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Oppo UDP-203 & UDP-205 Ultra HD Blu-ray Players Measurements and Analysis

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Using the industry's most advanced HDMI Audio Analyzer, the Audio Precision APx585, we proceeded to measure all of the various aspects of audio performance for the Oppo UDP-203 and UDP-205.

HDMI Digital Audio Tests

Using a 192kHz / 24 bit 6CH Dolby True HD signal, I measured a ruler flat frequency response from 20Hz to 1/2 Nyquist frequency (96kHz) for both the UDP-203 and UDP-205 player.

UDP-205 HDMI(Freq).jpg

Oppo UPD-205 Frequency Response (HDMI Out)

Analog Output Tests

For those of you that plan on exclusively using the analog outputs of the UDP-205, I ran a complete battery of measurements on the player.  With a player like the UDP-205, I could even envision a consumer bypassing a preamp altogether and utilizing it as not only the Universal UltraHD Blu-ray player but as the preamp itself.  The UDP-205 has a global volume control and both USB and HDMI inputs to stream music and handle HDMI audio and video sources.  Many folks in the high-end two-channel world actually prefer using the source player as the preamp and they can easily do that with this player.

Frequency Response

Using a  0dBFs 192kHz/24 bit True HD signal, I ran a 6CH sweep with all channels set to “large” and found the UDP-203 exhibited flat response from 10Hz to 50kHz and about -1.9dB down at 80kHz while the UDP-205 exhibited ruler flat all the way out to ½ the sampling rate (96kHz).  Oppo specifies this UDP-203 as -4dB at 96kHz and the UDP-205 to be -3dB at 160kHz.  Both players measured better than specified and beyond the limits of human hearing.

Oppo UDP-203 Frequency Response (6CH, 0dBFs).JPG

Oppo UDP-203 Analog Frequency Response (multi-channel outs)

Oppo UDP-205 Frequency Response (0dBFs)-6CH.JPG

Oppo UDP-205 Analog Frequency Response (multi-channel outs)

UDP-203 Analog Outputs:

  • Frequency: 20Hz - 48kHz (±0.2dB), 20Hz - 96kHz (-4dB ˜ +0.05dB)
  • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: >112dB (A-weighted, Unmute)
  • THD+N: < 0.001% (1kHz at 0dBFS, 20kHz LPF)
  • Crosstalk: < -103dB (A-weighted)

UDP-205 Analog Outputs:

  • Frequency Response: 20Hz – 160kHz (-3dB ˜ +0.05dB)
  • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: > 120dBr
  • THD+N: < 0.00018%
  • Output Level: (RCA) 2.1±0.2Vrms. (XLR) 4.2±0.4Vrms
  • Dynamic Range: > 120dB
  • Crosstalk: > 118dB

Using the same test signals and player configuration, I measured THD + N in both cases.

Distortion

UDP-203 (unbalanced, 2Vrms) THD+N Ratio.JPG

Oppo UDP-203 Distortion vs Frequency (multi-channel outputs)

UDP-205 (balanced, 4Vrms) THD+N Ratio.jpg

Oppo UDP-205 Distortion vs Frequency (balanced outputs)

Both players exhibited extremely low distortion with the UDP-203 measuring .002% THD+N for most of the audio bandwidth with a gradual rise with frequency to .005% THD+N at 45kHz.  This was at full rated output voltage of 2Vrms, which is more than enough signal to drive any modern amplifier to full rated power.  The UDP-205 measured even better (as expected) with a ruler flat distortion profile of .001% THD+N for the entire measured bandwidth (10Hz-96kHz) at 4Vrms via the balanced outputs. Our measurements were done with no weighting filter, which explains why they are higher than what Oppo specifies but still exceedingly below human threshold of detection making this mostly an academic exercise in how good of measured performance one could get from state of the art audio gear.

OPPO UDP-203 FFT (2Vrms) unbal.jpg 

Oppo UDP-203 FFT Distortion Analysis  (multi-ch outputs)

OPPO UDP-205 FFT (4Vrms) bal.jpg 

Oppo UDP-205 FFT Distortion Analysis  (balanced outputs)

Both players exhibited excellent noise spectra (-130dB) with residuals > 110dB below the fundamental. The UDP-205 is a bit cleaner as you can see less harmonics in the plot, but this is again academic.

Crosstalk

Oppo UDP-203 Crosstalk, One Channel Undriven.JPG

Oppo UDP-203 Channel to Channel Crosstalk

Oppo UDP-205 Crosstalk, One Channel Undriven.JPG

Oppo UDP-205 Channel to Channel Crosstalk

Using a 0dBFS 192kHz / 24-bit test signal, we measured channel-to-channel crosstalk with all channels set to large.  Both players again produced results that most dedicated analog preamps could only dream to reproduce.  The UDP-203 measured > -90dB at 20kHz while the UDP-205 was > -110dB at 20kHz. Oppo specified 103dB for the UDP-203 and 118dB for the UDP-205 but don't specify at what frequency.  Regardless, this is again academic since the measurements are so superb.

Signal to Noise Ratio

UDP-203 SNR (unbalanced, 0dBFS, 192kHz _ 24bit).jpg 

Oppo UDP-203 Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) with 0dBFS 192kHz/24 Bit Signal

 UDP-205 SNR (balanced, 0dBFS).JPG

Oppo UDP-205 Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) with 0dBFS 192kHz/24 Bit Signal

Both Oppo Blu-ray players produced textbook redbook SNR numbers reaching the 96dB theoretical noise limitation of a 16-bit signal (6dB*16).  For higher bitrate signals, the UDP-203 was able to achieve 113dB (unweighted) while the UDP-205 was able to achieve 123dB.  Oppo specifies 112dB for the UDP-203 and 120dB for the UDP-205, both of which we were able to confirm/exceed.

Bass Management

These settings only affect the analog outputs of the player and should be ignored if you're only using HDMI connections and relying on the bass management of your AV receiver or preamp/processor.

Setting all speakers to "small" and selecting 80Hz as our choice of crossover point, we measured the analog bass management capabilities of the UDP-203 and UDP-205.  Both players offer variable crossover settings from 40-250Hz (10Hz increments from 40Hz to 160Hz, followed by 160Hz, 200Hz and 250Hz settings). Oppo carried over their peculiar setting of full bandwidth subwoofer if you set all speakers to "Large".  They claim they do this for compatibility with older multi-channel recordings but just note this and realize in most cases you'd want to set all channels to "small" to take advantage of the bass management facilities inside the player.

UDP-205 Bass Management.JPG

Oppo UDP-205 Analog Bass Management Measurements

Note: The “Stereo Audio Output” as marked on the back panel of the UDP-205, and including both the XLR balanced and the pair of RCA single-ended terminals, are normally not affected by the bass management and down-mixing settings. In the setup menu, there is a setting to use these output terminals as the Front Left/Right channels (so users who do not need a dedicated stereo output can take advantage of the XLR balanced connections). If used as the Front Left/Right output, the terminals are no longer the original “Stereo Audio Output” and will be a duplicate of the Front L/R of the 7.1ch output group, thus affected by bass management, channel trim and down-mix settings.

We measured the filter slopes using a -20dBFS 96kHz / 24 bit PCM test signal.  For the HPF, we measured a -3dB point around 80Hz for the 80Hz default setting, with a slope just shy of 12dB/octave.  For the LPF, we measured a -3dB point of 80Hz with a 12dB/octave rolloff.  We personally prefer to see a 24dB/octave slope for the LPF like THX recommends, but Oppo said their goal was to meet the minimum Dolby requirement of at least a 1st order filter (6dB/octave) for the HPF and at least a 2nd order filter (12dB/octave) for the LPF.  If you want the very best in bass management for multi-channel, doing it in the player isn't the answer. Get a separate AV receiver or preamp/processor and do it there.

Conclusion

Once again, Oppo has produced some oOppo-backpanel.jpgf the finest Ultra HD Blu-ray players on the market.  There were no surprises or weird operational glitches found with either of these players.  They had very responsive interfaces and exhibited state of the art playback performance with every type of source material thrown at them.  The UDP-203/205 leave videophiles wanting very little and both players should satisfy all but the most critical audiophiles.  For the audiophile planning extensive use of the analog outputs or USB DAC, the UDP-205 is the right choice if cost is not an issue.  The build quality alone and its imposing stature in a fancy rack should make audiophiles salivate like Pavlov's dog.  For everyone else, the UDP-203 is the most sensible choice.  Are there other options for less money than the UDP-203?  Sure.  But, will they perform as flawlessly and offer the same level of build quality and operational refinement?  Not bloody likely.   

The Score Card

The scoring below is based on each piece of equipment doing the duty it is designed for. The numbers are weighed heavily with respect to the individual cost of each unit, thus giving a rating roughly equal to:

Performance × Price Factor/Value = Rating

Audioholics.com note: The ratings indicated below are based on subjective listening and objective testing of the product in question. The rating scale is based on performance/value ratio. If you notice better performing products in future reviews that have lower numbers in certain areas, be aware that the value factor is most likely the culprit. Other Audioholics reviewers may rate products solely based on performance, and each reviewer has his/her own system for ratings.

Audioholics Rating Scale

  • StarStarStarStarStar — Excellent
  • StarStarStarStar — Very Good
  • StarStarStar — Good
  • StarStar — Fair
  • Star — Poor
MetricRating
High Definition Video PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
Standard Definition Video PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
High Definition Audio PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
Analogue Audio PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
Bass ManagementStarStarStarStar
Deinterlacing & ScalingStarStarStarStarStar
Build QualityStarStarStarStarStar
Ergonomics & UsabilityStarStarStarStarStar
FeaturesStarStarStarStar
Remote ControlStarStarStarStarStar
PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
ValueStarStarStarStar
About the author:
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Gene manages this organization, establishes relations with manufacturers and keeps Audioholics a well oiled machine. His goal is to educate about home theater and develop more standards in the industry to eliminate consumer confusion clouded by industry snake oil.

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Recent Forum Posts:

sterling shoote posts on November 14, 2018 19:07
RichB, post: 1281287, member: 11091
Actually, Bob Pariseau is THE man. I am an understudy.
Oppo, heavy sigh.

- Rich
I went to Bob on several ocassions after misreading the OPPO manual or simply not understanding it. For the most part, I do not understand anything about wireless operation, DLNA, server recognition ,and other functions not associated with SACD disc playback. Thing is, I still do not understand for sure if I have applied all settings for the greatest pleasure. In fact, I can't even remember what I set, or how I set some of the unit's parameters. The other day, I decided I wanted to hear some hi-res ALAC files in iTunes via the OPPO's usb DAC. It took me about 15 minutes just to figure out the sequence of operations just to get the ball rolling. From that experience I decided to just write the sequence down:
1. turn on iTunes/set prepro to CD
2. check speaker output from computer is set to OPPO
3. turn on TV
4. press Home on TV remote control
5. press Input on OPPO remote control
6. scroll to usb DAC on TV from OPPO remote control
7 .press Enter on OPPO remote control
8. turn off TV
At any rate, easiest thing is playing BDs and SACDs just insert disc and power up pre amp.
RichB posts on November 14, 2018 10:30
herbu, post: 1281256, member: 56644
Thanks, Rich! Must have read thru that a dozen times. Don't know how I missed it. You ARE the Oppo Man! Thank You!

Actually, Bob Pariseau is THE man. I am an understudy.
Oppo, heavy sigh.

- Rich
herbu posts on November 14, 2018 07:36
RichB, post: 1281107, member: 11091
Use Down Mix mode Stereo.
From the 203 user manual:

If your audio system offers only stereo audio inputs, or if you would like to connect a dedicated stereo audio system in addition to the surround audio system which is already connected to the HDMI or S/PDIF outputs, you can connect the dedicated stereo audio system to the FL (Front Left) and FR (Front Right) outputs of the player. In the Setup Menu, set the Down Mix Mode to Stereo in the Speaker Configuration section (refer to Down Mix Mode on page 64).

- Rich
Thanks, Rich! Must have read thru that a dozen times. Don't know how I missed it. You ARE the Oppo Man! Thank You!
RichB posts on November 13, 2018 11:39
herbu, post: 1281104, member: 56644
I had a 103 for years and LOVED it. Then my TV died, so I got a 4K UHD TV. That meant a new receiver and a new BDP. For the BDP, I got an Oppo 203. Now I love 4K UHD movies… but there's a problem.

I use HDMI for main surround audio. I also use wireless headphones in addition to the main system surround, so I can walk out on the porch and still hear the show while my wife's listening in surround is uninterrupted. The Oppo 103 had RCA Stereo Audio Out connections, (in addition to HDMI). It let me connect an Oppo stereo pre-amp signal to Zone-2 of my receiver, then the headphones to the Zone-2 output.

But the Oppo 203 has no such output. It does have the 7.1 analog outputs. So here's my question. Is there a way to set the HDMI output to retain the native format of a BD for my surround system AND set the analog outputs to Stereo so the analog signal is completely contained in the FL & FR analog outputs?

I can currently connect 2 RCA cables from Oppo FL & FR to my receiver Zone-2 and it works fine, but I only get the FL & FR signal, (no or very little dialog since I'm missing the Center speaker output). Or I can connect the cables to Center and FL or FR, or any other combination, but I can't figure out how to get the entire signal in stereo format. I've played with the settings a bunch, but there are too many acronyms I don't understand to really know what I'm doing.

Ideas? Thanks.

Use Down Mix mode Stereo.
From the 203 user manual:

If your audio system offers only stereo audio inputs, or if you would like to connect a dedicated stereo audio system in addition to the surround audio system which is already connected to the HDMI or S/PDIF outputs, you can connect the dedicated stereo audio system to the FL (Front Left) and FR (Front Right) outputs of the player. In the Setup Menu, set the Down Mix Mode to Stereo in the Speaker Configuration section (refer to Down Mix Mode on page 64).

- Rich
herbu posts on November 13, 2018 11:09
I had a 103 for years and LOVED it. Then my TV died, so I got a 4K UHD TV. That meant a new receiver and a new BDP. For the BDP, I got an Oppo 203. Now I love 4K UHD movies… but there's a problem.

I use HDMI for main surround audio. I also use wireless headphones in addition to the main system surround, so I can walk out on the porch and still hear the show while my wife's listening in surround is uninterrupted. The Oppo 103 had RCA Stereo Audio Out connections, (in addition to HDMI). It let me connect an Oppo stereo pre-amp signal to Zone-2 of my receiver, then the headphones to the Zone-2 output.

But the Oppo 203 has no such output. It does have the 7.1 analog outputs. So here's my question. Is there a way to set the HDMI output to retain the native format of a BD for my surround system AND set the analog outputs to Stereo so the analog signal is completely contained in the FL & FR analog outputs?

I can currently connect 2 RCA cables from Oppo FL & FR to my receiver Zone-2 and it works fine, but I only get the FL & FR signal, (no or very little dialog since I'm missing the Center speaker output). Or I can connect the cables to Center and FL or FR, or any other combination, but I can't figure out how to get the entire signal in stereo format. I've played with the settings a bunch, but there are too many acronyms I don't understand to really know what I'm doing.

Ideas? Thanks.
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