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Customer Review

19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed Feeling, October 30, 2012
This review is from: OPPO BDP-95 Universal Audiophile 3D Blu-ray Disc Player (Electronics)
Like most reviewers already mentioned about the video performance. I have nothing to add, Oppo BDP-95's video performance is fantastic! 5 stars for its video performance. However, on the audio side, I do not quite agree with most reviers assessment about its analog audio performance! From an EE engineer's point of view, the layout of the PCB is not good at all, especially the ground plane. ESS is definitely a very good DAC chip; however, it has a build in clock running all the time. This means that the output has high frequency noise generate by ESS chip itself. An engineer needs to be very careful about handling the noise of the DAC chip, otherwise, the I/V stage (current to voltage converting) could overload the OP amp(s). In real listening session and waveforms measured in my lab, there is no surprise that ESS chip does not put out everything this chip can perform on Oppo 95. Readers of this review need to interpretate my words carefully, since my audio equipments are of the very top end products, the listening session is conducted with my own audio system (with Antelope DAC Gold, Master clock and 10M atomic clock). If you are an audiophile and looking for this player to replace your CD player, my suggestion is to get a BDP-93 as a CD transport, and look somewhere else for a better designed ESS chip based or PCM-1792 based DAC.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 31, 2012 2:13:24 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 31, 2012 2:14:30 PM PDT
G. Lapidus says:
I gave this product 5-stars in my review but appreciate your thought out comments. Don't you need to take price vs results in to consideration? What I mean is that based upon your suggestion one would spend around $500 for the OPPO 93 and then how much would be required to get a converter you consider that much improved beyond the DA stage of this unit? It seems to me there would be a fairly large additional cost involved here to accomplish what you suggest while for just around $1,000 one gets a transport and DA that is heads and shoulders above any other unit even close to its price range. On another subject, I don't know your musical tastes by recently I acquired the Mark Knopfler Shangra-La SACD and it is among the best sounding works I own and I own a lot from folk to opera. Just wanted to pass that on from one audiophile to another. Cheers

Posted on Nov 17, 2012 4:31:59 PM PST
KAW says:
As we all know, EEs (all engineers, for that matter) think they know everything. This is an entry level product and sounds very good for CD and SACD audio. Evaluating it based on PCB layout and comparison to high end electronics is ludicrous.

Posted on Nov 29, 2012 11:11:19 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 29, 2012 3:23:26 PM PST
OPPO Digital says:
First, thank you for the review. We take it seriously so we talked to ESS about this for fear that we might have missed something. ESS confirmed that our design was sound, and the PCB layout for using their excellent DAC had been carefully reviewed by their engineering team prior to production. ESS also pointed out that the numerous awards from prestige audiophile publications should be a proof of the BDP-95's proper design. Of course, for high-end audio design, there is always room for improvement. We thank you for the input and will continue to make even better products.

Posted on Jan 9, 2013 4:26:11 PM PST
Alan C. says:
I happen to own Antelope Zodiac Gold DAC with Voltikus power supply. And the sound is fantastic!

Now the above combination costs nearly 4 times of BDP-95. Comparing BDP-95 with high-end DAC seems unfair...

Posted on Dec 22, 2013 7:17:31 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 22, 2013 7:21:35 AM PST

Thanks for your thoughts and observations, but are you really comparing this player to a Antelope DAC Gold (A dedicated DAC - $3,895)? Should I compare a Toyota Corolla to a BMW 320I? I have no illusions that this BDP-95 is in the same league as the Antelope, but does it play blu-rays, DVDs DVD-As or SACDs? No, and I wouldn't expect it to.
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