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View Full Version : Alright, I did it. I bought a new Laserdisc Player!


Uncle Jay
11-20-2008, 03:49 PM
I've had a PIONEER CLD-D501 Laserdisc Player for nearly 16 years now. I bought it on January 1, 1993...I paid $700 bucks for it, lol. It was one of the first units to offer "dual side play"...so you didn't have to get up and flip them. I had a great time with this unit, but over the years it just deteriorated. In 2000, I had it refurbished, but it still acted stubborn. I would fire it up maybe once a year since then, spin a disc or two, but the quality of picture provided a lot of moire and grain. The dual side play would stick and certain discs wouldn't even play.

With my recent return to, or shall I say reinterest in Laserdiscs, I went out and bought a slightly used PIONEER ELITE DVL-91 DVD/LASERDISC combo player and I cannot believe the quality of this machine. Never have my laserdiscs looked this good. Even old standard lasers from the 80s look beautiful.

Had to share...

-UJ

Stige
11-20-2008, 04:07 PM
people in Europe seem to be wiling to die before selling their laserdisc players....

oh well

geeare
11-20-2008, 04:47 PM
ya i'm amazed these people will even use the internet when there are actual physical bulletin boards out there to pin things to.

wago70
11-20-2008, 05:26 PM
I've always wanted a top of the line LD player. I had a great one from Japan - a Pioneer player that displayed better color and a better "Black" level than my current DVD players. I ended up selling my collection this year once I couldn't get the player to start. I'm regretting letting go of certain titles and still wish I had many of them now. :(
That player sounds like a great find. :)

ekent
11-20-2008, 05:51 PM
I'm always on the lookout to find a player locally. I would like an Elite series player but folks online are hip to its worth and I don't think I could go over $100 on a player. Until I find a deal that I canot refuse, I will continue to use my CLD-D406.

A few years back I found a guy locally through eBay and the guy let me raid his stash of DTS discs. I snagged about 10 titles, 7 of them DTS for $50. Last year I sold most of them for well over $200 total.

KR~!
11-20-2008, 06:29 PM
Cool, I just brought an abacus to balance my money accounts.

Mattapooh
11-20-2008, 07:33 PM
Well I think that's just adorable.

Seriously though, I've never even SEEN a laserdisc, let alone watched a movie from one. I still remember my dad telling me about watching a Star Wars laserdisc at some dude's house on a big screen TV (remember the old massive crappy ones?) and talking about how amazing it was. Me, being a huge Star Wars fan at 13 (this was about 1993), I was envious as hell and wished I could've gotten into that stuff.

bigdaddyhorse
11-20-2008, 11:59 PM
I need to plug my LD player into my TV and see how it looks now. It was fine on a 32" SD, now I'm 67" full HD and quickly becoming finicky about watching SD broadcasts. I think it's mostly because the local FSN looks far worse than normal SD, and only 50-70% of Piston and Red Wing games get HD broadcasts.

I'm still very happy with my standard dvd player hooked up via componet. I can barely tell the difference between that and the 1080i Comcast HD signal, so that's keeping me from taking the BR plunge for now. Once prices drop a bit more and discs are cheaper, more titles offered, and including the extras from my current dvds, then I'll upgrade. It's also kept me from trying a up-converting dvd player, that and all the R2 stuff I have.

The last thing I need is a new way to plug my LD into the computer. I had dvdXpress, but it's an old version that won't work with Vista.:( Thought i had the jacks on my video card/back of tower, but a closer look shows those are all outs and no ins.:cry: At least I have audio ins for ripping my massive cassette collection.

Dave
11-21-2008, 12:08 AM
Congrats, man!

I'm toying now with getting another player, but when I realize I would have to spend a ton to get noticeable improvement in pic. quality, I usually back out. I'm probably going to get a blu-ray player instead. I have a high def TV but it is a tube (CRT). Lasers still looks decent on it with my CLD-D604.

Remember the format is only dead when we stop spinning discs.

Matt89
11-21-2008, 01:07 AM
Remember the format is only dead when we stop spinning discs.

No...it's been dead for a long time now. :D

Gotta love lasers, though. I have the Criterion LD of Taxi Driver with Scorsese's commentary. Too bad it was never carried over to the DVD release.

~Matt

Myron Breck
11-21-2008, 02:10 AM
I can't believe that I don't own one of the dinosaurs! I remember looking at them all the time as a kid and wishing I were rich enough to own one--and, let's face it, we're all STILL waiting on some of those special features to carry over to DVD/Blu-Ray!

Plus, they're big. Gotta love that. :)

Paff
11-21-2008, 04:12 AM
ya i'm amazed these people will even use the internet when there are actual physical bulletin boards out there to pin things to.

Cool, I just brought an abacus to balance my money accounts.

We get the idea, guys. It's a dead format, and better ones have taken over.

Now get this: WE DON'T CARE

It's not like we don't have DVD or Blu-ray, or are hoping that LD will come back the way vinyl has. It won't. It's over. But I also have over 500 LDs. Do the math (use that abacus, KR) on how much it will cost to replace them on another format. Yes, I'll eventually do it, and I've already upgraded several LD titles to DVD, but in the meantime I can still watch all those movies.

After that, many of the other posters here have already mentioned some of the advantages that LD still has. Larger size (which usually means big cover art, often based on the original art instead of the "re-imaging" and "floating heads" so prevalent in today's DVDs), and still some special features not ported over to DVD. For example, several HUNDRED stills from Night of the Living Dead that are not on the Millenium DVD from Elite.

A couple advantages not mentioned yet: Superior sound!! Yup, LD still sounds better than DVD because there is no need for compression. And many DVDs have the original soundtrack re-cooked and it sounds like ass. Suspiria, perfect example.

The nostalgia factor. As a fan of Hong Kong films, I used to order VHS tapes that were copied from LD (it was legal if the movie was not released in the US). Dual subtitles, sometimes white-on-white. Now those movies are on DVD, and those old LDs can be had for less than $5. I buy them in bulk, reminding me of the days when I was just discovering Hong Kong cinema.

Finally, the cool factor. A 2008 Toyota Camry will run circles around an old Porsche Speedster from the 50s, but which one is cooler? I've said it before, if you never got into LD, it's far too late to buy a player now. But if you're like me, with several hundred discs, you want them to look the best they can, and still watch them every so often.

Long story short, congrats Uncle Jay

KR~!
11-21-2008, 04:21 AM
It is still funny, but people are into all kinds of stuff, for example:
http://plusdeck.co.kr/eng/

indiephantom
11-21-2008, 05:39 AM
With my recent return to, or shall I say reinterest in Laserdiscs, I went out and bought a slightly used PIONEER ELITE DVL-91 DVD/LASERDISC combo player and I cannot believe the quality of this machine. Never have my laserdiscs looked this good. Even old standard lasers from the 80s look beautiful.

Had to share...

-UJ[/SIZE][/FONT]

That's the exact same LD/DVD player I have. Bought it in 1999 and it works really well. I use it as my backup DVD player, as it seems to have fewer "issues" with finicky discs. I remember when I got this player being amazed at the picture quality compared to my old one.

Tarantino also owns this model. You're in good company. ;)

Matt89
11-21-2008, 07:10 AM
Finally, the cool factor. A 2008 Toyota Camry will run circles around an old Porsche Speedster from the 50s, but which one is cooler?


You're damn right, James Dean's car! (Before he traded it in and got the Porsche Spyder that ultimately killed him.)

But yeah I get what you're saying. There are a few shops I know of that sell laserdiscs and I've grabbed a few just for the nostalgia factor. I have a few Criterion LDs just for the hell of it. I don't even own a LD player! I wanna get one though for the commentaries that weren't carried over to DVD.

~Matt

Shannafey
11-21-2008, 02:29 PM
I just bought a new 8 Track player to hook up to my surround system. You guys may think CDs and audio DVDs are good, but nothing matches the fidelity of an 8 Track tape!!! :lol:

It's not like we don't have DVD or Blu-ray, or are hoping that LD will come back the way vinyl has. It won't. It's over. But I also have over 500 LDs. Do the math (use that abacus, KR) on how much it will cost to replace them on another format. Yes, I'll eventually do it, and I've already upgraded several LD titles to DVD, but in the meantime I can still watch all those movies.

The nostalgia factor. As a fan of Hong Kong films, I used to order VHS tapes that were copied from LD (it was legal if the movie was not released in the US). Dual subtitles, sometimes white-on-white. Now those movies are on DVD, and those old LDs can be had for less than $5. I buy them in bulk, reminding me of the days when I was just discovering Hong Kong cinema.


Yeah, I know what you mean, Paff! I still have stuff on VHS, some of which I've transferred to DVD-R because I don't want to spend the money on rebuying it (if it was something I loved, I'd rebuy it).

Also, I with you on the nostalgia factor! I used to get Anime tapes transferred from Jap. LDs that didn't even have subtitles, just because I loved the animation. Those, I've rebought on DVD.

geeare
11-21-2008, 03:59 PM
Finally, the cool factor. A 2008 Toyota Camry will run circles around an old Porsche Speedster from the 50s, but which one is cooler?

LD is cooler than DVD or Blu-ray, lol.

seriously I understand the having 500+ LD's and not wanting to replace them but this "cooler" statement is just rediculous.

Fistfuck
11-21-2008, 04:32 PM
Finally, the cool factor. A 2008 Toyota Camry will run circles around an old Porsche Speedster from the 50s, but which one is cooler?

That's so five minutes ago. Eco-friendly is what's hot now.

Myron Breck
11-22-2008, 01:56 AM
It is still funny, but people are into all kinds of stuff, for example:
http://plusdeck.co.kr/eng/

Uh, YEAH!!!!! I have been wanting something that can convert my John Waters books-on-tape for ages and no one has a clue!!! You can buy LP-to-CD units as Wal-Mart.

russweiss
11-22-2008, 02:24 AM
Cool, I just brought an abacus to balance my money accounts.

Very well said:D:D

russweiss
11-22-2008, 02:31 AM
I had over 750 lasers at one point. I collected a lot of Chinese and Japanese imports because you just couldn't find the titles anywhere else. Once DVD starting becoming prevalent I sold my entire collection on Ebay and recovered a large percentage of the money I spent. Personally I didnt' like the fact of how large the lasers were as they became extremely heavy when you had to move them around. Also the cost was so much higher (average $30-35 dollars). My friend used to collect DiscoVision titles and he would remove the top finish on the mystery side to see what titles were pressed underneath.

SickNick89
11-22-2008, 03:04 AM
i still have my collection of a couple hundred titles on ld, many of them with extras not on dvd (scream-uncut, raw test footage on nightmare on elm street, carrie with commentary, poltergiest with documentary ect) so i8 won't be letting go of these anytime soon.

Dave
11-22-2008, 10:42 AM
If you guys are anti-LD or just want to rain on the parade, you probably have no business being in this thread. My opinion on a dead format is that it aint dead until it is no longer used. Therefore, LD will never die in my eyes. Of course it is dead from a new release standpoint. But looking at the sales on the ebay LD section, LD is very much alive for many people.

I agree with many of Paff's arguments. I like the nostalgic factor with LD and yeah, they do look a lot cooler. The image has held up well thus far, though I admit once we are all on significantly larger screens or projectors, the image will be hurting.

For me it's almost like collecting comics now. I'm doing it for the love of the format and because I like collecting rare lasers. I just bought Deep Blue Sea on LD for $40. Why would I do this when the DVD is $5-$10 with better pq? Well, I own the DVD but I think it would be cool to own one of the last lasers ever produced.

Regurgitate
11-22-2008, 04:52 PM
For me it's almost like collecting comics now. I'm doing it for the love of the format and because I like collecting rare lasers.

I can relate to that statement a lot in some respects. As a young teenager I feverishly tried to acquire a Laserdisc player and when I actually did I lusted after all the great criterion LDs and the various boxed sets that just screamed elegance and elitism if you will. I have a very modest Laserdisc collection now and every now and then I get the urge to pick up some kitschy odd ball import laserdisc or some sublimely terrible movie just for it's sheer irony. The problem is now when I actually sit and try to watch a laserdisc, I can't. To me the technology is horribly dated and even the most average DVD can beat the vast majority of Laserdiscs picture wise. Not to mention if you're watching a CAV title all the flipping and disc changing can get old.

ekent
11-22-2008, 05:10 PM
In many ways, I don't a DVD can compare to a properly produced CAV disc.

One example is the Dawn of the Dead CAV box set. I was amazed at the quality and I was geeking over the frame advance. Try doing that on any DVD version, it won't hold up with the MPEG-2 compression and the frame meshing.

I truly believe that if lasers were still being printed today, the picture would be superior to DVD. I think that the new mastering technology would look better on LD than DVD. Who knows, perhaps even anamorphic squeeze would have caught on.

Dave
11-22-2008, 05:50 PM
I guess the fact I have a reasonably sized 16x9 tube is why lasers still look decent to me. I was surprised at how well meridian looked when I watched it last week, and that's a laser from 1990.

Dave
11-22-2008, 06:46 PM
The other factor is that the high end Japanese machines (HLD-Xx) supposedly really breathe some new life into laserdiscs on the bigger TVs. People on AVS claims that they'll look nearly as good as DVD. Now, those high end machines go for $1500-$2500, so price is a huge factor. That kind of cash can buy a lot of blu-rays, ya know?

The other option would be the LD-S9, which is close to high end, but doesn't carry the same price tag. I've seen those go for $500 and I may bite and get one of those again at some point.

SickNick89
11-23-2008, 02:07 AM
If you guys are anti-LD or just want to rain on the parade, you probably have no business being in this thread. My opinion on a dead format is that it aint dead until it is no longer used. Therefore, LD will never die in my eyes. Of course it is dead from a new release standpoint. But looking at the sales on the ebay LD section, LD is very much alive for many people.

I agree with many of Paff's arguments. I like the nostalgic factor with LD and yeah, they do look a lot cooler. The image has held up well thus far, though I admit once we are all on significantly larger screens or projectors, the image will be hurting.

For me it's almost like collecting comics now. I'm doing it for the love of the format and because I like collecting rare lasers. I just bought Deep Blue Sea on LD for $40. Why would I do this when the DVD is $5-$10 with better pq? Well, I own the DVD but I think it would be cool to own one of the last lasers ever produced.

The last laser i bought new before they were discontinued was Blair Witch Project. I'm sure it had to be in the final list of laserdiscs ever produced.

Matt89
11-23-2008, 02:15 AM
Yeah it had to have been, and wasn't Sleepy Hollow the last laser ever produced? Correct me if I'm wrong. They officially stopped making them in what, 1999/2000?

~Matt

Dave
11-23-2008, 02:22 AM
2000 for US and 2001 for Japan.

I just bought BWP and Wild Wild West off ebay for $1.00 each.

Sleepy Hollow was last here; The Cell was last US release in Japan.

Matt89
11-23-2008, 02:45 AM
Hey Dave, do you have the Carrie Criterion? I really wanna get it for the commentary. (I have no idea where to get a player, though. I live in Toronto, so I guess you probably don't know of anywhere lol.)

~Matt

Paff
11-23-2008, 03:05 AM
Hey Dave, do you have the Carrie Criterion? I really wanna get it for the commentary. (I have no idea where to get a player, though. I live in Toronto, so I guess you probably don't know of anywhere lol.)

~Matt

I have it.

You could probably have someone record it to CD, then watch the DVD while listening to the commentary. It's more of an "audio essay", not really scene specific. I think I've listened to maybe half of it or so.

If you do decide to buy a player for something like this, be ABSOLUTELY sure you get the remote. To switch audio tracks on a laserdisc, you press an "Analog/Digital" button on the remote, and you can't do that from the front panel. No universal remotes do it either.

Matt89
11-23-2008, 03:10 AM
Yeha I might just get one, but are there any sites that feature laserdisc reviews?

~Matt

Paff
11-23-2008, 04:30 AM
Yeha I might just get one, but are there any sites that feature laserdisc reviews?

~Matt

players or discs?

Matt89
11-23-2008, 04:45 AM
Discs.

~Matt

Dave
11-23-2008, 06:20 AM
Discs.

~Matt

www.horrordvds.com

Matt89
11-23-2008, 06:22 AM
:lol:

Yeah I've read all those lol. Any other sites you know of?

I appreciate the effort, tho. :lol:

~Matt

Paff
11-23-2008, 06:55 AM
http://www.thecinemalaser.com/laserdisc-reviews.htm

Several of the great Elite horror releases are reviewed there

SickNick89
11-25-2008, 03:23 AM
i think i paid 30-40 for bwp new. at least those were the days of no real finacial responsibilities for me.

f.ramses
11-29-2008, 07:40 PM
Even though it's been a while since I've bought or watched any LD's I still think about getting myself another player to have as a backup every now and then. When I was little my neighbor had hundreds of LD's and I used to always be over at his house watching them with him. Years later, after being talked out of it several times, I finally broke down and bought my current player off of ebay (Pioneer CLD-D502) and I've been pretty happy with it, it will definitely be a sad day when this thing dies! It's funny, I actually don't know what my next player will be, a backup LD player, a BETAMAX player (always wanted one of these...), or a Blu-Ray player... :]

SickNick89
12-02-2008, 11:27 PM
Hey Dave, do you have the Carrie Criterion? I really wanna get it for the commentary. (I have no idea where to get a player, though. I live in Toronto, so I guess you probably don't know of anywhere lol.)

~Matt

The Carrie track is a little dry but still worth a listen.

Fistfuck
12-02-2008, 11:39 PM
i think i paid 30-40 for bwp new. at least those were the days of no real finacial responsibilities for me.

I blame the economy on you.

SickNick89
12-03-2008, 12:09 AM
I blame the economy on you.

fair enough.

elahrairrah
12-16-2008, 10:18 PM
Always good to read about those who appreciate Laserdiscs enough to keep acquiring the hardware to keep watching them. And also easy to ignore those who try to make fun of the technology when they've never actually seen it in play. I've wowed quite a few DVD aficionados when I showed them Jurassic Park in DTS or Saving Private Ryan in Dolby Digital when they didn't think the technology was worth anything.

Also helps that the Import Pioneer CLD-R7G I picked up a couple years ago makes my LDs look better than I've ever seen (even compared to my old Elite CLD-79.)

I truly believe that if lasers were still being printed today, the picture would be superior to DVD. I think that the new mastering technology would look better on LD than DVD. Who knows, perhaps even anamorphic squeeze would have caught on.

Here, here! 'Swhy I had hoped Pioneer never axed plans for this:

http://laservideodisc.tripod.com/advancedlaservisionformats/id1.html

How awesome would that have been?