You may want to look at Toshiba stuff. They seem to be in game a while and their technology is right there... We have Toshiba, both in DVD and our wide screen TV. Great combo for us.
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Swampwalker: I have never used or owned a DVD player but am curious as to what you are using for you CD digital front end. The reason is that some very favorable posts are starting to come out on the new Sony 9000 DVD/CD player that sells new for approx. $1100.00 at this time. Have you considered selling what you have for both DVD and CD and putting the money into an all in one player? That is granted that the 9000 model would be an upgrade for your CD player as well as your DVD. I ended up adding a DAC to my system because it was less expensive and less hassle (sell/buy) but do like the concept of fewer boxes and IC's. I realize that this may end up being more money depending on the resale value of what you now have, but is just an idea if you feel that the Sony may upgrade both sources. Also if you are not in a hurry, the units may end up on the resale market soon as other models come out.
David, interesting, because I have been thinking just the other way - more boxes. Why? This technology is changing so fast, my theory anyway, is that maybe I don't have to spend as much if I only have to upgrade one piece and not the whole enchilada when a new chip comes out for one component, or something like that.
Who knows? I guess it depends if the system is HT only or combined and weighing out all the options (resale price, IC's, rack space, etc) it's a wacky hobby, eh?
Angela: I went through the same thought process when upgrading my digital front end and just decided that most of my source material is in standard format and that this format will still hold the biggest market share for many years to come. Other than SACD (with has very few titles that interest me - though I would love to have the option to play them as more come out which the 9000 and others would provide) I also suspect that there will be no leaps and bounds in this technology anytime soon. I don't know if my Bel Canto DAC can receive format updates in the future, but it sure sounds good at the present. I also figure the less cables the less confusion, though I can also see them (more cabes) being used to tailor a system's sound. The whole debate does really just go round and round and I decided to first focus on my present needs with my glimpse of the future coming in second. I love to plan ahead (to a fault) but for right now feel more comfortable living and listening in the present.
Dekay- My HT and 2 channel are separate in space and function. The DVD would be used with a Loewe Planus 16:9 which is VERY source dependent. Other components in HT in a small room (11x11) are Yamaha RVX 995, Sony A55 DSS, 5 NHT superzeros and 2 NHT Sub1P (one as bottom for L,C&R, one on the LFE channel). My 2 channel front end is CAL CL-10 (HDCD). I don't see combining them in the near future, but if I did, I would probably get a CL-25 and set up some kind of a pass thru using my BAT 3i pre, if feasible. So right now, I just want to improve the video quality as the Loewe shows every defect in the source.
I needed to upgrade my Sony DV-300. I also did not need progressive video and wanted to spend less than $600. I listened/watched everything I could find in the DC area. I took 3 units home. I ended up buying a $1300 Sony S9000ES with progressive video. It's audio and video was superior to everything I could find. After using the S9000ES, everything in the $600 range sounded flat. They did not have the dynamics.
Other than the 9000ES, I recommend the Technics A-10 or the Sony 7000 for the $500-$600 range. In the $800-$1000 range, I recommend the Pioneer DV-37.
For many the Sony 7000 has been the standard to measure everything by--video and audio. Yes, I've seen it--many times. Most highend stores had it: both to sell but also to show off their other items (projection TVs, etc.) Note that in most magazines, it is the most used DVD player that is used to test TVs, projectors, etc. It has excellent video. It used to cost about $1,000 as well. So you found it for a very good price. The negatives would be no DTS or 96/24 support--again on the audio side. The 7700 corrected this, but many felt that the 7700 did not have the build quality of the 7000. The 9000ES has it all, including better audio, video, and a 5 year warranty, but it lists for $1,500.
Be aware that you may not be concerned about CD audio, but audio from DVD-Video is important as well. In comparision, with the Panasonic A7 ($500) and JVC723GS ($600), the audio while playing DVD's was so much more dynamic and clean with the S9000ES. The 7000 would be superior to the A7 and 723 as well, but doesn't equal the 9000. Because the 9000 is so good, is why you can now get a good deal on the 7000.