Deeper than it is wide, the huge CX995V is a 400-disc changer that can handle DVDs, CDs, and SACDs. Discs are loaded vertically into the carousel, which quickly rifles through all 400 slots each time you hit CLOSE. Slow to recognize each type of disc, the Sony had good color accuracy via component but no visible transitions below a brightness value of 20 (out of 256) or above 231, translating to inadequate rendering of dark and bright details. Diagonal-motion filtering was good; its ability to handle complex motion was average. As with several other machines, test patterns via HDMI showed a higher black level and a vertically ovalized distortion of the circle in the HQV jaggies test. Also with HDMI, horizontally crawling text broke up, an artifact that was not apparent via its componentvideo outputs.
Audio was warmish, with a hint of soundstage depth and fairly realistic bass, but without the definition, dynamics, and level of satisfaction that the Denon DVD-1920 delivers. What stands out about the audio performance of the CX995V is its lack of memorable positive attributes. It's quite an ordinary performer with a massive disc-handling mechanism. That is also true of its video capabilities.
The classic Sony remote is well done but unremarkable. The owner’s manual makes much of what appears to be a nightmarish filemanagement system for those who might actually load this player with 400 discs. Movie fans may want to read the owner’s manual before planning on loading their collections into the DVP-CX995V. If you’re planning on using the player as a music server, an iPod is a better choice for the same price.
This six-disc universal changer offers a lot of bang for the buck. Video performance compares nicely to the best, with superb color and detail, good black and white levels, low motion artifacts, and excellent 3:2 pulldown.