Phew, what a scorcha!

Thank goodness my car has airconditioning. It got up to 30C (mid-high 80’s F) around here today and even with the air being recirculated, the car’s aircon was having trouble getting down to 19C.

As described in my previous entry, most of my day was spent exchanging DVDs and getting my hair cut. I spent most of the afternoon and evening, however, sitting on my sofa with a 12″ desktop fan (which I picked up for £15 in Woolworths today) next to me trying to keep cool. At least today seemed less humid than yesterday.

I’m hoping that with the help of the fan, tonight I will get more sleep than last night. I didn’t manage to get any rest until gone half one when the temperature got down to a comfortable value.

I hate really hot, humid weather.

DVD fun

Well, I went to Richer Sounds this morning carrying the DVD player I got last week.

Anyway, the upshot was that after a little persuasion they took the old player back, especially when I told them about the experience I had when I first hooked up the machine last Saturday and needed to put the HiFi’s volume onto full to get any sound out of it at all. And he couldn’t understand why Shrek wouldn’t work either as it does on their demo machine.

So, I then ask the saleman that I’m interested in the Toshiba SD-520E and then asked if there were any other machines of a similar price which mat be better. He suggested the Cambridge Audio DVD75 as it does Progressive scan in both PAL and NTSC, unlike the Toshiba which only does it in NTSC mode. I ask for a demonstration of the unit and found it to be a decent machine. I paid my extra £50 and walked out the door with the new machine.

It wasn’t until about 1pm that I got home after getting my hair cut and everything. As soon as I got in I took the player out of the box and attempted to set it up. Things started to seem a little wrong when I started getting shocks from the unit after I’m plugged it in. I was getting tingly sensations on my fingers where they were brushing the HiFi’s metal case. I then tried turning the unit on and nothing happened. At this point I got out my multimetre and found that the case of the player was live with 121 volts AC. Hmm..

Back went the DVD to Richer Sounds. At first they didn’t believe me saying that it must have been static. Finally, the manager came across and told them to DOA the machine on safety grounds. So, they brought me another machine.

This time I wasn’t going to leave the shop without the machine being tested, so off to the viewing room I went, the salesman took the player out the box, plugged it in… nothing. So they brought another… nothing. Oops.. a duff batch.

At this point I asked if I could have the demo machine as that obviously worked. They were happy with that. So, I now have a nice new working machine. Though I will have to pop in to get the cover for the optical out port as that seems to hve been remoted and not put back on.

So far, I’m very pleased with it. The picture is sharp with very little banding. It plays all my DVD’s, is branded for all the standards. It shows JPEG pictures and on top of all that, the sound output is gorgeous! CD’s sound better than from the HiFi’s own CD player, DVD have rich sound too. The only thing it doesn’t do is control the widescreen mode on the telly so I have to tell the telly to switch to 16:9. I think that’s a pretty minor failing.

On the whole, if you’re looking for a £200 DVD player with progressive scan, JPEG, DVD-Audio, MP3 etc. playback and Dolby Digital decoder you can’t really go far wrong this player.. assuming you can buy one that works. Oh, and the remote is nifty.. it’s wafer thin, is powered by a coin battery and the buttons glow in the dark. 🙂