Does video quality reduce on HDMI pass through?

Quinch

Novice Member
I have just bought a Yamaha HTR-2071 surround sound system with AV receiver from Richer Sounds, my Virgin Tivo box is connected to the HDMI-in on the AV then the AV is connected to the tv via the HDMI-out port as per the instructions but the video quality on the tv is now noticeably worse. What is particularly noticeable is when accessing the Tivo menu or when any text appears on screen it looks hugely pixelated. There is very little mention of pass through in the manual for the HTR-2071, does anyone know why this is happening and how to fix it?
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
What TV make and model is involved?

Call RS for help as it's an 'exclusive model'. The "user manual" on their site is the briefest for an AVR I've ever looked at.

HTR-2071 - Downloads - Yamaha - Malaysia however has a more detailed one as well as the quick start version...

It can upscale 576 and 1080 to UHD... but at £299 price point most TVs will make a better fist of that so probably worth disabling that feature so the TV does the work. :rtfm: p 42

Alternatively, you may be able to use ARC (? eARC) and connect Tivo to the TV direct rather than via the AVR?
 

Quinch

Novice Member
Thanks for the link, we got a dvd in the box with the full user manual on it. The tv is an old 1080p Panasonic plasma but the picture from the Tivo box was fine previously when we had it plugged directly into the tv. We're not trying to upscale to UHD, just want the 1080p we had before. Also have an Xbox passed through which looks fine so seems odd that it would just affect the Tivo box. As far as I understand it if the HDMI is 'passed through' the AV receiver isn't doing any decoding of the signal at all so I don't understand why it now looks bad?
 

ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
Does the volume for the amp appear on both sources when you change it?

It sounds like the HDMI handshake is not working properly and might be trying to convince the Tivio box to output a lower resolution signal. What are the picture output settings on the Tivo box set to now?
 

Quinch

Novice Member
Volume just appears on AV but can access all AV menus on TV. Tivo set to 1080p and 'enable 1080p pass through ' in settings
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
What does the Panny show when you press the <i> button with the Tivo showing?

(My GT60 usually shows the input name, resolution of the input, and it's wide setting).

That might explain something? Perhaps.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Your AV receiver has no video processing or scalling and is effectively just a repeater as far as the video being passed through it is concerned. After saying this, there is some processing involved with introducing onscreen graphics and menus where the AV receiver would or could be effecting the outgoing video signal.

You don't mention what channel you are viewing while you notice the diminished video qiality. Note that not all channels are HD and many that are aren't that good in terms of their video quality.
 

DavidT

Well-known Member
Thanks for the link, we got a dvd in the box with the full user manual on it. The tv is an old 1080p Panasonic plasma but the picture from the Tivo box was fine previously when we had it plugged directly into the tv. We're not trying to upscale to UHD, just want the 1080p we had before. Also have an Xbox passed through which looks fine so seems odd that it would just affect the Tivo box. As far as I understand it if the HDMI is 'passed through' the AV receiver isn't doing any decoding of the signal at all so I don't understand why it now looks bad?
Try setting the tivo to 1080i not 1080p.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Try setting the tivo to 1080i not 1080p.


That would be a good idea and something I missed. Virgin Media don't carry any channels that would be broadcasted at 1080p (propgressive) and all the HD channels they carry are 1080i (interlaced) in nature. This means that the V6 box is deinterlacing the interlaced video prior to outputting it. THe TV would do this without you having to do it with the V6 player.

The only progressive video would be that associated with UHD broadcasts or content accessed via the Amazon Prime or Nettflix apps. THere's a seperate passthrough option in the video setting for these services.

Here's the options I'd suggest you set the TiVo's video output to in order to avoid any processing and in order to get the native video:

by default 2021-12-01 at 21.26.06.png


by default 2021-12-01 at 21.26.31.png
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
Note that the OPs old plasma Panny TV is HD 1080i/p max input in any case, so UHD features on both AVR and TiVo should be unavailable...

If OP sees, and is really bothered by, degraded pictures via the AVR cf TiVo direct into the TV input perhaps the answer is to use it that way?? (Although it will mean no 5.1 sound over ARC probably, as many Panny plasmas don't support that from other hdmi inputs,, mine included).

I am, however wondering if TiVo via the AVR is now sending 576i for SD material and then the TiVo menus will be 'coarser' than if those 576i programmes were up-scaled by the TiVo to 1080 and using its' HD menu overlays?

I know I gave up on using my Foxsat's option to send <original> format (although I could see my GT60 did a slightly superior upscale/deinterlace) due to the time taken/disruption to the picture when channel surfing SD-HD-SD etc.,. or even playing recordings in different formats.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Note that the OPs old plasma Panny TV is HD 1080i/p max input in any case, so UHD features on both AVR and TiVo should be unavailable...

If OP sees, and is really bothered by, degraded pictures via the AVR cf TiVo direct into the TV input perhaps the answer is to use it that way?? (Although it will mean no 5.1 sound over ARC probably, as many Panny plasmas don't support that from other hdmi inputs,, mine included).

I am, however wondering if TiVo via the AVR is now sending 576i for SD material and then the TiVo menus will be 'coarser' than if those 576i programmes were up-scaled by the TiVo to 1080 and using its' HD menu overlays?

I know I gave up on using my Foxsat's option to send <original> format (although I could see my GT60 did a slightly superior upscale/deinterlace) due to the time taken/disruption to the picture when channel surfing SD-HD-SD etc.,. or even playing recordings in different formats.


Then he should leave the 2160p options unchecked.

The V6 box would only output 576i if that resolution is selected in the output options. If he's only ticked the 1080p option or options then the STB will upscale everything to 1080p. The only way in which to get it to output the native resolutions is if doing as I've illustrated.
 

Nutty667

Active Member
I only have 1080p ticked on my tivo. Works fine as passthrough through receiver.
You don't really want the TV to switch into 576i for SD content as you'll either have terrible resolution guide menus or it'll keep switching resolution.
 

DavidT

Well-known Member
I only have 1080p ticked on my tivo. Works fine as passthrough through receiver.
You don't really want the TV to switch into 576i for SD content as you'll either have terrible resolution guide menus or it'll keep switching resolution.
576i is going to be upscaled by the Tivo or upscaled by the TV. If you only have 1080i selected on the Tivo then that is where the upscaling is done however most decent quality TV's will do a better job of upscaling so its better to select all the Tivo video options that your TV supports (other than 720p and 1080p) and let the TV do the upscaling.
 

Nutty667

Active Member
576i is going to be upscaled by the Tivo or upscaled by the TV. If you only have 1080i selected on the Tivo then that is where the upscaling is done however most decent quality TV's will do a better job of upscaling so its better to select all the Tivo video options that your TV supports (other than 720p and 1080p) and let the TV do the upscaling.
Yes the TV will upscale it, but it'll still be a resolution switch everytjme you flick between HD and SD as Rodders53 said.
Well there's no 720p content in UK so no point in ticking that one. Converting 1080i to 1080p is trivially easy, so irrelevant. And I don't think you can make SD channels look that much better than what the Tivo does. Any comparisons that says otherwise?

I've never had any cause to fiddle with what the Tivo outputs.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
It is ordinarilly recommended not to upscale anything using an STB or playback device. An acceptable standalone scaling device wont be an option for less than £1K and I'm pretty sure that Virgin Media aren't incorporate anything but the most basic video chipsets into their STBs?

A decent TV will more than likely include better video processing than any TV STB. Besides which, the TV manufactureing knows more about that TV capabilities than any third part manufacturer so the video processing and upscalling on most TVs will be optimised for the TV that it is being carried out on.

After saying all this, try both options and select the one you think is the better. If you see an improvement in the PQ while using the V6 box to scale the video then by all means use the V6 to scale it.

Regardless, broadcast TV PQ is horrendous in the UK and sprinkling glitter on a turd will not remove the odour. Put crap into a scaler and you just get upscaled crap out the other end. Garbage in, garbage out :lesson:


By the way, the only reason your TV upscales anything is in order for the lower resolution video to fill the TV's panel. The TV will also deinterlace any interlaced content because you cannot show interlaced video on a flat panel TV.
 
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Nutty667

Active Member
It is ordinarilly recommended not to upscale anything using an STB or playback device. An acceptable standalone scaling device wont be an option for less than £1K and I'm pretty sure that Virgin Media aren't incorporate anything but the most basic video chipsets into their STBs?
By the same token, neither do TV's.

A decent TV will more than likely include better video processing than any TV STB
That it may, but you're missing the annoyance part. If you let the TV rescale it will still resolution switch between channels. This would be annoying.
At the end of the day, SD channels are never going to look anywhere near HD regardless of the scaler you use.

Edit:
I've just tested turning on all the resolutions on the Tivo and it's exactly as I expected. Constant video resolution switching on the TV.

The Home button main menu switches to 720p.
BBC1 HD switches to 1080i
BBC1 SD switches to 576i.

Bringing the Guide up on BBC1 SD shows a pixelated guide still at 576i. Still readable, but pixelated like the OP said. Too annoying for any marginal improvement in SD upscaling. Though for me, I thought the Tivo edged out the SD picture quality, but then my TV is 8 years old.
 
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Steve356

Distinguished Member
By the same token, neither do TV's.


That it may, but you're missing the annoyance part. If you let the TV rescale it will still resolution switch between channels. This would be annoying.
At the end of the day, SD channels are never going to look anywhere near HD regardless of the scaler you use.

Edit:
I've just tested turning on all the resolutions on the Tivo and it's exactly as I expected. Constant video resolution switching on the TV.

The Home button main menu switches to 720p.
BBC1 HD switches to 1080i
BBC1 SD switches to 576i.

Bringing the Guide up on BBC1 SD shows a pixelated guide still at 576i. Still readable, but pixelated like the OP said. Too annoying for any marginal improvement in SD upscaling. Though for me, I thought the Tivo edged out the SD picture quality, but then my TV is 8 years old.

Same results for me on my 2 year old 4K TV. I just leave the V6 on Automatic nowadays.
 

DavidT

Well-known Member
I believe that my Sony 65XH9505 does a better job of upscaling than the VM V6 hence why I let the TV do it, the resolution switching doesn't bother me. I would expect any £1k+ TV to be better at upscaling than a £50ish STB. But as already said try both and go with what suits you best. BTW I never watch SD.
 
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Quinch

Novice Member
Thanks for all the responses, it's great to be on a forum with so many people trying to help.



This issue and the responses has now thrown up a load more questions for me but I'll explain the original issue first:



1. The issue appears to now be fixed although I don't really understand why. The Tivo menu on the TV now looks normal and the resolution looks ok.

2. Here's the curveball: when I was playing around unplugging cables, turning boxes off and doing resets etc I then after doing a reset on the Tivo plugged it straight into the TV and the picture was ok again (as it was before we got the AV receiver). I then routed it through the AV again and it immediately went pixelated and low resolution as before so I pulled the HDMI from the Tivo back out of the AV and plugged it straight back into the TV again and it was still pixelated?! It was as if plugging the Tivo into the AV somehow altered the settings or changed something in the Tivo box which reduced the resolution even when plugged into the TV, is that even possible?

3. To complicate things further Virgin Media TV and website was down entirely on Thursday but when it went back up again the Tivo resolution was ok. So basically I have no idea whether the issue was caused by something from Virgin's end or my end and what caused or fixed it 🤦‍♂️



I have some more questions about resolution and my Tivo box raised by responses above:



1. I looked on the BBC website and it says...



So I checked the Tivo box for my model number but there is no sticker on the back and the TSN prefix on the System Info does not match any Tivo box on their website. The prefix is C68, any ideas which box this is?



Thanks again for all the responses and sorry for the elongated post.
 

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ChuckMountain

Distinguished Member
What does the TV show on its info panel in that case?

It just sounds like it is setting the resolution for some reason at 576.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Virgin Media experience a TV service outage on Thursday that was nationwide. It lasted from about 11 am that dat untill late into the evening.



As far as BBC channels are concerned, no Virgin Media box gets 1080p. The HD channels are 1080i and the SD channel 576i.

You can get 2160p and HLG via the BBC's iPLayer streaming service though if using a TiVo V6 or the new 360 VM STBs and accessing iPLayer via the iPLayer app onboard those boxes.

No channel accessed via Virgin Media's TV service will be encoded with 1080p. All the HD channels are 1080i.
 
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Quinch

Novice Member
So even though it says 1080p on the system settings and some boxes are capable of 2160p it's all upscaled 1080i?
 

Quinch

Novice Member
For instance if I watch a 4k film from Sky Cinema your saying the Tivo box nerfs it to 1080i and upscales it?
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
So even though it says 1080p on the system settings and some boxes are capable of 2160p it's all upscaled 1080i?


Yes, if you select the 1080p setting then you'd be upscalling all lesser options left unchecked up to 1080p. THe only content you'd get with a native 1080p resolution would be that accessed via the Amazon Prime and the Netflix streaming apps etc on the STB. There's a seperate passthrough option you should use for these located just above the 1080p option.

If you were watching content with a native 4K resolution without the 2160p option selected then the box would downscale the resilution to the next lowest option you'd put a check mark besides. You'd mot a 4K display anyway so 2160p would be available anyway and shouldn't be selected.
 

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