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Capture cards and noise

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by NickBull, May 8, 2002.

  1. NickBull

    NickBull
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    I currently have a Pinnacle Rave TV card to use with Dscaler. With DVD I get a fair picture and it looks ok with the adaptive noise filter. However with LD, via Svideo, i get some very strange noise that the adaptive filter won't cure.

    This noise is like light coloured scan lines that look like they're moving down, mainly, dark scenes. They can be cured using the temporal filter, but this creats a very strange smearing effect that renders LD's almost unwatchable.

    Would a Falcon card help in this respect. I'd really like to run Dscaler with absolutely no noise filtering at all.

    Nick
     
  2. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    I have just started to have a look at my new htpc last night. Same card I think, using s-vid on from Sky. Moving horizontal bars moving vertically in direction. Look like hum bars...earthing problem. Will investigate further later in week...... Not a noise problem I don't think.

    Gordon
     
  3. NickBull

    NickBull
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    The temporal filter cures mine, but it makes a mess of the motion.

    If it's earthing then I read on AVS that re seating all the PCI and AGP cards and other connections in the pc can help.

    I might also try the Cardboard and foil sandwich that is recomended.

    If I can get it so a low adaptive noise filter setting works then I'd be more than happy. Otherwise i think it's falcon time.

    Cheers

    Nick
     
  4. laurel

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    What sort of PSU you got?

    Something decent like an Enermax can really clean up the noise a bit as well.

    I also found that my UPS gave me better results (although the other half thinks I'm off my rocker. :D)

    Cheers

    Laurel
     
  5. NickBull

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    I've got a Quiet PC job at the moment. Sometimes wish I'd gone for an enermax.

    What UPS do you use, and how much are they?

    I have my pc in an 8 gang extension with all other Audio stuff, I assume it can't be too brilliant for noise!

    Nick
     
  6. laurel

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    Nick

    They start around £50 for a decent one. I have an APC model which cost me around £130. It's a little overpowered for what I need (which is basically power cleaning/surge protection) but more is ok - right :D

    CCL over your way do a few models by Liebert which are pretty good. The main thing is to make sure they will supply enough current for your equipment.

    I think Argos do something for the home user as well.

    Something else to consider would be a simple surge protected extension block. Belkin are common. I think these really do make a difference. CCL do them as well (and are cheaper than dixons etc). 5 way for £11 6 way for £20 with telephone protection as well.

    Well worth it for me to clean up the signal. And the surge protection is a plus (we tend to have quite a few power cuts/surges in our area - I have previously blown 2 modems and a motherboard).

    Cheers

    Laurel

    Ps. You could also use one for your projector (if you didn't know that already! :D )
     
  7. NickBull

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    Laurel,

    I noticed the CCL ones. They do the enermax quite cheap too.

    Argos do an 8 way surge protection block with filtering for £35 which might be worth a try. Could benefit all my audio components.

    I heared that the Enermax has less 'noise' than the quiet PC psu, so that might be an upgrade too. Also the Pinnacle TV card is supposed to be a bit noise prone. I only got it as it was cheap to experiment with.

    Looks like I need a couple of hundred pounds to get a nice clean signal. Woner how much a second hand ISCAN pro would go for?


    Thganks for your help

    Nick
     
  8. laurel

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    Yeah - I got the Enermax from CCL. It's pretty good. Definitely less noise than before (with bog standard 300w PSU).

    I would definitely go for the surge protector. If you go for the Belkin 8 way - this also has RF filtering as well (if you use RF it's handy).

    I have both the Pinnacle PCTV and Hauppage WinTV cards and your right - the Pinnacle does suffer a bit more.

    The spend never ends eh? :D

    Good luck.

    Laurel
     
  9. NickBull

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    Never. But it's fun eeking out the last ounces of performance! Or in my case the first pounds!

    I might get a consensus about the enermax. It's actually pretty cheap for the quality. I can always sell on the Quiet PC one to offset the cost. It's a good supply if you are just doing DVD I think.

    Nick
     
  10. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    I use an Enermax. The bars are not a noise issue they are an earth issue...or a design flaw of the board itself, pretty sure of this.....

    Enermax PS is low audio noise and seems to have a low video noise too.

    Gordon
     
  11. laurel

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    I think your right Gordon. There is a difference between the Pinnacle and Hauppage card in the same PC so the card is the culprit.

    Having said this, the PSU/UPS upgrade definitely helped!

    Cheers

    Laurel
     
  12. NickBull

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    I'll try re-seating the cards and connectors in the pc.

    One thing I notice is that if I put svideo from stand alone DVD through it, the lines are a lot less prominent than from the LD.

    Could there be a conflict with the LD and the card? What is a negative earth loop and could it me a problem with connecting some equipment?

    Gordon, if you discover a solution to this I'd love to know it. The picture looks good apart from this problem.

    Cheers

    Nick
     
  13. laurel

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    Nick

    You could try earthing the chassis of the LD see whether that makes a visible difference.
     
  14. NickBull

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    Laurel,

    Good idea, Should beable to just losen a screw underneath and connect an eath to a plug and just plug it in!

    I'll give it a go tonight. I have a good 2 hours of things to try to reduce noise and improve earthing now. Something has to work!

    Cheers

    Nick
     
  15. Cam

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    Nick,
    I was running a QuietPC PSU and a Pinnacle PCTV Rave and had similar light scanlines, I got a Falcon card and that improved matters (not just the scanlines) but the biggest improvement came from ditching the QueitPC PSU and getting an Enermax. That got rid of the problem altogether and made an improvement to the sound quality to boot.
    I use an APC UPS as well, I have never used the HCPC without it so I don't know whether it affects picture quality, I'll have look later and get back about it.

    Cam
     
  16. NickBull

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    Thanks Cam, it is under consideration. Maybe just the Enermax first though, I moved the Pinnacle card to the bottom PCI slot and shielded it with a tinfoil and cardboard sandwich in a sealed envelope. On DVD not I get only slight noise.

    The big noise with the LD player seems to be coming from the player. It's pretty annoying I might post on AVS and see if anyone can explain it.

    Thanks

    Nick
     
  17. laurel

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    Hey Nick

    Did you try earthing the machine?

    Laurel
     
  18. NickBull

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    Laurel,

    You kow I didn't. I had a long list of things written down to try, by the time I ascertained it was the LD player and nothing else, I'd got a bit fed up and went to bed!

    I'll give it a go tonight. I have found a company in Bolton that do LD repairs so I've mailed them to see it it is a known problem. It may be the LD power supply or something.

    Also goign to pop to get the Suge protector, filter thing this afternoon. See if that helps things out.

    I know there's a pretty decent picture waiting to get out of the LD player if I can just clear up the noise. It explains why the Noise filters were struggling and the picture looked washed out though. The details there, it's just masjed by noise and/or Noise filter artifacts.

    Moving the card and shielding it seems to have had a noticable effect on the noise from the DVD player. Still prefer Theatretek, but it's definately very good.

    Nick
     
  19. laurel

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    Let us know what happens mate.

    By the way - I'd be tempted to plug the LD into the surge protected outlet as well to make sure it has a clean supply.

    Cheers

    Laurel
     
  20. NickBull

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    Yeah, the idea of the 8 outlet one is to tidy up cables and clean everything up a bit. I hope it works!

    Thanks

    Nick
     
  21. Cam

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    Nick,
    I just tried the HTPC without the UPS/conditioner and it does make a very small difference running without it but very little, BUT when I tried the laserdisc (925) connected to the UPS there was a pretty amazing transformation! The noise and faint lines I had been getting completely disappeared. I have just watched the Star Wars trilogy back to back...hehe..with a break for Auf Pet and they have never looked better. I had noticed a small improvement in PQ when watching movies at very unsociable hours but the effect of the UPS on laserdisc playback surpasses this.

    Cam
     
  22. NickBull

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    It didn't cure my problem, but it certainly made a difference. It is not watchable and the coloutrs more solid. I think if I get the earthing sorted out I should be getting somewhere near DVD from it.

    Still, I could actually sit through Star Wars now and not keep thinking about the picture!

    Nick
     

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