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Component Vs HTPC input

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Boris Blank, Feb 27, 2001.

  1. Boris Blank

    Boris Blank
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    Is there a noticable quality difference when using HTPC as opposed to say component (or RGB) input from a DVD player. I know that HTPC will provide a better de-interlaced picture but is there more detail when using HTPC into a projector or are they pretty much the same?
    Paul
     
  2. Gary Palmer

    Gary Palmer
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    Hi Paul,

    The HTPC produced image is soooo much better than the output from a separates DVD player (RGB or component). I sometimes watch bits of movies sat at my PC because it is so good (bit sad really). Toy Story2 can look breath-takingly detailed. On Star Trek Insurrection, some of the special effects look superb. You also notice film damage on the original print much more easily!!

    The problem is how good is your projector ? It will not be as good as a decent PC monitor (SXGA at 80Hz).

    If the video handling of your projector is not so good then an HTPC will probably produce a much better image.

    If your projector handles video very well then it may not be worth the hassle and expense.

    If you're into PC games then this is a major added bonus (play a driving game or Quake with multi-channel sound on a 10 foot screen !!!).

    The native DVD resolution is 500x700 ish (can't remeber the exact numbers). Good software on the PC upscales and de-interlaces this to a higher resolution, more stable image with less motion and digital artefacts than the s-video out of a normal DVD player.

    The upscale process can not add more detail, it just lets you produce a bigger projected image by adding more pixels interpolated from the pixels on the disk (similar idea to line doubling).

    I found that my projector does a damn good job using plain old s-video and the smallish gains to be had with my PC were offset by the hassle of having the PC in the same room as the rest of the home cinema stuff so I gave up (for now...dedicated room one day.

    If you've got a PC give it a try !

    Watch out for the DVD software though. My laptop DVD software is complete cack compared to my desktop. (I like the MGI DVD software. WinDVD and PowerDVD are popular). Check out the AVS forum (the HTPC bit)
    www.avsforum.com

    Tons of stuff there.
     
  3. Jenz

    Jenz
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    Resulting in the almost complete removal of jagged lines/stair stepping. Even non-Anamorphic material looks stunning as a result. Imagine putting up Criterion Armageddon or The Abyss and not knowing if it is anamorphic or not. It looks that good.

    If you check my set up you'll see that I switched from a Sony 725 Component Video setup to a HTPC.
    Neil's Rig

    Be warned though. If you go this route you may never go back [​IMG]



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  4. Boris Blank

    Boris Blank
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    Jenz and Gary,
    Thanks for your replies. I think the word I used, detail, was incorrect but I now understand why. Perhaps "cleaner" would be more appropriat?

    I have a Sony VW10 which has a very good scaler - I suspect that using an HTPC on that would not give the same amount of picture improvement as it would otherwise have had if the Sony didn't have a scaler. (Does that make sense?). Let me put it another way, all projectors would benefit from HTPC (which primarily scales the picture), however if the projectors on-board scaler is already good, the benefit is less obvious? Ok, I've got that.

    I think you are both right in saying I need to try this out for myself. For the Sony its maybe a case of squeezing out a few extra % increase in picture quality (I already have a progressive scan player so whether the effort is worth it remains to be seen). For a projector with a bad, or indeed, no scaler at all, the boost in qaulity would be very large?

    OK, I'm not technically minded but I think I've got it. The question I originally asked was wrong, its not a case of is HTPC better than component, its whether the SCALING of the source signal increases the picture quality - it does, but the improvement actually seen depends on the harware previously used, yes? i.e. if you had only used S-Video before then the move to HTPC is quite a leap; if you used component/progressive its a smaller step but still an improvement?

    Does that sound about right?
    Paul
     
  5. Jenz

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    Paul,

    Yes it does sound right. The benefit of the HTPC is that the screen resolution can be configured to the sweet spot for the projector, thereby making the very best use of the projector itself. This cannot be done with a dedicated Player. A test would be to use discs like Dark City to see if you get stairstepping/jagged edges using your prog scan player. If you do then the HTPC would give you the benefit because in this example you do not.

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