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DVD Audio Players .. why?

Old 02-13-01, 01:35 PM
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What's the difference between a dvd audio player and a normal dvd player you watch movies on?

Why would someone want one over the other?

Can normal dvd players play dvd audio discs anyway?
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Old 02-13-01, 02:28 PM
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DVD-Audio Players

DVD-Audio is an entirely different format than DVD-Video. They both use the same type of DVD disc as a storage medium, but after that they are very different.

DVD-Audio is designed to replace CD-Audio, and can deliver much higher quality audio than either CD or DVD-Video.

DVD-Audio can deliver 196 KHz, 24 bit audio in an uncompressed format (Meridian Lossless Packing). The best DVD-Video can do is 96 Khz, 24 bit linear PCM audio (which is also uncompressed) so the audio quality on DVD-Audio discs is at least twice as good as DVD-Video.

The typical DVD-Audio disc will have a 96 KHZ, 24 bit MLP audio track, which is considerably better than a typical DVD-Video audio track which is 48 KHz, 16 bit compressed AC3.

You can not play DVD-Audio discs in a DVD-Video player, unless they also include a DVD-Video zone. Some DVD-Audio discs will include a seperate playback zone for DVD-Video players, but many DVD-Audio discs will not include this extra data, and thus wont be compatible with DVD-Video players.

To put it simply, DVD-Video is for watching movies and DVD-Audio is for listening to music. Each format offers significantly better levels of quality than their predecessors (VHS and Audio-CD)

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Old 02-13-01, 11:09 PM
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DVD-Audio can deliver 196 KHz, 24 bit audio in an uncompressed format (Meridian Lossless Packing). The best DVD-Video can do is 96 Khz, 24 bit linear PCM audio (which is also uncompressed) so the audio quality on DVD-Audio discs is at least twice as good as DVD-Video.
Ok.. but... can you REALLY tell the difference? Maybe I just don't have good ears, but honestly I never heard a difference in quality between audio cassettes and CDs (other than a hiss with tapes with you make it too loud, and I even hear hisses on some CDs too) .. music doesn't sound any clearer. DVDs don't sound any clearer either, but I like hearing stuff behind me and things like that.

Personally, I don't see DVD audio going very far if DVD video players won't be able to play the audio discs. Why should I have 2 different players? It's both DVD, they should both be able to do the same thing, IMO.

Will the human ear even be able to tell the difference between "normal" audio and dvd audio? I kinda doubt I will
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Old 02-14-01, 12:02 AM
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Originally posted by necros
Ok.. but... can you REALLY tell the difference? Maybe I just don't have good ears, but honestly I never heard a difference in quality between audio cassettes and CDs (other than a hiss with tapes with you make it too loud, and I even hear hisses on some CDs too) .. music doesn't sound any clearer. DVDs don't sound any clearer either, but I like hearing stuff behind me and things like that.
Well, you just saved yourself a lot of money. I'm shocked about your lack of distinction between cassettes and CDs. But consider yourself lucky for the money savings, and unlucky for missing the enjoyment of the quality. By the way, DVD-Audio players can play DVDs, so you don't need two players.

I'm not anxiously awaiting DVD-Audio - CD quality is pretty good. But I hardly ever even bothered to make a cassette copy of a record, they sounded so bad to me. And I used good equipment to the point of adjusting recorders with frequency generators and oscilloscopes!
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Old 02-14-01, 01:16 AM
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Just a few more questions while we're on the whole audio tech-talk mode

How does DVD-Audio compare to SACD (Sony's version)?

Are the two compatible? For example, can the DVD-A play SACD recorded audio and vice versa?
(According to Sony's history of always coming up with their own proprietary technology , I don't think they're compatible)

Last question, is there enough room on a DVD-A disc to incorporate an anamorphically enhanced movie with a DVD-Audio soundtrack? Or is this new technology just about music and music videos?
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Old 02-14-01, 01:19 AM
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Originally posted by X

By the way, DVD-Audio players can play DVDs, so you don't need two players.

Not all DVD Audio players play DVD's, only the universal ones.

On a related note it seems like DD 5.1 is not part of the spec, i.e. DVD Audio discs do not have to have an additional DD 5.1 track and not all of them will.
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Old 02-14-01, 01:42 AM
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I don't know if they're going to be mandatory, but I have 2 DVD-Audios (Doors- LA Woman & ELP- Brainsalad Surgery) and they both have 5.1 tracks that will play on any dvd player. Both have certain features (photos, video, lyrics, etc.) and audio tracks (DVD-A 5.1 & DVD-A stereo) that can only be accessed with a DVD-A player. But since most of the DVD-A exclusives are visually realted, I would think that all the DVD-A players would handle video, or else how could you watch ELP's extra live footage? I'd say the regular 5.1 quality is about equal to DTS cds. The Doors sounds incredible, with the rain in Riders On The Storm surrounding you & thunder coming from the rear. And the music is also very active in the rear, yet still blends in. The best the Doors have ever sounded. Sound & Vision magazine had an article about the discs & said something about the DVD-A 5.1 tracks not handling the bass properly with current receivers & that players or receivers would have to be modified? Anyone notice a bass problem if you've listened to a DVD-A on a real player?
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Old 02-14-01, 02:55 AM
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Originally posted by El Kabong
I don't know if they're going to be mandatory, but I have 2 DVD-Audios (Doors- LA Woman & ELP- Brainsalad Surgery) and they both have 5.1 tracks that will play on any dvd player. Both have certain features (photos, video, lyrics, etc.) and audio tracks (DVD-A 5.1 & DVD-A stereo) that can only be accessed with a DVD-A player. But since most of the DVD-A exclusives are visually realted, I would think that all the DVD-A players would handle video, or else how could you watch ELP's extra live footage? I'd say the regular 5.1 quality is about equal to DTS cds. The Doors sounds incredible, with the rain in Riders On The Storm surrounding you & thunder coming from the rear. And the music is also very active in the rear, yet still blends in. The best the Doors have ever sounded. Sound & Vision magazine had an article about the discs & said something about the DVD-A 5.1 tracks not handling the bass properly with current receivers & that players or receivers would have to be modified? Anyone notice a bass problem if you've listened to a DVD-A on a real player?
Check this link to DVD-audio.co.uk. If you look at the chart it states that DVD-audio only players are not compatible with the video portion of DVD Audio discs. Only Universal DVD Audio players and DVD players are.
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Old 02-14-01, 10:06 AM
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DVD Audio is a huge improvement over standar red book CDs. But if you can't tell the difference between cassettes and CDs, you may be better off not getting one until the prices come down and the technology improves.

DVD Audio is, in my opinion, incredible. You should at least get a good demo and then draw your own conclusions.
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