Are we all idiots?

rdt123

Active Member
Hi all,

Lots of us have been into this home cinema lark for a while now and i have a few thoughts. Please don't kill me....

I have been upgrading constantly for years. How many have said to the missus, "no i'm happy now it's finished" only to upgrade again shortly after.

I was happy with my DV88+ running into my Panny 5 untill all this HDMI stuff kicked off and now i'm getting itchy. Well i've decided to change to the 868Ai so i can ilink to my AX10i

Anyway, last night i set up a tv in my conservatory, a panny 28PS1. Free with it was a panasonic slimline DVD. it's loud at spin up and looks cheap, however it is component so i stuck it into my plasma and whipped in a bit of LOTR. Result: i could hardly see any difference between that picture and my arcam in PAL progressive. Oh and boy did i look!

I now feel a little strange. Are we all just wasting our time, part of a huge con. I'm sure someone could hook up a PC and tell me that the balance is this and the saturation is that but i have to go with my eyes, there was very little difference, not a grands worth

Please restore my faith..
 

hornydragon

Well-known Member
Erm sorry mate but thats proigress for you! GEt the plasma ISF calibrated and you should see a bigger difference! the amount of hype in this industry is MAD! I even saw a top end PJ with Intelaced component and HTPC DVi DVD feed, same disk same room same everything and DVi looked utter tosh compared to the intelaced component!
 

rdt123

Active Member
ISF callibrated. What is this. And thats another thing(oh he's off now) what do these people mean 'the plasma as usual looked shocking out of the box' how do i set it up


cheers
 

hornydragon

Well-known Member
Get DVE or AVIA and set the levels brightness contrast with test patterns etc ISF (Image Science Foundation) they come out of the factory either with retail settings or abritary ones. Gordon Does ISF calibration, and i set a CRT TV up the other day and now you can see a moving black line on light scenes that werent visible before it was set up!
 

bob1

Well-known Member
Originally posted by rdt123
Are we all idiots?
Yes, the kids both have cheap £40 dvd players they don't look or sound any different to my £180 player maybe were just paying for better build quality and hype.
 

rdt123

Active Member
Hi again,

I presume AVIA is a calibration disc. Do you know where i ccan purchase one? Are they NTSC or PAL?

cheers
 

mw3cdj

Standard Member
Hornydragon,
Do you know anyone in the Cardiff , Swansea area that dose ISF calibration ??
Thanks,
Daran.
 

hornydragon

Well-known Member
Erm dont know of anyone specific but i do know that a couple of people are considering getting it done in this neck of the woods.
http://www.wsquared.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/
Are bristol based and if a couple of peeps got together might save a bit on travelling, never used them so no idea how good they are!
 

gingerone

Well-known Member
How much does ISF calibration roughly cost and will it make much difference considering my plasma is set up with DVE?
 

chris

Active Member
Originally posted by rdt123
Hi all,

Lots of us have been into this home cinema lark for a while now and i have a few thoughts. Please don't kill me....

I have been upgrading constantly for years. How many have said to the missus, "no i'm happy now it's finished" only to upgrade again shortly after.

I was happy with my DV88+ running into my Panny 5 untill all this HDMI stuff kicked off and now i'm getting itchy. Well i've decided to change to the 868Ai so i can ilink to my AX10i

Anyway, last night i set up a tv in my conservatory, a panny 28PS1. Free with it was a panasonic slimline DVD. it's loud at spin up and looks cheap, however it is component so i stuck it into my plasma and whipped in a bit of LOTR. Result: i could hardly see any difference between that picture and my arcam in PAL progressive. Oh and boy did i look!

I now feel a little strange. Are we all just wasting our time, part of a huge con. I'm sure someone could hook up a PC and tell me that the balance is this and the saturation is that but i have to go with my eyes, there was very little difference, not a grands worth

Please restore my faith..
I went from a proline (what ever it was), to the pio 626, to a sammy 709, back to the pio 626, to a pio 656, to a denon 2900, down to the denon 2200.
I am sure that i saw a slight diff in PQ between these lot, but it might of just been me, wanting to see a diff.
I agree with you and think that unless you are running a PJ with at least a 9ft screen, you will not be able to notice a big diff in PQ....i brought my kids a pio360 each for X-mas and there was no diff (on my 42 RPTV) between the PQ on these and my 656....and the only reason i am now a denon fan, is not because of the PQ but because they have the ability to be able to put a buffer memory in and get rid of that(IMO) really ANOYING layer change and i will continue to buy denon untill the others decide to but buffers in there machines and then i will buy a cheap machine, as the size of screen i use(42"), there would not be a noticeable diff in PQ between a £50 player and a £1500 player.
This is of cause based on an interlaced picture (as i have not used or seen a progresive picture), but untill someone can show me a big difference then i will stick to my opinion.

I would just like to add, that i have drunk about 7 pints of stella before writing this, so it may seem a load of old ******** in the morning.....:D
 

Taq

Standard Member
Most of the cheap sub £50 players from China have buffers and have no layer change pauses afaik, as they are based on dvd-rom drives.

Taq
 

bonzobanana

Well-known Member
DVD players don't stay the same. Every year a new decoding engine comes out from all the dvd chip manufacturers like zoran, mediatek, ess etc. They always pull out a bit more picture detail from the mpeg 2 files as well as improve other things. Last years jap model may be inferior to this years chinese model because the jap player is based on older technology.

One thing that I find quite interesting is component out is almost always directly created in the main decoding chips. The dvd stores its picture data in component form and thats what the main decoding chip generates. This signal needs little processing to get it out of the player and so realistically component output will be least effected by the shoddy/cheap construction of budget chinese players. Where as composite and s-video and even scart rgb require more processing and circuitry to create and this is often where the chinese players don't do such a good job. So unless someone can explain to me otherwise I believe the chinese decks do a better job with higher quality signals than lower quality ones. Basically your relying on the quality of the actual decoding chip/engine more than the circuitry around it for component out.

Anyway I compared my ebench cheapy with a Panasonic s75 for progressive scan and they were evenly matched for ntsc although giving slightly different images. One sharper (ebench), one cleaner (s75). With pal progressive the ebench was the winner as the Panasonic doesn't have it. Before you say the test is unfair I'd just like to say the ebench is based on the zoran vaddis 6 chipset not unlike the arcam dvd player. The zoran chip is excellent at getting fine detail out of mpegs. Sadly the rgb scart output of the ebench is quite awful. Obviously the component to RGB circuitry is poorly done. But component out is excellent and to be honest s-video is pretty respectable too.
 

stricko

Novice Member
Before I start shelling out even more money, how much better is calibration using AVIA / DVE than the THX optimiser routines
 

hornydragon

Well-known Member
well i have never mastered the THX thingy! DVE gives you test patterns and tones so is much more comprehensive, dics navugation is a real pain tho!
 

gingerone

Well-known Member
I set up my plasma with the THX optimiser before my DVE disc arrived and I could not get a picture I was happy with.
One sweep with the DVE disc and the picture was awesome. After a couple sweeps it was better again.
It is the best money I have spent for getting the picture right on my system and is well worth the outlay.
 

Brogan

Novice Member
DVE = a waste of £12.
For a plasma it gives test patterns to set up brightness, colour and sharpness and that's it.
Contrast is covered for CRT but not for plasma.
Save your money.
 
B

bobbypunk

Guest
going back to the first point, DV88+ is meant to be just as good as 868 apart from HDMI, are you sure there isn't going to be an upgrade (like Arcam often do) and remember in another year or so most decent dvd players will probably have it.
 

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