? about oppo

what is all the hype about, are they really that good? and if so , why would anybody buy a thousand dollar player? has anyone used one with powered speakers? if so , which ones? thanks doing research on a small system to do video and music in a 10 by 10 room...
Here is a review from Enjoy The Music on the DV971H: Sonically the Oppo's digital output is on par with my older Toshiba SD-9200 and SD-3109 players. It doesn't begin to compare with the Lexicon RT-20, Meridian 598, or Meridian 800. On CD's it's dimensionally flat, musically uninvolving, and harmonically threadbare. Audiophiles will not find the DV971H's digital outputs adequate for critical music listening. DVD's sound OK, and although everything is there, the sound doesn't have quite as much dynamic acuity and spatial detail as with the Lexicon or Meridian players. Its analog audio output is even more pedestrian. Even lateral imaging is barely adequate. Audio is just not the Oppo DV971H's forte.

I heard the 983 and felt no big deal. The core of the reviews is "for the money". If funds are that limited, I suggest save up a bit and buy something used here on audiogon. Please don;t mistake the oppo for high end sound. As for the picture, it's a 1080P age, guys.
Cerrot the 971 was HORRIBLE on audio, and was decent picture at the time like 5 years ago... The newer Oppos blow them away as transports. The 980 for 160 dollars cannot be touched transport or video wise for the money.
Here's the deal with these bargain basement DVD players, that offer otherwise very good DAC's and processing for standard pcm, and better for DVDA and SACD playback: Basically, you get what and have suggested for audio playback - a bit limited dynamics, constricted sound, not so musical, sweet, and full bodied sounding, and maybe lacking some extension and air. Overall, the sound is not as refined as what's out there, if you're after the ultimate sonic experience from your investment.
On a more "goal oriented" note, I've found that passive speaker systems in general offer somewhat limited dynamic expression and tranparancy, to offer a sense of "true realism", if lacking speed, impact and dynamic contrast overall. Using equipment that's dynamically challenged, simply moves one away from "the goal", if the highest sonics possible is what one is trying to attain from their system. (building a high performance system is like tweaking a race car. Better parts, more knowledge, and a heck of a lot of tweaking and patience will ultimately yeild you a better race car)
Back on task. Overall, however, compared to the digital processing from 10+ years ago, these bargain DVD units are simply supberb!...specially SACD and DVDA playback from these units.
I myself had been using an old Panasonic DVDA-310 from 10 years ago, which was a world beater for a DVD/CD player, retailing at $699 when they came out - reviewed as "better than Levinson Separates, at at that time by Absolute Sound (May '98 issue). I have been very happy with it for CD and DVD music for years. Simply superb! And yet this player, like the Oppo's being mentioned here, still aren't perfect units by any means.
The better quality transports and DAC combo's also offer what and are hinting at, specifically much more accurate dynamics and dynamic contrast, overall weight and speed to the sound, better air and delicacy, more body and richness to the sound, soundstaging, etc!
That's not to say the budget players with the advanced digital processing are not good, they are simply outclassed on a purist level, if you have the money to invest in "the best!".
For budget conscious, yes, you will do very well with what these units are offering - however a good digital connecition from some from some of the better transports and DVD units out there likely can do as good or better of a job connected digitally to an outboard pre/pro or processor for digital playback!(processing in the outboard receiver, pre or processor). As standalone units, they can, yes, be mod'ed, for even better results. But then that gets you closer to the more expensive units out there. And, I suspect something like a used SACD player from Sony would still beat it in all areas of audio playback for the same money. So consider (all those looking for sonoic nirvana for $100 or so)
Basically, you get a whole lot for a little -relatively speaking - from these affordable digital units these days. You simply get more when you spend "significantly more" with better transports and standalone processors, IMO.
But, shopping on the net for used can save you even more, and give you more options.
I guess, like those above, it's probably more truthful to inform those seaking the highest end sound they can budget, that spending $160 on a DVD player won't "get you all the way there". That said, shopping for better quality "separates" is still not easily thrown aside from some miracle budget piece made in some country where there might not be any running water...so consider.
Would I still buy an Oppo myself? Sure! I'd probably have it moded, even use it just for DVD playback and upscaling (and thus DD/DTS digital out). But I'd still likely end up with better CD separates, SACD players and other, if I was really into higher end sound - and I am.
"IT'S ALL GOOD! Some's just better than others..."

I'm pretty much in complete agreement with you. In a highly resolving system, the sonic attributes of a high quality dedicated music player will usually be pretty obvious to a crtical listener.

However, in a moderate system, if you have a moderate budget or have limited shelf space, an Oppo might be the best choice.

And finally, concerning your comments about having an Oppo mod'd, I bought an Oppo 970H with level 2 mods by Ric Shultz at EVS (www.tweakaudio.com). It rendered my expensive dedicated CD player unnecessary as it was very close in sound quality for redbook playback, plus it played SACD, DVD and DVD-A. I was able to free up valuable shelf space and put about $2000 back into my audio slush fund.....


Ill add this. I just sold all my Ayre acoustics equipment(cx-7,k5xe,v-5xe). I now use a Anthem avm-30 and a PS3 transport with absolutely no sound loss. First let me say, I was going to keep my Ayre cx-7 cd player, but the truth is, I found absolutely nothing about it as a transport I liked better then the PS3. I tried and tried to hear a quality that made me choose the PS3, and I have a great ability to even hear tonal differences in the smallest bit. I actually thought the PS3 sounded a touch better. Now, some will say, I dont have the right speakers. Well, I own the lGacy focus 20/20's, a killer speaker, some paradigm signature series speakers, and a pair of Martin Logan Vantages. I compared this with all 3 sets. I did hear different tonal shades, but that was the only real difference. i also let others hear and decide. They actually heard NO difference at all. Litterally with a fast A/B comparison with the push of the button in the Anthems menu, they heard NOTHING. And let me say, anyone who doesnt find the Anthem AVM-30 to be a KIllER 2 channel performer is crazy.

What I am getting at, is I do believe qaulity is important. I think the no loss in sound qaulity mostly due to the Anthem/bryston sst setup I have in the mix. However, as a transport, the PS3 did as good as the 3k Ayre player in every regard. I am not saying the following statement to brag,but I am a musician. I sing,play saxophone by ear,play drums, and have spot on pitch that is extremely rare. I say this becuase, honestly if I cant hear a difference, chances are nobody really would. The only thing I picked up was slightly cleaner/brighter sound with the PS3 in place, and it was such a small amount, my ears could be playing tricks on me.

I think the new equipment comming out now, is so advanced, there is no need for new cost no object stuff. If a OPPO 983 can have the best picture available and everyone admitts to this part at least, there is no reason it cant do the same for sound. Thats just truth. The same high dollar stuff that people claim make video picture better has been proven wrong with the oppo 983, its only time till we see many more manufactures doing the same.

For the record my PS3 does not sound good using analog output into my Anthem, so as a transport is the only manner in which I am speaking.