How are you connecting your DVD player to your TV; RCA Jacks, S Video, composite video or HDMI cable? It may be your connection.
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Doubt its adaptor, I run the same set-up in one system and have no issues. If there is a reset featute on DVD try that and see if it infact has the extensive picture adjustment menus that alot of the better players have. My Lexicon for example has more adjustments for picture than both HD monitors I have plus Projector, it could be a black level filters setting or overall adjusted really dark.
HDMI to DVI converter will always result in sub optimal quality. Although the signal is compatible between HDMI and DVI the color space is not. In most cases you would see crush in extreme white or black scenes. But your problem sounds more serious than that. Sometimes you get better result using component video (three RCA wires). If your DVD player supports component video, you might want to try that instead.
Thanks for all the suggestions so far. I I checked the menus and these are the video adjustments:Video Adjust Functions:
Sharpness/Brightness/Contrast/Gamma/Hue/Chroma Level Control
any further thoughts always appreciated. I must say forgetting fit n finish build quality, visually thus far my prior basic oppo blew this thing out of the water....