View Full Version : Laserdisc (Yet Again)

12-16-2000, 11:13 PM
I am looking to get an LD player for Christmas, and I was wondering what the best buy is for a cheap player. I am not looking to spend a lot of money, but I do want something that will adequately play LD's, suggestions as to what products and where to get them would be a real help!

"i spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up for i realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply...evil." - Dr. Loomis, Halloween

12-17-2000, 12:20 AM
Well, the problem is that "cheap" players aren't very good at all. LD is not like DVD, in that entry level players are NOT as good as the higher priced models.

Also, many companies put out VERY poor LD players, and these are big name companies. Most people feel Sony players are horrible. Thus you really only want to buy from one company: Pioneer.

Make sure the Pioneer is labled CLD-Dxxx. You can find CLD-S201s real cheap, but they suck. The "S" designation means it's a single sided player. You don't want that. LDs can only hold 1 hour per side (30min for CAV discs), and you want a player that will automatically flip the side.

Try a Pioneer CLD-D40x, CLD-D50x, CLD-60x, or CLD 70x.

You can buy from E-bay, and make out OK, but you never know. If the player is out of alignment, it may cost more to repair than it's worth. There's always Ross' Exchange http://www.rossexchange.com . He carries a few players. They can be pricey, but he guarantees them, as well as making sure they're cleaned, lubed, aligned, and properly packed.

I know I'm probably turning people OFF to Laserdisc, but it's just not something you can go into on a whim. It's literally a dead format. Which sucks because there's so many great LDs that may never make the transition to DVD.

12-17-2000, 04:45 AM
I have a single sided, and im happy with it. I usually go grab a coke when i gotta change the disc http://www.horrordvds.com/forum/smile.gif

12-17-2000, 09:32 AM
I had one of the auto flipper players until it suddenly started grinding to a halt every time it was activated.

So I guess I have a single layer player now as well...

12-17-2000, 10:28 AM
Thanks guys for all your comments, but Paff I have a question. Do the Pioneer CLD-Sxxx's suck simply because they need to be flipped? Or are their other reasons to avoid these players? I was checking a few places, and they have players like CLD-S104 for 40 dollars in near mint condition, just wondering!

"i spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up for i realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply...evil." - Dr. Loomis, Halloween

[This message has been edited by rhett (edited 12-17-2000).]

12-17-2000, 03:40 PM
Mine is a CLD-S201, and i couldnt be more satisfied with it.

12-17-2000, 04:11 PM
I'm fairly certain the S201 doesn't have any sort of circuitry to cleanup the picture at all. If you don't mind that then the S201 is a decent machine. But trust me, flipping the the laserdisc gets to be a pain in the ass, especially if you go after some of the CAV box sets (e.g. Dawn of the Dead).

On the other hand, if you want to get into LD with minimal investment and don't really care about Dolby Digital sound, the S201 is a decent machine. Even if you get a machine that has AC-3 RF output (for Dolby Digital sound) you still need to get an RF demodulator which is another $100 or so.

David W. Anderson - dave@horrordvds.com
Webmaster - www.horrordvds.com (http://www.horrordvds.com)

12-18-2000, 04:48 PM
Well, I suppose if you have to have a cheap player, the 201 is proabably the best of the worst. Like Dave said, there's no video noise reduction on it. You may think that's not a big deal, but laserdisc video can be especially bad on some discs, so bad in some cases you may actually prefer VHS. Getting a better quality player makes a lot of difference.

I don't mind getting up once during a movie to change discs, but 3 times or more? I believe the special edition of Dawn of the Dead would require FIVE trips to the player to manually flip the discs, versus only TWO if your player does it automatically. Did I do the CAV math right there?

Basically, I'm just saying if you're going into laserdisc, there's no reason to do it half-assed. If you're gonna do something wrong, do it right. A good Pioneer 400 or 500 level player should cost less than $200, and will show you what a great format LD was (and still is).

Keep asking questions about certain models, and we'll all be happy to steer you towards the good ones, and away from the bads. I'm waiting to hear how much BigD likes the 406 he just bought...

12-18-2000, 10:10 PM
is the sony mdp-500 any good? i saw it recently at a pawn shop.

12-18-2000, 11:15 PM
Personally, I've never used a Sony player. Some people report good experiences with them.

But I've heard more bad than good. And the people who've bad-mouthed Sony players are people whose opinions I highly trust. So I'd say don't bother.

Sticking with Pioneer is always the best option. Many other players (Proscan, Mitsubishi, and Marantz) are Pioneer clones, and you may make out OK, but when in doubt, go Pioneer with Laserdisc.

12-19-2000, 05:43 AM
I'm still gonna defend my 201. I have about 40 LDs and the picture on all of them (excluding my F13 discs, cause the quality sucks anyway) look astounding. NONE are as bad as the VHS tapes. However, There may be some shitty LDs out there, but i dont have any (other then the F13s).

It is certainly not the most advanced but i wouldnt even lump it in with the "worst" even if it is the best amongst them. Matter of fact I would say that You couldnt go wrong with ANY Pioneer player.

Lastly as far as repairs, i was asked to repair more Sony's then anything else believe it or not.

Basically if you dont wanna get up its not for you. I watch CAV too when the option is availible because i dont mind getting up. Its good to get off the couch http://www.horrordvds.com/forum/smile.gif But if you have a digital setup, dont get it, it wont show off anything.

A good price range for the S201 is $50-$100. I payed $60 and mine was brand new.

12-19-2000, 06:31 AM
Just a quick question: What are the CLD-xxx (three number) players? Are they inferior to the CLD-Sxx and the CLD-Dxx, I just need a little clarification here :

"i spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up for i realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply...evil." - Dr. Loomis, Halloween

12-19-2000, 04:20 PM
Not sure what you mean here....the 3 numbers are AFTER the S or D designation (single or double sided). I have a CLD-D704. In the past I've owned CLD-D502 and CLD-D406. All good players, the 704 being the best.

There's also the Elite players, the CLD-99, CLD-79, and CLD-59. These are REAL good players, but the 99 regularly goes for over $1000, so I'm guessing it's out of your price range.

Stick with CLD-Dxxx (if you want a double sided player), 400 level or higher. Blow off M's and V's and 4 digit players.

12-20-2000, 06:39 AM
Oh right, sorry, typo. I meant the four digit players. Thanks though, I am checking ebay actively waiting for a good deal on a CLD-Dxxx. http://www.horrordvds.com/forum/biggrin.gif

"i spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up for i realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply...evil." - Dr. Loomis, Halloween

12-20-2000, 07:17 PM
Hey Rhett:

I just took a gander over at E-bay, and a few things looked interesting.

One is a Marantz LV520. This IS a Pioneer clone, with all the desired features: 2 side play, S-Video out (though you actually shouldn't use that), and Dolby Digital RF out. Current bid is $100, It will probably not go higher than $200. I have ZERO experience with Marantz LD players, but I've heard good reports.

Second is a Pioneer CLD-D406. Good player, one of the most recent Pioneer made, so it's at most 3 years old. That's going for $150.

Finally, (and probably most interesting) is a Pioneer CLD-D501. The listing mislabels it as a CLD501, but CLD-D501 is the proper model number. It's going for $187 (a little high), but here's the kicker: He's throwing in several discs, among them the Halloween Criterion Edition, the Jaws Box Set, and the Dawn of the Dead Box Set, which are three of the biggest reasons to even own an LD player. Those three discs alone will probably cost you $100, so you can subtract that from the end cost. I don't know any of these sellers, they may be dead beats. But if I was looking to buy a LD player, those would be some I'd look into first.

[This message has been edited by Paff (edited 12-20-2000).]

12-20-2000, 07:32 PM
Also, there's a Panasonic LX-900, which was their best model. I've heard bad things about Panasonic players, but I know 2 people who own them and are VERY happy with them. That one's at $90, which is a pretty good deal.

By the way, ALL of these auctions are ending today or tomorrow, so get a bid in quick. (I only search for ones ending in around 48 hours. No point bidding on a 704 that still has 5 days of auction left.)