Glorious Sound Using Coax Digital on XA2 - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 12-22-2007, 09:56 PM
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Default Glorious Sound Using Coax Digital on XA2

Well I spent some time over at the AVS Forum when many were replying to a post I did on the terrible sound quality of dolby digital 5.1 on the HD-A3 using toslink. I actually bought two A3's at the time and took one back since I couldn't live with the bright, thin sound quality while I kept the other A3 for a smaller room using a 32" LCD HDTV. I decided to keep the Sony DVP-S7000 first generation player running until today. I was lucky enough to still find and buy a new XA2 which I hooked up today which I immediately downloaded FW 2.7 via a burned CD. After this, I played my first HD DVD Movie King Kong using the coax digital output and was very impressed with the sound quality. No bright, thin sound here compared to the toslink only available on the A3. My main TV room has highend equipment where difference can be seen and heard. I'm perfectly fine using the A3 with an HK AVR which actually sounds great with the small Klipsch Quintet III speakers. It's not highend but actually impressed me on how good AV receivers are now. I haven't tried the toslink on the XA2. There's really no need since I've always preferred the coax over toslink any day of the week. Even "Bluejeancables.com has an article saying they prefer coax over toslink when there's a choice allowed". Yes, I know others will disagree here and I'm not wanting to argue this point since the differences don't require double blind folding techniques. I'm just posting this to anyone using the XA2 and toslink. I realize the rave is all the lossless sound but my XA2, Theta Casablanca, McCormack amps and Aerial Acoustic speakers were in pure delight today playing King Kong in plain Dolby Digital 5.1. I haven't played any other movies yet but have Transformers in HD that will be played next. The sound from King Kong was tremendous with no compression artifacts that could be heard whatsoever. Her screaming in the movie was crystal clear sound with no edginess along with great dynamics.

Boy, I was more than a little tentative about the XA2's sound quality. I guess I was concerned for nothing. The sound and picture quality on the XA2 is easily worth the price of admission especially if the other components are up to the task.

Now if someone could tell me if the Picture Mode should always be set to FILM or left in AUTO. The update review with FW2.7 seemed to indicate using FILM no matter the resolution setting used to get rid of any stuttering on certain movies since AUTO still produced the stuttering problem. Should FILM be used no matter what?
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Old 12-22-2007, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by robertrobert View Post
Well I spent some time over at the AVS Forum when many were replying to a post I did on the terrible sound quality of dolby digital 5.1 on the HD-A3 using toslink. I actually bought two A3's at the time and took one back since I couldn't live with the bright, thin sound quality while I kept the other A3 for a smaller room using a 32" LCD HDTV. I decided to keep the Sony DVP-S7000 first generation player running until today. I was lucky enough to still find and buy a new XA2 which I hooked up today which I immediately downloaded FW 2.7 via a burned CD. After this, I played my first HD DVD Movie King Kong using the coax digital output and was very impressed with the sound quality. No bright, thin sound here compared to the toslink only available on the A3. My main TV room has highend equipment where difference can be seen and heard. I'm perfectly fine using the A3 with an HK AVR which actually sounds great with the small Klipsch Quintet III speakers. It's not highend but actually impressed me on how good AV receivers are now. I haven't tried the toslink on the XA2. There's really no need since I've always preferred the coax over toslink any day of the week. Even "Bluejeancables.com has an article saying they prefer coax over toslink when there's a choice allowed". Yes, I know others will disagree here and I'm not wanting to argue this point since the differences don't require double blind folding techniques. I'm just posting this to anyone using the XA2 and toslink. I realize the rave is all the lossless sound but my XA2, Theta Casablanca, McCormack amps and Aerial Acoustic speakers were in pure delight today playing King Kong in plain Dolby Digital 5.1. I haven't played any other movies yet but have Transformers in HD that will be played next. The sound from King Kong was tremendous with no compression artifacts that could be heard whatsoever. Her screaming in the movie was crystal clear sound with no edginess along with great dynamics.

Boy, I was more than a little tentative about the XA2's sound quality. I guess I was concerned for nothing. The sound and picture quality on the XA2 is easily worth the price of admission especially if the other components are up to the task.

Now if someone could tell me if the Picture Mode should always be set to FILM or left in AUTO. The update review with FW2.7 seemed to indicate using FILM no matter the resolution setting used to get rid of any stuttering on certain movies since AUTO still produced the stuttering problem. Should FILM be used no matter what?
I don't have HDMI receiver but went with the analog hook up and it is great. Toslink vs coax is a wash for the most part but the 5.1 analog set-up will give TrueHD sound if you wanted. The XA2 is also the best upconverter.
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Old 12-23-2007, 03:17 PM
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I don't have HDMI receiver but went with the analog hook up and it is great. Toslink vs coax is a wash for the most part but the 5.1 analog set-up will give TrueHD sound if you wanted. The XA2 is also the best upconverter.

Yeah, I'll have to wait to upgrade my processor when the upgrade path is available then I'll be able to get the lossless formats. The sound really is quite dynamic through my setup but the credit goes to all the components in the chain. The HK AVR that is capable of decoding all the latest sound formats can't come close to my highend setup. I was thinking about using the 5.1 analog set up like you mentioned but don't know of a way that I could still be able to use my stand alone CD player that I route through my processor only as a pre amp. I'm not sure if there's a way to get some kind of switching device for the L & R analog inputs so I can switch between the CD player or XA2. No one seems to reply when I've asked about this possibility. I've also not been able to get an answer on the Picture Mode set to FILM question. How do you have your XA2 Picture Mode set???

Anyone else out there have input on the Picture Mode setting??? It seems the XA2 review on the sight indicated that FILM should be used instead of AUTO no matter what the resolution setting in order to get rid of any stutter problem that may exist on certain DVD's playing on the XA2.
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