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OPPO DV-970 Universal DVD/SACD Player

Oppo 970 HD

“A better mousetrap catches more mice, and the designers at OPPO seem to have started with that premise in this product’s development. The DV-970HD catches more design goals in its brief than most of its competitors, ranging from high quality multichannel audio to upsampled video from DVDs, with a surprising number of added features in between, both audio and video.”

SIM2 Seleco HT300 E-Link 720p DLP Video Projector

Sim2 Domino 30 DLP Projector

“I started watching with input 9 (you turn on the projector by pressing the appropriate input; it then warms up for a minute or two, the picture appears, and then becomes brighter over a period of several minutes as the lamp is gradually brought to full illumination, a process that takes time, but also helps realize the 8000-hour estimated bulb life. This is an important concern when projector bulb survival rates are often mired in the 2000-hour range…”

SIM2 Domino 30 DLP Video Projector

Sim2 Domino 30 DLP Projector

“DLP projectors are getting better with each new generation of chips from DLP’s inventor, Texas Instruments. The Domino 30 uses the most recent, with 1280 x 720 pixel resolution, which is native 720p. High resolution optics are employed with motorized zoom and focus adjustments. The projector bulb is said to have a service life of 6000 hours or more…”

Benq PE8700 DLP Video Projector

Benq PE 8700 DLP Projector

“A new name in the A/V firmamant, BenQ claims to be the 3d largest manufacturer of LCD panels in the world, and has come into Canada as a subsidiary of BenQ America Corp., and the parent company has manufacturing plants in Malaysia, Mexico, China, and Taiwan. The product presented here, however, is a projector that, like the SIM2 Domino 30, uses the newest HD2 Mustang 720p DLP engine…”

ISF for HDTV - Andrew Marshall on ISF calibration

ISF logo

“Some of us thought that HDTV sets would come ready to make the best of all images, and I assumed this when I acquired my 64″ Pioneer Elite PRO-710HD rear-projection TV a year or more ago. It has been superseded by newer, less expensive models in the same size, as HD prices have rapidly come down. The buzz these days is around the larger plasma sets (up to 60″), which can be hung on a wall…”

Pioneer Elite PRO-910 HD Plasma Display and Media Receiver

Pioneer Elite Pro-910 HD Plasma Display

“The PRO-910HD is the first Pioneer plasma in our experience to come with an outboard controller/tuner box, with ATSC digital tuner, as well as VHF/UHF reception. It also handles cable or satellite digital services. Connection to the display is via a single output that Pioneer calls their iLink (an IEEE 1394 “Firewire”) cable. However, the RO4U media receiver/processor has numerous inputs on both front and rear panels…”

NAD L 70 DVD Player/Receiver

NAD L-70 DVD Receiver

“This new receiver is striking right out of the box because it abandons the traditional and conservative NAD style that has changed little over the years, 30 in all. According to a white paper issued by the company, “Because the L70 is a DVD receiver, some people might be tempted to try to squeeze it into the rather crowded `Home-Theatre-in-a- Box’ category…”

LG Electronics RD-JT41 Video Projector

LG-JT41 Video Projector

“The attraction of front projectors is undeniable: they are compact, can be set up quickly (if they are DLP or LCD types), and do not dominate a room. The market for these as presentation devices (your “Powerpoint partner”) has opened up an even bigger market for more affordable home theatre display devices. The first of these reviewed in these pages came from Epson (Summer/Fall 2002, Vol. 21 #2), the TW100 LCD type…”

Bryston SP 1.7 A/V Processor / Preamp and SPV 1 Video Switcher

Bryston SP 1.7 Surround Processor/Preamp

“Like many manufacturers, Bryston has quickly moved to update its SP1 (Spring 2001, Vol. 20 #2) home theatre processor to accommodate the new surround formats and processing options, including Dolby Pro Logic II (Film & Music), DTS NEO:6, and THX Surround EX. There are also these DSP listening modes: Stereo5, Party, Hall, Stadium, Club, Theatre, Church, and Natural; in my view, all but the last of these should be ignored…”

SIM2 Seleco Grand Cinema HT300 DLP Video Projector

Sim2 HT-300

“It could be said that this new projector is a truly international product (at a truly international price, too), in that much of its technology comes from the US and it’s manufactured in Italy. It features the new Texas Instruments HD-1 Digital Micromirror Device 16:9 (1280 x 720 pixels) DLP chip to support 720p resolution, and uses the increasingly popular Faroudja/Sage DCDi chipset for deinterlacing and video enhancement…”

Pioneer Elite Pro-1000HD 50 inch Plasma Display

Pioneer Elite PRO-1000HD

“The Elite PRO-1000HD is either the third or fourth generation plasma model from Pioneer, and incorporates all the improvements they’ve made to this technology. Most of these are in the areas of resolution and motion artifacts, both serious considerations with fixed pixel displays. In the past, plasma sets have tended to work best when a scaler or line doubler is between the video source and the display to provide compensation for artifacts, and provide the exact resolution that works best with the particular display…”

Marantz DV-12S1 DVD-A/V Player and SR 8200 Receiver

Marantz DV-12S1 DVD-A/V Player

“Marantz is unique, as far as I know, in offering both SACD and DVD-A players, the DV-12S1 and the SA-12S1. Both play video DVDs, but unlike Pioneer’s Elite DV-47a neither will play both digital audio formats. Instead of a universal player, here we have not-quite-identical twins..”

Pioneer Elite DV-AX10 DVD-Audio/Video Player

Pioneer DVD-AX10

“I reviewed this DVD-A player in the Winter of 2000 (Vol. 19 #3), and had some high praise for the sound quality of the DV-AX10 heard through its companion C-AX10 digital preamplifier. However, that early sample had no analog output, and recognized but did not output sound from SACDs. Well, now we have the production model of the AX10, and it’s impressive not only as an audio player, but as a video one…”

Arcam FMJ DV27 Progressive Scan DVD Player

Arcam FMJ DV-27 DVD Player

“Last spring I spent some time with Arcam’s Diva DV88 DVD player (Spring 2001, Vol. 20 #2), and was impressed by its S video output, but less so by its non-progressive component output picture. Now we have in front of us the FMJ range player with progressive scan output, which is said to offer superior audio performance as well. It plays CD-Rs, Video CDs, and “some MP3 audio files”, according to the manual, as well as decoding HDCDs…”

NAD/PSB Alpha Home Theater System

PSB Alpha C

“Here’s a system designed and assembled in Canada, though the origins of the components lie far to the east. Since being bought by Lenbrook Industries, NAD has done all product development at its international headquarters in Pickering, Ontario, while PSB loudspeakers are designed by founder Paul Barton and his team in the same facility…”

Pioneer Elite PRO-710 HD 64 inch Rear Projection TV

Pioneer Elite HT Pro 710

“My wife didn’t buy it, but for the last year or more I’ve felt handicapped in reviewing the latest video gear because I didn’t have a high resolution digital television. That meant no component inputs, no progressive scan capability, and limited resolution in image display. OK, work with me on this…I needed a newer, bigger, better video centrepiece…”

Seleco SIM2 Multimedia HT 200 DLP Projector

Seleco HT-200

“A single-chip DLP display device, the HT-200 is specified at 800 X 600 pixels, or 480,000 overall, about half the normally agreed threshold for high definition performance. The more expensive HT-250 claims 1024 X 768 for 786,432 total pixels, getting closer to HD resolution. Both are single-chip DLP (Digital Light Processing) projectors, and this means that the primary colours are separated by a colour wheel, which turns at high speed…”

Arcam Diva AVR100 Dolby Digital/DTS A/V Receiver and DV 88 DVD Player

Arcam AVR 100 A/V Receiver

“Things get complicated. Especially home theater receivers. I recently gave up in frustration on an HT receiver review because I simply could not make it work! And I’m the guy who takes pride in never having to read the manual…hey, I’m a reviewer, I know how these things work, trust me.

TEAC Reference DV-H550 DVD Player and AG-H550 Receiver

TEAC DV-H550

“The newest additions to the small and cute TEAC Reference Series, the DV-H550 and AG-H550 bring compactness to full-featured home theatre. The former plays DVD, CD, CD-R/RW, Video CD, and MP3 discs, and has 96/24 stereo DACs, as well as outputting Dolby Digital and DTS. It uses 10-bit, 27 MHz video DACs, and has a digital picture zoom function, and has composite, S, and component video outputs…”

Toshiba SD4109X 6-Disc DVD Player

Toshiba SD4109X 6-Disc DVD Player

“This is the DVD player with both the kitchen sink and the dishwasher. A look at the feature list reveals a plethora of plenitude: 6-disc carousel play, built-in Dolby Digital decoding, 24/96 and HDCD play, Spatializer virtual surround, DTS digital output, and jitter reduction circuitry. And those are just the audio features…”


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