I doubt the problem is in the DVD player, you'll need to check out the pre/pro or receiver you're using and set it up to receiver the DVD-A input for those discs.
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Thank you for your help. I am using a Pioneer Elite SP-99 separate DD processor, via the coaxial digital input. Consequently, I believe the 6 channel DD 5.1 connection from the DVD player to the processor is correct (presumably it would not play DD 5.1 video disc, audio portion of, if this were not the case?). The DD 5.1 replay option does not even appear in the menu set-up at the start of a DVD-A disc, I know it is there though.
I can help. I have the 38A and have successfully played (and enjoyed) the same Doors LA Women DVD-A. DVD audio uses only the analog output -- it won't work at all with the digital coxial cable (which you'll still use for DVD video, movies, HDCD, etc.)
Here's how to hook up your 38A for DVD-A: In the centre of the 38A you'll see four RCA jacks together marked: sub, centre, LS and RS -- these jacks, along with two of the anlaog L and R RCA jacks make up the 6 RCA connections needed for DVD-A. You must have a reciever with 6 analog inputs in order for this to work. (I use a Marantz 14EX.) The 38A will then decode the DVD-A signal and then send it to the appropriate speakers. And for best results, you should have 5 FULL RANGE speakers, or at least 4, and a good sub.
Even with my very close to reference quality set-up (Marantz 14EX, Kef Reference 4 in front, Kef Reference 2 in rear and Kef 200 Centre with the big Veloydyne 18HGS sub, I am only moderatley satisfied with DVD-A. IMHO, most of the DVD-A recordings (I own about 12) are not very good -- poorly recorded with unnatural separation. The only three discs I really like are: Doors LA women, Beuna Vista Social Club and Swan Lake.
I also have a high end two channel SACD system running through the same front speakers and it totaly stomps on the DVD-A. I know it's not fair to compare my Sony SCD-1 and Aranov tubes to my HT setup, but still there is a HUGE differnce. That said, I do occasionally enjoy DVD-A and the Pioneer is wonderful unit for video.
By the way, I put a Black Diamond Racing shelf under the Pioneer and it really helped. Video sharpened up and audio lost some of the digital edge.
Hope this helps --sounds like you'll need to get a reciever with 6 channel analog inputs and some more RCA cables.
Let me know if you still have any questions. --Lorne