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Is DTS really better than DD?

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Is DTS really better than DD?

Old 04-05-01, 12:24 PM
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I've listened to both and can't tell much of a difference. Are there any movies where you can really tell a difference?

Also, for DTS, do you have to use an optical connection? Will the RCA jacks work?

Thanks.
Old 04-05-01, 12:34 PM
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Originally posted by niteshade
I've listened to both and can't tell much of a difference. Are there any movies where you can really tell a difference?
There is a difference, though it is often subtle. A few DTS tracks are even inferior to their DD counterparts. Most people notice the clarity and imaging is better, but not everyone thinks it's dramatic.
Also, for DTS, do you have to use an optical connection? Will the RCA jacks work?
You must use a digital connection, whether it be optical (Toslink) or coaxial digital. You're unclear about what you mean by "RCA jacks".
  • If you mean the analog R/L audio ouputs, then NO.
  • If you mean the 6-channel 5.1 outputs on some DVD players, then MAYBE but probably not, unless you have one of the rare built-in DTS decoders.
  • If you mean the single RCA-style coaxial digital output, then YES.
Your DVD player and receiver must both be DTS compatible, you must be using a digital connection, and the receiver and DVD player must be properly set up to transmit/decode the DTS signal. It a somewhat complicated setup, and my guess is that you haven't been hearing the DTS tracks. Read some of the preevious posts on this forum for help, or post again with your equipment and connections so someone can help you get it set up. Then you'll really be enjoying DTS sound.
Old 04-05-01, 12:43 PM
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Originally posted by niteshade
I've listened to both and can't tell much of a difference. Are there any movies where you can really tell a difference?

Also, for DTS, do you have to use an optical connection? Will the RCA jacks work?

Thanks.
I prefer DTS because of the cleaner sound. It does add clarity and in some cases deeper bass over DD.

In reference to your second question read digits answer.

Good luck!
Old 04-05-01, 01:42 PM
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>>>Are there any movies where you can really tell a difference?
Old 04-05-01, 01:58 PM
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There was a little debate over the two tracks on "The Rock:CC"... supposedly, the DTS track was a little front-heavy, but if you upped the volume on your rear speakers, everything worked fine. I didn't go through the entire movie comparing tracks, but one instance where I happened to test them out was the scene in which the SEALs are trapped in the shower room and covered by Gen. Hummel's troops. The SEAL team leader is addressing Hummel's troops and the camera switches to Cage & Connery's characters listening to the speech... in one of the tracks (I forget which now), the voice can be heard behind you... in the other track, the sound isn't as "directional," if that's the right term.
Old 04-05-01, 02:00 PM
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Yes.

But I have to ask... When and where did you hear an A/B between DTS and DD? You wouldn't ask about an optical cable if you had it at home.

Another title - Se7en Platinum. Do an A/B with the DTS and DD tracks. DTS kills.

Old 04-05-01, 03:24 PM
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Sorry about being vague. I currently have a Technics SA-DX1040 Receiver connected to a Pioneer DV333 DVD player through an optical connection. I haven't done much comparing directly between DTS and DD. I just listened to a small section of Gladiator in both formats and didn't hear much difference. I was just curious if anyone has done more extensive direct comparisons.

Anyway, when I said RCA jacks, I meant the L/R out on the back of the DVD player. I didn't realize those were strictly analog.

Since I switched to the optical cable I get the occassional "pop" when the DVD switches audio formats. It didn't happen when the DVD player was connected through the analog RCA cables. Also, the optical cable just seems so fragile. I would have been more comfortable using the thicker RCA cables. No big deal.

Thanks for the input.
Old 04-05-01, 04:25 PM
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You've got it hooked up right, then. The optical does seem fragile, but that "pop" is probably due to the Technics receiver -- I seem to recall the problem occurring in older Panasonic DVD players and Technics decoders, but I could be mistaken... I wouldn't worry about it, it's annoying but pretty harmless, and probably only happens on DTS discs.

There should be a lot of "great DTS soundtracks" threads on this forum, so you might want to do a search and see what other have suggested. I've heard good things about U-571. Jurassic Park is one of the few where people say the DTS track is worse.
Old 04-05-01, 04:47 PM
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I don't really have a difference of opinion between them. I don't have DTS at home, so all I've heard are comparisons at stores. A lot of it has to do with physical hearing ability and personal choice. I work with sound codecs at work, and I'll tell ya, there's not a lot of difference that can be proven between most. Not saying this applies to DD v. DTS, just that a lot of it is in the ear of the beholder.
Old 04-05-01, 05:37 PM
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When DTS tracks were being mastered by DTS there were more differences in favor of DTS. The old dts dvd's were sold as a niche and therefore more care was taken into making the soundtrack. Now that the DD compression has improved, it's not as noticeable. Any new release now played at the same SPL will give you almost the same results. Some rare new releases are better(in DTS) but for the most part they're even.

I just like DTS because most of the time there is a dts trailer that gives the whole presentation more of a 'theater feel'.

And it sounds better too!!
Old 04-06-01, 04:44 AM
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Geez, this discussion is always full of emotions and sometimes ends in a flame war... Anyway my opinion: if you have a proper setup, DTS will definetely sound better. Period. The reason why I say 'proper setup' is because of the characteristics of DTS: a cleaner, more dynamic sound which you won't notice on a $1000 HT.
Old 04-06-01, 06:46 AM
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Sorry, but I can't justify spending the same amount on a HT as I would on a car just to be able to hear the difference between DD and DTS. I have better things to spend my cash on. I think my system sounds pretty damn good for the money. And, it cost waaayyyy more than $1000, at least $1200. (So, maybe I should be able to hear the difference?)

What dollar amount constitutes a proper setup, anyway?
Old 04-06-01, 08:13 AM
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Before the cost of equipment was even mentioned in this thread, I was going to add that you need to make sure your system was calibrated correctly. If you haven't used Avia or Video Essentials and a sound level meter, then you probably won't hear what any DVD sound has to offer. Until you balance your speakers using test tones from these disks, you won't be hearing what the sound engineers intended the movie to sound like. This is an essential part of a "proper" setup. BTW, Gladiator IS another title where a lot of people say they hear a major difference in DD vs. DTS.

Also, what speakers do you have? Some types of very small speakers/surround speakers will leave a "hole" in the frequency spectrum between the speakers frequency response and the crossover's cutoff point to the subwoofer. As far as this goes, your subwoofer's low extension capability and output will affect how different people rate sound of different titles and sound formats. So, you see, cost/quality of equipment can make a difference in the way 2 different people will describe a soundtrack. Besides the fact that not everyone discerns sound the same way.
Old 04-06-01, 09:05 AM
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I always go for DTS over DD, really just because it's supposed to be better. Really, though, on my plain ole HT in a box setup, the only difference I notice is DTS is louder.. for DD I keep the volume around 15, for DTS it's around 10
Old 04-06-01, 09:07 AM
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The DTS track on The Predator is amazing, a lot better than the 5.1.
Old 04-06-01, 09:13 AM
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I don't have a super-expensive HT so I guess I won't notice the benefits of DTS over DD. Right now, I can tell no difference at all. I also live in an apartment, though, and can't jack the sound up to ridiculous levels - when I get my first house then we'll be looking at a home theater makeover and the difference will probably come out. One thing that grates me is DTS versions of discs having less features than their DD counterparts. I didn't find this out until the last couple days before Jurassic Park shipped and had to jump through hoops to get my order changed.

Eric

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