1. Join Now

    AVForums.com uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

2 weeks with Rock Plus..how I got on.

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Gordon @ Convergent AV, Jan 6, 2002.

  1. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
    Distinguished Member AVForums Sponsor

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2000
    Messages:
    13,999
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Living in Surrey, covering UK!
    Ratings:
    +2,803
    I’ve been lucky enough to have the use of the UK distributors dem Rock Plus over the Xmas period. Didn’t plan it that way but it was a happy co-incidence.

    I used it with a Sony1270 crt projector feeding S-video in from Sky Plus, Humax5300digital satellite, Thomson VCR in composite and Denon DVD2800 component. Here’s what I found.

    To make sure the unit sync’d fine to my projector I followed the instructions in it’s manual to re-set to factory default output of VGA, 640 X 480 @ 60Hz. Turned everything on and got a picture. Then decided to go about setting output to 1440 x 600 @ 48Hz. I wont go in to how you do this but it’s pretty simple. All seemed OK and so I set about doing convergence properly etc. The did greyscale. Except when I was measuring things my video analyser was reporting refresh at 59Hzish…..and so was the projector….Went back to Rock and it claimed to be outputting my 1440 x 600 @ 48Hz. Very strange. Turned it off and then back on. Bingo….it was now definitely working at 48Hz as convergence was miles out and flicker was pretty bad… So, did convergence and geometry again…. Now sat down to watch some stuff only to find that the Rock had locked up….So, switched it off and back on again. All ok for about 2 minutes then it stops responding to IR commands…..

    It turns out that there’s a bug that makes 48Hz refresh trip the thing up. So I gave up on that and went to set up same resolution at 72Hz. This worked PERFECTLY for the entire 2 weeks I had the thing. I love the set up parameters on the Rock. The adjustments for chroma delay are excellent. It has everything required to get the most from partnering it with most display devices.

    Didn’t have time to greyscale accurately with this setting but it all seemed pretty good from what I’d done previously. During the hols I watched Moulin Rouge, bits of other discs and several R2 French language films along with copious amounts of TV, both UK and French along with Buffy on Videotape.

    I found that with Region1 NTSC DVD it was great but not as great at de-interlacing as the best I’ve had at home. I’ve writtena bout my test pieces on Rock Plus before so I won’t go through it all again. With the other sources though it was better than all I’ve had. This was a major plus point for me as I use my projector as a TV so video de-interlacing is a major deal for me. The only concern I had was on watching a R2 French DVD where there was BAD posterisation effects on grey and black backgrounds in one scene. It looked pretty horrid. I’ve never seen this with a CRT, usually with fixed pixel devices. I’m sure it must be a bad DVD encoding but I haven’t had time to check on the processor I’m using just now to see if it’s the same. Hopefully it will be…..

    My issues with the Rock have been that it doesn’t auto detect PAL and NTSC requiring a switch between the two by going in to an onscreen menu and changing input source standards. For those of you with Pronto’s this is history. It’s possible to create macro’s which will do all this and more with one button push. This fact and how to do it seemed to pass me by when I read the instruction manual. In fact, I programmed mine so that whenever Sky was selected it would switch Rock to s-video, put my amp to Sky, put Rock to Pal input. I could also have added put output to 75Hz as well but chose not to. This macro happens extremely quickly as the Rocks IR response rate seems very quick. I had 0.2 second delays between each command. I never did it but I’m sure you could also create macro’s to go straight to certain aspect ratio’s as well. The only issue with PAL/NTSC was when DVD was selected. I put UK/US buttons on my DVD page to deal with this. It was so simple to use with a Pronto that Melanie NEVER had any problems watching anything when I was away. Having a device for a protracted length of time like this helps get a handle on how it works and all its foibles. I actually liked it. It definitely has its place in the world.

    Oh yeah, the last thing I did before sending it back was to try a software update. Downloaded software from TAW’s site in US. Connected laptop to port on Rock, ran the .exe file and went for some coffee. All done in minutes. Worked as soon as it was switched back on. It was a much easier job than updating the Vigatec we have. Not that I haven’t managed to update it every time I’ve tried.

    So, I like it. I’m looking forward to hearing what folk think of their Optical Digital Video Output update for it as well and also to trying the SDI input version too. Pity I can’t afford one……

    Gordon
     
  2. rigman

    rigman
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2000
    Messages:
    2,760
    Products Owned:
    1
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    East Yorkshire
    Ratings:
    +59
    Good review Gordon, maybe the 48Hz feezing issue will be sorted at the next software upgrade. I am hoping to get one from Roland at the end of this week along with a recon Barco 808s so your review was just what I needed to hear to justify my decision.

    Four days to go I cannot wait, its SO exciting
     
  3. ReTrO

    ReTrO
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2000
    Messages:
    3,498
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    High Wycombe, Bucks, UK
    Ratings:
    +59
    Sound pretty cool to me. Wish I could afford it!

    Does the S&W Interpolator Gold have all the options of the Rock? I've not seen any info about upgrading the Snell, or is it too good to start with?

    Cheers
     
  4. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
    Distinguished Member AVForums Sponsor

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2000
    Messages:
    13,999
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Living in Surrey, covering UK!
    Ratings:
    +2,803
    The night before teh Event Richard A was uploading new software algotithms to the INterpolator...so it is updateable.

    I also think you can upload as many or as few other options to it as required.

    Sure Ruichard will chip in

    Gordon
     
  5. RichardA

    RichardA
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I could not say that Interpolator Gold has the exact feature set of the Rock, but then the Interpolator Gold has a lot of features that the Rock does not ! Remember a feature is only a feature if it is of practical use.

    On the upgrading front - the Interpolator Gold has always been fully upgradeable - the original customers of Interpolator 1 from over 6 years ago can upgrade to the very latest version at no cost penalty and that includes every single one of the latest features.

    Interpolator Gold is a fully modular product and hardware upgrades/updates are simple module swap, firmware upgrades are chip changes which are carried out by the dealer on site - they don't even have to remove the chassis from the equipment rack (and they can download the firmware from our ftp site)

    And of course when a product is as good as Interpolator Gold, why would you need to upgrade it.

    I hope this is of interest.
     
  6. ReTrO

    ReTrO
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2000
    Messages:
    3,498
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    High Wycombe, Bucks, UK
    Ratings:
    +59
    Why do you offer upgrades then? ;)




    Sounds good. Makes me want one even more.

    Thanks for the extra info.

    Don't suppose you have a spare job do you?

    Cheers
     
  7. Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Thank you Gordon, we appreciate your review.

    Look for a new and exciting algorithm coming from TAW around mid year. Its an entirely new De-Interlacer that expands on present methods.

    This algorithm will have a unique "upgradeable" architecture that will allow it to expand on itself as CPU hardware speeds improve.

    This will allow the ROCK the final upgradability we have been searching for and make the unit timeless in its life span.

    Enjoy.

    Phil
    President & CEO - TAW, INC.
     

Share This Page

Loading...