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Dissapointing LCDs - are they all like this?

Discussion in 'LCD & LED LCD TVs' started by ajf, Oct 7, 2005.

  1. ajf

    ajf
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    Was having a look at LCDs in local Comet(!) this week.
    I know Comet are perhaps not the best place to look but I could not help but notice that ALL the panels on display exhibited noticeable pixellation and banding in colours etc.

    Is this just how LCDs are, or more down to the signal and connections that Comet use?

    I had looked at the Tosh 27wl56 which seems a good panel for the price you can get it at but this was one of the worst panels of the lot.


    Andrew
     
  2. Racquel Darrian

    Racquel Darrian
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    Have a look at the new range of LGs in Currys with a HD output to them. I was gobsmacked with the 37" model.
     
  3. danvitale

    danvitale
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    Go to a dedicated movie retailer that uses quality connections and a hi def movie.

    Normal consumer stores bolt together the screens using crap connections just to play the same video on repeat.
     
  4. Jim Barry

    Jim Barry
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    Yes, LCDs look great with a high definition input. The problem is that they usually have poor quality deinterlacing and scaling circuitry, so that standard definition sources look pretty awful compared to a CRT. Digital TV tends to look bad on LCDs because the inherently sharper screen makes compression artifacts such as countouring, blocking and mosquitos more noticeable. The horrible "sharpening" filters that are typically employed make this even worse. And yes, Comet probably does have a low quality video feed.
     
  5. SteveI

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    The source quality and connection method are of vital importance. I have my PC connected to my Samsung LE32R41BD via VGA and it's just like having a 1360 x 768 monitor, each pixel is pin sharp. The only thing limiting the picture quality with this setup is the quality of the source.
     
  6. mjw123

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    Exactly - bout time people started realising this instead of criticising LCD's....these panels are only as good or bad as their sources.......... :lesson:
     
  7. Member 55145

    Member 55145
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    yea i went to comet and currys last night, all tvs were hooked up via RF as usual, looked crap, stumbled accross a 37" LCD by LG, and I was shocked! it was gorgeous, normally id overlook LG as a cheap crappy brand but this TV kicked all the others up the HDMI, my perpose of going was to see if the toshiba 58 was up to scratch but i got my eye on this LG aswell now! just need to take a Progressive source in to try them out!
     
  8. ///3oris

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    Sorry for the stupid question, but wouldn't this be true for pretty much any fixed pixel display then? What I mean is... what really makes/breaks the picture isn't just the LCD itself (for the most part) it's usually the engine in the background which is mapping all the sources to the static pixels and in the process applying random filters which don't always look great to our eyes. For example, when you look at something small handheld device (cell phone, game boys, etc), their image always looks great, since everything was written for the specific resolution they use. My little Samsung I600 has the best picture of anything I've seen anywhere, with 'perfect' blacks.

    Now, having said that and assuming that it's true, when you feed an LCD TV a PC signal you're feeing it a signal the tv doesn't have to re-scale or filter in any way... it's "raw" right? So in that case, wouldn't watching a DivX from the computer on an LCD TV look crisper than anything you could ever watch from TV/DVD sources (aside from HD?) even if watching that TV source via a PC-TV-Tuner?

    Sorry if I'm getting ahead of my own understanding of the technology, I'm fairly new to this and just want to find the right TV for my needs -- which mainly include PC/video streaming and some analog cable once in a while.
     
  9. Member 55145

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    depending on the quality on the TV's scaler really.

    i think best bet is to use a PC with DVI-D out to the LCD in the LCD's native resolution, use an ATI card with catalyst CC and the pc will probably do a better job of scaling
     
  10. ajf

    ajf
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    Sorry, that wasn't my intention at all :)
    I have an LCD monitor for my PC and that is great.
    It was just such a shock to see how poor they were in the shop, though I did suspect it may be the signal.

    Problem is I do not know of any good dedicated retailers for this type of equipment within reasonable distance so Currys/Dixons are my only options for actual viewing.

    Andrew
     
  11. SteveI

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    I'm not sure if I'm quite understanding what you're getting at here, as you've mentioned divx and pc-tv-tuner. From my playing with the samsung lcd so far, the results via vga have been far better than the results via s-video. Via s-video, dvds played with a standalone player look "okay". Freeview watched via a Nebula USB device connected to my PC then output via vga to the tv looks better than a dvd player connected via s-video, despite the freeview source being worse than the dvd. I haven't yet got round to playing dvds on the PC, but I expect the lcd tv to be more revealing of source flaws, so superbit dvds, for example, may well look better than normal dvds stuffed full of extra features.
     
  12. ///3oris

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    Yes, I think you're describing what I was saying.

    When I go in and look at these TV's in the store, even with HD signal going to it, they look like complete crap. The image is pixelated, there are areas of bluring, colors are completely off, certain colors blend, certain colors don't "mix" and stick out, etc. Now, my point is: the reason for such crappy pictures, is that the signal is digitized/processed through various filters, etc*. With a PC source, the PC outputs the exact resolution of the TV (or usually a few pixels off, which can be fixed) and due to this, the TV doesn't try to "fix/filter/scale" this image.. it just takes it as a raw signal. Which is why everything looks crisp/clear from a PC source, and thus would be the case when streaming video from the PC.

    *This is pure speculation on my part, as I said I'm new to this and am still learning. I was actually looking for opinions on whether what I was saying is right or wrong, since I plan on using my TV for PC duty... not to look at my desktop, but to stream media from my PC and use this as a second monitor.
     
  13. freekbear

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    Actually it's a whole lot more complicated, here's a list of places where image quality can be compromised (in order of the production process)

    1. When mastering the content for broadcast or DVD use. (Compression)
    2. When decoding the source:
    PAL/NTSC conversion
    interlaced to non-interlaced conversion,
    frame rate conversion (source fps -> output fps)
    scaling to your decoding device (DVD, PC) output resolution
    3. scaling from TV input resolution to TV output resolution
    4. Image processing on the TV to 'improve' quality (XD, Wega, PixelPlus, etc)
    5. Display properties of your screen. (Black levels, viewing angles)
    6. Your room setup (Darkness, contrast with surroundings)

    Also, at any stage of transmission (broadcast, cables to TV) interference can stuff things up.

    Stage 1 is probably the most imporant stage - stuff up the original broadcast/DVD release - there's not much that can improve it, the information just isn't there... This is why HD is so much better

    Why is the PC quite good at giving decent image quality, because you can roll up steps 2-4 into one, if you set everything up right, and make your TV 'dumb' -> no scaling, no image processing. Also, a powerful PC has a lot more processing power available to do this work and the decoding/filters/transforms can be updated to be beter or faster - something which most consumer box thingies won't let you.

    I only watch content via PC - it rocks!
     

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