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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 4:53 pm 
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Oh, I see. I ought to learn how to read things correctly. Sorry about that.

Has anyone here tried these cheap Pioneer players? I recently got a region-free DV-578 universal player. I must say, for a $120, I'm VERY impressed with this thing's redbook playback quality, which is about 10 times better than something at that price point has any right to be. It's wicked good. Not many players that cheap use Burr Brown chips. Yeah, it also plays obsolete formats like SACD and DVD-A, but I don't really care about those. I haven't explored its multi-channel and bass management features yet. My shortlived experiments with multi-channel setups proved to be too frustrating. There has GOT TO BE a better way to implement proper bass management.

Krab, do you find the MCACC feature in the Pioneer amps to be useful at all?

[These Pioneers had some issues with DVD-A playback, but if you get a September 2004 or later build with the 2.05 firmware, you're all set. I know I'm veering off topic here, but I just wanted to point out that the cheaper Pioneer A/V gear gives you a lot of bang for the buck, more than any other brand out there. No HDCD, though!]

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 5:31 pm 
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Not exactly "cheap," but I had a Pioneer DV-45 for a while. Great DACs, but it was glitchy. Every now and then, it would lock up hard in the middle of DVDs for no apparent reason. (It seemed to especially dislike WB TV DVDs.) The failures were reproducible on the Pioneer, but not anywhere else.

I also have a Pioneer DVL-700 (the original DVD/LD "combiplayer"), which does similar things. I still use it as an LD player, for which it's a jewel. But between those two, I'm leery of Pioneer DVD decks.

Still, $120 for name-brand multi-region? Can't really complain about that.

Ryan

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 6:52 pm 
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From the forums I've studied, it seems that it took Pioneer a while to work out their firmware issues. So far, the Pioneer has played everything I've thrown at it flawlessly. The reason I got this thing was for the quality of its PAL > NTSC conversion, which is one of the best I've seen, period.

I was just pleasantly shocked to hear how good it is as an audio player. I didn't expect that at all. I'm not saying it's the greatest, but it more than holds its own against my beloved Pioneer Elite PD65 (still my favorite player of all time). The analog stage on the DV-578 is also equally impressive for such an affordable machine.

I haven't tried the multi-channel stuff on it yet (which was the original point of the thread, after all), so I can't say how well it handles that.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 11:56 am 
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Crummy Old Label Avatar wrote:
Oh, I see. I ought to learn how to read things correctly. Sorry about that.

Has anyone here tried these cheap Pioneer players? I recently got a region-free DV-578 universal player. I must say, for a $120, I'm VERY impressed with this thing's redbook playback quality, which is about 10 times better than something at that price point has any right to be. It's wicked good. Not many players that cheap use Burr Brown chips. Yeah, it also plays obsolete formats like SACD and DVD-A, but I don't really care about those. I haven't explored its multi-channel and bass management features yet. My shortlived experiments with multi-channel setups proved to be too frustrating. There has GOT TO BE a better way to implement proper bass management.

Krab, do you find the MCACC feature in the Pioneer amps to be useful at all?



'Useful' is an understatement. Room correction is the wave of the future. Most people (including me) are too cheap/ignorant to employ acoustical treatments for a room (I use a little, plan to build more) . Digital room correction is the next best thing.

As for the rest, almost every uni-player I've read about has some issue wiht some disc or format. I never had the problems with my DV-45a that Rspaight had , though the model definitely has its quirks. I don't see much downside in getting one of the cheaper ones, so long as you know what you're getting in terms of bass management, crossover slopes, time alignment etc. Bass mgmt issues can generally be solved by spending another $200 or less on an ICBM box from Outlaw Audio. Of course that entails another six RCA connections.

Personally, the *sole* criterion I used in my latest uni-player was that it have ilink connectivity. One link to rule them all, one link to bind them.
The Yammy however, being built around a Phillips DVD core, has THE SLOWEST disc loading I've ever seen. Pas mal. On the upside, I've foudn apossible hack to make it region-free -- now if I can just get my hands on a non-region-1 disc to test it...

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 11:20 pm 
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Rspaight wrote:
I also have a Pioneer DVL-700 (the original DVD/LD "combiplayer"), which does similar things. I still use it as an LD player, for which it's a jewel.



Ryan,

Not meaning to stray off subject, but tell me more about the LD side of the DVL-700 from a picture quality standpoint. Luminance S/N, chroma noise, sharpness, etc - with respect to the obvious limitations of the format. Is it a relatively "clean" picture?

I'm thinking of transferring over some of my LD's (currently using a Panasonic LX-900 and a Pioneer V4400 Industrial) and am always interested in hearing about other players.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:59 am 
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I have a limited amount of first hand experience with LD players, since I was the only one in my circle of friends who was geeky/media-obsessed/gullible enough to buy into the format. I've owned only two -- a circa-1988 Magnavox and this Pioneer. The Pioneer walks all over the Magnavox, but that's not saying much. (The Magnavox doesn't even have S-video.)

My own impression in that limited context is that the Pioneer does well. The picture is indeed clean -- good sources (the Star Wars SE box, the Criterion 2001) look crisp and clear. Blacks are solid and the colors are strong without much chroma noise at all. As far as sharpness goes, LD sources are all over the map, as I'm sure you know (some look worse than VHS), but on a good disc (again, the Star Wars SE box is one of the best I've seen) it's quite good indeed, getting within shouting distance of a non-anamorphic DVD.

From the reviews I've read, the DVL-700 is outclassed by the Elite players, but was a good example of the non-Elite line of mid-90s Pioneers. Here's a review that thinks it's the best thing since sliced bread:

http://www.oz.net/blam/LaserDisc/DVL-700.htm

Others I've read were less impressed, but still thought it was at least a competent LD deck.

Ryan

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:24 pm 
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I've tried several LD players (all Pioneer) and the best one by far is the CLD-D704. I have a Mitsubishi M-V7057, which is a rebadged 704. The image quality is excellent and it has adjustable DVR circuitry if you want to tweak anything. On top of that, it switches sides automatically and has optical and RF outputs.

The only other LD player I've seen that comes close is the Pioneer LD-V8000, their top-of-the-line industrial model. Its lack of convenience features, however, is a major downside.

My Mitsu is just sitting in a closet right now. I've liquidated 95% of my LD's, save the few that aren't available on DVD (the Criterion Blade Runner, etc.). If I ever get around to transferring those to DVD, I'll probably just dump it on eBay. I didn't even bother to sell the 8000, just dropped it off at Goodwill.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:16 pm 
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Ess Ay Cee Dee wrote:
The only other LD player I've seen that comes close is the Pioneer LD-V8000, their top-of-the-line industrial model. Its lack of convenience features, however, is a major downside.



I had a V8000 and sold it too. I thought the picture was very good, but thought I liked the look of my LX-900 a tiny bit better. Also, on the 8000 I had, it took forever to load a disc - about 25 seconds. I thought maybe it was the unit, but someone on the newsgroups complained about it as well. A couple of things I liked about the 8000 was that it was one of the few players that did a true field freeze (switchable on the hidden menu). The Drop Out Compensator, also switchable from the hidden menu, seemed to work well too.

My Panasonic LX-900 seems to be compared to the CLD-703 quite a lot. In fact, Runco used the the transport of the 900 when they made the only player ever to be THX certified. The 900 also has a three stage (luminance only) DVNR circuit, which I find particularly useless. It tends to make everything look worse, regardless of the source.

I'd still like to take a look at a 703 at some point. I really have no use for AC-3...so the CLD-D704 wouldn't be necessary for me.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:41 pm 
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Yeah, the CLD-D703/4 is supposed to be the best thing Pioneer ever made (with the possible exception of the 70s SX receivers :)). I've heard nothing but good things about those.

Ryan

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:51 pm 
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The CLD-D604 is pretty nice, too.


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