HDMI or 7.1 out for best AQ

I recently purchased an Oppo BDP-83 universal player that I will be getting modded in the near future. Some of the mods out there are pretty specific as to what is upgraded in the player, i.e., 2-ch vs Mch vs HDMI outputs. My question to you folks in the know is this: what is the best type of connection to use between the player on HT processor, separate 7.1 RCA's or HDMI? By having an answer to this, I will hopefully know where to put my money most wisely. TIA.

There is no general answer. What are you connecting it to? What is your speaker setup? How good are your room acoustics?

IMHO, if you have any need for bass/channel management, general DSP and room correction (and almost every does), HDMI is the better choice since it optimizes those options.

If you are using a 2 channel analog system, there's another answer.

HDMI allows your processor/receiver to do decoding. 7.1 uses the chips in your OPPO. Your mission should you chose to accept it is to listen to both and determine which unit sounds better.
Hi Kal,

Thanks for responding.

My system is a combined 2-ch/HT set-up. The Oppo will be used only in as a player for the HT part of the system. I have a separate 2-ch only CD/SACD player and preamp. I run Herron monoblocks into highly modified Reimer Tetons (only the cabinets and tweeters remain) for L/R, a one of a kind Reimer super CC, and VMPS 626 surrounds. A BC MC amp drive the CC and surrounds. The room is well-treated with GIK panels for a previously present slap echo. Dual subs are used only for the HT.

To be honest, I still am using an older processor, a Proceed AVP-2 that I dearly love for its audio quality. I hope to upgrade to a more modern processor in the near future, but presently have no experience with room correction or advanced bass management.

If you would chime in again that would be great.

Well, in your case, you are stuck with analog outputs for anything other than CD, DD and dts until/unless you replace the AVP-2. I know, for many, this is a highly-valued product but I believe it is too long in the tooth for modern HT or, indeed, hi-rez multichannel audio, both of which the BDP-83 can provide via HDMI.

Thanks to all for the responses thus far. They were most helpful to a HT technophobe.

The AVP-2 will only do 5.1. But it depends in general which device does a better job of decoding as well as bass management.
In the responses above,Drewmb stated the HDMI output would have the prepro do the decoding while Kal stated the Oppo would. Which is correct, or are both correct? Also, I could then then use a non-Hi-rez capable prepro with the Oppo and still get the the lossless codecs as the Oppo can decode them?

Drewmb likely meant a AVR capable of decoding the new high rez audio formats would use the HDMI output from the Oppo. Kal most likely meant that as your Proceed AVP-2 will not decode the new high rez audio formats your stuck with using the Analog outputs on the Oppo for hi-rez. If this is not what they meant, it is still the case.

"Also, I could then then use a non-Hi-rez capable prepro with the Oppo and still get the the lossless codecs as the Oppo can decode them?"

Senor Wooten is, indeed, correct.

I have a similar situation. I have had the Oppo-83 for about two months, connected to my B&K Ref 50 S2 pre-pro via 5.1 analog. I use the analog connection exclusively for all disc modes - DVD, CD, SACD, DVD-A and BR. The Oppo decodes everything, including TruHD and DTS-MA. The Oppo sounds exceptional on BR TruHD and DTS-MA, and DVD 5.1. It is very good on CD, SACD and DVD-A. I use the HDMI only for video.

I plan to get the Oppo modded for three LCR analog channels. At that point, I will sell my current tube modded universal DVD player. For now, the Oppo can't match its CD, SACD performance.
I feel your answer lies in your decision to either hang onto the current aV processor, or get a new HDMI type.

gona keep it? Do the analog outs on the 83.... gona get a new AV proc: Do the digital out on the 83.

What does anyone suggest for cable type/manuf. for those of us taking the 5.1/7.1 analog route? What have you had luck with? digital coax (ala Sterovox for example)? Analog interconnects? Is quality just as important here between an Oppo BDP-83 and the AVR?
Top quality RCA's are necessary to get the best performance. I use Acoustic Zen Action 5.0 and Action 1.0 for the 5.1 connection between Oppo-83 and the Pre-Pro. The Action 5.0 has 5 cables in one jacket with locking RCA's. It is terrific cable, convenient and affordable. The Harmonic Technology Rainbow is also a great cable. Otherwise, you can use any set of 3 pairs of RCA cables that you like. You just have to be careful about 6 separate RCA cables putting stress on the player if they are heavy.
"Drewmb likely meant a AVR capable of decoding the new high rez audio formats would use the HDMI output from the Oppo"

Correct, Correct.
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I'll mention Audio art. I like Rob's hybrid III RCAs. I've used a pair of them with good success as main RCAs from proc to amp (s).

I also like the Cardas Neutral Refs, but they might tend to be pricey adding six or eight of them... even if bought preowned. They definitely are a clear cut "hear what ya got" with those wires... great mid range and top ends!

B4 I put much into ICs, I'd look into a pc for that player. My 980 responds very well to upscale power cords. I'd think the 83 does too.
Nice system love the pass lab amps. Where did you get the cabinet for your equipment. I had a friend build mine and I hate it. Thanks Allan