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It isn’t often that I have to review a product on several different levels. The Oppo UDP-205 Ultra HD Blu-ray disc player, however, is an exception. It provides outstanding value for money in four very different roles: as a CD, SACD, and virtually any other form of stereo music disc player; as a DVD, Blu-ray, and Ultra HD (4K) Blu-ray video player; as a surround-music disc player; and as a digital preamp.
I can strongly recommend it in any of these roles in competition with other units in anything like its price range. It is also, however, the best surround-music player I’ve yet encountered, and this potentially gives it a very different role than an ordinary stereo disc player. If you put it into a high-quality AV system it does an outstanding job of reproducing the multichannel music on many SACDs, older DVD-As, and DTS surround recordings, as well as on PCM surround recordings like those put out by AIX.
I realize that surround music has gone out of fashion in much of the stereo world, but I think this is a bit of a tragedy. If you have a really good AV system, you also have a really good surround-music system, and it is a pity not to take advantage of it, even if it does not match your stereo system in some respects...Continue reading here
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