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ALIS - What is the best resolution?

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by Claus, Aug 10, 2004.

  1. Claus

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    Hi,

    I have a Loewe Spheros 42" plasmascreen which uses a Fujitsu ALIS panel.
    I'm also testing a DVDO HD Scaler.

    What resolution is best to send to the screen?

    720p
    1080i

    Or?

    Claus
     
  2. MAW

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    1024x1024
     
  3. Claus

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    Well,

    That's not possible.
    the screen accepts 720p, 1080i, 1080p- But when set to 1080p the picture isn't stable.

    So what is best for the ALIS panel. 720p or 1080i?

    C
     
  4. MAW

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    Try the 1024x1024 via VGA, it's what the iscan has that resolution for. if not, then I'd try the 720p, but I loathe ALIS, it will still be pants.
     
  5. cybersoga

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    1080i is closer to the native resolution of the screen (1024i) than 720p.
     
  6. MAW

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    I'm able to do the maths too, but you can't be sure what the screen will do with this. The new ones advertise as a feature that they junk 56 lines, ie 5%, and stretch the result to fill the screen. Is that what you want?
     
  7. Joe Fernand

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    Claus

    What is it your hoping to achieve with the DVDO UltraHD/ALIS Interlaced display combination?

    I'm not sure I understand the concept of spending money on a video Processor such as the UltraHD that offers Video Switching, Deinterlacing, Programmable Scaling and Digital Audio delay and outputting an Interlaced signal (1024i).

    As MAW says if you follow Hitachi's lead they seem to be saying take everything up to 1080P and then let the panel down convert it to 1024i (though somehow Hitachi have slipped in 'Native 1080i' panels' not seen or heard of them as yet!!!).

    See http://www.hitachi.us/tv/discover/techadv/tech_ad_plas02.shtml

    I don't think the UltraHD offers 1080P so your probably best to try 720P - or audition a processor that does offer scaling to 1080P. {Correction the UltraHD does offer 1080P - just had to go get the manual out of its box :)}

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  8. MAW

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    The iscan does offer 1024x1024 as an output resolution, the issue is that this is not accepted by the DVI port of a Hitachi panel. It might be by the VGA port, definitly worth trying, you might try asking Dale via the video processing forum. The problem with the 1080 formats I believe Hitachi have always had. Other panels do this too, but to a lesser extent. If you send 1368 x 768 to a Panasonic 50" it ditches the last 2 pixels. This is not a big deal. Send a Hitachi 1080, and the new ones actually advertise this as a FEATURE, and they display 1024 lines and junk the remaining 5%. As pointed out elsewhere, this might be the black border of a 2.35:1 film, but the remaining portion of displayed video has a problem. It is now 1920x1024. This is 1.875:1 instead of 1.77:1, which is the shape of the screen. Therefore, it stretches the image vertically to fit. That's what they call native 1080
     
  9. ianh64

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    Hi Claus

    I've become interested in the Loewe Spheros and Xelos XL range but am looking at the 32" - 37" LCD range.

    I spoke with a Loewe technical guy a few days back who believed that the Xelos/Spheros LCD range could cope with pretty much anything given it. He mentioned a specific feature, DDC that allows this - I can not find any reference to it in the brochure. However, when I pushed the guy further as to whether the set would accept native resolution (1366x768 in the case of the LCD's), he became less sure of the exact facts. Im not sure where you are based, but their UK number is 0800 0276465. May be worth a call to discuss input at 1024x1024.

    Have you ever compared your Spheros against a similar sized Hitachi? I would like to think that the Loewe is much better quality.

    Do you know if any online manuals are available for the Loewe range? I have drawn a blank looking at their web site.

    -Ian
     
  10. cybersoga

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    Not quite, when (sony alis screens) are fed 1080i, they crop 28 lines off the top and bottom so you see 1024 of the 1080 lines. It also chops off a proportionate amount from the sides, so your seeing 1820x1024 center portion of the 1920x1080 picture then it's downscaled horizontally to 1024x1024. It doesn't require scaling vertically. This maintains aspect ratio and 5% overscan isn't something to be too concerned about, although I agree it's not deirable, but no other plasma has as many horizontal lines. An alternitive is to use a A HD scaler then it'll convert 1080i to 1024i without much of a problem. Personally I would judge it as a 1024x512 panel since if you displayed a 1080i image where both odd and even lines are the same it would be progressive 512 lines. Having said that, I would say that a 1368x768p panel is more desirable than 1024x1024i judging by resolution alone.
     
  11. MAW

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    Strewth mate! Chucking 5% of my picture away as overscan is a total issue for me. But I agree 100% a 1366x768 panel will do any job better than a 1024 sq., but that leaves you with a few very expensive LCD screens in this size range.

    Edit. Maths at fault. We are cutting 5% from the top/bottom, and the another 5% from the side. That must be about 8% of the picture area.
     
  12. cybersoga

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    I've just had a look at Hitachi's site, their "virtual 1080p" is pure marketing BS. What it actually does when it's fed 480i is to deinterlace then scale to 1024x1024p then the screen itself does the interlacing to 1024x1024i.
     
  13. MAW

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    That's probably the simple answer too, it takes a divine being to interpret the workings of Alis. I seem to remember bringing farmyards into this on another recent thread too! We'll call it shared innovation.
     
  14. cybersoga

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    1920x1080 is 2073600 pixels

    1820x1024 is 1863680 pixels

    1863680 / 2073600 = 0.89876543209876543209876543209877

    x100 = 89.876543209876543209876543209877

    100 - 89.876543209876543209876543209877 =

    10.12345679012345679012345679013

    so that's 10% then!
     
  15. MAW

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    :D OK so it's worse than I thought! Smartass! :D
     
  16. Joe Fernand

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    ccybersoga

    Did you view/listen to the Video trailer for the VirtualHD? - the wording of the Voice over is pretty inconclusive; you can take it that ALL sources are processed to 1080P or that some sources are processed to 1080P whilst others will be processed to anything up to 1080P.

    I think they forgot to TM VVM (VirtualVideoMangler).

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  17. MAW

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    This seems to have comprehensively trashed Alis again, don't we just love it, but we still have Claus and his Lowe panel lost in HD processing. I find it absolutely astonishing that they have chosen to go with the fuji/hitachi panel, they are a truly premium manufacturer. Probably they have also shut off support for 1024sq, preventing the sensible use of a scaler. Shame on them if so, is there not a decent tech spec on the web for this beastie?

    edit. Loewe have just about the most unhelpful website in the world, and the model is not listed.
     
  18. cybersoga

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    just listened to it, maybe the new hitachi does deinterlace and scale to 1920x1080p, but it wouldn't make much sense as it'll then it'll have to downscale to 1024x1024 and it probably will loose 10% of the picture as overscan in the process not to mention 896 horizontal lines that they conveniently forgot about... :D then of course the screen itself will reinterlace it... maybe they are trying to redefine what 1080p means!

    The only new thing about the new hitachi's that I can gather is that is has a better internal scaler and that it can do 3:2 pull down. Unless they have a new panel that can actually do 1080p? i'm having a hard time finding the actual resolution of the screen.
     
  19. Gordon @ Convergent AV

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    From listening to the spiel on the Hitatchi website I took it to mean the following.

    SD material is probably de-interlaced to 480/576P then scaled to 1024
    1080i is de-interlaced to 1080P then scaled to 1024.

    I came to this conclusion as they say that source material may be processed up to 1080P....not that it is all processed up to 1080P. It sounds to me very like they just want to shout the largest number they can in the hope folk will be astounded....They also don;t say what methods are used to create 1080P from flm source 1080i and video source 1080i. They may be bobbing and weaving to get the 1080P then doing their stretchy crop thang!....nice.

    Anyway...poor Claus. I guess the Iscan distributor in your country and the Loewe distributor don't have any ideas for you?

    G
     
  20. ianh64

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    The Spheros range is listed under the Products/Systems/TV option rather than the Products/TV option. Intuitive it isn't.

    VGA inkl. DDC: 1 x bis SXGA Auflösung / 1 x bis XGA Auflösung 1280 x 1024 Pixel / 1024 x 768 Pixel
    translates as:
    VGA inclusive DDC: 1 x to SXGA dissolution/1 x to XGA dissolution 1280 x 1024 Pixel / 1024 x 768 Pixel

    Its that DDC thing again and im still none the wiser. Maybe it really means autosense or autoscale, which would match what Loewe tech support said.
     
  21. MAW

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    ie. no native res. Not that much point in a scaler then, especially if these are the only reolutions, no 16:9 ones, no HDTV support, what are these guys on? How about via YUV input, 720p to there is probably the best of a bad job.
     
  22. ianh64

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    The guy that I spoke to in Loewe tech support (admitidly when discussing the LDC panels) implied that DDC allowed the set to accept pretty much anything thrown at it. When pushed, he would not confirm that this also included native support. The printed manual definately states (in English) that it has a PC interface up to S-XGA (1280x1024) for both plasma and LCD versions, S-video, RGB and component are also confirmed and elsewhere it mentioned progressive. The DVI is HDCP compliant and is HDTV suitable whatever the details of that are. So they are fairly well spec'd. It just all boils down to exactly what DDC (digital display channel) does, and unfortunately, Loewe tech support UK, is unlikely to provide the answer.
     
  23. Dr Downey

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    OK, flame me at will for what I am about to say!

    I have a Sony plasma, which is an ALIS screen.

    I think it's great, I took plenty of time looking at the options, comparing the PQ on many screens - budget wouldn't stretch to one of the HD models, and specs are specs, and in spec world 2+2 on one doesn't necessarily add up to the same on another!

    Fed a quality souce, I get a quality picture.

    I guess that the 'you are what you eat' idea works for plasma too.

    What's so wrong with ALIS? And bring on the flames! (I'm just off to get my asbestos suit!) :D
     
  24. Claus

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    Hi,

    Thanks for all the info!

    The Loewe plasma I have is a demo model. I review plasmascreens in a norwegian magazine so the screen is not mine. The DVDO scaler isn't mine either. It is also up for a review.

    The reason I went to this forum is that I was a bit insecure on the ALIS-resolution matter and as always I get excellent info on this forum.

    The DVDO outputs 1080p, just so you know.

    I'm quite impressed by the PQ this screen have, but the Panasonic screens are better in every respect, except design.

    This a heavy beast. It weights 70Kg because the front is solid glass.
    And it costs too much, around 8000.

    Thanks guys!

    Claus
     
  25. peezee

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    Well, Dr Downey not only will I not flame you but I'll say this (funny how this came to mind right before I read your post ;) ):

    there are indeed other plasma screens based on ALiS panels, matter of fact today I had the opportunity to compare an Hitachi 42PD5200 with a Sony 37XS1 (and a bunch of others too) which both use a 1024x1024 ALiS glass - and the Sony clearly outperformed the Hitachi on PQ alone.

    Ok, they were playing "Finding Nemo" (thru Scart RGB dispatch I think), probably not the best setup - but still, you could clearly see the Sony picture was much crisper and had more "credible" colours (using the other screens as a reference). In fact, to me the Hitachi looked blurrier than pretty much any other plasma there; and it's not the 1st time I can see that difference.

    So I think it would be fair to separate the name "ALiS" from "Hitachi plasma TV", because from what I see the Hitachi's might well be the least performing of all plasmas using ALiS panels...
    <although, it might well be a matter of understanding how to best set it up AND how to best "drive it"...>

    Bottom line, you can make a very decent plasma TV out of an ALiS screen. Doesn't have to be an Hitachi. Too bad the Sony's are out of my affordable price range though... :( :D
     
  26. Joe Fernand

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    Claus

    Interesting that Loewe use a huge chunk of Glass - just as Pioneer are about to banish Glass from the latest range of PlasmaTV's in favour of a lighter less reflective substrate.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  27. MAW

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    Lighter, I like them already! On the subject of Alis pictures, I have seen that a well set up Sony can look good, but you pay a premium for it. I reckon they are better with RGB than component, might be just me of course. Hitachi used to recommend RGB and sync as a connection method for DVD and stb's on their interactive connection website. Never mentioned component, much less progressive scan. You'd have to expect them to know best really.
     
  28. andrewmellor

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    I've been reading this thread with interest and I too have to agree with Dr Downey, I have a 42" fujitsu Alis panel and the picture I get from it is fantastic and a lot better than many I have seen in the showrooms.
    Unfortunately I'm not too up on the technical side of how it works and produces the pictures but I do know that I'm very happy with them, the one thing that worries me is that had I read all the posts I'm sure that I'd have been compelled to steer clear of Alis as I do take comments on board from the 'respected' posters on here....I'm still not too sure why it seems to be put down so much on here as I'd find it hard to criticise my picture...it's without a doubt a match for my SonyFQ80 crt which I'd always been led to believe would be a better picture than plasma.
    Sorry but just felt I had to get this off my chest.....it could be my eyes of course, or maybe I'm just being defensive:)
    Andrew
     
  29. MAW

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    You see your screen in isolation. I am pleased you are happy with it, no doubt there are a lot of happy alis owners out there. What this thread concludes really is not 'alis is rubbish' but that 'alis is unsuitable for picture purists who wish to use high end scalers'. Personally I would not want one, nor do I ever recommend them, partly cos all except Hitachi are hideously expensive, and I have serious misgivings about Hitachi quality control. Fact is, for the price of a Fuji alis panel, you can get a Panasonic Hi def, of a Pioneer MXE, or for that matter an HDE if that floats your boat. Or a PW6 or equivalent and a Lumagen or DVDO scaler. Price for price, it becomes tougher, as a retailer, to justify the money spent.
     
  30. johndon

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    Most people here will have read of my problems with a Hitachi 42PD3000 (buzzing and grey 'cloud' effect) - this has now been replaced with a 5300 which doesn't exhbit these problems.

    As with my previous set, I still think the picture quality is excellent. Now I know that ALIS panels are interlaced but I feed it with a PAL progressive signal from an Arcam DV79 DVD player and the picture quality looks fantastic. ALIS panels also seem to do a pretty good job with Sky pictures especially those on the high bandwidth channels which, again, can look excellent.

    Having said that, I think the Pioneer 434 and MXE1 give a better picture but at a higher price.

    John
     

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