New Oppo DV-980H

I have just ordered the new Oppo DV-980H for budget two-channel music playback. It will replace my excellent DV-970HD I hope (as long as it sounds better)!

I will write a report after it has burnt in.

Anyone else using one yet? Got any set-up suggestions for stereo playback?
I bought two Oppo DV-981HD and I’m using them both for video and two channel. I got burned on a high end DVD purchase and decided to stick with cheaper technology since I'll probably replace them before they wear out. My main system is a Levinson 360S DAC and No. 37 transport. I ran side by side tests into the 360S as transports (No 37 and Oppo) the differences were very slight. I thought the Levinson had a slightly smoother sound. Needless to say I was quite surprised … I expected more of a difference. I guess the logic is “a transport is a transport” but there are differences.

I heard about the Oppo from a buddy and then read an article in Stereophile mag a few months back. I was quite amazed. When I ran it side by side as a stand alone CDP it didn’t fair as well but it was very respectable for it’s price tag. I cant find anything I can afford that sounds as good as my Levinson setup. I suppose you could get a unit modded and smooth out the rough edges but I would burn it in and see what you think. I have one on each system (two channel/HT System) and they sound completely different as they should. I would think the DV-980H would match up to components in its price range better. The 981HD has a “big league” sound for pennies but the build quality is as it should be. You get what you pay for. Until the technology market settles a bit I’m sticking to 5.1 and standard 1080p upsampled DVD. The Oppo is a perfect choice. Video via HDMI on a 50” plasma is amazing. HD DVD will have to go a long way to beat the Oppo … looking at the cost factor right now; it’s not worth it for me.

Five channel SACD is also VERY good. I run it on the HT system and I can really hear a noticeable difference. I had a Denon setup for a while and didn’t care for SACD at all. Now I use my SACD’s for the “buddy demo” I get a lot of compliments.

Out of 5 stars … I give it 4 for sound, 3 for build quality and 5 for overall value. I have had one for about a year and the second one for about three months. I live in Vancouver Washington and the rain is coming back soon, so my movie/music time is about to go up significantly.

Let the testing continue!
I have one now and it is notable for its DSD/PCM output on HDMI, if one has a suitable pre/pro.

Just set up a small system for a friend using the Oppo 981 for DVD/CD. Running it through an Assemblage 2.0 upgraded version with Onkyo receiver and Focal speakers. Very respectable 2 channel at that level with help from the DAC.
Cnet said "This may be the last DVD player we can recommend
meaning now with DVD HD (and possibly to follow Blu Ray coming down in price.Dan didn't we see this movie?).But anybody know if there going to get into the DVD-HD.Saw that 15000 contrast ratio Samsung LCD and it just floored me.So was wondering about Oppo getting into new formats.Anybody know?
Adamj, you get your 980H yet? I have one coming in tomorrow that I plan to use as a gap filler in a 2nd system until I decide on a new source.

It will go with a pair of Zu Druids and Onix SP-3 MKII integrated. Wiring is Pure AV silver speaker cables and Chord Silver Siren IC.

Mabye it will do such a good job that it will be all I need. ;) Probably not, but I can always find a place for a $169 universal.

BTW, I use Klipsch Cornwall III's in my main sytem. Something about the Klipsch sound that really floats my boat.
Hi Jack,

Yes! It is here, burnt in and performing wondefully! The overall performance is a massive improvement on the 970HD. There is more warmth across the frequency spectrum and the bass is much more solid and goes deeper than before. The thin sound of the 970HD is replaced with a sound much like that from the excellent Eastsound E5 Signature ($900ish).

What I would also add is that the package as a whole is much better thought out and finished too. I think there is a better synergy with my other equipment (Klipsch/modded Trends Audio) than I have had with any other CDP I have tried so far in this set-up... so if you use gear like mine then this is a safe bet!

Right, back to work for me. More thoughts soon.
I hooked one up for someone the other day, worked great, picture was very even passed the SACD/DVD Audio through HDMI to the Onkyo receiver without a hitch.

I just purchased the 840, hooked it up to my B&K avr202 and parasound hca-1500a amp and vandersteen 3a speakers... the cd player sounded okay- it was better then my previous player (a temporary sony es piece) but not as good as my rega apollo. i was sorta happy, loved the detail, not so happy w/ the bass. i switched rca's to kimber hero's, got a bit better... and then noticed the volume control on the oppo remote.

i went direct from the oppo to the paraound amp, and i was floored. now i dont have the worst pre-amp in this system, b&k is an alright brand, but my god was that ever the weakest link. I am going to move the oppo and parasound and vandersteens to a spare bedroom today and have that be a contained system... it sounds too good to go back, cant go back. i am thrilled with this player and the fact that you can run it w/out another preamp and have this sound quality come through.
The oppos built in volume control is VERY good. I couldnt beleive it as well when we wanted to do a last minute demo with the DV970HD but we didnt have a preamp on hand and we used the Bel Canto REF1000 amps into some expensive bookshelfs. I was scared that it wasnt going to work right or have some popping noise or something when we turned the amps on, but it was straight silent. It was stunning that it sounded so good to say the least. Just make sure you keep the volume down all the way when you turn the amps on. No problems, no noise. The new DV980HD is got a ton of potential, Oppo outdid themselves on this latest model.
Does the new Oppo 980 have a built in volume control for direct connection to amps?
All of the Oppo models have the built in volume control for direct connection to amps.
Mr. Bill,

According to this review, it has the volume control on the remote!
"Does the new Oppo 980 have a built in volume control for direct connection to amps?"

Bill, yes it does.
Thanks you everyone!
It really, really, really works well.

I love my 2ch room now... no preamp- makes me laugh sometimes.

I have not had any popping sound either to this point w/ the 980. It sounds amazing, and i would have to spend much more on a high level preamp to sound better than this. The goal in my mind is to have as few breaks in the signal chain as possible- I dont want to colorize the sound from the CD- I dont want to change the audio signal- how much money do you have to spend on a preamp that sounds as if it is not there? alot.

This is also the easiest and fastest way to compare RCA's... direct from the source to the amp. The Opps's volume control is great to say the least.
Hi guys, seen as you are discussing the volume control I thought I would add some more thoughts on the 980H.

I used my 970HD direct in the Trends Audio T-amp (configured as a poweramp). Wih that unit there was a lot of noise along with the signal, and the noise was in inverse proportion to volume... this sucked, as most of the time I don't listen at high volume.

With the 980H the noise was gone. Completely. However, inserting the new Kingrex pre-amp between the (980H and the Trends amp made a HUGE difference. I used to be convinced by the economy and logic of a "direct to power-amp" approach but now I have to say I am amazed. If and I mean IF! there was any loss of detail, siblance, depth, width or ANYTHING else from adding the pre then my ears are not good enough to hear it. More than that, everything was enhanced by the pre-amp.

Clearly this is probably more to do with the pre-amp than the fact I was running the 980H at full volume, but it is worth noting that the "direct" approach is, in my opinion, of no quantifiable benefit. Moreover, adding a good pre-amp can be the start of something beautiful!

Someone mentioned a clicking sound. I have a small clicking noise between tracks. Not mechanical as it comes through my speakers. Not real loud, but it's there every time.

I have another issue with a couple of DVDA's that I have. Both are Santana DVDA's. I have a few other DVDA's and they work fine. My SACD's, HDCD's and RBCD's work fine as well.

Problem on one disk is that it will not diplay the titles and the screen gets pixelized. I am able to get it to play and can also see the photographs, but but not the titles.

On the 2nd disk it will play the titles, but hangs up after certain tracks.

Both disk are practically brand new. As a matter of fact, the one disk was brand new.

Not a big deal, but I'm curious none the less.

The small pop between tracks is more of an issue. Do you guys here this pop? If not I may have an issue and may need to send it back for a new unit before my trial period is up.

BTW, anyone read they're coming out with a 983? New video chip as I understand it, and the price is up as well.
Does the DV-980H decode HDCD like previous Oppos?
Yes it does decode HDCD, and it a universal player. For the money, its a no brainer!
i also have the clicking sound... sounds like a needle to record sound. if you do report this to oppo, please do let me know what response they give you.

Chrisdor3, that is a perfect description of what I'm hearing. The thing is that I like this player so much that it's really only a minor annoyance to me.

Just the same I think I will give them a call and ask.

Anyone else have this same issue? Also, have any of you had issues with any of your DVDA's that I've had?
It has been reported by others and reported to Oppo. In my experience, it accompanies physical operations but I have not ever heard it while the program is playing.

Which is better,980H or 981HD,I care more about sound but I do plan on buying HDTV in near future
For sound, the 980H. For picture, wait for the upcoming 983H.