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  1. #1

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    Default Pioneer Elite BDP53FD Discussion thread. Review will follow soon.

    Hello all ,
    I took home a BDP53FD Yesterday for many reasons.
    1) To figure out all it's issues
    2) To see if I could own it myself
    3) To better understand where Pioneer Elite is at with Blu ray players as I have not fully liked one yet.

    I currently own a Cambridge Audio 650BD which I fully love except for toggle power(I'll explain later). I've wanted personally a Elite Blu Ray player (Universal) Since Blu Ray came out. I'm a Universal player user as I enjoy only having one player do all my Disc use (SACD/ DVD AUDIO/ CD/ DVD/ BLU RAY, HDCD).

    I did the 3.11 Firmware update on the 53 Yesterday as it just came out. I'll go into the issues with Version 3.01 later.

    For now if anyone has a experience with this player , feel free to posts all your thoughts here. I'm gonna fully test the hell out of this player and find all the good and ugly about it. I got a few hours in last night and I plan a few more tonight. By this weekend I should know enough to write a full review.

    Stay Tuned
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  2. #2

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    Mantis, I look forward to reading about your review. I had considered purchasing one of these until I read a bunch of reviews on it. Not only will I be interested in its PQ and sound but also its streaming capabilities and how well it plays with your network.

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    I've been very interested in the 52 and 53, because I have always loved my Pioneer universal DVD player, and would love to replace it with one that plays BD as well. But the reports of bugs and failures over at AVS have kept me far away. And not just from the Pioneers.

    How long will it take to develop BD players that just work, and don't take forever to load disks?

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    Awesome idea, Dan!

    I inquired about an open box Pioneer BDP-41FD at an audio store near my house that the owner was asking $200 for. The owner told me it was an ok player, but for that money he would rather sell me a brand new Sony s780, as he thought it was a better player and a better deal. I have not bought anything yet, and now I am very curious to see what you think of the new 53 model. Can't wait to see your verdict

    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamM2 View Post
    How long will it take to develop BD players that just work, and don't take forever to load disks?
    Yeah, no joke! I take naps while my sony s360 loads. It's terribly slow... From what I understand the s780 is the only one that is significantly faster in the Sony line up.
    Last edited by Lietuvis91; 03-22-2012 at 09:47 AM.
    Living Room 7.1 HT Rig:

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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by drselect View Post
    Mantis, I look forward to reading about your review. I had considered purchasing one of these until I read a bunch of reviews on it. Not only will I be interested in its PQ and sound but also its streaming capabilities and how well it plays with your network.
    Video quality is top notch as well as Sound but sound is handled with the SC-07 over HDMI so it just passes it correctly. Also honestly I have a 60" Pioneer Elite Kuro which makes everything high rez look unbelievable. The real test is when I do a VS shootout with my Cambridge Audio 650BD and see if I can hear or see any differences. Both players on this note are incredible.
    I have it hard wired to my 10/100/1000 network which is runs fine , no problems. Streaming it does Netflix , Pandora , Picaco what ever that is and You tube so in this department it lacks against other streaming players , I would have liked at least Vudo which is the coolest Video streaming service available. I love it as the pic and sound are awesome.
    I have not done any music streaming over Windows as I don't have anything on my Windows side of my Computers for music (I'm all mac's over here and 2 of them run Windows 7 and XP on the other).
    It also has USB which again I have not given a test drive.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamM2 View Post
    I've been very interested in the 52 and 53, because I have always loved my Pioneer universal DVD player, and would love to replace it with one that plays BD as well. But the reports of bugs and failures over at AVS have kept me far away. And not just from the Pioneers.

    How long will it take to develop BD players that just work, and don't take forever to load disks?
    I'd keep waiting my man, wait at least t'll I do my full review , I'm not quite sold on this player.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lietuvis91 View Post
    Awesome idea, Dan!

    I inquired about an open box Pioneer BDP-41FD at an audio store near my house that the owner was asking $200 for. The owner told me it was an ok player, but for that money he would rather sell me a brand new Sony s780, as he thought it was a better player and a better deal. I have not bought anything yet, and now I am very curious to see what you think of the new 53 model. Can't wait to see your verdict



    Yeah, no joke! I take naps while my sony s360 loads. It's terribly slow... From what I understand the s780 is the only one that is significantly faster in the Sony line up.
    The 41FD sucked ass as as well as the 23FD. I'm hoping the 53FD will shed it's wings and fly but so far it has broken wings and I'm trying to figure it out. There is no WOW factor , no ELITE feeling , no PRIDE nothing. I'm not completely judging it yet but it's quirky and I'm not so happy.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

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    Video quality is top notch as well as Sound but sound is handled with the SC-07 over HDMI so it just passes it correctly. Also honestly I have a 60" Pioneer Elite Kuro which makes everything high rez look unbelievable. The real test is when I do a VS shootout with my Cambridge Audio 650BD and see if I can hear or see any differences. Both players on this note are incredible.
    From incredible to this in 4 minutes. Really!?!

    There is no WOW factor , no ELITE feeling , no PRIDE nothing. I'm not completely judging it yet but it's quirky and I'm not so happy.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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  9. #9

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    Not a lot of "info" on this Player at Pioneer's site? No "real" specs in the Manual, not even gross weight and dimension info?

    And a MSRP of only 499 (not promising in terms of what "older" Elites went for?).

    Looks like Pioneer is cheaping out their units. The site info says this thing plays SACDs...but I don't see "any" confirmation of that in the manual?

    Look forward to the review.

    cnh
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    I am also on the fence on buying this unit. I currently own the Sony BDP-S780 and a Pioneer BDP-23FD. What didnt you like about the 23FD Mantis?

    I only have the Sony because I redeemed my Sony points for it, it has a great 12 bit picture and somewhat fast loading.

    I was thinking of also buying the SC-57 and coupling it with the 53FD, I currently have the SC-07 so I may just keep that since I've read a couple of so - so revies over on AVS about Pioneers recent quality issues.

    Any thoughts on the SC-57?

    Thanks

    Juan

  11. #11

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    [QUOTE=F1nut;1744954]From incredible to this in 4 minutes. Really!?![/QUOTE
    Wait for the review and I think you'll understand.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnh View Post
    Not a lot of "info" on this Player at Pioneer's site? No "real" specs in the Manual, not even gross weight and dimension info?

    And a MSRP of only 499 (not promising in terms of what "older" Elites went for?).

    Looks like Pioneer is cheaping out their units. The site info says this thing plays SACDs...but I don't see "any" confirmation of that in the manual?

    Look forward to the review.

    cnh
    Yes it plays SACD but if you want multichannel , you have to use HDMI only. I'm not even shore it will play down to 2 channel out over analog. That's all it has out , there really isn't a analog section which is strange on a Universal player. Again no ELITE feeling.
    Dan
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  13. #13

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    Aren't the new Pioneer BDP's made by Sharp?

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnh View Post
    Not a lot of "info" on this Player at Pioneer's site? No "real" specs in the Manual, not even gross weight and dimension info?

    And a MSRP of only 499 (not promising in terms of what "older" Elites went for?).

    Looks like Pioneer is cheaping out their units. The site info says this thing plays SACDs...but I don't see "any" confirmation of that in the manual?

    Look forward to the review.

    cnh
    For $499 I'd take the Oppo over the Pioneer. IMO their quality is definitely going down hill. I was very disappointed in the cheap remote they give you with the $2200 sc-57. It's comparable to my $100 Panasonic blu ray remote. Not cool Pioneer.
    Last edited by leroyjr1; 03-22-2012 at 09:36 PM.

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    After playing with this thing for 2 days now I decided to post some more thoughts.

    This is the flagship Elite Blu ray player offered as of ok well right now , tomorrow can bring a new one and then this would be old hat. Just how todays market is as nothing stays current anymore. I'm actually not a fan of this "keep building new one every 6 months to a year".
    Front panel - where do I start? The color and look. This is not an ELITE look , ok today it is but in history , Pioneer Elite products came in a Urushi ( for those who don't know what that is it's a Piano black finish) finish with Wood side panels. Chrome or gold feet, gold trim and a beautiful package. You as the owner felt like you purchased something better , something special something ELITE. Something that some of us who like "the better one" would be proud to have in our gear racks.
    The First thing to go was the wood side panels , ok I can kinda live with that (Not really) as it's been a very long time since a product sported such things. I believe the last player to have them was the DV-38A as a DVD player( killer player by the way). The last receivers to sport this I believe if I'm correct was the vsx29tx. I Installed all these products when they where new and I remember being so excited and felt honored to Installed them and then own them. It was great times back then when gear was heavy and built like a tank. Ok maybe I'm getting old and trying to hang onto something here but my glory days are very special to me.
    So this new panel sports a Black polished Aluminum front , Elite tray badge , 4 buttons and the typical orange / yellowish display. Nothing to even remotely get excited for other then seeing the gold Pioneer emblem (which was changed years ago from a much cooler design , yeah I liked the older one better) and the ELITE name in the middle.
    The feet on the bottom are black , with very little dampening material , like it was an after thought so it wouldn't scratch someones furniture. Not like the older players not no not none.
    The remote is the remote , I could really care less I never use factory remotes , I use all universal style remotes over the years so this is no concern with ****ty button placement , no back light , no who the hell cares. If you do , I'm not the one to evaluate this.
    Connections are stripped down to bare essentials with one connection that is a bit puzzling , composite out , why the hell would you leave a composite out on a blu ray player on a DVD player I never saw the need as even S was outdated back in the day of DVD. 1 set of analog left and right , 2 HDMI outs , 1 Ethernet , 1 USB and a removable power cord. There is a RS232c connection for custom but with IP control this connection is rarely used anymore unless you have it connected to a NON IP control system. IR is also fine as I have rs232c abilities in my system and don't see the need to use it in my system. I use RF to IR with a Emitter to control so no big deal , it is nice to see it there as maybe in some jobs I might decide it's a good idea to use it.
    Control is important.
    Iphone , Ipod , Ipad app - this is ok , it gives you control over IP and you can play around with it. Not something I would use on a day to day basis.
    Before I go current with the latest firmware version , I'd like to say a few things about this player and the issues it has had that I have experienced since it came out. This is the biggest reason I took one home for a in home test. Before it came out and I found out Pioneer was releasing a Blu ray Universal player , I felt like a great weight was lifted off me and I could breath again. Don't mistake me I love my Cambridge Audio 650BD as it's pretty bad ass player but it's not without flaw. The one flaw that I easily get around but still annoyed with is NO DISCRETE POWER ON AND OFF CODES". This is a huge deal when you have it in a closet , a rack in a basement or on the other side of the house somewhere out of sight. In my system , my gear still lives underneath my TV(not for long) so I just use the toggle command after I send my macro to setup the system to use what function I plan on using( I have different setups for different disc').
    The firmware version 3.01 is what I have seen since it came out. The first problem I noticed is NO DISCRETE CODES FOR POWER ON AND OFF.Same Issues as the Cambridge just re read above. Now this issue even goes deeper than that. This player running this firmware doesn't like to turn on or off all the time. It does when it feels like it , other times it say F U I'm staying on go SUCK IT. I had customers just leave the damn thing on as one guy wanted to rip it out of his system and throw it out the window as he could not get it to go off. Sweet , ELITE product with NO Discrete code how nice. History lesson , Elite products had Discrete codes and this one does not. Faith quickly got lost for me. First eh Kuro got axed , no Universal Blu ray players , Slowest players on the market and now this. GREAT!!! O I forgot to mention failures. Many Elite Blu ray players over the last 3 years had the highest failure rate of any string of years in Elite History. I've been in this business for a long time and can't remember EVER having ANY service issues with Elite anything.
    First one we sold broke and had to be replaced. Thats pretty cool.
    Also freezing issues with streaming services like Netflix , player just doesn't want to go back to the home or main menu system. It likes to stay on Netflix and thats where it wants to be no matter what button you press unless you power it off. Thats a cool feature right of an ELITE product?
    This 53 is no different , it did the same thing the 23FD did.
    So a few days ago they released a firmware update and addressed the power Discrete issue. OK it now has the ability to be controlled correctly. I've tested this the last 2 days and haven't had any power related issues. Cool one problem solved(for now anyway , we shall see what the future brings)\
    Back to Streaming - Netflix works ok , menu system is OK at best. It's not very good compared to other GUI's I've seen but it gets the job done so I'm not going to nit pick but I sure would like to.
    You tube flat out SUCKS ASS. It's the worse interface I've used yet. If you buy this player just skip Youtube unless your a patient person. I wanted to turn it off after a few videos. It's not the quality it's the GUI thats hard to use. Try and search , then go to something else , finding video's you trip around and stumble across stuff after many attempts.
    Picasa - I don't use it , don't care about it , who cares.
    Pandora - so Am I going to use my Bu ray player as my Pandora player? Maybe , it's ok , it works , not the best GUI but it gets the job done. Average at best here.


    Now lets get into Blu ray movies watching. This is where the player is fantastic. After proper setup and calibration , it's pretty fast loading , start up and everything is in except able tolerances. I can live with the way it works , video and sound is amazing so really if you buy this player as just a Blu ray player , no disappointment here. I have ran a few disc's and no issues loading or skipping anything. Everything worked flawlessly. (wipes sweat from forehead ). I've said this before but I own a Pioneer Elite 60' Kuro and with and High def image , this TV does everything justice. It's still IMO and my ISF gear's the best set money can buy( If you can find one and could care less about 3D).

    Audio - I played a few CD's over HDMI and it sounds great. The DAC is being used in the SC-07 (Wolfson 8740) so audio is a non issue. BUT this front display sucks ass , where the hell is the track info? If you don't' turn on your TV, you have no idea what track your on unless you know that by song. This sucks ass and seems to be a thing stripped off , no ELITE feeling here.
    Analog out sounds different then the HDMI out. I listened back and forth for about an hour and my thoughts is HDMI out sound alive and the Analog out sounds crushed. It was my exact reaction after I first switched to analog and back. It's like someone put a thin blanket over my speakers and held the sound down a little. It's weird , you have to have one to experience this to know what I'm saying. I'm assuming the DAC inside is not of the same quality as the DAC in my receiver. I use all good quality wire (Audioquest) and with my Cambridge I actually like the analog over the Elite Sc-07 for cd. it sounds slightly more organic.

    SACD- I feel a bit on the fence here. No analog outs , ok for me thats a non issue the SC-07 decodes SACD over HDMI and plays it just fine , but I can't spec one on a older job that has a B&K or older receiver or preamp that does't support SACD over HDMI or doesn't have HDMI at all. So this is a limiting factor of this model.

    DVD AUDIO - same as SACD no support over analog.

    So where does this leave me? Not really sure , I don't have butterflies in my stomach , I'm not overly excited nor really care much for this player. Yeah I want my cake and eat it it's an ELITE damn it. I want my 1200.00 level player. I want it to be badass , I want it to be class leading and compete with anything on the market. I leaves me rather wanting an OPPO over this. I have not Installed a 9 series yet but everything I have read makes me want to order a 95. I'd rather pay 1000.00 and get a great player then spend 500 and get a so so player. Much can be argued here I'd like to read your thoughts on this review and if anyone else owns one.

    More to come.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  16. #16

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    Here's a few pic's






    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

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    @leroyjr....The distributor that I bought my SC-57 from said that Pioneer had sold all of their TV technology to Sharp. He acted like the Sharp Aquos(?) line was actually the same TV as the Pioneers used to be. If this is true or not..I have no idea.. but this guy has been a Pioneer distributor since the 80's...and his parents before him. For that matter the BDPs might be made by Sharp and just branded Pioneer. Also.. I think that they actually intend for you to control the 57 with an IPad or IPhone.
    "Making life enjoyable through expensive electronics." BillD

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    M60's as a Zone 2 off of the Pioneer in the living room

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    I'll stick with my Harmony 1100. It works much better than the iPad/iPhone. The price of the 07/27/37/57 was all around the same price so going cheap on the product while keeping the price the same is ridiculous. The class D amps are the only thing pioneer has going for them right now.

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    I guess this is a thread jack...but I bought the Elite thinking that it was the best you could get...at the price range... I got my 57 cheap...but was told I could have had an Onkyo 1009 cheaper. The fact that my 807 only lasted 2 years (maybe less), and was basically a space heater in my theater room made me change to Pioneer. Now I find everyone loving the Onks... I can't win for losing.
    "Making life enjoyable through expensive electronics." BillD

    Pioneer Elite SC-57
    M70 series 2 mains
    CS2 center
    M40 surround
    M30 front height
    SVS PB 12 NSD

    Carver TFM-45 (mains)
    Carver A753x (center, surround)

    320GB PS3, 42" Panasonic G10,

    M60's as a Zone 2 off of the Pioneer in the living room

    R.I.P. Onkyo TX-NR807

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    Quote Originally Posted by leroyjr1 View Post
    I'll stick with my Harmony 1100. It works much better than the iPad/iPhone. The price of the 07/27/37/57 was all around the same price so going cheap on the product while keeping the price the same is ridiculous. The class D amps are the only thing pioneer has going for them right now.
    What Pioneer doesn't get is At this price point , we are willing to pay for a quality product. $2200.00 isn't a budget minded purchase for a receiver. IMO if Pioneer would have increased the price with new features , I would have purchased "THE NEW ONE" . Don't skimp on quality to add features and keep the price the same , I'm way no in. I've noticed little things about the newer models that bother me.
    Dan
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    Unless you go with the Onkyo 3009/5009 you made a good decision going with the Sc-57.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ibewbrother View Post
    I guess this is a thread jack...but I bought the Elite thinking that it was the best you could get...at the price range... I got my 57 cheap...but was told I could have had an Onkyo 1009 cheaper. The fact that my 807 only lasted 2 years (maybe less), and was basically a space heater in my theater room made me change to Pioneer. Now I find everyone loving the Onks... I can't win for losing.
    It's cool , All thing Elite can be talked about here as I'm indifferent with them right now. You didn't make the wrong choice picking the 57 over the Onkyo IMO. I think it's a way better sounding receiver. This is one thing Pioneer has always done right , performance. Even this new Blu ray player with all the things I don't like about it still performs at a top notch level.
    I'm wondering if I missed something , are you not happy with your SC-57?
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by leroyjr1 View Post
    Unless you go with the Onkyo 3009/5009 you made a good decision going with the Sc-57.
    Curious , do you find that level of Onkyo receiver to outperform the SC-57? I've done vs with the Integra models and they came up short in the sound department. Not in dynamic range or features as the Integras are stacked but when you want to sit down and listen to music , it's doesn't have that separates quite to it. It sounds like a good quality receiver.
    I still think he didn't go wrong unless I'm missing something.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  24. #24

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    Receivers is about the only thing Pioneer has going for it right now. Other than that, I don't think they make anything else I would want to own.
    I have an older 320 bdp, slower than the competition loading data loaded discs, but the picture and sound are still outstanding and for under 2 bills, hard to beat.

    I don't get why they try to add features most get from another device, like netflix. You can add an Apple tv, Roku unit, and many others that do streaming way better. I want a bdp that does one thing and does it well, play BR discs. They are trying to half ass this into being all things for all people which ultimately leads to failure. Thats why the Kuro was so good, it did one thing well, no streaming, no 3d, no internet, just a damn good picture. All the money goes into doing one thing well instead of 5 things half assed to keep it within a certain price point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    Receivers is about the only thing Pioneer has going for it right now. Other than that, I don't think they make anything else I would want to own.
    I have an older 320 bdp, slower than the competition loading data loaded discs, but the picture and sound are still outstanding and for under 2 bills, hard to beat.

    I don't get why they try to add features most get from another device, like netflix. You can add an Apple tv, Roku unit, and many others that do streaming way better. I want a bdp that does one thing and does it well, play BR discs. They are trying to half ass this into being all things for all people which ultimately leads to failure. Thats why the Kuro was so good, it did one thing well, no streaming, no 3d, no internet, just a damn good picture. All the money goes into doing one thing well instead of 5 things half assed to keep it within a certain price point.
    I so agree with you except I want my Blu ray player to be Universal with sacd , dvd audio , hdcd , cd and dvd. I could care less about streaming as like you said there are so many ways to get it elsewhere. I have netflix 3 times in my system , the 53 , Apple tv and Xbox 360.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  26. #26

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    Thats 2 different animals Dan, a universal and a straight up BDP. A good universal, I thought Pioneer did great with the 59 and 79 respectfully but lost it with blu-ray. The OPPO seems to be the one to beat in the universal dept. for under a G note.

    For me anyway, Pioneer is using it's "Elite" tag, whose reputation took years to build, and destroying it. They are using it more so as a marketing gimmick than rather really making the products with Elite on it a step above everything else.
    Last edited by tonyb; 03-23-2012 at 07:37 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mantis View Post
    It's cool , All thing Elite can be talked about here as I'm indifferent with them right now. You didn't make the wrong choice picking the 57 over the Onkyo IMO. I think it's a way better sounding receiver. This is one thing Pioneer has always done right , performance. Even this new Blu ray player with all the things I don't like about it still performs at a top notch level.
    I'm wondering if I missed something , are you not happy with your SC-57?
    I haven't even hooked it up yet... I posted in another board(room?) ..about my shut down. Both of my Carvers are at the electronics shop for new led meter lamps, and I have just finished changing doors and painting...along with some electrical work. I hope this weekend to at least power it up and listen to the M60s in the living room and work on the networking aspect. Truthfully....I haven't even got entirely through the manual....and I have it on this computer and the Ipad I bought specifically for the cool looking control stuff. Hell....I've had it for three weeks now and all I have done is make sure it will power up.

    Basically...when the Onk went south... I decided to go for broke and do all of the things I have thought about doing since I started building my system. My only point was now I'm reading many posts about the Onkyos....and I went Pioneer...and now Pioneer isn't what you want. When my 807 was working....all the posts were about how good the SC-37 was.
    "Making life enjoyable through expensive electronics." BillD

    Pioneer Elite SC-57
    M70 series 2 mains
    CS2 center
    M40 surround
    M30 front height
    SVS PB 12 NSD

    Carver TFM-45 (mains)
    Carver A753x (center, surround)

    320GB PS3, 42" Panasonic G10,

    M60's as a Zone 2 off of the Pioneer in the living room

    R.I.P. Onkyo TX-NR807

  28. #28

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    Just pickup an OPPO 93 or 95 & be done with it. I just upgraded from the 83 to the 93 strictly for 3D capability. Rock solid unit & it's wireless streaming is awesome, I use VUDU alot for movies...excellent picture & sound.
    "2 Channel & 11.2 HT "
    Panny 65" 3D Plasma
    Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A3010 AVR
    D>SONIC M2-600M mono's / mains
    Rotel RMB-1095 / 5 channel amp
    Rotel RMB-1075 / 5 channel amp
    TEAC UD - 501 DAC
    Oppo BDP-93
    SONOS System
    KEF Q900 / mains
    KEF Q600 / center
    KEF Q800 / surrounds
    KEF Q100 / rear surr.
    Def Tech ProMonitor 1000 / front & rear presence
    Velodyne SPL-1200R subs / dual pair
    DSPeaker Anti-Mode 8033 sub EQ
    Equitech Balanced Power Son of Q 1.5R
    Extensive room treatments

  29. #29

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    Pioneer does make good receivers, but by no means are the only good receivers out there. Every maker has top of the line models, and Onkyo has some very good top models too. Comes down to sound signature of the brand, which of coarse opinions will vary.

    Dan is referencing his dislike for their blu-ray player, not their receivers.

  30. #30

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    [QUOTE=pearsall001;1745211]Just pickup an OPPO 93 or 95 & be done with it. I just upgraded from the 83 to the 93 strictly for 3D capability. Rock solid unit & it's wireless streaming is awesome, I use VUDU alot for movies...excellent picture & sound.[/QUOTE

    I so need to come over dude. I've been so busy. We will get together soon. I would like to check out the Oppo.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

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