Reavon UBR-X100 and UBR-X200 Ultra HD Blu-Ray Players Review


Reavon UBR-X100
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value

Reavon UBR-X200
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $799 (UBR-X100), $1699 (UBR-X200)

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Reference-quality video
Universal disc playback (UBR-X200)
Pure Direct output
Minus
No DVD-Audio or SACD support (UBR-X100)
Build quality lags that of other flagship players
Interface needs polish

THE VERDICT
This pair of players from newcomer Reavon succeeds brilliantly in giving the Ultra HD Blu-ray format, along with other shiny discs, a new lease on life.

It's no secret that the Ultra HD Blu-ray disc player market has become a barren wasteland over the past few years. It seems like we've lost more players than we've gained, with little in the way of new models coming from manufacturers who used to debut several players a year during the heyday of shiny discs. And the situation is even worse for someone seeking a high- end player with advanced features, broad disc format support, and top-flight build quality.

When Oppo, the previous leader in the field, abandoned the player market a few years back, I fully expected to see other manufacturers rush in to fill the void. But that hasn't exactly happened. Pioneer released its UDP-LX500 which I reviewed, but that model has since disappeared. Panasonic's DP-UB9000 is probably the closest thing to a true high-end player available today, and although I was enamored with that model's onboard HDR processing, it's missing some key features like a direct video output (with no scaling/ processing) and an ability to play SACD-format discs. But now we finally have another player option, this one from Reavon. Is this new company the Oppo heir we've been eagerly waiting on?

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UBR-X100

A Tale Of Two Players
France-based Reavon is hitting the market with a pair of Ultra HD Blu-ray players: the UBR-X100 ($799) and UBR-X200 ($1,699). Both models are based on the MediaTek reference video processor that formed the heart of the Oppo 4K players. Reavon advertises these as universal players, but only the X200 meets what I feel is the true requirement for that label: comprehensive disc format support. The X200 can play Ultra HD and regular Blu-rays (including 3D ones), DVDs, SACDs, and DVD-Audio discs. The X100, on the other hand, doesn't support SACD or DVD-Audio playback. Granted, it's been years since we've seen any new DVD-Audio disc releases, so I'm not sure how important that omission is in the grand scheme for most users. But SACDs are still regularly being released, though mostly by boutique audiophile labels. Both models also play high-resolution files (FLAC, AIFF, DFF, DSF, and more) either streamed over your home network via DLNA or stored on an external attached drive.

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UBR-X200

Reavon sent both the UBR-X100 and UBR-X200 for me to evaluate. The players look almost identical, and closely resemble Oppo's UDP-203. (Imitation being the best form of flattery for what remains the top 4K player I've used to date, and one that I continue to use in my reference system.) The front panels on both models feature a machined front plate with solid buttons and a simple display that can be dimmed or turned off completely. Disc trays don't feel as solid as the ones on Oppo's now discontinued player, or the Panasonic and Pioneer high-end models I reviewed in 2019 for that matter, but their operation is smooth.

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UBR-X100 back

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UBR-X200 back

On the back panel is where you'll spot the key differences between the X100 and X200. The X100 features standard HDMI options (audio/video from the main output plus an audio-only HDMI out) along with optical and coaxial digital outputs, while the X200 adds analog stereo RCA and balanced XLR outputs plus a 7.1-channel RCA-jack output. This level of connectivity is the same as what's available on Panasonic's UB9000, though it's not up to the level of the now-discontinued Oppo UDP-205, which also featured a dedicated headphone amplifier output and, like the UDP-203, functioned as a Roon endpoint for network streaming using Roon music management and library software.

COMPANY INFO
Reavon
(470) 800-9933
ARTICLE CONTENTS

COMMENTS
3ddavey13's picture

If Reavon's strategy was to fill the void left by Oppo, they have sadly missed the mark. The UBR-X100 isn't a universal disc player, so doesn't merit comparison to either Oppo player. And while the UBR-X200 has many of the features found on the UDP-203 (at 3x the price), it doesn't have them all, most obviously the HDMI and digital audio inputs as well as those mentioned in the above article. And what is Reavon's justification for the high price of the UBR-X200? It uses the same chassis as the X100 and weighs 1.1 lbs. more. The UDP-205 is not only 1.7" taller than the 203, it's 12.5 lbs. heavier, a substantial difference. There was no mention of what DACs the Reavon players employ, but the UDP-203 is equipped with a high-end Sabre ES9038Pro (the 205 has dual ES9038Pro DACs, which can be used simultaneously by the 7.1 analog outputs). The UDP-205 can also decode MQA as well as upsample digital music files from its USB inputs.
I take no pleasure in criticizing Reavon. I would love to see someone become the next Oppo. I was lucky enough to buy my players soon after their release dates, and I'm as disgusted by the outrageous prices being asked for them today as I am disappointed that Oppo is gone. Reavon (as well as others) had a golden opportunity to become the next Oppo but chose not to. Maybe this market is not as important as we'd like to believe.

sirwilliamlee's picture

when they hide that..... its made in China.
what is the worlds biggest mistake since Hitler?
giving China MOST FAVORED NATION STATUS.

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