IFA NEWS: More details of Sony's high-end ES Blu-ray Disc player, SACD player and flagship receiver

Sony BDP-S5000ES

The Blu-ray Disc player is the BDP-S5000ES (pictured), claimed by the company to be 'the world's most advanced', and including features such as an HD Reality Enhancer and Super Bit Mapping designed, it's said to take picture quality 'way beyond what has previously been available from Bu-ray Disc'.

The HD Reality Enhancer is said to give sharper edges without emphasising the grain on the original film, while increasing colour depth from the 8 bits of the original to the equivalent of 14 bits. Meanwhile Super Bit Mapping, which uses processing based on human visual sensitivity, is said to deliver 'the best possible quality over HDMI, with smoother colour tones.'

The player uses a Precision Drive HD transport mechanism in the center position, an ultra-rigid Frame and Beam chassis to reduce vibration and a low-leakage R-Core transformer.The analogue audio board is isolated from the video and servo sections to avoid interference, and the player offers Linear PCM and HD audio decoding with bitstream output, and 7.1-channel analogue outputs.

It will handle all formats up to Dolby TrueHD and DTS- HD Master Audio, either decoded internally or output as bitstream. It will also upscale your existing DVDs to 1080p using Sony's Precision Cinema HD Upscale, and even the analogue component video output is said to be superior, thanks to the use of 14-bit/297 MHz Video D/A conversion.

The SCD-XA5400ES SACD/CD player is designed, Sony says, to provide a perfect transfer of SACD's native DSD data to the matching STR-DA5400ES receiver, using Sony's H.A.T.S., or High-quality digital Audio Transfer System. This allows the AV receiver to control the flow of data from the player, and this, in association with buffering in the AV receiver, ensures the smoothest possible transfer between the two

If the player is used with other amplifiers or AV receivers it employs its own Super Audio CD conversion system, which uses the equivalent of 12 separate digital-to-analogue converters, to output the audio as stereo analogue, either on phono or balanced XLR connectors, or as conventional multi- channel audio via HDMI.

The new 7x130W STR-DA5400ES receiver has six HDMI inputs and two outputs, along with two of Sony's Digital Media Ports for use with portable and computer-stored music.

BDP-S5000ES at a glance
- High-end Blu-ray Disc player designed to make the most of the latest discs
- HD Reality Enhancer and Super Bit Mapping for greater colour depth and resolution with the latest Full HD TVs
- 24p True Cinema technology for total fidelity to the original cinematic experience
- BD-Live and BonusView compatible for enhanced interactive content
- Upscaling to 1080p for DVD with Precision Cinema HD Upscale technology
- High performance 14-bit/297MHz Video D/A converter for superior analogue video output
- Decoding for the latest high- definition audio formats including Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD
- 7.1-channel Linear PCM output as well as Dolby TrueHD/DTS- HD bitstream audio output to external AV receivers/decoders
- 7.1-channel analogue output with Advanced Current Segment Audio D/A converters for legacy AV receivers/decoders
- Precision Clock Conditioner to reduce clock jitter noise over HDMI
- Frame and beam chassis for rigidity and vibration suppression, and Precision Drive HD transport mechanism in center position
- R-Core transformer and separate audio board to minimise interference
- Separate audio board for the best sound quality
Back-lit Remote Commander for easy use in a darkened home theatre
- RS-232C and infrared control inputs
- Gold plated HDMI port and other A/V terminals

SCD-XA5400ES at a glance
- High- end Super Audio CD/CD player for multi-channel and stereo music
- DSD transfer via HDMI to STR- DA5400ES, with H.A.T.S. for HDMI system to ensure accuracy and sound quality
- High-quality Super Audio CD conversion system, using six stereo converters, for analogue output
- Twin-laser design for optimal reading of Super Audio CDs and CDs
- Frame and beam chassis for rigidity
- Twin transformers - one for audio, one for control and digital - for the best sound
- RCA phono and balanced analogue outputs

STR-DA5400ES at a glance
- Flagship AV receiver, designed to form the heart of a top- quality home entertainment system
- 6 HDMI inputs and two outputs, enabling simultaneous use of TV and projector
- 7x130W power output
- Decoding for all current HD Audio formats, legacy surround formats, multi-channel Linear PCM and DSD from Super Audio CD
- H.A.T.S. for HDMI system for optimal audio quality when used with SCD- XA5400ES
- Video upconversion and 1080p upscaling
- Digital Cinema Auto-Calibration
- BRAVIA Sync for simple operation with BRAVIA LCD TVs and other components from Sony
- Picture in picture facility for Graphical User Interface
- Three-zone multiroom operation - Zone 2 audio and video, Zone 3 audio only - with additional remote handset
- Two Digital Media Ports, for connection to iPod, WALKMAN players, Bluetooth music devices and wi-fi networks
- RS-232c and infrared remote control inputs and three 12V trigger connections, for use in integrated installations