Universal Players

OPPO BDP-93, BDP-93NE (NuForce Edition), and BDP-95 Universal 3D Blu-ray Players

ARTICLE INDEX

In Use (JEJ)

Because the BDP-93, BDP-93NE, and BDP-95 bench tested so well out of the analog audio jacks, I watched movies with the video through the HDMI output, but the audio through the 7.1 analog output jacks. I also listened to music using the analog connections rather than HDMI, which has significant jitter issues. I used an Anthem D2 as the processor, which has a pair of XLR balanced inputs for the stereo analog audio listening as well as 5.1 analog RCA input jacks, Denon AVP-A1HDCI processor with 7.1 RCA analog inputs, Lamm LL1 stereo preamplifier (two-channel RCA out), Balanced Audio VK-5i preamplifier (two-channel XLR out), Classé CA-5200 multi-channel power amplifier, McIntosh MC1201 monoblock power amplifiers, Lamm M2.2 monoblock power amplifiers, Carver Mark IV ribbon speakers, and a Paradigm Reference Signature C5 center channel speaker. Cables were Emotiva, Marc Audio, and Legenburg.

Machete was an odd movie - sort of Tarrantino-esque - with Danny Trejo as the hero, and Robert De Niro as the bad guy. Notwithstanding that it was not exactly entertaining to see so many heads lopped off by Danny's machete, the sound quality was terrific. Just when I thought it was safe to put all those RCA interconnects away, you know, the ones used to connect the multi-channel analog outputs from the DVD player to the multi-channel analog audio inputs on the receiver, out they came, because the DACs in the players are better than the ones in the SSP.

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The American is a current Blu-ray release, and I watched it for the first time on the BDP-95. The sound was perfect.

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High resolution multi-channel music is starting to appear in Blu-ray format. I love Baroque music, and this Blu-ray release using DTS-HD Master Audio was marvelous. To hear the delicacies of stringed instruments in chamber music requires low distortion and low noise, both of which are characteristics of the BDP-93, BDP-93NE, and BDP-95.

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This DVD-A release of Holst's The Planets was terrific in surround and high resolution. "Mars - The Bringer of War" is my favorite of the tracks, and it was thunderous, yet clear in every nuance.

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SACD is alive and well, and I thoroughly enjoyed this Telarc recording of Liszt compositions in multi-channel surround. No harshness, no midrange mush, no excessive sibilance. Just satin smooth musical pleasure.

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I also listened to many of my favorite CDs, using the stereo XLR outputs from the BDP-95, and I have never heard a better quality sound. The noise and distortion characteristics of the BDP-93 and BDP-95 are so low, frankly, I could not hear a difference between the two players, but others, with younger ears than mine, probably would be able to detect, perhaps, slightly better detail using the BDP-95. Also, if your other components have medium levels of distortion, it would be best to have the source with as low distortion as possible, so that it does not push the total amount of system distortion into a range that is really noticeable.

With the 93NE, its predominance of even ordered distortion compared to the odd ordered distortion of the 93 made it sound a bit more musical, sort of like what a Class A triode does (almost entirely second order distortion). It was a slight difference, but I could hear it (triodes produce large second order peaks, while the second order peaks in the 93NE were small). When I asked NuForce about this, they said that the emphasis on second order harmonic distortion was their exact intent, and that the result would be "more musical".