Excellent Dvd Player. What I love is that it can play every format possible. (with the exception of jpeg cd's) Right now im using its optical out put to my reciever, and, one analog to the tv, and the other to the reciever (the analog to the reciever because SACD's can't be played from the digital because of protective reasons, but thats in al players). it is hooked using component video and is nice and sharp. Top-of-the line model, and stil remains top of the line for 5-disc changer's.
OK, I gave this one a little time to percolate. I had to replace a Sony DVP-NC650V, which was having some page-changing problems and couldn't play the first 1/3 of one of my favorite CDs, so was relegated to the bedroom, replacing a Sony CDP-C75ES CD player. From some of the talk among 'philes here and there you'd think there actually was no DVD player that can handle CDs adequately, although many do well with SACDs. Well maybe that was true - until this thing came along. I actually stole this off a guy on eBay with the inent of reselling at a profit, but in checking it out I discovered that not only does it do dynamite work with SACDs, but it also does equal justice to redbook CDs through
our Sony DA777ES receiver and B&W DM600s3s in stereo. Yes, it is at least the equal of the old C75ES, which was, needless to say, quite good (and weighed nearly twice as much as this "throw-away"). Video? Outstanding! Brilliant, vivid, accurate and easy to look at picture, along with surround sound as good as the DA777 can dish out. (Haven't tried the player solo - why should I? I've got "the best receiver ever made" to play it through. Together they do magic with light and sound.
I purchased this DVD changer looking for a product to be comparable to my previous Denon DVD player. I studied the numbers and felt by the great ratings and impressive stats including SACD that I was going to find an exceptional buy. How disapointed I was, I have had many DVD players over the years and have a good idea what to expect. This player shocked me with the jagged edges and the poor picture, the carosel was slow and made a grumbling noise. On the plus side, the styling, in my opinion, is pleasing. I returned the player to J&R, which was a painless experience. Overall not a recomended player at any price. If you are finiky on pic quality and/or playing on a big screen skip this one and go with another brand, in my humble opinion.
I bought a Samsung DLP TV and had to replace my old Sony non-progressive DVD player. I wanted to get a Sony ES DVD player, but decided to wait until I can get one with DVI output, so I thought I'd buy a decent quality lower-end model.
I had originally bought an Onkyo DVCP701 and was sorely disappointed in the picture quality. So it took it back and bought the Sony. I'm very pleased with this machine. It does what it's intended to do, and does it very well.
The picture quality is outstanding, especially for a $200 player. I have it running through Acoustic Research component video cables. The picture is razor-sharp and shows no artifacts. You have to fiddle with the Dynamic setting a bit to get the best picture. I picked Dynamic 1, but I'm sure it's different for other TVs.
Sound quality for movies is incredible. Everything is very well-defined and spatial. Sound performance on CDs was lackluster. Everything sounded muted and dull, with little spatial quality. Everything seemed to be either left or right, with little discernable soundstage. Still, I have a dedicated CD player I can use for music. I haven't tried the unit with SACDs so I can't comment on that aspect.
Well I happened to be in Circuit City the other day looking at Cd's when I stumbled across this player. I had been wanting to do one of two things to my audio system of recent, improve upon my old Denon cd player, or get a SACD player. I've kept my eyes open in the past year or so for a cheap entry level SACD player. Visiting Best Buy routinely I noticed that they indeed did have a cheap SACD player. Unfortunately it was too cheap (a peace of crap Pioneer I think). When I saw the Sony I immediately got the itch.
Although I've only had this player running for less than a week, a couple of observations are necessary. It became apparent rather quickly that the performance from "Red book" Cd's was much improved upon my older Denon player. This consequently delayed my listening to SACD's for a while. One doesn't have to look too far to see why the Sony outperforms the Denon in CD playback: 24 bit/192 kHz DAC vs. 16 bit/ 44.1 kHz DAC. When you get right down to it, it's ultimately the DAC that determines your sound. Not Chokes or after-market power cords or ridiculous power supplies or fancy glass epoxy boards or any of that. That may help some, but it's really a case of pyschoacoustics. If you really want to spend a lot of money in a cd player, buy a $250-400 one every two years or whatever time frame that coincides with the release of a new chip architecture. You'll be happy you went with sound engineering.
Next up in this player's performance is DVD video (obviously Sony can't support a competing format in DVD-audio). I wasn't really interested in using this player as a DVD player when I bought it, but it actually performs very well in this category too. Again, a 12 bit/108 MHz video DAC can do wonders as well. Anyone still wonder why just about any computer with a pentium 4 is better than the most expensive computer one could put together based around a pentium 3 chip? The only thing that is bothersome about the Sony in DVD play is it's lack of a 2 MB buffer system on layer change. It would have been nice but I can live without it. The picture is very good, and like other reviewers, I choose to use an outboard processor for the surround sound.
Finally, the reason why I bought this player (at least I think it's why), SACD! My first foray into SACD came curtosy Pink Floyd's DSOTM. I was kind of skeptical at the onset of surround sound technology about how I would like my music broken up and scattered around me. Of course, SACD also supports strictly 2 channel stereo modes. This was how I listened to the Floyd disk first.
To say that I was shocked would be an understatement. The detail (across the whole frequency spectrum) is amazing. Bass slam, timbre accuracy, resolution, high frequency detail without fatigue, intimacy of every nuance. And did I mention Bass slam? My sub has never sounded so tight and in phase.
How did multichannel listening sound? Just as good. DSOTM's "Time" track is probably the penultimate for this format. I can't conceive that it would get much better than this. I'm sure I will be proven wrong though.
Consider me Sony's number one fan on their DSD's 1 bit 2.822 MHz sampling rate (64 times that of CD). For those of you who haven't heard it, do yourself a favor and try a SACD machine. Just make sure you pick a good piece of software. Aerosmith's copies are a big pile of marketing crap.
I hope to see more rock titles released in the future in SACD (there's currently around 700 plus Classical and Jazz titles available). And I also think SACD will soundly trump DVD-audio. The engineering is just better (although one could raise the point as to when that has ever mattered; think DAT vs. cassette tapes).
Now for the cosmetics. The player has a nice build quality. Good heft even with a plastic front panel. I do like the bright blue and white lights on the front detailing SACD/mulichannel/progressive scan, although they can be dimmed. There are no gold plated contacts though, although I don't think that really detracts much. The player operates smoothly (something my Denon never really did) and quickly. The one thing that would be nice is a lit remote, but I can't understand how Sony is selling this machine for $250 to begin with, so I guess they had to cut costs somewhere. Speaking of which, I'm pretty sure they are LOSING money on this machine. But I guess they figure by pushing the SACD software and hopefully establishing a market share, they'll reap the benefits of another 20 year patent.
For those of you who think spending thousands of dollars on digital gear is worth it, do yourself a favor and stow that cash with the purchase of this machine. If you really have to dump G's of cash on stereo gear, buy more expensive speakers or amps. Which is about the only thing the actual cost/benefit ratio strictly applies.