DVD-A thoughts...

I have a universal player that can play back DVD-A's. Some of these are pretty good sounding, but like everything in this hobby, there is wide variation. Anyone here still listen to DVD-A's? 

One question, I have a Diana Krall DVD-A that is multi leveled, with the ability to play back surround sound or stereo or video. The interesting thing is that the stereo mix was done by Doug Sax and the other mixes by others. I have not figured out how to get to just the stereo mix on my player (just the surround sound level, which seems to be the default), anybody run into similar issues?


it's another way to represent 3d sound, but to me it's a no go due to limitations to mainly mainstream that I can hear on radio every day.


I have exactly 1 DVD-A disc.

I listen in 2 channel mode. I believe most players (by default) will play just in stereo if the "surround" outputs are not plugged in.

There may also be something in the settings where you can choose 2 channel vs surround.

Honestly, the DVD-A's I've seen are all exorbitantly expensive. Like twice the price of the identical SACD, so I never really bothered. $15 for the CD, $40 for the SACD and $75 for DVD-A.

I'll stick with SACD, thanks.

@coralkong Actually, I have a number of DVD-A’s, they were all bought on the used market, and in many cases for less than I would have to pay for the equivalent CD! Not many folks have the gear to play DVD-A’s, so this has impacted the price of these discs.
While the disc I mentioned in my OP plays fine on my system, it is playing the surround sound version, even though I do not have a surround set up, or connections. I am wondering if anyone knows how to play the stereo version, which as I mentioned, is mastered differently?

Sorry I can't be of more help, @daveyf .

Out of curiosity, what happens if you stick the disc in a regular CD player?

I just looked at the manual for my unit, and it will ONLY play (output) DVD-A to the analog out jacks, so surround isn't even an option for me. (I never even realized this until now...)

Sounds like you have the exact opposite problem.

I don’t own a regular CD only player, but I seriously doubt this DVD-A disc would play in one if I did. My player is a Universal unit, meaning it can also play back DVD video to a home theater system. I don’t utilize it this way, as the SACD capability and the standard Redbbook SQ is excellent. 

You should have the choice of which "soundtrack" to play as for the video DVD but oviously only from the menu that will appear on the TV screen. Probably it will be possible from the remote control too but not sure if you will see it on the player display. Which player do you own?

I have a bunch of DVD-As.  I bought most of them at a fire sale when Tower Records went bust.  They play fine on my Oppo 103 and 203, but not all play on a newer Pioneer Elite Universal player.

  Regarding your playback issue, it may be a compatibility issue with your amp/processor.  DVD-A isn’t a priority for the newer machines 

@katylied   The player I own is a Esoteric DV60. The display seems to indicate that the disc is playing only the surround sound layer. Sounds fine, but I suspect the stereo only layer, mastered by Doug Sax, would sound a lot better. The other DVD-A discs I own all play on the stereo layer only, probably because there is no embedded video layer. I actually prefer the XRCD discs to all of these from a SQ perspective. Nonetheless, the DVD-A's I own were all bought for less $$ than the XRCD's.

Thank you @coralkong. I did look up this in the manual before and tried the "audio button". For some reason with this disc, there was no result. Perhaps the disc is faulty?

@daveyf , I don't know, but if it were me, I wouldn't worry about it. I've had bum discs before....it does happen.

I remember buying the brand new Robert Plant/Allison Krauss CD. Took it out to the car, unwrapped it, popped it in the CD player, and it skipped. LOL.

It happens.


@coralkong I think with this particular disc, it is possible that a video screen is required to change the levels. This is the only DVD-A that may require this, but it still sounds fine under the surround sound mastering, better I am sure with the stereo.



The DV-60 is a very fine Player. Good advice as above. Yes, for certain functions/settings, a video screen is required.


Happy Listening!