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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
You'll have to forgive me for posting another one of these questions - but after a couple of weeks of research on this site I need to finally make the purchase.


I've been looking for an upconverting DVD player to go along with my new Panasonic TH-42PX50U plasma and need to keep it in the budget range of $200 or less.


That being said - it appears as if the following are among the most talked about players in this price range with and HDMI output:


Panasonic S77 (read about macroblocking problems with this player especially on Panny Plasma's)

Toshiba 5980

Samsung HD 941


Anyone have any experience with these players and could recommend one over the other - or any other players in that range that might outperform these???


Thanks for your help
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy_larry
You'll have to forgive me for posting another one of these questions - but after a couple of weeks of research on this site I need to finally make the purchase.


I've been looking for an upconverting DVD player to go along with my new Panasonic TH-42PX50U plasma and need to keep it in the budget range of $200 or less.


That being said - it appears as if the following are among the most talked about players in this price range with and HDMI output:


Panasonic S77 (read about macroblocking problems with this player especially on Panny Plasma's)

Toshiba 5980

Samsung HD 941


Anyone have any experience with these players and could recommend one over the other - or any other players in that range that might outperform these???


Thanks for your help
Larry,


I didn't see the OPPO 971 on your list. I realize it's DVI rather than HDMI, but you can get an optional DVI-HDMI cable (for free at least one of the suppliers), and it's in the price range youre looking at.


I can't say if it's a match for your tv though, since I have it ging to a a TOSH, 65HX93 CRT-RP. Perhaps another OPPO owner could that has a Panny Plasma could advise.


Rick
 

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I would be a little wary of a Faroudja DVD player paired with a Panny plasma due to MB potential. The Sony S975, Tosh 5980, or Samsung 850 or 950 might be your best bet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillP
I would be a little wary of a Faroudja DVD player paired with a Panny plasma due to MB potential. The Sony S975, Tosh 5980, or Samsung 850 or 950 might be your best bet.


From what I've been able to find on this site and DVD Benchmarks links - the Panny S77 probably isn't the best match for the Panny Plasma due to the tendencies for Marcroblocking - looks like the Oppo player incorporates the same chip technology.


I guess that would only leave the Toshiba 5980 or Samsung 850 & 950.........either of these better than the other or is it a toss up?


Thanks again for the input
 

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You may want to check the plasma and lcd threads if you are looking for tv specific info. Otherwise I would go with the Samsung. I have the samsung hooked up to a 60xs955 and the picture looks wonderful.
 

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crazylarry,


I got a TH-37PX50U a couple weeks ago. I picked up a Samsung 850 and a Panasonic S97S to demo. I too heard about the macroblocking enhancement on the Panny plasmas but with the S97S (build date Jan 2005, firmware 540) I don't notice it. A couple times I think I see it but check it on another player (the 850 and my PC) and see it is there so I blame the source, the DVD. The S97S may enhance it slightly, but not enough to bug me or make it "unwatchable".


So my advice would be try out the S77 (if you can) and see if it works for you. I am not happy with the PQ I get from the HD850 when compared to the S97S. I am also told that I should have my screen calibrated using Avia before looking for macroblocking. I'll be doing that tonight, but if I don't start seeing issues then I'll probably be keeping the S97S.


Good luck.


TZ
 

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I am using Marantz 7600 with my Panny plasma. The pictue is pristine except a minor problem when on progressive mode. I can't say more now, otherwise the Denon pressure group will be rolling over my head.


Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy_larry
Anyone had success using any other players with their Panasonic Plasma?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ac388
... the Denon pressure group will be rolling over my head.
Now now, trying to be civil. :)


But now that you mention it, how about the Denon 1920? It might be a bit higher than your proposed budget, but has good audio quality including SACD capability. Has the 2301 chip, so the Macroblock artifacts might be less pronounced. Anyone tried this combo?
 

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Although I like my Denon, many have written they are not good matches with Panny plasmas. The 1920 reportedly has less MB than many other Faroudja players, but it has not been eliminated (we need to wait for Faroudja to come out with a new non-MB chip). I think the Sony S975 is the way to go at the lower end, and the Pioneer 59ai or Onkyo SP1000 at the high end.
 

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I'm running a Panny S77 on my Panny pdp (PX500). MB is a near non-issue for me. I typically see it for perhaps 10-30 seconds during an entire movie. During this time it's pretty understated. I must emphsize that proper brightness calibration is key. Also ran a Sony 975 which broke after 2 movies, but had excellent PQ. The S77 and 975 are about equal in PQ to my eyes (though I admittedly never did a side by side). Others have found the S77 PQ to be better (sharper with richer colors) in side by side comparos. The S77 is more reliable and tweakable so I'm sticking w/ it. The 59avi or the upcoming Sony NS90 (assuming it's more reliable) are the only other players I'd recommend.
 

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I bought and demo'd the Toshiba 5980 for a few days ... I have a new Panny 50" plasma but forget which exact model.


In a head to head comparison of the Tosh vs, and older Phillips model (progressive, but not upconverting) (I used "Incredbles" as a test video) :


1. Phillips in component connected 780, had much better gradation of tone across color ranges and while the picture was softer, it wasn't blurry.


2. Toshiba connected by HDMI had a noticable harshness to the picture, and halo-ing at the edges of figures. I didn't notice any macro-blocking. When the contrast was lowered (a long ways) this halo-ing almost disappeared. However, the gradations of skin tones and colors was never good with the Toshiba.


I packed it back up and I'm still shopping.


I tried an LG model just to see if the chipset made a difference, and I couldn't even get the LG model to communicate well with the Panny display. It didn't even get a video test after black came up as purple/green ... The box didn't even cool down in my livingroom before it was back to the store.


I'm still shopping and debating the similar purchase you are


Sammy 841 or 950 series (though there are other consumer reviews (bizrate, amazon) that claim no real "upconversion" seen with the 840 -- this could just be poor setup and tuning)


Panny s77 (worried about macroblocking)


Denon seems too pricey for what you get at difference levels.


I'd like to buy it locally so I can return it and do so quickly !


My 2 cents.
 

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How is the Panny S77 at progressive scanning. I have a component only DTV, and so far I have tried Sammy HD850, HD841, Zenith DVB318 and Onkyo DVS302. Out of all of these, the 318 had the best picture via component at 1080i. The 841 was at the bottom end, PQ wise. The S77 has better audio, but I'm hoping the PQ is better on Progressive then the Sammy 841 was at Upconverting.
 
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