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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,


Despite the news about the chroma bug in the 3800 and 9000, I decided to see for myself how the player performed. I got the player locally in California from GoodGuys at 10% off retail. Not a great deal, but with some doubt about the players performance I decided to play it safe and “pay†for the 30 day return privilege.


To jump straight to the chase, the player definitely has the chroma bug. In my opinion it is very noticeable. On my 92†screen, the corduroy pattern in the checker board on Toy Story was immediately evident from my normal viewing distance of 10 feet. I tried some other material with strong red/orange content and found the same effect. It was definitely not as bad as the “Bad†example on the Secrets website, but I was surprised by how evident it really was. To put this in perspective for those who might think I’m being overly critical, my wife easily noticed the effect when she passed by to look at my new toy. “What’s wrong with the red?†were her exact words.


I spent some time comparing the interlaced and progressive output. In general, the Silicon Image 504 does a great job. When the Denon was outputting interlaced video I used the doubler in my Sanyo PLV-60HT projector (a PixelWorks processor, I think). I generally preferred the Denon’s progressive output, but the Denon’s chroma bug was distracting on some scenes. I guess the chroma bug does not affect the interlaced output of the player as the effect was greatly reduced or removed when I fed the interlaced signal to the Sanyo. I may even consider using the Denon as an interlaced player with the line doubler that is built into the Sanyo.


I bought the player for its DVD-Audio capabilities as much for it’s video prowess. On the audio side the player generally fulfills my expectations for a $1K player. I won’t try to describe the sound as it is so subjective. The noise floor seemed to be sufficiently low to actually make use of the expanded resolution of DVD-Audio. Compared to conventional CD fare, I heard noticeable improvements in all the DVD-A discs I had on hand. Suffice it to say that I could live happily with the Denon as the primary source in an audio only system.


Also on the plus side is build quality. The play does FEEL substantial. I plan to have a look inside to see where the money went. The remote could be better, too may similar shaped buttons, no backlighting.


So I guess the $1K question is will I keep the player. As it stands, probably not. If the chroma bug were fixed, I would definitely keep the player. This is the first time seeing the chroma bug in my home theater and it sucks. I sure hope that Denon will be able to fix this problem. In my opinion, this is a great product with one irritating flaw.


Chris
 

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Quote:
I guess the chroma bug does not affect the interlaced output of the player as the effect was greatly reduced or removed when I fed the interlaced signal to the Sanyo.
It is still there, it is just that the Silicon Image is weaving the chroma together, which is maintaining the full vertical resolution while the PLV60 is using Sony's DRC, which is not weaving during motion. (Does not retain full vertical resolution.)


Chris,


Put Toy Story back in and change it from auto to video and see how much worse it can get. :)
 

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Well I have been waiting for this player for a while now and am truly dissapointed at the review. Well I guess I will just live with the 4800!

Too bad though...I thought that Denon was going to really make this player the best yet.
 

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This is a major disappointment. I was strongly considering the Denon 3800 vs. 9000, but I suspect I would be annoyed by this chroma bug.


Any suggestions for a top-notch DVD-DVD-audio player which has many of the features of these Denon models but without the dreaded chroma bug??
 

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Chris,

Thanks for the report.

By any chance have you another display device in the home to test out the chroma bug on a smaller television? I'm curious how much you notice the streaks on perhaps a CRT device.

TMG,

I know it's not a top notch player but the JVC-XV723 doesn't have the chroma bug.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi All,


I finally had the chance to take a look inside the player. All in all, seems like Denon has done a great job putting this thing together. There are a total of 6 circuit boards not including the smaller boards for the front display and remote control functions. One side has the video and audio boards stacked on top of another. The opposite side has a board for most of the power supply functions and a transformer. The center houses the drive with a circuit board beneath and two smaller boards in back. Overall the build quality is high, but I think most of the weight of the player comes from the extra sheets of metal attached to the top cover and bottom plate. See the attached image and sorry for the poor quality, it's late



One interesting thing I noticed was that the circuit board that contains the RS-232 port is connected via a ribbon cable to the control board and the video board with the Analog Devices Video D/A. I dont know how much I can read into this, but could this mean that the bug could be fixed with a software upgrade? I thought the 232 port was only remote system control and that there were no software upgradeable parts insde the 3800. Is this true?


sspears,

The problem is definitely a lot worse when I put the player in Video mode and watch the checkerboard scene from Toy Story. In the regions of the picture affected by the chroma bug, the interlaced signal (viewed as 480i or converted to 480p by the projector) does look better than the progressive output of the Denon


Capt RJ,

Unfortunately I don't have a TV with progressive inputs. I did try to improvise a little this evening by shrinking the screen size down as much as possible with the projector (ended up around 65", diagonally). It was better, but I can still notice the effect of the chroma bug. Based on my limited experience, I do think that Denon is right in classifying this as a mild case of the bug. On a 36 TV perhaps this wouldnt be such a big deal.


Except for the Chroma bug, I do like the player. Chroma bug aside, I have found on many DVDs that the Silicon Image chip outperforms the doubler in my projector. As I mentioned before, I also like the sound quality and construction of the player. If only Denon could fix that Chroma bug, this would be the one.


Chris
 
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