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Bring an HDTV from the USA to the UK

C

cmclaughlan

Guest
So I just returned to the UK, Scotland, after living in the USA for 12 years. Thankfully I wasn't paying my moving expenses so I brough over my Samsung 61 inch HD TV. (HLN61W)

First thing, those Maplin 40 Watt transformers don't do the buisness with a 110W TV, after the second one blew and I finally sussed what was going on, I ordered a couple of nice sturdy 300W ones from http://www.airlinktransformers.com/american-transformers.asp

Yeah no more TV blowing up .. right lets get some signal into it ...

DVD player ... well thats a Arcam DV79, so no problems there, whack it in the DVI input and PAL/NTSC DVD is taken care of.

Hmm won't synch to 50hz through component or s-video. Now thats a bit of a problem.

So I hook the PC up to the DV-15 connecter (VGA) and I get the PC working.

Then I take the cable box (omg the NTL cable box is so crap, what do you mean no digital audio !! and best it has is composite over SCART, pathetic) hook that up through the amp and into the PC. I tried a lot of SCART cables to finally come to the conclusion that the cable box was only outputting composite, well mainly that the SCART-s-video gave nothing, and neither did the SCART-Component (well that one was a long shot). Luckily I have video capture on my now almost useless ATSC oTA card. So hook up through that and yeah, cable TV. Now the wife won't completly lynch me.

I must admit the NTL cable looks better than Comcast, analogue and digital, back in Chicago.

Now for the big questions .. what to do about HD ? Is Sky going to be the only game in town ? Will there be over the air HD at any point ?

I give no hope to NTL seeing as my one call to them asking if they had a cable box with better audio or video connectors was met with complete inability to understand what I was asking for.

Is there any chance of TiVO releasing a new box for the UK/Europe ?

Colin
 

Welwynnick

Distinguished Member
Welcome back.

Cable TV on a 61" 720p DLP RPTV. My Goodness. The UK is way behind the US with HD, but it is coming. Sky HD will be with us in a few months, and there is still BD/HDDVD to look forwards to, though other suppliers will be some way behind.

You have already got over the shipping and mains problems, so the big one that remains is that your TV will display 60Hz video, and UK sources are 50Hz.

Since you have a VGA input, that gives you a great deal of flexibility, and you can use many video processors with VGA outputs, from cheap PC monitor tuners, to expensive scalers that should give you a great picture from any source.

Nick
 

JonMace

Well-known Member
In the options on the NTL STB you should be able to turn on RGB, then from Maplins you can get a RGB to SVideo convertor this should give you a better picture.
 

Stephen Neal

Distinguished Member
As others have stated - an external scaler might be worth considering. Some of these will do a 50/60 conversion as well as allowing RGB analogue and HD component inputs to be converted.

However the conversion from 50 to 60 may not be as good as watching natively - so weigh up the costs of a scaler with the costs of replacing your TV - as Sky will be 50Hz and if you are staying in the UK and appreciate quality, watching a low-cost conversion (broadcasters pay tens of thousands of pounds for their converters) may not be a good quality choice.
 

Dutch

Well-known Member
JonMace said:
In the options on the NTL STB you should be able to turn on RGB, then from Maplins you can get a RGB to SVideo convertor this should give you a better picture.

I'm afraid Colin has already tried to input S-video at 50Hz with no picture viewable.

I think your only option would be scaler such as a Lumagen DVI or HDP which can frame rate convert 50Hz sources to 60Hz in addition to having many other desirable features. Hope this helps.

Steve
 

JonMace

Well-known Member
Dutch said:
I'm afraid Colin has already tried to input S-video at 50Hz with no picture viewable.

I think your only option would be scaler such as a Lumagen DVI or HDP which can frame rate convert 50Hz sources to 60Hz in addition to having many other desirable features. Hope this helps.

Steve

He is using his PC as a scaler the RGB to Svideo convertor would just give him a better input than compersite that he is currently using
 
C

cmclaughlan

Guest
Thanks for the pointer to the Lumagen device Steve. I've just started looking into possible scalar solutions. (Especially one that is not a noisey PC but the wife has discovered bittorrent and how she can watch her favourite US TV shows right after they are broadcast)

Yes I am already using my PC and s-video capture as a poor man's scalar.

JonMace I tried the RGB settings with a SCART to RGB cable but the TV wouldn't synch to it. Thanks for the suggestion though.

Thanks for the welcome back Nick. Yes, people are a little shocked when they stop by and see the TV ;-)

I'm holding out that whatever box I get for HD viewing will have a DVI output on it. That my TV can sych to @ 50Hz.

Thanks for the comments and suggestions everyone.

Colin
 

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