Would an upconvertind player be an improvement?


I have a Pioneer Elite Pro 520 HD display, ISF calibrated. It only has inputs for component or SVHS.

At present, I'm using a Denon DVD 2900 which gives me a nearly filmlike picture.

I'm not ready to jump to HD until Denon creates a new "universal" player.

In the interim, would a Toshiba XA2 be worth it to upconvert my DVD collection?

Many thanks,
I'm using an Oppo 981HD to upconvert and loving it. Don't know the Toshiba in particular, but they tend to make good equipment. Pioneer also has an upconverting universal that's very good. I watch full HD over cable and then watch upconverted DVDs and I don't really miss the extra resolution of full HD. I'm watching on a 46" Sony Bravia LCD from about 12' away. Yes, if I try I can see a difference, but the upconversion is very good, particularly since I can't replace all the old DVDs and don't want to.

I bet before 2008 is over there'll be a reasonably priced BlueRAy/HD-DVD/upconverting universal player.

I second the Oppo, best DVD players you can buy for under several thousand dollars.

As for universal DVD players, DVD, HDDVD and BluRay I would personally be very hesitant to take this route without very careful personal review of the piece.

HDDVD abd BluRay are very different designs and integration into the two is also quite different. I just don't see a good universal player addressing so many different needs without being very expensive. Additionally, I personally think the HDDVD will be more successful as it is based on a much better protcol (but we know what happened with Beta tapes). BluRay is based on the BBC low resolution solution to basically upconvering a mediocre process. This was not intended to be a playback designed system but one of recording and transfering.

I have a company that manufacturers equipment for the optical disc industry (DVD and CD) and we see a lot more adaptation for HDDVD than we do for BluRay. Coincidently, it is much more cost effective to convert to HD DVD than it is for BluRay which requires an entire new line of equipment vs. more similar equipment to the various types of DVDs that can be converted to producing HDDVDs.

But to the topic, I would go with the Oppo as I seriously question whether Denon will be able to make a comparable player for 10-20 times the price of the Oppo!
I have an Oppo DV-980H, and like it a lot. It upconverts std. DVDs to your choice of 480p, 720p, 1080i, or 1080p, but only through the HDMI cable. IIRC, its component video output only upconverts to 480p. It would then be up to your Pioneer Elite display to take it from there.

I notice a significant picture improvement when playing a DVD on upconverting players via the HDMI connection, but less so with the component connection. You'll need to read up; the upconversion via component varies from player to player.
Since HD dvd is now on its way out---and if you haven't made that jump;no sense buying a combo player. Any of the older 1080i tvs (without hdmi)can only be connected via component;and component forces you to use the next lower resolution--720. (for BD or HD-dvd)For a quality improvement I say get the Denon 5910--It has the much better chip which your tv can use. Depending on how much you want to spend the 5910ci w/ hdmi would be the same on your older tv. There is something to be said re. CRT sets. They may be big and fat and heavy but you will have to spend large to equal it. On the XA2 it is the best HD- player and better than many BD players. It's upconversion is quite good but I'm not sure you would see this using a component hookup.