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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All,

I'm thinking of purchasing a laser disc and a large number of LD's to fill out my HT experience. As I know zip (or less) about LD's, I thought I'd look here for help. Here's what I need to know....

1. What models of LD players should I consider....I'd rather pay a reasonable amount for a decent player than an el-cheapo one. Are there any features that are indespensible on a good player?


2. What can I expect to pay for a player?


3. Where is the best place to find discs at a reasonable price (besides here)?


4. What type of results can I expect on my 8ft wide screen (LCD projector)...as in better or worse than satellite / dvd / vhs?


5. Oh yeah...one more thing...what is "CAV"?


Thanks so much for your help.

Greg
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Gregoire
Hello All,

I'm thinking of purchasing a laser disc and a large number of LD's to fill out my HT experience. As I know zip (or less) about LD's, I thought I'd look here for help. Here's what I need to know....

1. What models of LD players should I consider....I'd rather pay a reasonable amount for a decent player than an el-cheapo one. Are there any features that are indespensible on a good player?


2. What can I expect to pay for a player?


3. Where is the best place to find discs at a reasonable price (besides here)?


4. What type of results can I expect on my 8ft wide screen (LCD projector)...as in better or worse than satellite / dvd / vhs?


5. Oh yeah...one more thing...what is "CAV"?


Thanks so much for your help.

Greg
Hmmmm I'll take a crack at this. IMO if you don't have any LD s/w I wouldn't do this unless you can pick up the LD titles for a reasonable rate and that those titles are not available on DVD.


1. I own a Pioneer LD 704 - had one major problem with the eject mechnism. Otherwise a decent unit. The Pioneer Elite stuff seems to be built like tanks but I could never afford the stuff. I would look for digital coax or optical out for audio. It would be nice if you had AC-3 out as well assuming you have the s/w that supports it. You may need and RF AC-3 modulator as well (this is an option usually)


2. I would check the classifieds here and at places like Audiogon and Ebay


3. ebay, Amazon and local video stores that are blowing them out.


4. In terms of PQ not as good to DVD (especially with HTPC or good scaler). I would say comparable to satellite - much better then standard VHS. My CRT / 8 ft screen setup is not quite up yet so my comparisons are on a direct view TV using the svideo outputs from my LD, DVD, Satellite and SVHS VCR.


5. From my recollection, most LDs are usually recorded in CLV or Constant Linear Velocity where they LD spins faster towards the material near the centre and slower for the data/material towards the edges to maintain a CLV. One side of LD can hold up to 1 hour recorded in CLV.


CAV is Constant Angular Velocity so the LD is spinning at the same speed regardless of where the material is. With CAV only 30 minutes can be stored on one side but the picture quality is supposed to be better - can't remember the reasoning.


Just be aware with LD, your movie, concert video etc will be interrupted so you (or the player) can flip or change the LD to play the rest of the material out. Also to pickup new titles on LD - generally it is more expensive than the same title on DVD. Don't want to discourage you from picking up a LD - just be aware of its limitations and the supply and demand for the s/w.
 

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I think the PQ varies. Its almost equivalent to satellit feed or a VHS copy from DVD.
 

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I highly recommend reading this FAQ:

http://www.mindspring.com/~jzyber/askjosh.htm


Not only does it contain a great deal of other information you may find helpful, it contains a fairly good list of the good laserdisc players. I myself have a CLD-504, which is perfectly fine. It lacks, however, the digital noise reduction that I consider to be the most important perk. After I got a DVD player I took my LD player in for servicing -- there was nothing wrong with it; I just really noticed the chroma noise for the first time. Resolution of laserdisc is excellent -- I think it's somewhere between DSS and DVD. I would describe it as being very, very similar to S-VHS -- that is, twice as sharp as a VHS tape but still subject to some color blurring in the blues.


Another good source of data (though no longer maintained) is:

http://www.cs.tut.fi/~leopold/Ld/FAQ/


eBay is a fine place to see the current prices for players. Expect to pay $250 and up for a player worth having at this point.


Finally, CAV wasn't really intended to confer better image quality -- although it was apparently 4% better, as I recall. The real point was that CAV discs can be freeze-framed by any player. The CLV discs can only be freeze-framed by the high-end laserdisc players with digital field memory. For that benefit, you have to flip the disc twice as often.


Good luck! Being a laserdisc owner is something of a heartbreaking affair these days.
 

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The best LD player is the HLD-X9. On well mastered discs, it will provide an image every bit as good as DVD (often better). Unlike other players, it uses the same laser as DVD. Sharp image, no chroma noise, the best 3D Y/C available. It also plays High-Def lasers (MUSE). BUT...it is very expensive. Approx $2500 imported.


While the US players (using the older laser) don't quite reach the same level, the best ones are the Pioneer CLD-99 and 97. (There is a MacIntosh player out there that is the same as the 97, but with Dolby Digital.) Other players will not perform as well, as indicated by Bluebear's comment regarding the 504.


If those players are unaffordable, that leaves the 704. One reason why so many believe that DVD is much better than LD is that LD playback is far more dependent on the actual player used than DVD is. Any lesser model than those mentioned will noteven come close to displaying the video image that LD is capable of providing.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Hank527
I think the PQ varies. Its almost equivalent to satellit feed or a VHS copy from DVD.
I VHS copy from DVD?? Well than you must have the worst LD player in history.:)

It's as Joel Clemons said!
 

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I have a pioneer elite CLD-99 a marantz and a panny. Blowing it up to 8ft wide none of them exhibit anything close to DVD. Of course with DVD I'm using SDI, but still LDs vary. On my Sony Wega 32" TV LDs come close to DVD @ 8ft its no contest DVD wins. A SVHS copy of a DVD looks better than the LD. The LDs overall picture is alot more dull than the SVHS and VHS copies. The overall resolution is greater. I prefere the color saturation DVD offers over LD and stand by my comments.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Hank527
I have a pioneer elite CLD-99 a marantz and a panny. Blowing it up to 8ft wide none of them exhibit anything close to DVD. Of course with DVD I'm using SDI, but still LDs vary. On my Sony Wega 32" TV LDs come close to DVD @ 8ft its no contest DVD wins. A SVHS copy of a DVD looks better than the LD. The LDs overall picture is alot more dull than the SVHS and VHS copies. The overall resolution is greater. I prefere the color saturation DVD offers over LD and stand by my comments.
And I think that my HLD-X9 on a 6ft wide screen with 7" Barco CRT is as good as non-16x9, some times better!

Ep 1 is to my eyes better on LD than the R1 DVD. The color saturation on the LD is vastly better IMO. I also think the contrast is better on the LD. The DVD is only having a little better resolution (16x9 vs LB) but in my eyes the LD is the winner. And the sound... :D


And I still can't understand that you think you get better picture of a s-vhs copy than LD...But that's what you think.
 

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S-VHS never has the colour of LD....!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, I'm intrigued......just bought a bunch of LD's on e-bay to play with......now what I need is a player.....and from what I've read it DOES make quite a difference in playback depending on the individual player model....correct?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Gregoire
Well, I'm intrigued......just bought a bunch of LD's on e-bay to play with......now what I need is a player.....and from what I've read it DOES make quite a difference in playback depending on the individual player model....correct?


Yes, that I think we all agree on. The difference between lower end players and higher ones is rather big, much bigger than between DVD's.

So please get one for as much I you think you can spend and if you get the "LD bug" and buy alot of movies you can always get a better player.
 
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