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Appeared on: Thursday, May 20, 2004
Kiss DP-1000 DVD player


1. Specifications

Kiss DP-1000 DVD Player - page 1

After the successful DP-450, Kiss has released its SlimLine DVD Player, the DP-1000. This device is capable of playing back almost everything: DivX® 3.11, DivX® 4, DivX® 5 and XviD movies, as well as audio CDs, home-burned CD, MP3 and Ogg Vorbis audio. Even picture CDs can be shown, simply burn some jpeg format pictures from your PC onto a CD and you can enjoy watching them on your home TV.

The DP-1000 has the official certification from DivX.

Basic features

- Full DVD/MPEG-4/DivX®/XviD/CD/MP3/Ogg Vorbis/CD-RW/DVD+-RW compatibility
- JPEG Picture CD viewing
- Progressive Scan Video Out
- Time Search
- Playback Control: Play/Pause/Stop/FF/RW/NEXT/PREV
- Repeat Playback
- Slow Motion
- Title/chapter select
- Parental lock, Multi Language, Multi Subtitle, Multi Angle
- Remote Control
- TV Type (PAL and NTSC)
- Configuration Setup Menu
- Aspect Ratio (4:3 Pan and Scan, 4:3 Letter Box and 16:9 Wide)
- S-Video Output
- Composite Video Output
- Component Output
- Dolby Digital, MPEG Audio Decoding
- Dolby Digital/MPEG 5.1 Digital Output
- S/PDIF Outputs
- Analogue stereo



2. Unpacking - Control menu

Kiss DP-1000 DVD Player - page 2

Unpacking - Control Menu

The retail package includes the unit, the remote control, the stereo and the video cables, the Scart cable and the power cable.

As we can see the player has only two buttons on the unit, which are the play/pause and the stop/eject respectively. On the left side is the loading tray.

Below we can see the inside of the DP-1000, after removing the cover, something which is not recommended since you void the manufacturer's warranty. (Click on the image for an enlarged view).

Below are the two main chipsets used in the unit.

The unit's main chip is the MT1388E from Mediatek.

The other main chip is Sigma's EM8500, a premium solution for DVD players, enabling manufacturers to easily incorporate support of MPEG-4, MP3, WMA and Picture CD content, progressive DVD-Video, high definition scaling and audio CD playback. The convergence of these applications into a single, cost-effective appliance represents a substantial benefit to the consumer.

Video decoding capabilities include MPEG-4, MPEG-2 and MPEG-1 compressed video formats while audio decoding includes Dolby® Digital, Windows Media Audio (WMA) and MPEG-1 Layers 1, 2 and 3 (MP3). MPEG-4 video support is based on the advanced simple profile and supports DVD resolution content. MPEG-2 video support includes full precision DVD decoding and Macrovision protection. Any form of decoded content can be output in either progressive or interlaced format. Beyond the normal decoding of content, the EM8500 offers a sophisticated scaling and scan conversion of standard video to various HDTV resolutions, which recreates many elements of cinema picture quality. Also supported is Kodak's Picture CD (JPEG) format for viewing digital photo content, which provides a substantially enhanced image when utilizing the high definition output. Additionally, the chip offers an 8-bit full-screen on-screen-display capability with alpha blending and flicker filtering, composite and S-video TV outputs, interlaced or progressive analog component video outputs (YPbPr or RGB) scalable up to HDTV resolution and 5.1-channel and S/PDIF digital audio outputs.

The EM8500 is designed around the system-on-chip concept with an internal 150 mips RISC CPU, system interfaces, busses and control ports to implement a complete DVD player. Supporting a range of DVD drives, the EM8500 offers both IDE and DVD loader interfaces for use of either standard or lower cost proprietary devices. A built-in memory controller provides a direct interface of up to 16MB of SDRAM and 4MB of Flash. Additional interfaces include I2S, I2C, UART, 16 GPIO pins and front panel control.

On the rear panel are all the appropriate audio/video outputs. Analytically they are:
the coaxial and optical audio (digital)
analogue stereo audio output (L & R)
composite video and S-video output
the component video outputs and the universal (Scart) line out

There is no built in 5.1CH decoder, but this is something we wouldn't necessarily expect to find on a low-priced DVD player.

For excellent sound reproduction, DD5.1 and DTS, we recommend you to use one of the two digital outputs.

As was mentioned, the DP-1000 also offers Component Video outputs (PbPrY) for better image quality.

The all in one SCART couldn't be missing.

The package also includes the remote control for the device, which is the same as that included in the DP-450 package. The remote control is absolutely necessary for operating the device, since other than the two buttons on the front panel, play/pause and stop/eject, there no other buttons.

Click on the remote image for an enlarged view.

 

 

 


 

Below we have included screenshots of the main menus from the player.


3. Reading Tests

Kiss DP-1000 DVD Player - page 3

Reading Tests

One important thing that makes a DVD player good is its ability to read all the discs and all the formats. For this reason we tracked down all the appropriate material in order to check the manufacturer's specifications regarding format support.

DivX support

All the DivX versions we tried, v2,3,3.11,4,5.11, played successfully with the DP-1000 except this one where the Quarter Pixel was enabled, as it can been seen in the screenshot below. With this feature disable there were no problems.

Xvid support

Our tests confirmed that the Xvid 1 and 2 are supported by the Kiss player. Once again the Quarter pixel had to be disable, otherwise you won't be able to play the files.

In our Xvid test movie, with AC3 sound, we had to files with subtitles, one was a .sub file with english subtitles and the other a .srt file with greek subtitles. The second one was not been recognized from the player. We don't know what was the problem, the greek subtitles or the type of file?

DVD support

The Kiss DP-1000 we have in our hands is a region-2 drive, which means that the player is able to decode (play) only the pressed DVD-Video discs coming from the European region. However since you can upgrade the device with new firmware it is possible, with an unofficial version, to make it region free.

 

We connected the DP-1000 through the Scart interface with the corresponding cable, which is included in the player's package. As was expected, the player supports the DVD-Video format. We recorded a 4.35GB DVD-Video file on various DVD+R/-R, DVD-RW/+RW media. The recorders we used are some of the latest dual-format available on the PC market, as well as some 1st generation recorders. Pressed single / dual layer DVD-Video discs were also included in the test. All the test discs were created with the same PC /software in the DVD-Video mode.

We checked the player's disc recognition as well as smooth navigation and playback. The results were very good, since all the discs were read completely. The table below lists the drives and media we used in our tests.

Recorder
Media
Speed recorded
Recognition
Playback
Sony DRX-500UL v1.0c
TDK DVD+RW 2.4x
2.4x
OK
Sony DRU-530A v2.0h
Mitsubishi Chemicals DVD+R 4x
4x
Taiyo yuden DVD+R 4x
4x
N-Tech DVD+R 4x
4x
Philips DVD+R 4x
4x
Pioneer DVR-107D v1.05
JVC DVD-R 8x
8x
MKM DVD+R 8x
8x
CMC DVD-R 4x
4x
CMC DVD+R 4x
4x
NEC ND-2500A v1.06
JVC DVD-RW 4x
4x
Maxell DVD+RW 4x
4x
Ritek DVD-R 4x
4x
Mam DVD-R 4x
4x
TDK DVD-R 4x
4x
Plextor DVD+R 4x
8x
Mitsubishi Chemicals DVD-R 4x
8x
Taiyo Yuden DVD-R 4x
8x
Optorite DD0401 v1.30E
MKM DVD+R 8x
8x
Hi-Space DVD-R 4x
4x
Verbatim DVD-R 4x
4x
BTC DRW1008IM v0.55
Pioneer DVD-R 4x
4x
LiteOn LDW-811S vHS0K
FujiFilm DVD-R 4x
4x

Kiss player supports reading of DVD-ROM discs.

Cannot reproduce this advanced audio format.

CD support

The DP-1000 supports AudioCD, CD-R/-RW, VideoCD and Super-VideoCD playback. The *.cda files of any audioCD are recognized flawlessly, even when the disc is factory pressed or is a CD-R/RW. In addition, CD-Text is supported.

In our case, when talking about data CD (CD-R/-RW), we refer to either compressed audio files (MP3, WMA, Ogg Vorbis..) or pure *.wav files, or VideoCD and Super VideoCD.

In the case of pressed AudioCDs, the player recognizes and plays all the tracks, offering additional features such as CD-Text reading and navigation between tracks, as already mentioned in the previous page. This also applies to CD-R and CD-RW discs. The device played audio files from CD-R, 10x HS-RW, 24x US-RW and 32x US-RW discs we inserted in the disc tray.

In addition, no problems were noticed when we played 8cm CD-R/-RW (185MB) or 90/99min CD-R.

CDS200 and Key2Audio protected Audio CDs are playable in all players, and the Kiss DP 1000 is no exception, since the protection schemes are intended for PC devices only.

This format, as was expected, it is not supported.

Let's see now how the player reacts to various compressed audio files stored on data CD-R/RW. Although the specifications of the DP-1000 indicate MP3 support, it is not sure whether the drive can handle all MP3 compression modes. CBR or VBR encoding mode and variations in the sampling rate could be hard for any reader to decode. Below is available, the behavior of the player with various MP3 and WMA files.

Compression type
Compression settings
Recognize / Play
MP3
CBR 20kBit 11025Hz Mono
Yes
CBR 20kBit 11025Hz Stereo
CBR 32kBit 11025Hz Stereo
CBR 32kBit 22050Hz Mono
CBR 40kBit 22050Hz Stereo
CBR 48kBit 22050Hz Stereo
CBR 48kBit 44100Hz Mono
Yes
CBR 56kBit 22050Hz Mono
Yes
CBR 56kBit 44100Hz Mono
Yes
CBR 64kBit 22050Hz Stereo
Yes
CBR 96kBit 22050Hz Stereo
Yes
CBR 96kBit 44100Hz Mono
Yes
CBR 96kBit 44100Hz Stereo
Yes
CBR 112kBit 44100Hz Stereo
Yes
CBR 128kBit 44100Hz Mono
CBR 128kBit 44100Hz Stereo
CBR 160kBit 44100Hz Stereo
CBR 192kBit 44100Hz Stereo
CBR 224kBit 44100Hz Stereo
CBR 256kBit 44100Hz Stereo
CBR 320kBit 44100Hz Stereo
VBR - High compression
VBR - Highest compression
VBR - Low compression
VBR - Lowest compression
VBR - Medium compression

Windows Media Audio

(WMA)

WMA 48kbps
Yes
WMA 64kbps
Yes
WMA 96kbps
No
WMA 128kbps
Yes
WMA 160kbps
No
WMA 192kbps
No
WAV
WAV
Yes
Ogg Vorbis
Yes

The player supports decoding of all the popular CBR and VBR MP3 modes. In the case of WMA files, the player provided average performance. Half of our test files reproduced audible clicks and pauses.

You can use the DP-1000 to watch your photos. The Jpeg format is supported and there is the capability for the user to cycle through the images.

As was expected, from the manufacturers specifications, both formats are supported.


4. Error correction tests

Kiss DP-1000 DVD Player - page 3

Error Correction Tests

Here, we try to simulate one of the most interesting problems faced by the average user while using a DVD player, the reading accuracy of a DVD player when accessing a defective or scratched DVD or CD disc. Of course, the performance of the drive here has to do with the quality/precision of the mechanical parts (Optical Pickup Unit, sufficient servo control, etc) as well as with the drive's reading strategy under abnormal conditions, controlled by the main chipset and firmware commands.

So, in order to test the abilities of the Kiss player against several types of defects, we used the ABEX series from Almedio which offers a good indication of the error correction capabilities of a CD/DVD reader. In addition, we used the SBC444A test disc from Philips and the CD-Check test disc from Digital recordings.

DVD-Video

This is a single-sided, dual layer (S-2 type, OTP) disc with 8.5GB capacity. The disc can be used for checking the layer switching operation from layer1 to layer 0. The disc also includes test pictures and test signals for Dolby Digital, linear PCM (48kHz/24bit, 96kHz/24bit) and others to check for high quality picture and sound. The disc contents is an MPEG-2 NTSC DVD-Video file. Apart from the disc contents, the TCD-545 includes defects on the disc area (black dots and fingerprints). The size of the black dots varies from 0.4mm to 1.0mm. Fingerprints are sized from 0.065mm to 0.075mm.

Although a graphical presentation of the transfer rate when reading the test disc is always enlightening, it is not an easy task when you test a non-PC DVD player. As a result, we used the test disc as a normal DVD-Video disc and checked whether it is recognized and played correctly, with detailed navigation through the tracks and forward/reverse operations. Note that the size of the defects increases as we sequentially play the tracks.

The Kiss player managed to playback the disc successfully, with no skips, picture stills or glitches. This good behavior is also prominent amongst most PC DVD recorders/players. We proceed to the next test disc, the Abex TCD-541.

This disc is exactly the same as the Abex TCD-545 tested previously, except that the defect is a scratch of dimensions varying from 0.4mm to 3.0mm, increasing by steps of 0.2mm/step.

Once again, the DP-1000 read the contents of this disc without producing any reading errors.

AudioCD

This is an AudioCD disc used for measurement and adjustment of the error correction ability and tracking/focusing servo characteristics of a player against the defects included in some CDs. Three kinds of defects are included on this disc, interruption in information layer, black dots and fingerprints. The interruptions are fabricated by intentionally varying the lengths of pits in the disc fabrication area. Their size varies from 0.5mm to 1.0mm. The diameter of the black dots are from 0.4mm to 1.0mm. Last, the simulated fingerprints are small, gathered dots, of diameters sized from 65 micrometers to 75 micrometers. 160 individual black dots in total construct the artificial fingerprint.

All audio tracks were played successfully without problems.

The test concept with the Philips SBC 44A is the same as in the previous test disc. Interruptions on the information layer vary from 400 micrometer to 1000 micrometers, while the black dots have a size of 300 micrometers to 800 micrometers.

 

This disc was not a problem for the Kiss player.

 

Same contents as with the Abex TCD-726, but different defect. A scratch with a size of 0.4mm to 3.0mm is on the disc's surface. Error symptoms expected when playing this disc are noise, sound skips, same sector repeatedly played, start of tune cannot be detected etc.

The DP-1000 played successfully the first 5 tracks out of the 15 in total. The 5th track corresponds to a scratch size of 1.0mm. First problems occurred in the 6th track (1.2mm) with audible "clicks" while playing, which increased and were followed by sound skips and playback interruptions as the defective area was increasing in size.

We finish this testing cycle with the CD-Check disc from Digital Recordings. Five audio signals (5 tracks) in combination with disc error patterns to rate the player's ability to read music and reproduce it completely. The five tracks contain a sequence of progressively difficult tests.

- Check level 1 (track 1): Standard manufacturing errors
- Check level 2 (track 2): 0.375mm scratch
- Check level 3 (track 3): 0.750mm scratch
- Check level 4 (track 2): 1.125mm scratch
- Check level 5 (track 2): 1.500mm scratch

Any clicks, interruptions or looping during audio reproduction indicate failure of a Check level (audio track). Below you can see the test results:

Check level
1
2
3
4
5
Result
OK
OK
OK
OK
one click

The player had very good performance since it managed to reproduce the first four level without problem. During the 5th track, which is the most difficult for all players, including PC recorders, we heard only one click for each time played, and then nothing else.

 

 

 

Overall, we can say that the error correction capabilities of the Kiss player are very good.


5. Conclusion

Kiss DP-1000 DVD Player - page 4

Conclusion

After using the DP-1000 for several days, we can easily say that this device is very versatile with a very easy to learn menu/navigation system and has all the appropriate settings for playback. For full control of the DP-1000, the included remote control is required since the main unit has only the play/pause and stop/eject buttons. The device has all the appropriate connections but we would welcomed a decoder with the 5.1CH outputs. The Progressive Scan Video Out that the player offers, is one of the strong points since there are not many devices in this category. However, we would like to see a coaxial audio cable also included in the package.

The DP-1000, according to our reading tests, managed to confirm all the manufacturer's specifications for DVD/MPEG-4/DivX®/XviD/CD/MP3/Ogg Vorbis/CD-RW/DVD+-RW compatibility. Only SACD and DVD-Audio advanced formats are not supported from the player, which was expected and not included in the specification. Once again the price justifies this.We would also like the greek subtitles to be recognized in the Xvid movie. Probably with a firmware upgrade this will be fixed

From the error correction tests, the Kiss player revealed very good behavior, ignoring scratches up to 1.125mm. But even with larger defects (1.5mm), the audible errors were few. Black dots( sized at 0.4-1.0mm) and artificial fingerprints(0.065-0.075mm) were not a problem for the player.

 One thing that we noticed was that quite often, the MP3 playback froze. Most of this was due to changing track without first stopping the playback. In this case, you have to disconnect the power cable in order to reset the player.

The DP-1000 model is already available on the market and ranges in price from 160~190 euro, which we consider to be quite good.

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