Denon DVD-A1UDCI Universal Blu-ray Player Preview 
Home Theater Video Players Blu-ray Players
Written by Michael Palmer   
Monday, 06 December 2010

Branded as "the world's first 'universal' Blu-ray Disc player", the DVD-A1UDCI from Denon is the company's flagship digital video and audio player.  In this sky's-the-limit price range, Denon smartly aims this product not only at videophiles who demand video perfection from sources like Blu-ray and DVD, but also audiophiles with DVD-Audio, SACD, CD, WMA and MP3 collections.  

Denon's DVD-A1UDCI has a built-in Ethernet Port for connection to a home network, but unlike many less expensive players, it can only able to access BD-Live content from Blu-ray discs or Denon firmware updates, which leaves a wealth of internet streaming services like Vudu, Netflix, and Pandora off the table.  Also, while the DVD-A1UDCI is a Profile 2.0 player, to download BD-Live content, you'll need to purchase an optional SD card.

Like it's cheaper-by-two-grand 100th anniversary cousin, the BDP-A100, Denon's DVD-A1UDCI features Advanced S.V.H. (Supreess Vibration Hybrid) disc drive mechanism that provides a stable platform for discs ensuring error-free playback without mudding effects or vibrations.  As stated above, it also plays just about every format available in terms of video and audio.  Blu-ray Discs, DVDs, DVD-Audio, CDs, SACDs, JPEG CDs, AVCHD video files, and DivX discs are all no problem.

Cinema lovers will drool over the DVD-A1UDCI's Silcon Optix Realta HQV video processor upconverts and deinterlances film and video sources from your standard definition DVDs pixel-by-pixel to created clean, smooth, distortion free images in your choice of resolution outputs (480i/p, 720p, or 1080i/p).  The real treat is dual HDMI 1.3a outputs for feeding multiple display sources; and AV Pure Direct Mode allows owners to assign one HDMI to video and one to audio.  Denon has also included a Y/Pr/Pb component out and the pretty-much-useless S-Video and Composite out.  Perhaps there will be someone who purchases a Blu-ray Disc Player for mostly its audio capabilities?  All I know this would be a waste of serious coin to use either of the included SD outputs.

Music maniacs will enjoy the AL32 advanced digital audio processing, which upconverts 16-bit CDs to full 32-bit digtal format, virtually eliminating low-level harmonic distortion.  The DVD-A1UDCI can also bitstream out or internally decode Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, and DTS-HD Master Audio for output over HDMI or using the 7.1 channel RCA analog audio outs (great for those who want uncompressed or lossless audio, but don't want to swap out a pre-HDMI receiver).  A unique feature is the ability to decode Dolby Pro-Logic IIx internally which can turn 5.1 mixes into 7.1 (again most likely using the RCA 7.1 outs).    For jitter free multi-channel audio playback from Blu-ray, SACD, and DVD-Audio discs, Denon has included the latest version of its Denon Link jack, but its usage requires a compatible Denon Link equipped multichannel audio/video receiver.  Stereo lovers will also love the pair of balanced XLR outs on the back.  The DVD-A1UDCI also plays MP3s, Windows Media files, and HDCD files.

This high-performance Blu-ray Disc, DVD, DVD-Audio and SACD-capable CD player also includes a detachable power cord, a back-lit remote, and a 1-year warranty.  Installers in need of precise control for their premium clients will enjoy both an RS-232C port for third party controllers as well as IR ins and outs for remote repeater system.

The Denon DVD-A1UDCI Blu-ray Disc Player can be purchased for $4,500.00 online or from your local authorized Denon dealer.  But for this many greenbacks, no 3D, no built-in memory for BD-Live content, and WiFi for internet streaming services seems like a lot to ask.

Specs

  • Media Compatibility: Blu-ray, CD, SACD, DVD, DVD-A, BD-R, CD-R, BD-RE, CD-RW, DVD+R, DVD-R, BD-ROM, DVD+RW, DVD-RW
  • Outputs: 2 HDMI 1.3a, 1 Denon Link (4th Gen), 1 Coaxial Digital Audio, 1 Opitical Digital Audio, 1 Y/Pb/Pr Component Video (capped at 1080i), 1 S-Video, 1 Composite Video, 1 RCA Stereo, 1 set of RCA 7.1 Channel Analog
  • Additional Features: LAN (100BASE-T) Ethernet Port, BD-Live (needs optional 1GB SD card), RS-232C port, IR input and output for remote repeater systems
  • Audio Formats: DTS, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pro Logic IIx, DTS-HD Master Audio, AAC, SACD, DVD-Audio, MP3, Windows Media, HDCD
  • Video Formats: VC-1, AVCHD, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, JPEG, DivX
  • Dimensions: 17-1/8" W x 5-15/16" H x 17-13/16" D
  • Weight: 41 lbs. 11 oz.





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