Blu-ray Players

Onkyo DV-BD507 Blu-ray Player

ARTICLE INDEX

Setup and Configuration

The DV-BD507 was an absolute cinch to get set up. It is extremely light, as most players are these days, so I simply put it in my rack where my old HD-DVD player was taking up space, and plugged in the non-detachable power cable. The player includes a couple of options for audio and video connectivity. On the video side, you can use component, composite (no S-Video) or HDMI. On the audio side, you can choose from 2 channel analog, optical or coaxial digital, or HDMI. At this point the best way to hook up a Blu-ray player to your system is with HDMI to get all the benefits of the high resolution video and audio with a single cable. Finally, I connected the Ethernet port via category 5e cable to my home network. This would allow for both BD-Live functionality (the player is Profile 2.0 compliant), as well as over-the-Internet firmware upgradability.

Being someone who is slightly obsessive about being up to date with all the latest and greatest (I keep my computers and other gadgets on the latest firmwares and softwares once I verify that there aren’t any drastic problems with them), I checked whether there was already a firmware update for the player. The setting to update the firmware is found in the setup menus, under the “Custom” heading, and the “Others” field. My 1.00 firmware was up to date according to that process.

Next, as I always do when I get a new piece of gear, I traversed all available menus to see what features, options, and functions I had available to me. The first is a quick setup menu that allows for the most important settings to get you started right away. There you can set the type of HDMI audio output (more on this later), HDMI video resolution, component video resolution, and the language of the menu system. If you have both an SD card as well as a Blu-ray disc loaded, there is an option that will pop up to allow you to select which source you will be viewing.

For those wishing for more detailed configuration (which I would guess includes most of this readership), the next set of menus is the custom section. First, you can set the language for the audio, subtitles, disc menus, and player menus. Next, you have the video settings. Under this menu, there are options like TV aspect ratio, HDMI video resolution (which is where you can specify 1080p24 for those HDTVs that support that output), Deep color (the player supports x.v.Color), component output resolution, progressive mode and still mode. I set mine to 16:9 wide for the aspect ratio, 1080p24 as my HDTV supports that resolution.

The audio section is interesting, as there are several things to consider when making your menu selections. First and foremost, one must understand that this Blu-ray player will output the high resolution audio formats, such as DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby TrueHD as bitstream over the HDMI connection. Of course, like all Blu-ray players (and the players formerly known as HD-DVD), these high resolution signals can also be sent as multichannel LPCM signals over HDMI. So, once you understand these options, there are a couple of ways to set it up. First of all, under the audio section you can select the BD Audio mode. This setting’s options are “HD Audio Output” and “Mix Audio Output”. Here lies the solution to the old issue of not being able to mix the secondary audio, such as the director’s commentary, with the high resolution audio, such as Dolby TrueHD, and still send bitstream output to the receiver via HDMI. When this is set to “HD Audio Ouput”, it simply allows the high resolution audio bitstream to be sent via HDMI – no secondary audio here. When set to “Mix Audio Ouput”, if there is secondary audio, the DV-BD507 will output LPCM and mix the secondary and primary audio channels, but will output bitstream if there is no secondary audio.

Furthermore, because the mixing is done in the player, when this option is selected, a new menu appears that allows you to set speaker sizes, levels, and delays, just as you would in a receiver. This allows for proper bass management. Also found here is a down-sampling setting and a dynamic range control setting. The latter is useful for night time viewing where you don’t have the luxury of very drastic changes in volume levels, but still want to be able to hear the full range and depth of the audio track. A notable feature here is that if the Dolby TrueHD soundtrack is encoded with DRC settings, the player will recognize them when it outputs the signal to your receiver.

The last two custom menus are for parental controls, and for everything else. The parental settings allow for both Blu-ray rating level and DVD rating level to be set independently. In the catch-all menu for all the remaining settings, you will find things like whether to display the angle icon, whether the player should automatically power itself off, the dimmer for the panel display, the HDMI CEC setting (which allows you to control various HDMI devices over the wire), and configuration of your network connection. In addition, this is where you can check for and run firmware updates. The nice thing is that you can update via the internet directly through the player’s Ethernet connection, or you can update via an already downloaded firmware update that is on an SD card.

The final main menu is where you can re-initialize the setup of the player or network connection, as well as erase saved BD-ROM content.