be more difficult than another, simply since there might be less of an access & more difficult soldering involved...


From what I heard there is wide demand for modified RP91s, but the simple fact is that they are harder and harder to find. Lots of online companies claim they have them (until, that is, you actually order from them).


This should all change when the new Panasonic lineup starts taking hold.


Which reminds me, Stacey, when are you going to start doing tests on the new models?
 

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There were a couple of issues with RP91, one was the clock. The RP91 is really unstable and they have had to reclock the video signal. (At least that is something I recall.)


The other may be the location. If it is difficult to get to, ie pulling parts out, it might not be worth the trouble.


As far as tests, there is not really anything out that makes me want to look at current players. It seems like a rather slow time in the industry. We may get something out by years end, if we can look at enough players.
 

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Actually we sorted out the RP91 issues now and we are modifying them once again. It was a long road to sort it all out but now the mods are no more difficult than any other.


I am also pleased to announce (pre-announce?) that we have made a Meridian SDI install kit and will be offering that directly for self-installation very soon. Stacey is first in line for that one...followed by Healthnut....and whoever else needs one. :) Price will be $1500 per mod.


Tom
 

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Since most of the video quality on all players(no chroma bug) should theoretically be similar due to similar digital connection in SDI, wouldn't the question really be better answered by asking which player offers the best AUDIO? Specifically bass management/ control, SACD, DVD-A, best power supply, capacitors, presence of DTS etc., etc.,


Folks like Steve Bruzonsky on the tweakers area may be able to answer the audio portion, or anybody self proclaimed as an audiophile may abe able to recommend a player from the known SDI modded players.


How about it Tom? You should know which players you would prefer having modifed several brands......throw us a bone ;)


Jaime
 

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Hmmm...


Well the best sounding to me are the Denon 3300/Technics A10/Panasonic A7. They also have better MPEG decoders than the newer Pannys IMO. But they do not have the features you are seeking above.


For SACD/DVD-A, bass management, and a decent sound I'd have to say the Pioneer 47A...since it is your only choice. Better yet, I'm guessing a Modwright 47A will sound quite good once Dan starts to ship them.


I plan to stick with a DVD-RV30 with digital coax output for video and have Dan modify a 47A for my audio platform. As Stacey said above, the news on the DVD player front has been slow lately. So I think I'll be pleased with this setup for at least another 6 months! ;)
 

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The 47A is a great value for the money ($800). However, compared against the sound of units more expensive, such as the Arcams, the sound is not as good. I suspect the D to A converters in the Pioneer are not as good as in the higher price spreads.
 

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Hi Mark!


Agreed. But I said I'd want it modified by Dan Wright. I've heard one of his modified players before and I think his mods will make this average audio player a contender....or at least good enough for me. :)
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Tom Strade
Hi Mark!


Agreed. But I said I'd want it modified by Dan Wright. I've heard one of his modified players before and I think his mods will make this average audio player a contender....or at least good enough for me. :)


That would be mine, a Technics DVD-A10 Dan Wright Ultra modified Immersive SDI output player. And I'm still waiting for a local HTPC/ISF type to size my projector to the HTPC display so I can use the HTPC!!
 

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I love mking good stuff even better. I just had my brand new Wadia 861 modded by Steve Huntly of great northern Sound. Boy is that baby better.


My Electrohome 9500LC is having virtually all of its aps replaced with low low low ESR military grade caps with certain power supply capsincreased in size. One board took 175 caps alone. Noise levels in circuit affecting black level went down 2db on one board alone.


almost everything out there is designed to a price point. Most of it can be substantially improved by careful replacement of parts.
 
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