Sony DVP-NS9100ES User's Manual

ES DVD Players
Technical Background
Version 4.0; August 8, 2005
Introduction
Sony ES engineers are superbly educated, exceptionally well equipped
and have ready access to world-leading in-house technologies. But these alone
do not explain the soul of Sony's ES Series. You see, the creators of these
components are motivated by their passion for music and movies. That's what
drives them late into the night, seeking to control visual artifacts that most
viewers will never notice. That's what takes them into the listening room, seeking
to identify subtle sonic differences among various converters, capacitors and
equipment interfaces. The result is an Elevated Standard in DVD/Super Audio
CD/CD players. Presenting the DVP-NS9100ES and DVP-NS3100ES.
Sony co-developed the Compact Disc, Super Audio CD and DVD. Our
knowledge of these formats is encyclopedic. And Sony's expertise is clearly
evident in these latest players. They represent superb craftsmanship and stateof-the-art electronic design. But there's more. The two models provide stunning,
upscaled High Definition images, using the HDMI interface. And the NS9100ES
is Sony's first DVD player to incorporate an i.LINK® (IEEE 1394) digital output for
Super Audio CD signals1.
i.LINK® and HDMI™ Digital Interfaces1.................
Video Performance.................................................
Audio Performance.................................................
Construction & Design............................................
Features..................................................................
Specifications..........................................................
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1. i.LINK is a trademark of Sony used only to designate that product contains an IEEE 1394
connector. All products with an IEEE 1394 connector may not communicate with each other.
Please refer to the documentation that comes with the device having an i.LINK connector for
information on compatibility, operating conditions and proper connection.
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i.LINK® and HDMI™ Digital Interfaces
In 1985, the engineers of Sony® ES surprised the world of high fidelity.
The Sony CDP-650ES was the world's first CD transport with a digital output,
enabling unheard-of sound quality and unprecedented flexibility in audio system
configuration. Now such interfaces are taken for granted in high fidelity.
In 1997, Sony staged another coup with the DCR-VX1000 Handycam®
camcorder, the world's first video component to incorporate IEEE 1394, called
the i.LINK® interface by Sony. Now such interfaces are found on almost every
digital camcorder and millions of personal computers.
In 2003, Sony took the i.LINK interface in an entirely new direction with the
SCD-XA9000ES Super Audio CD/CD player. It was Sony's first to use the i.LINK
interface to carry an uncompressed digital output for the Super Audio CD's Direct
Stream Digital® signal.
Today, Sony takes digital interfaces one step further. The DVPNS9100ES is Sony's first DVD/Super Audio CD/CD1 player to incorporate the
i.LINK digital audio output. While both the NS9100ES and the NS3100ES
incorporate a High Definition HDMI digital output that unifies both video and
multi-channel audio! These are the most advanced digital interfaces Sony has
ever built into a home A/V source component.
i.LINK Digital Audio Output (NS9100ES)
From the initial launch of Super Audio CD, the 1-bit DSD® pulse train was
always converted to analog prior to output. This means that previous DVD
players with Super Audio CD capability could only output the SA-CD sound in
analog, not digital, even if the player included coaxial and optical digital outputs.
1. i.LINK is a trademark of Sony used only to designate that product contains an IEEE 1394
connector. All products with an IEEE 1394 connector may not communicate with each other.
Please refer to the documentation that comes with the device having an i.LINK connector for
information on compatibility, operating conditions and proper connection.
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SA-CD
D/A
convert
Speakers
Amplifier
SA-CD Player
A/D
convert
Digital Signal
DSP
D/A
convert
LPF
Volume
Analog
Power
Amp
Analog Signal
Typical SA-CD reproduction involves numerous D/A and A/D
conversions. The i.LINK digital connection can simplify the signal path.
However, these analog connections can expose the Super Audio CD
signal to repeated D/A and A/D conversions. The i.LINK® interface of the DVPNS9100ES overcomes this limitation. The i.LINK interface maintains the signal
in the digital domain, protecting the music from repeated conversions. This
i.LINK digital output is compatible with the i.LINK digital input on Sony's own
STR-DA7100ES and the recent STR-DA9000ES. The i.LINK interface also
enables a single digital cable to take the place of six analog cables.
A portion of the DVP-NS9100ES back panel shows the multi-channel
analog outputs (lower right), stereo analog outputs (center), optical and
coaxial digital outputs for DVD and CD (upper left) and i.LINK digital
output for Super Audio CD (lower left).
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4
3
2
1
Internal layout of the DVP-NS9100ES as seen from the back. You can
see the edge of one of the R-Core power transformers (1), the analog
audio circuit (2), and the analog video circuits (3). The digital audio
circuit board (4), which includes and the i.LINK output is partially hidden
behind the analog video circuit.
The i.LINK® digital audio interface uses Digital Transmission Content
Protection (DTCP), a robust system that protects the music from piracy. The
application of the i.LINK (IEEE 1394) interface for Super Audio CD is clearly
different from—and not compatible with—previous i.LINK interface applications
for DV camcorders, PC peripherals and professional digital video systems. You
can only connect the DVP-NS9100ES i.LINK output to a compatible digital audio
input, such as that on the STR-DA7100ES receiver.
The i.LINK output circuit incorporates this Large Scale Integrated circuit
from Texas Instruments.
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High quality digital Audio
Transmission System (HATS)
The design of the i.LINK® interface is exceptional because communicating
six streams of 2.8224 MHz digital samples raises extreme challenges.
Conveying 1-bit signals at such high data rates and synchronizing the signals
with the other component's master clock would normally expose the signal to the
time-base errors called jitter. These errors translate directly into time-based
distortion of the audio waveform.
The connection from the DVP-NS9100ES to the STR-DA7100ES receiver
overcomes this challenge with the High quality digital Audio Transmission
System (HATS). HATS uses "command-based rate control of isochronous data
flow" to solve the problem. The system incorporates three principal elements.
1.
2.
3.
Variable-speed transmission from the player.
Buffer memory in the receiver.
Command signals from the receiver to the player, controlling
transmission speed.
The receiver continually monitors the amount of audio data in its buffer
memory. When the buffer memory reaches its lower limit, the receiver
commands the player to increase data transmission speed. When the buffer
memory reaches its upper limit, the receiver commands the player to decrease
transmission speed. And when the buffer memory is between the upper and
lower limits, the receiver commands the player to transmit at normal speed.
DVP-NS9100ES
STR-DA7100ES
With Sony® HATS, audio data flows from the player to the receiver's
buffer memory, according to rate control commands from the receiver.
Reproduction in the receiver achieves the full time base accuracy of the
receiver's quartz crystal master clock.
In this way, HATS makes it unnecessary to synchronize a jitter-prone
signal with the receiver master clock. Instead, the buffer memory outputs a jitter-
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free signal at the full quartz-crystal accuracy of the receiver's master clock. You
get all the benefits of digital transmission, without exposing the signal to the
potential for jitter-induced distortion.
Dual i.LINK® interfaces
The DVP-NS9100ES actually has two i.LINK® interfaces in daisy chain
configuration.1 You can connect a second i.LINK source component to the DVPNS9100ES, while the NS9100ES itself connects to a single i.LINK interface port
on the STR-DA7100ES A/V receiver. In this configuration, all three i.LINK
components must be switched on for the second source component to transfer
signals to the STR-DA7100ES. Performance is only guaranteed when the
second source component is a Sony SCD-XA9000ES or another DVPNS9100ES and the A/V receiver is an STR-DA7100ES.
DVP-NS9100ES
SCD-XA9000ES or
DVP-NS9100ES
Thanks to the daisy chain architecture of the i.LINK interface, it is
possible to connect components in different configurations. However,
performance for the daisy chain on the right is only guaranteed when
connecting the Sony equipment shown.
1. i.LINK is a trademark of Sony used only to designate that product contains an IEEE 1394
connector. All products with an IEEE 1394 connector may not communicate with each other.
Please refer to the documentation that comes with the device having an i.LINK connector for
information on compatibility, operating conditions and proper connection.
HD upscaling and the High Definition
Multimedia Interface (HDMI™) technology
Today's home theater enthusiasts are increasingly likely to have "HD
Ready" or "HD Built in" televisions. And they're just as likely to be starving for
High Definition content. The DVP-NS9100ES and NS3100ES go a step toward
fulfilling that need with High Definition upscaling of the Standard Definition DVD
signal.
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An HDMI™ plug and its corresponding jack.
To begin with, many DVDs originate on film or progressive scanning video.
These discs are encoded in 480p progressive scanning to deliver twice the
vertical resolution as conventional 480i video. Sony's HD "upscaling" outputs this
signal as 480p, 720p or 1080i High Definition via the High Definition Multimedia
Interface (HDMI™) jack. You owe it to yourself to spend some time admiring the
results. Slip in a top-quality DVD, and the upscaled image is sumptuous, rich
and detailed. Even though this source material is Standard Definition, it comes
amazingly close to the look of full High Definition.
While 480p video is also available at the analog component video outputs,
HD upscaling at 720p and 1080i is only available via the HDMI™ output.
Established in September 2003, HDMI™ is an extension of the DVI digital
interface. While DVI is limited to video only, HDMI™ can transmit uncompressed
High Definition digital video and digital audio via a single cable. This greatly
simplifies system set-up, replacing as many as ten analog and digital
connections with just one cable! In addition to providing 480p, 720p or 1080i, the
HDMI output of Sony® ES Series DVD players can support digital signals in both
RGB component video and Y/Cb/Cr component video.
Y
Pb
Pr
DVD
Player
Left
Right
Center
A/V
Receiver
or
Television
DVD
Player
HDMI
A/V
Receiver
or
Television
Surround Right
Surround Left
Subwoofer
Before HDMI technology (left), you needed nine cables to get
component video and 5.1-channel analog audio from your DVD player
and into your receiver. HDMI conveys both video and audio with full
resolution and digital precision—all on a single cable!
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The options for audio are equally rich. The HDMI™ output of Sony® ES
Series players can support a full range of digital audio, including 2-channel
stereo PCM, Dolby® Digital and DTS® 5.1-channel compressed audio and even
uncompressed multi-channel PCM audio! The DVP-NS9100ES incorporates the
awesome capabilities of the Silicon Images Sil9030 Large Scale Integrated
Circuit (LSI). Thanks to the Sil9030, the NS9100ES can output uncompressed
digital images up to 1080i and uncompressed digital audio up to 192 kHz/2channel or 96 kHz/8-channel!
With so many choices for video and audio output, you may wonder
whether users will be knowledgeable enough to get the best performance from
their systems. Is RGB preferable to Y/Cb/Cr? Is 720p better suited to their
television or 1080i? While users will have their choice from a menu of options,
HDMI technology offers a simpler way.
Component-to-component communication
A system called “product unique key exchange” enables connected
equipment to automatically confirm the type of component connected through the
HDMI cable. In addition, a destination component (such as Sony's STRDA7100ES A/V receiver) can automatically "request" the appropriate audio and
video, by listing its input capabilities. In this case, the ES Series DVD player can
automatically choose the highest performance audio and video formats that the
DVD player and the destination component both have in common!
Consider what happens when you connect a DVP-NS9100ES or
NS3100ES to an HDMI equipped television. On first connection the two
components exchange basic information—they "introduce themselves."
DVP-NS9100ES
or NS3100ES
Hi. I’m a DVD player.
Television
with HDMI
input
Hi. I’m a television.
Next, the components communicate their input/output capabilities.
DVP-NS9100ES
or NS3100ES
What is your input capability?
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Television
with HDMI
input
I can accept 720p video and 2channel audio at 48 kHz and 16 bits.
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Finally, the components agree on the highest available quality options for
digital audio and video—and then automatically transfer content at that quality!
DVP-NS9100ES
or NS3100ES
Television
with HDMI
input
OK. I can output those signals.
Thank you
We've considered just a DVD player and a television. But the dynamic
changes when you insert the Sony® STR-DA7100ES A/V receiver into the
reproduction chain. In this case, the source component DVD player can only talk
to the next component in the chain, the receiver. The receiver then
communicates with the television and mediates the content exchange for the
entire system.
DVP-NS9100ES
or NS3100ES
Receiver with
HDMI input &
output
Television
with HDMI
input
Receiver, what is your
input capability?
Please note that some restrictions apply.
•
AC Power. All HDMI components must be switched on in order for the
HDMI system to work. You can't use HDMI connections through the receiver
if the receiver is switched off.
•
Anti-piracy. To prevent the piracy of very high quality digital signals, HDMI
technology also incorporates a security method called High-bandwidth Digital
Content Protection (HDCP). This encrypts the signal so that only authorized
devices can decode the data into pictures and sound. The HDMI connection
is for playback only, meaning that content distributed via HDMI cable cannot
be recorded.
•
Super Audio CD. As of January 2005, standards for sending Super Audio
CD sound over HDMI cables had not been established. For this reason,
Super Audio CD sound is not available over the HDMI outputs of the DVPNS9100ES and NS3100ES.
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Video Performance
Precision Cinema Progressive™ circuitry
The purpose of today's high-end home theater systems is to recreate the
look and sound of the movie theater. This includes the vivid detail and seamless
coherence of the film frame. A crucial technology for achieving this goal is DVDVideo playback with progressive scanning, "480P" output. This works with many
of today's "HD capable" and "HD monitor" televisions, which offer 480P inputs.
For example, Sony markets this capability as a Hi-Scan 1080i™ television. In
this context, 480P outputs have been promoted as a must-have feature in DVD
players. However, there continue to be important differences in how DVD
players generate the 480P signal. The DVP-NS9100ES and NS3100ES have
Sony's Precision Cinema Progressive system, a comprehensive approach that
incorporates two significant circuits to deliver a picture that comes closer than
ever to the original movie theater experience. Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active
interlace-to-progressive (I/P) conversion ensures maximum resolution, while
Sony's Vertical Edge Compensation reduces artifacts along the edges of
objects in the scene.
Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P Conversion
Interlace-to-Progressive (I/P) conversion is a potentially tricky process.
The solutions range from inexpensive and simplistic to sophisticated Hollywood
postproduction systems that require powerful computation. Optimum I/P
conversion is challenging because there are so many different types of content:
1. Material originated on film (or on 24-frame progressive digital systems,
which in this context behave just like film).
2. Material originated on film and recorded onto DVD-R/RW or DVD+R/RW.
3. Material that quickly intercuts video and film-originated footage.
4. Material that has film and video showing at the same time.
5. Material originated on interlaced video.
These different types of DVD material place different demands on the I/P
converter. A conversion strategy optimized for material originally shot on film will
not get the best results for material originally shot on interlaced video, and vice
versa.
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The mathematical algorithms of Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P
conversion have been committed to silicon in this Large Scale
Integrated circuit (LSI), the Sony CXD9866R.
Sony solves the problem with Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion that
includes built-in motion detection. The system automatically recognizes each
type of material and applies the appropriate processing. This enables us to
generate the ideal progressive scanning output for each type of DVD source.
•
Film originated material. For footage originally shot on 24-frames per
second film and 24-frame progressive digital cameras, simplistic solutions like
"frame memory" can end up creating motion artifacts that mar the final result.
These appear as zipper-like patterns on the left and right edges of moving
objects. The Sony® system automatically and flawlessly detects the 3-2
cadence and performs full "3-2 reverse conversion," which maintains the
integrity of the original film frames. Mismatched film frames are never "forcefit" into a single video frame. The system adds no motion blurring. You'll
enjoy twice the vertical resolution of conventional interlace video, for an
experience that's less like watching television and more like watching film.
•
Film originated material on a DVD-R/RW or DVD+R/RW. DVD recorders
complicate the I/P conversion processes, because these recorders capture
everything as interlaced video. That means movies, even if they were
originally shot on film, are recorded as 30 frames per second interlaced, not
24 frames per second progressive. There are none of the usual First Field
Repeat Flags (FFRFs), leaving many DVD players unable to guess at the
original frame structure. In this case, conventional 3-2 reverse conversion will
not work, but Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion will. Thanks to builtin motion detection, the Sony system does not depend on FFRFs. So you get
accurate reproduction on DVD-R/RW and DVD+R/RW discs.
•
Film material intercut with video material. Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P
conversion applies appropriate processing for film elements and interlaced
video elements, even when they alternate in rapid-fire sequence, as they
might during the "making of" documentary on a movie DVD. The Sony
system instantly recognizes the characteristics and film and video and
automatically applies the correct processing for each.
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•
Film and video material shown simultaneously. The Sony® system
performs beautifully even when film and video appear on-screen at the same
time, for example, when video-originated subtitles are superimposed over a
film-originated scene. Because the Sony system analyzes each individual
pixel, it can switch processing modes anywhere—even in the middle of a
scanning line! In contrast, conventional systems need to wait until the end of
the field before switching between film and video modes.
•
Interlaced video. Shooting on interlaced video means capturing a new field
of 240 interlaced scanning lines every 1/60 second. When subjects are
moving, there can be significant differences from each field to the next. It's a
far cry from film 24 frame progressive origination, where the subjects move
each 1/24 second. Combining two video-originated fields of 240 interlaced
scanning lines into one frame of 480 progressive scanning lines is no simple
task. For this reason, Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion applies
special processing for video originated material.
In addition, these Sony ES Series DVD players enable you to adjust the
threshold of film and video detection. So you can optimize the I/P conversion for
the specific DVD you're watching. You get I/P conversion that's not only
amazingly smooth, but also exquisitely tuned to the individual needs of each
DVD. When you're done watching, the players can store the setting in memory
for up to 400 discs. So each time you play that title, you'll automatically get just
the right conversion!
An on-screen display enables you to adjust the threshold of film and
video detection for each individual disc. Sony players can even store
your setting for use the next time you play that title!
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Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion
and interlaced video origination
Many of today's DVDs feature concert videos, documentaries, current
events, sports, nature footage and other subjects originally captured on
interlaced video. For this reason, any high-end progressive scanning system
must solve the problem of motion artifacts for footage shot on video. Video
based I/P conversion creates new pixels from existing information. For example,
to enable progressive scan output for a field of odd scanning lines, the player
must create the pixels that compose all the even scanning lines. Unfortunately,
this can result in motion blur. Horizontal lines in the scene can flicker on and off.
Other areas can suffer from an unnatural shimmer.
Scanning
lines
EVEN
future
ODD
current
EVEN
Past 1
ODD
Past 2
EVEN
Past 3
Time sequence
I/P conversion of video originated material. The red pixel, on an even
scanning line needs to be created for the current field of odd scanning
lines. If not done properly, this can result in zipper-like edges on
moving objects, line flicker and unnatural shimmering.
Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion overcomes these problems
with built-in motion detection and two distinct video conversion algorithms: one
for still objects, another for moving objects. As with film origination, the
algorithms are applied separately for each individual pixel. So both can be
applied to different parts of any given scene!
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Still
Processing
Moving
Processing
Still Part
Moving Part
The typical interlaced video frame includes both still and moving pixels.
Sony Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion applies separate processing
for each.
•
Pixels for still objects are the easiest to handle. When objects are not
moving, the player can simply use the corresponding pixel from the previous
field. Because there is no motion, these pixels will match perfectly with the
current field, creating a seamless progressive scan output.
Scanning
lines
EVEN
future
ODD
current
EVEN
Past 1
ODD
Past 2
EVEN
Past 3
Time sequence
STILL PIXEL PROCESSING
Pixels for still objects are simply created from the corresponding pixel in
the previous field.
•
Pixels for moving objects are created by composing pixels from scanning
lines immediately above and below within the same field. Because all
information comes from the same 1/60-second slice of time, this suppresses
motion artifacts. While this process does not result in the full improvement in
vertical resolution, the human eye is less sensitive to detail in moving objects.
So the overall effect is a stunning improvement in image detail, clarity and
solidity.
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Scanning
lines
EVEN
future
ODD
current
EVEN
Past 1
ODD
Past 2
EVEN
Past 3
Time sequence
MOVING PIXEL PROCESSING
Pixels for moving objects are created by composing pixels from the
scanning lines immediately above and below in the same field. This
minimizes motion blur.
Thanks to Sony's flexible approach, still backgrounds are impressively
sharp and detailed, while moving objects in the same scene are free from motion
artifacts. You'll see more consistent, more satisfying, more seamless 480P
output with a wider variety of discs. The visibility of scanning lines is all but
eliminated. Connect a 480P-compatible television, monitor or projector and
prepare to be amazed.
Just as you can adjust the threshold of film/video detection, you can
optimize the still/motion detection for the specific requirements of the DVD you're
watching. As before, the players can memorize your Still/Motion threshold for up
to 400 discs. So each time you play a title, you'll automatically get just the right
conversion!
You can adjust the Still/Motion detection threshold with this on-screen
display. As before, your setting for each disc can be stored in memory.
Vertical Edge Compensation
As we've seen, Sony's Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion of video
sources suppresses the zipper-like effect that can occur when moving areas of
two interlaced fields are combined in the same progressive frame. It's a major
step forward in picture quality. But there a second, less obvious artifact that can
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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occur in part of the video image part of the time. Most people would not notice
the artifact without being told when and where to watch for it. But Sony's
program for these ES components required us to address even subtle distortions.
The problem is jaggedness in the edges that separate areas of the scene,
especially when the edges are straight lines, when they're diagonal and when
there's a big difference in contrast between the areas they separate. Rooflines,
car hoods, venetian blinds and other lines in the scene can appear with
unwanted stair steps not in the original program. Sony's Vertical Edge
Compensation controls this artifact.
Pixels on the line above
Pixel being created
Pixels on the line below
Sony's Vertical Edge Compensation uses a broad range of pixels on the
lines immediately above and below to calculate a pixel on moving edges.
This controls the jaggedness that can sometimes distort edges in the
video picture.
Vertical Edge Compensation uses the built-in motion detection to judge
motion at the pixel level and to detect edges. When the circuit detects an edge, it
refers to other edges within the field. The circuit then assembles data from a
broad range of pixels on the lines immediately above and below to calculate the
new pixel. This smoothes out the stair steps and results in consistent, naturallooking lines throughout the picture. It's just one more way that Sony raises the
standard in DVD-Video picture quality.
Precision Cinema Progressive™
circuitry in action
We've devoted seven pages to Pixel-by-Pixel I/P Conversion and Vertical
Edge Compensation—the technologies behind Sony's Precision Cinema
Progressive circuitry. But while the technology is complex, the benefit only takes
a moment to appreciate. Start with a high-quality DVD that you know well. Using
HDMI or Y/Pb/Pr component video, connect the Sony® DVD player to a great
High Definition or HD-capable television, monitor or projector. Then watch.
The original frames retain their integrity, even if they were originally shot
on film or 24P progressive digital. You'll see full performance for every part of
the picture, whether still or moving. The vertical edges on objects in your picture
retain all their clarity, even when the objects are in motion. The horizontal edges
are clean and clear, without the obvious stair steps or jaggedness. You'll
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approach the full glory of High Definition picture quality—from today's standard
DVDs.
14-bit D/A Conversion (NS9100ES)
The binary word length used in video digital-to-analog (D/A) conversion
helps determine the gray scale performance of the picture. This can be seen, for
example, in the play of light across the face of an actress, as the light of a candle
falls off into shadow. Longer word lengths contribute to smoother, more realistic
transitions from dark to light.
Starting with the DVP-S7000, Sony led the way with 10-bit video digital-toanalog conversion. The DVP-NS900V raised the performance to 12-bit
conversion, producing four times the grayscale levels. The DVP-NS999ES
incorporated the Analog Devices ADV7304A, a 14-bit video D/A converter. Now
the DVP-NS9100ES incorporates the Analog Devices ADV7324, a refined 14-bit
converter. This produces four times the grayscale levels of common 12-bit
designs—and a total of 16 times as many as earlier, 10-bit designs.
The 14-bit video D/A converter also includes the video encoder and
processing for Macrovision™ Copy Protection.
Sony applies the 14-bit process both to DVD's luminance (Y) black-andwhite channel and to DVD's two color difference channels (PB and PR). So you
get more accurate rendition of colors from the deepest black to the brightest
highlights.
216 MHz D/A converter oversampling
In DVD-Video playback, the ultimate in picture detail comes into direct
conflict with the ultimate in picture clarity. Detail is a function of the video
"bandwidth" or "frequency response." The highest resolution details occupy the
highest video frequencies. Clarity is a function of video "noise." In the worst
case, noise appears as "snow" or flecks and specks of unwanted color. In more
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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subtle examples, noise appears as a texture or graininess not present in the
original picture. These Sony® ES Series DVD players achieve a remarkable
combination of superb fine picture detail and excellent clarity, thanks to 216 MHz
oversampling in the D/A converter.
To understand how 216 MHz oversampling can have such a powerful
effect on picture quality, it helps to understand the concepts of digital sampling
and aliasing noise.
Digital recording systems work by "sampling" the original source at a
specific rate, or "frequency." The frequency of sampling is determined by the
Nyquist Theorem, which dates back to 1928. Harry Nyquist calculated that the
sampling frequency needed to be at least twice the highest frequency in the
signal you need to record. For Compact Disc, which records audio frequencies
up to 20,000 cycles per second (20 kHz), the sampling frequency is 44,100 times
per second (44.1 kHz). Because the video signal is much more complex, the
frequencies are far higher. To capture the exceptional fine picture detail of DVD,
the black-and-white or "luminance" channel records frequencies out to 6,750,000
Hz (6.75 MHz). This means that DVD samples the video luminance channel at
13,500,000 Hz (13.5 MHz), as part of the DVD-Video format specification.
Channel Bandwidth
20,000 Hz
6,750,000 Hz
CD Audio
DVD-Video
Sampling Frequency
44,100 Hz
13,500,000 Hz
Digital recording systems sample the analog input signal at a specific
rate or frequency at least twice the highest frequency of the channel.
For DVD-Video, the sampling frequency is 13,500,000 times per second
(13.5 MHz).
Nyquist sampling only works properly if the analog output is carefully
filtered of the aliasing noise that the digital process incurs. Fortunately, the
aliasing noise is consistently higher in frequency than the highest video
frequencies we want to recover. The noise appears in clusters at each multiple
of the sampling frequency, plus and minus the video bandwidth. Unfortunately,
the noise is very close to the video frequencies. The player must use a very
steep analog filter, which must be carefully constructed to pass all the video
frequencies and block all the aliasing noise.
Normally, even slight errors in the analog filter could cut the highest video
frequencies—degrading picture detail—or allow some aliasing noise to pass
through—degrading picture clarity.
The solution to this problem is to run the A/D converter at a higher
frequency than the samples on the disc. This "oversampling" design fills in the
blanks between the DVD samples with additional, calculated samples. For
example, 2X oversampling calculates and inserts one additional sample between
each original sample from the disc. 4X oversampling inserts three additional
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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samples. 8X oversampling inserts seven additional samples. And 16X
oversampling inserts fifteen additional samples.
The benefit is this: in the process of generating additional samples,
oversampling shifts the aliasing noise up in frequency, opening up substantial
room between the video signal and the noise. With more room, we can relax the
design of the analog filter, which can be far milder in slope, and far more effective
at optimizing both the picture detail and the picture clarity.
27 MHz-Sampling
Analog-Filter
Video
Signal
Noise
27
Noise
54
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
108
Noise
Noise
216
54 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
27
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
54
108
216
Noise
Noise
108
216
108 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
27
54
216 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
Noise
27
54
108
216
These diagrams show interlaced video and the need for oversampling.
At 27 MHz sampling (top), the design of the filter (red curve) must be
extremely steep to avoid cutting into the video detail (blue) or passing
some of the noise (pink). At 54 MHz (second from top), the filter is
somewhat better. And at 108 MHz (third from top), the filter becomes
better still. Oversampling at 216 MHz (bottom) leads to a far more
effective analog low-pass filter. This enables the Sony® ES Series DVD
players to deliver all the picture detail, without degrading the clarity of
the image with noise.
Oversampling, which is useful for interlaced video, becomes indispensable
for progressive scanning video. Because progressive scanning outputs twice as
many horizontal lines per second, progressive playback effectively doubles
channel bandwidth to 13.5 MHz and doubles sampling frequency to 27 MHz.
Players need a minimum of 27 MHz sampling in order to output a progressive
signal.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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DVD-Video Interlaced
Playback
DVD-Video Progressive
Playback
Luminance Channel (Y)
Bandwidth
6.75 MHz
Luminance Channel (Y)
Sampling Frequency
13.5 MHz
13.5 MHz, effective
27 MHz, effective
Progressive scanning effectively doubles both the video bandwidth and
the sampling frequency. While only the luminance (Y) channel is shown
here, this doubling also occurs for the two color difference channels (PB
and PR).
27 MHz-Sampling
Loss
Video
Signal
Analog-Filter
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
Including
Noise
27
54
108
216
54 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
27
Noise
Noise
Noise
Noise
54
108
216
Noise
Noise
108
216
108 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
27
54
216 MHz-Sampling
Video
Signal
Noise
27
54
108
216
At 27 MHz sampling (top), the design of the filter (red curve) is
extremely challenging for progressive scanning. The filter either cuts
into the video detail (blue) or passes some of the noise (pink).
Oversampling at the 216 MHz frequency of the Sony® ES Series DVD
players makes a huge difference.
Oversampling has been used successfully in CD players for decades.
And while the video equivalent is harder to achieve, the effect is the same. The
D/A converter of the DVP-NS9100ES and NS3100ES shift the sampling
frequency from the standard 13.5 MHz to 216 MHz. For progressive scan
playback, that's 8x oversampling. For interlaced playback, it's a whopping 16x
oversampling. This oversampling is the most powerful that Sony has ever built
into a DVD player. You get superb clarity with the effective suppression of video
noise, while enjoying the full video bandwidth for breathtaking picture detail.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Noise Shaped Video™ circuitry
While 216 MHz sampling deals with noise outside the video frequency
range, another circuit reduces noise within the frequency range. That's important
because the perceived transparency and depth of the video image depends on
controlling noise. Sony's D/A converter uses Noise Shaped Video circuitry to
shift noise from inside the visible frequency range to outside. Even though the
overall noise level remains the same, the perceived noise is dramatically reduced.
What's more, once shifted, the out-of-band noise is further suppressed by the
analog filter. The result is reproduction without flecks or specks of unwanted
color. You'll see a video picture that's vibrant, deep, transparent and clean.
Noise Shaped Video and the higher 216 MHz sampling frequency work
together to cut video noise for improved transparency and clarity.
Super Sub Alias Filter circuitry for
both luminance and color difference channels.
The benefit of the 216 MHz sampling rate is delivered by the Super Sub
Alias Filter circuits. In comparison to most previous designs, these filters are
now far more effective for two powerful reasons. First, the 216 MHz sampling
rate is higher. Second, while some previous designs deployed Super Sub Alias
Filter circuitry on the black-and-white (luminance) channel only, the DVPNS9100ES uses these filters on all three video channels: luminance (Y), blue
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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color difference (PB) and red color difference (PR). This results in a consistently
clean, clear, vibrantly detailed color picture.
The typical filter leaves traces of the clusters of aliasing noise, which
look like lumps in the top diagram. Super Sub Sampling Alias Filter
circuits on the Y, PB and PR channels control this aliasing noise more
effectively.
"Below Black" reproduction with
Graphical Gamma Adjustment
The DVD format dictates specific quantization for specific brightness
levels. For example, full black corresponds to a quantization of 16 while full
white corresponds to 235. However, direct-view CRTs, plasma panels, CRT
projectors and LCD projectors each have specific needs. For example, LCD
projectors are subject to "black float" and can benefit from a calibration "below
black." CRT direct view televisions tend to lose dark detail when viewed in
brightly-lit rooms.
Historically, gamma adjustment has matched the grayscale of a video
camera to the general transfer characteristics of CRTs. Sony's Graphical
Gamma Adjustment matches the grayscale performance of the DVP-NS9100ES
and NS3100ES to the specific transfer characteristics of your display. Used with
a commercially available calibration disc, the Graphical Gamma Adjustment can
achieve ideal reproduction.
The system enables you to make adjustments to gamma much like a
graphic equalizer adjusts audio frequency response. As with an audio equalizer,
aggressive adjustment can yield unnatural results. The controls are best used to
make gamma curves that are smooth and subtle. Sony's control offers eight
points of correction, each with 8-bit precision. And you can always return the
gamma controls to the industry-standard "flat" state at the touch of a button.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Graphical Gamma adjustment is like an eight-band graphic equalizer for
grayscale and black level.
Video Equalizer
Sony's Video Equalizer enables you to fine-tune the picture quality of each
disc you watch. You can adjust Picture, Brightness, Color, Hue and Chroma
Delay in addition to Graphical Gamma Adjustment. And once you've optimized
the picture for a particular disc, these ES Series DVD players can commit your
settings to memory for up to 400 discs.
Separate analog video circuit board with
separate power supply
The digital and control circuits of any DVD player generate high-frequency
radiation that can affect other circuits in the chassis. This noise can potentially
impair low level analog signals. To prevent any cross-interference, Sony
carefully separates the digital circuits from the analog circuits, mounting them on
separate circuit boards. This maintains the purity of the analog signal to achieve
consistently clean video images.
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To maintain the purity of the signal, Sony places the analog video
circuitry on a separate board, driven by its own power supply.
Because digital noise can corrupt the DC voltage, the power supply is
another potential path of interference. That's why early on, Sony recognized the
advantage of giving the analog circuit block its own series power supply. This
ensures power that's both abundant and clean.
Video Shield Plate (NS9100ES)
DVD players process analog audio, analog video and digital signals in
close proximity, opening up the possibility of signal radiation and interference
even between circuit boards. To prevent even slight traces of interference, the
DVP-NS9100ES incorporates a shield underneath the analog video circuit board.
This protects the analog video from radiated interference from the digital video
board. It also limits the interference between analog video and the digital audio
board, which is located close by.
To minimize signal interference, the DVP-NS9100ES has a shield plate
fitted to the underside of the analog video circuit board.
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High speed video buffer amplifiers (NS9100ES)
If your television accepts an HDMI™ cable, you can enjoy a fabulous alldigital video connection. If not, you'll be happy to note that Sony® engineers are
passionate about achieving exceptional performance from analog video
connections. For example, the long analog cable runs found in many home
theater installations can be highly capacitive. This tends to degrade the video
signal, softening the picture and limiting the video bandwidth. To counter this
possibility, the DVP-NS9100ES incorporates high-speed video buffer amplifiers.
High slew-rate op amps handle large loads with very low overshoot. You get a
powerful driving force for the video signals, even over long cable runs. As a
result, the video signal delivered to the television has extremely low levels of
noise, differential gain and differential phase.
Analog Video Board
Component
Low pass filter
For Progressive
(Component)
Cr
Cb
MAIN Board
AV Decoder
STE5588CVB
IP Converter
CXD9866R
Low pass filter
For Interlace
(CVBS,S-Video)
16M SDRAM
RCA OUT
(525i/p)
Y
VIDEO Encoder
ADV7324
Y(S-Video)
S-Video
C(S-Video)
CVBS
CVBS
Buffer
Op-Amp
AD8058 X 6
Power Supply
For Analog Video Circuit
+5V
-5V
Block diagram of the DVP-NS9100ES video circuit. You can see the
separate digital circuit board (left) and analog circuit board (right). At
center, you can see the nine channels of low-pass filtering. On the right
are the video buffer op amps.
Output Capacitor-Less (OCL) coupling
In typical audio and video design, an output capacitor prevents the
accidental passing of DC offset voltage from one component to the next.
However, the mere presence of the output capacitor can affect the video
frequency response and literally tinge the television picture with unwanted
shading. And these effects can't be corrected by your television's picture
controls. Sony's answer is a rigorous design that controls DC offset voltages
from the start. You get reliable operation without performance-robbing output
capacitors.
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Carefully selected parts (NS9100ES)
More than a labor of technology, the DVP-NS9100ES represents the
enthusiasm that Sony® engineers share with high-end videophiles. That's why
the player incorporates a variety of carefully selected resistors, inductors,
semiconductors and capacitors. Each plays a specific role in maximizing video
performance.
ƒ
Low Distortion Film Capacitors. While electrolytic capacitors are suited to
power supply filtering, film capacitors are especially proficient for sound and
picture. Many of these low-distortion capacitors contribute to the outstanding
performance of the DVP-NS9100ES.
ƒ
Oversized output resistors. Output resistors determine the impedance of
the analog output circuits. Most designers avoid large resistors. But Sony
incorporates large resistors of uncommonly tight tolerances. This contributes
to the high slew rates required for wideband video.
Wide pitch component output jacks
Sony engineers even anticipated the high-grade output cables that
videophiles are likely to plug into the ES Series DVD players. For this reason,
Sony deliberately spaced the Y/PB/PR output jacks further apart than common
practice, the better to accommodate heavy-gauge cables and plugs!
The spacing or "pitch" between the component video output jacks is
wider than usual, to accommodate heavy-gauge cables and plugs.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Audio Performance
In addition to DVD-Video and Compact Discs, these ES Series DVD
players also reproduce sumptuous high-resolution audio: both stereo and multichannel Super Audio CD music. You'll hear the inner detail of choral ensembles.
The reverberation trailing from a guitar chord. And the acoustic space
surrounding the instruments. With Super Audio CD, you hear every nuance of
sound reproduced with incredible ease and clarity.
Multi-channel Super Audio CD playback
The ES Series DVD players take full advantage of the latest generation of
multi-channel Super Audio CD music. Multi-channel Super Audio CD gives
producers the ability to capture the precise ambience and reverberation that give
any concert hall, jazz club or recording studio its characteristic "sound." Multichannel Super Audio CD doesn't just bring the performer to your room; it sounds
as if you have entered the performer's space. The result can be overwhelming.
By combining this fully dimensional soundstage with the uncanny clarity of DSD®
technology, these players offer music reproduction that's nothing short of brilliant.
DSD® decoder LSI
The Super Audio CD’s 1-bit signal is processed and decoded by Sony's
DSD decoder LSI. This integrated circuit makes intelligent decisions regarding
processing of the incoming data to form the 1-bit audio signal. The LSI first
reads the Watermark—a feature protecting Super Audio CDs from illegal
copying—and then decodes the incoming data. The LSI uses internal memory to
take data that's output intermittently from the disc, rearrange it and order it into
continuous 1-bit audio streams. This LSI also reads sub code data such as the
Table of Contents, track number, track time, and text data.
Audio Technology for Analog Outputs
While the provision of an i.LINK® digital interface for Super Audio CD
signals is a technological tour de force, compatible equipment is just beginning to
become available. Clearly, many owners of the DVP-NS9100ES will be enjoying
Super Audio CD through analog outputs. For this reason, Sony has developed
sophisticated technology to provide an analog output of superlative linearity, with
extraordinary freedom from noise, interference and jitter-induced distortion. The
result is unsurpassed music reproduction, no matter which outputs you use.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Speaker Time Alignment
For optimum playback, the mastering engineers who create CDs need to
anticipate the speaker configuration over which the music will be reproduced. In
stereo, that configuration is simple: two identical speakers ideally set an equal
distance from the listener. In a multi-channel sound, the ideal is slightly more
complex. Multi-channel Super Audio CD is designed to conform to an
international standard, called ITU-R. This envisions that the listener sits in the
exact center of a circle of five identical speakers, with each speaker occupying a
specified position in the circle. (For the Low Frequency Effects or LFE channel,
the subwoofer can be flexibly placed outside the circle.)
The ITU-R circle makes a great reference for studio engineers. But few
home environments can accommodate exactly this setup. Even if you did have
five identical speakers all the way around, the rectangular shape of most rooms
would make it difficult to place all five speakers at equal distance from the
listening position.
Center
Right
Left
LF
30°
110°
Reference
Left surround
Right surround
Mastering for Super Audio CD multi-channel sound assumes that
speakers will be placed according to the international ITU-R standard.
To resolve the problem, Sony provides a special Digital Signal Processor
(DSP) that adjusts the arrival time of each channel with delay in 900microsecond increments. Because most people can't make the mental leap from
microseconds to speaker distance, Sony calibrates the delay as distance, in 30cm (1-foot) increments. Each 900 microseconds of delay "moves" a speaker
back 30 cm (1 foot). In this way, Speaker Time Alignment adjusts the "virtual
position" of each speaker, enabling you to synchronize the arrival time of sound
for all five speakers. You can even change the perceived distance of the
subwoofer in relation to the other speakers. With Speaker Time Alignment, you'll
experience multi-channel sound as it was meant to be heard. You'll get the effect
of correct speaker placement, even if your actual placement is far less than
correct!
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Incidentally, this adjustment is not duplicated on most A/V receivers.
Some receivers can adjust for speaker distance on the multi-channel signals that
are decoded in the receiver itself. But most receivers offer no such adjustment
for the 5.1-channel analog inputs you may be using to enjoy multi-channel Super
Audio CD.
A/V Sync
Today's advanced televisions and video projectors often incorporate
sophisticated video signal processing to optimize the image quality. Often, these
circuits require buffer memories that result in a slight delay of the video signal.
Unfortunately, this can result in a mismatch, where the television picture lags
behind the sound from the speakers by some fraction of a second. As you can
imagine, the effect can be unnatural and annoying.
That's why Sony offers another Digital Signal Processing function: AV
Sync. This enables you to correct time misalignments between the audio and
video signals by up to 120 milliseconds, in 10 millisecond increments. Sony
brings your television and your home theater speakers back into alignment. A/V
Sync achieves identical results on stereo, 5.1-channel and even digital audio
outputs.
Separate speaker settings
Unlike previous models, the DVP-NS9100ES and NS3100 also provide
speaker size and location settings for Super Audio CD playback that are
separate from the settings you make for DVD-Video and other formats.
Super Audio D/A Converter (SA DAC)
If you're using the DVP-NS9100ES with an amplifier that does not have an
i.LINK® interface of if you're enjoying the NS3100ES, you won't be listening to
Super Audio CDs via digital output. In this case, the player's on-board D/A
converters will exert a pivotal influence on sound quality.
Multi-channel Super Audio CDs present the player with six separate
channels—all recorded with exactly the same superb quality as two-channel
Super Audio CD. That's why the Sony® ES Series DVD players incorporate six
channels of Sony's Super Audio D/A Converter (SA DAC). The circuit delivers
superlative performance for multi-channel SA-CD, two-channel SA-CD and CD
reproduction.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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CD
16 bit/1 fs
24 bit/8 fs
8x
Oversampling
digital filter
Noise
shaper
1 bit/64 fs
Multi level
D/A converter
SACD
1 bit/64 fs
DSD
filter
1 bit/64 fs
Sony's Super Audio D/A Converter (SA DAC) does an equally superb
job on Compact Disc signals (top) and SA-CD signals (bottom).
The converter consists of a single integrated circuit that contains four
significant circuits:
1. 8x oversampling digital filter for CD. Ensures accurate phase linearity and
low noise.
2. Noise shaper for CD to further suppress audible noise. The noise shaper
also puts out a 1-bit signal at 64 times the CD sampling frequency (1-bit/64 fs).
Sixty-four times 44.1 kHz equals 2.8224 MHz, the same sampling frequency
as Super Audio CD. In this way, the SA DAC presents both CD and SA-CD
signals to the final converter stage in the identical 1-bit/64 fs form.
3. DSD® filter for SA-CD, a digital filter that removes unwanted super high
frequency noise by computing raw 1-bit digital data. By reducing noise in the
digital domain, the DSD filter reduces the burden on analog filters and
contributes to the uniformity among channels.
4. Multi-level DAC for both SA-CD and CD is a breakthrough design that
combines the best attributes of 1-bit converters and multi-bit converters for
sound that is exceptionally transparent, against a background that is
phenomenally free from noise.
Sony's multi-level digital-to-analog conversion is a significant step forward
in audio technology. To appreciate the advance, it's important to understand
three types of digital-to-analog converters: multi-bit, 1-bit and multi-level.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Multi
Multi level
level D/A
D/A conversion
conversion
LSB
1
2
4
8
+
16
…
MSB
32,768
Multi-bit D/A conversion in a typical early CD player employed 16
switches, corresponding to the 16 bits of the CD sample. Each switch
produced a different level of current, according to the significance of the
bit.
In the 1980s, the overwhelming majority of CD players used multi-bit
Digital-to-Analog converters (DACs). Also called "ladder type" or "resistor ladder"
converters, these designs typically used one resistor switch for each digital bit in
the sample. The value of the resistor controlled the amount of current that flowed
when the switch was On. Each switch produced current proportionate to the
value of the corresponding bit. For example, the current for the Least Significant
Bit (LSB) was 1, the next bit was 2, the next 4, the next 16 and so on up to the
16th or Most Significant Bit (MSB), which had a value of 32,768.
While these converters could offer superb dynamic range, they were
susceptible to a distortion called nonlinearity. For any given output level, the
combination of switches set On and Off would always be the same. In this way,
if a switch's current source had an error, that error would always be reflected in
the output level and the linearity would always be spoiled in exactly the same
way.
This problem of errors and nonlinearity was especially important in the
MSB, because the MSB is so big in comparison to the other bits (for example,
32,768 times the current of the LSB). So even slight errors in the MSB could
overwhelm the value of the smaller bits, distorting the musical signal at the zero
cross, where the binary digits flip from 1111111111111111 to
0000000000000000. These errors are generally masked by the music, when it is
loud. But when the music is soft, this problem of "low-level nonlinearity" can
impart a grit or hardness to the music that university researchers found to be
audible.
For this reason, technologists developed 1-bit D/A converters that
bypassed the problem completely. Significant among these 1-bit designs was
Sony's own High Density Linear Converter™ circuit, which made its debut on the
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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landmark CDP-X77ES in 1990 and has since been followed by Sony's Current
Pulse 1-bit converter. Like other 1-bit converters, these Sony® designs
overcame the problem of zero-cross distortion, achieving superb low-level
linearity for excellent sound, even during quiet passages and the reverberant tails
at the end of musical notes.
11 bit
bit D/A
D/A conversion
conversion (Current
(Current pulse)
pulse)
On/off
1
value
1
0
on
off
on
off
on
off
variable
1 /64fs
1 /64fs
1 /64fs
time
PWM (PULSE WIDTH MUDULATION)
The principle of 1-bit D/A conversion. In order to reproduce Super
Audio CD, Pulse Width Modulation must operate at a higher frequency
than the SA-CD sampling frequency of 64 fs (equal to 2.8224 MHz).
These 1-bit converters performed beautifully and dominated CD player
design throughout the 1990s. However, in order to avoid the influence of jitter, to
maintain linearity in the time axis, 1-bit converters need to be driven by a highly
precise clock. And Super Audio CD makes this demand for precise timing even
more stringent. Super Audio CD uses an extremely high sampling rate of
2,822,400 samples per second—2.8224 MHz. Many 1-bit converters employ
Pulse Width Modulation, in which the converter modulates the output by creating
longer or shorter pulses. Unfortunately, this requires a D/A converter clock
frequency substantially higher than 2.8224 MHz. Because it's extremely difficult
to maintain clock precision at such high frequencies, the signal is exposed to
time-axis errors—jitter—which pass directly into the analog audio waveform,
causing subtle distortion.
Such distortion was not acceptable for the design program of the ES
Series DVD players. That's why Sony® ES engineers endowed the SA DAC with
Sony's multi-level D/A conversion. Unlike the multi-bit conversion used at the
dawn of the digital age, multi-level conversion exhibits superb low-level linearity.
And unlike the 1-bit conversion, multi-level conversion is remarkably free from
jitter and jitter-induced distortion. You get the best of both worlds.
The multi-level D/A system has multiple switches controlling multiple
current sources—in effect a number of 1-bit digital-to-analog converters
operating in parallel. The analog output is created by summing all the current
sources. Unlike 1-bit DACs, output is expressed not by the pulse width but the
number of the current sources. This reduces the clock frequency, reducing the
influence of clock jitter and reducing the radiation of noise into nearby circuits.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Multi
Multi level
level D/A
D/A conversion
conversion
1
1
1
N
N= 64 (for spec 1)
+
1
1
…
1
The SA DAC uses multi-level D/A conversion, illustrated here. Like
multi-bit conversion, the multi-level system uses many switches
operating in parallel. Unlike multi-bit designs, the value of all switches is
identical—a binary 1.
Multi
Multi level
level D/A
D/A conversion
conversion
Output
64
0
1 / 64 fs
1 / 64 fs
1 / 64 fs
time
The output of the multi level D/A converter varies from 0 to 64,
depending on the number of switches set to On for each sample.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Multi
Multi level
level D/A
D/A conversion
conversion
Multi-Bit
Multi-Bit D/A
D/A conversion
conversion
1
1
1
A
1
A
1
B
2
B
2
C
D
+
4
C
1
1
4
Output =2
1
1
1
1
1
1
Output =5
Output =3
1
+
Output =2
+
D 8
8
1
+
1
+
Output =2
1
1
+
Output =2
Multi-bit conversion (left) versus multi-level conversion (right).
To appreciate the difference between multi-bit and multi-level conversion,
take a look at the two of them, side-by-side, as shown in the diagram above. For
multi-bit conversion (left), each switch for has its own unique value. For multilevel conversion (right), all switches have the same value, 1.
For multi-bit, each desired output corresponds to one and only one
combination of switches. For example, there's only one way to generate an
output of 3. In contrast, multi-level conversion has many ways to generate the
same output value. The illustration on the right shows four different switch
combinations that create an output of 2. In fact, Sony® multi-level converters
can use thousands of switch combinations to create a given output level. And
the converters select the combinations at random, so output errors tend to cancel
out. And errors never get the opportunity to cause the regular, predictable
nonlinearities of multi-bit designs.
In this way, multi-level conversion achieves high precision in the amplitude
direction and high accuracy in the time domain, for astonishing specifications and
exceptional uniformity on all six channels. But the benefit is far more than just
technical. You'll hear reproduction with of superb clarity, transparency and
musicality.
Separate analog audio circuit board
The digital audio, digital video, analog video and servo control circuits
inside a DVD player are potential sources of radiated noise. Low-level signals in
the analog audio circuits are particularly susceptible to this noise. That's why
Sony isolates the analog audio circuits on their own board. It's one more
measure to help maintain the purity of both DVD-Video sound tracks, and Super
Audio CD music.
In addition, Sony uses six separate, identical audio circuits to handle the
5.1 channels. This ensures uniform frequency response and gain characteristics
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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at the output. Sony's careful design not only maintains the sonic purity of multichannel Super Audio CD signals, but also preserves the crucial left/right and
front/rear symmetry of 5.1 DVD-Video surround signals.
A separate printed circuit board for analog audio employs six separate,
identical circuits to handle the 5.1 channels of output.
Separate Audio Clock (NS9100ES)
While most DVD players have a single master clock, the DVP-NS9100ES
has two. The main clock—used for video and system circuitry—is located on the
main circuit board. However, a second crystal oscillator clock just for the audio
D/A converter (DAC) is located directly on the audio circuit board. This separate
master clock, located near the audio DAC, improves the reproduction of music
from CD and Super Audio CD.
The audio master clock only functions during CD and Super Audio CD
playback, when the audio does not need to be synchronized with video. When
the HDMI™ cable is connected or when you play DVDs, audio/video sync
becomes essential. Under these circumstances, the audio master clock is
switched off and the audio DAC gets its timing from the main clock.
Coaxial and optical digital output circuits
To deliver a high quality digital signal, these ES Series DVD players
employ a wide-bandwidth optical module. It can achieve transmission speeds
over 13 Megabits per second. This offers plenty of headroom for the 4.6
Megabits per second required by 96 kHz/24-bit outputs. The coaxial output
delivers comparable quality thanks to a high-performance pulse transformer.
Both digital outputs assure superb dynamics while holding noise and distortion to
the bare minimum.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Audiophile-grade components (NS9100ES)
Two capacitors with identical circuit values can have quite different sound
quality. For this reason, Sony® engineers have taken the time to choose topquality audiophile-grade components throughout the DVP-NS9100ES. The op
amps, resistors, capacitors and more have been individually selected and
matched for their sound quality. For example, carbon resistors with nonmagnetic leads have been chosen for their higher handling capacity. We chose
film capacitors for their superior audio characteristics. We even considered the
power plug. Sony engineers chose a grounded, 3-pin plug for superior
mechanical and electrical characteristics.
Sony's choice of a grounded AC input assures a more stable electrical
and mechanical connection.
Gold-plated output jacks.
To maximize electrical conductivity and minimize the effects of oxidation
over time, the audio, composite video, S-Video and component video output
jacks are plated with gold. Noise at the contact points is held to a bare minimum.
You might not notice that the output jacks are plated with gold. But they
protect the audio and video signal quality from oxidation which can
degrade the output signal over time. And that can make a noticeable
difference.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Video Off and Display Off modes
One potential concern with so many types of circuitry in one chassis is
mutual interference. Sony minimizes the possibility of radiated interference with
power-off configurations that shut down potential sources of noise:
ƒ
Video Off: Shuts down the video circuitry and the HDMI™ output to
eliminate even slight residual effects on the audio circuitry.
ƒ
Display Off: Disables the display for a further reduction in noise.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 38
Construction & Design
Twin R Core Transformers (NS9100ES)
The digital processing and control circuits can introduce noise to the
power supply voltage, which can trigger subtle audio distortions. To protect the
audio circuitry, the DVP-NS9100ES uses two separate power transformers: one
for the servo and digital system and another just for the analog audio and video
systems. The analog power supply is further divided, with independent
transformer windings for analog audio and analog video. This reduces
interference between audio and video circuitry to a bare minimum. In addition,
power supply regulation on the audio circuit board itself helps establish stable
operation for the audio D/A converters.
Power transformer cores and windings can vibrate and degrade the sound,
radiating 60 Hz hum into nearby audio circuits. That's why Sony chose an RCore design. The R stands for round. Not only is the core round, it has a
cylindrical cross section, enabling the transformer windings to be wrapped
without the voids or gaps that permit vibration. This results in far less radiation,
far less hum. These two transformers are mounted on a non-magnetic copper
plate, which is quite effective in reducing vibration, flux leakage and the
consequent noise and distortion. The audio power supply circuit also
incorporates discrete components, including electrolytic capacitors, carefully
selected for their sound quality.
The two power transformers have round cores with cylindrical cross
sections. This enables far more consistent transformer windings—for
far less radiated hum.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 39
New Base and Pillar (NBP) chassis (NS9100ES)
Where some see the chassis as an empty box, ready to be filled with
circuitry, Sony® ES engineers see a vital contributor to sound quality. Our
engineers understand that the chassis can become a pathway for vibration that
can subtly modulate wiring paths, resistance and capacitance values. All of this
adds up to unwanted distortion. That's why the DVP-NS9100ES is built upon the
formidable foundations of Sony's New Base and Pillar (NBP) chassis.
In Sony's previous Base and Pillar (BP) chassis, pillars stand on a metal
panel base, to which side and top panels are installed. This design bolsters the
strength of the bottom panel (the base), achieving high rigidity in a simple
structure. The BP chassis also has the advantage of creating a large space in
which the major subassemblies can be laid out with ease.
The New Base and Pillar (NBP) chassis of the DVP-NS9100ES is a
significant refinement of this classic Sony design. New L-shaped side walls
further increase the rigidity of the chassis, reduce resonance and free up internal
area.
Front view (left) and side view (right) of Sony's Base and Pillar (BP)
chassis. It's supremely strong to suppress resonance.
Off center insulator feet (NS9100ES)
To prevent shelf-borne vibration from entering the chassis, Sony's
insulator feet locate the screw hole off center. Varying the radius from screw to
perimeter tends to vary the resonant frequency within the foot. In this way,
vibrations coming from the bottom of the insulator act to cancel each other when
they reach the screw mount.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 40
Silver Cascade Design
In addition to its remarkable technology, the DVP-NS9100ES continues
the "cascade" faceplate design exclusive to the Sony® ES Series. The design
sets all the primary controls at an angle, so that you can identify each control and
use the player without uncomfortable bending. The silver colored faceplate is
made of brushed aluminum and fits in beautifully with conventional audio
components. But the design really comes into its own when the DVP-NS9100ES
is combined with other silver cascade components, such as the STR-DA7100ES
or STR-DA3100ES.
The STR-DA7100ES shows how the Silver Cascade design extends to
receivers. The design is also featured on the STR-DA3100ES.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
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Features
DVP-NS9100ES
DVP-NS3100ES
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
System
HDMI™ Output
i.LINK® interface1
HATS i.LINK interface control
DVD-Video playback
CD Audio playback
Video CD playback
DVD-R/RW (Video Format) playback
DVD-RW (VR Format) playback
DVD-RW (VR) CPRM playback
DVD+RW playback
CD-R/RW playback
CD MP3 playback
CD JPEG playback
Stereo Super Audio CD playback
Multi-channel Super Audio CD playback
Disc text display for DVD-Video
Disc text display for CD
Disc text display for Super Audio CD
Video
Precision Cinema Progressive™ output
Pixel-by-Pixel Active I/P conversion
Vertical Edge Compensation
14-bit, 216 MHz video D/A converter
12-bit, 216 MHz video D/A converter
Noise Shaped Video™ circuitry
Super Sub Alias Filter
Video equalizer with Graphical Gamma
Adjustment
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 42
Separate analog video circuit board with
separate power supply
High Speed video buffer amplifiers
Output Capacitor-Less coupling
Carefully selected parts
Wide pitch component output jacks
Video shield plate
DVP-NS9100ES
DVP-NS3100ES
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
-
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Audio
Super Audio CD stereo and multi-channel
playback
Dolby® Digital 5.1-channel decoding
DTS® 5.1-channel decoding
192 kHz, 24-bit (2 ch.) / 96 kHz, 24-bit (5.1
ch.) Super Audio DAC
Speaker Time Alignment
A/V Sync
Dolby® Digital and DTS® pass-through
Twin R-Core power transformers
Separate circuit board for analog audio
Separate power supply for analog audio
High-speed digital outputs
Audiophile-grade components
Gold-plated output jacks
Video Off and Display Off modes
Construction
New Base and Pillar (NBP) chassis
Off center insulator feet
Convenience
Multi-brand remote control for televisions
and A/V receivers2
Jog/shuttle dial
Playback Memory (400 discs)
SmoothScan™ and SmoothSlow modes
1. i.LINK is a trademark of Sony used only to designate that product contains an IEEE 1394
connector. All products with an IEEE 1394 connector may not communicate with each other.
Please refer to the documentation that comes with the device having an i.LINK connector for
information on compatibility, operating conditions and proper connection.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 43
Specifications
DVP-NS9100ES
DVP-NS3100ES
2 Hz to 44 kHz
2 Hz to 50 kHz
(-3dB)
2 Hz to 20 kHz
2 Hz to 44 kHz
2 Hz to 50 kHz
(-3dB)
2 Hz to 20 kHz
115 dB
108 dB
100 dB
103 dB
n/s
99 dB
0.0008%
0.0008%
0.0015%
Beneath the
limit of
measurement
(±0.001% W
Peak)
0.003%
n/s
n/s
Beneath the
limit of
measurement
(±0.001% W
Peak)
1
2
1, Interlace or
Progressive,
Gold Plated,
Wide Pitch
2, Gold Plated
2, Gold Plated
1, Gold Plated
1
1, Gold Plated
2, Gold Plated
1
1, Interlace or
Progressive,
Gold Plated,
Wide Pitch
2, Gold Plated
2, Gold Plated
1, Gold Plated
1
1, Gold Plated
2, Gold Plated
Audio Performance
Frequency Response
DVD (PCM, 96 kHz)
Super Audio CD
CD
Audio Dynamic Range
DVD Video
Super Audio CD
CD
Harmonic Distortion
DVD Video
Super Audio CD
CD
Wow and Flutter
Output Interfaces
HDMI™ output
i.LINK® interface
Component Video Output
S-Video Output
Composite Video Output
Coaxial Digital Audio Output
Optical Digital Audio Output
5.1-ch Analog Audio Output
Analog Stereo Outputs
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 44
Infrared Input / Control S Interface
RS-232C Control Interface
DVP-NS9100ES
DVP-NS3100ES
1
1
1
-
AC 120 V, 60
Hz
38 W
17 x 5 x 15-3/8"
(430 x 125 x
390 mm)
20 lbs., 15 oz.
(9.5 kg)
RM-ASP003
Remote
Commander®
unit, AA
Batteries x2, AV
Cable,
Instruction
Manual
AC 120 V, 60
Hz
27 W
17 x 4-1/2 x 143/4" (430 x 115
x 375 mm)
12 lbs., 2 oz.
(5.5 kg)
RM-ASP002
Remote
Commander
unit, AA
Batteries x2,
AV Cable,
Instruction
Manual
General
Power Requirements
Power Consumption
Dimensions (WxHxD)
Weight
Supplied Accessories
Sony Electronics Inc.
16530 Via Esprillo
San Diego, CA 92127
www.sonystyle.com
© 2005 Sony Electronics Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written
permission is prohibited. Features and specifications are subject to change without notice. Sony,
Direct Stream Digital, DSD, High Density Linear Converter, Handycam, Hi-Scan 1080i, i.LINK,
Precision Cinema Progressive, Remote Commander and SmoothScan are trademarks of Sony.
Dolby Digital is a registered trademark of Dolby Laboratories Licensing Corp. DTS is a registered
trademark of Digital Theater Systems, L.P. Noise Shaped Video (NSV) is a trademark of Analog
Devices Inc. Macrovision is a trademark of Macrovision Corporation. HDMI, the HDMI logo and
High-Definition Multimedia Interface are trademarks or registered trademarks of HDMI Licensing
LLC.
1. i.LINK is a trademark of Sony used only to designate that product contains an IEEE 1394
connector. All products with an IEEE 1394 connector may not communicate with each other.
Please refer to the documentation that comes with the device having an i.LINK connector for
information on compatibility, operating conditions and proper connection.
2. Multi-brand remote may not be compatible with some brands or models.
ES DVD Players 2005, Version 4.0
Page 45