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HD in more than one room?

Discussion in 'Televisions' started by phlashman, Oct 25, 2005.

  1. phlashman

    phlashman
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    Hello.

    With Sky HD just around the corner (hopefully) I'm trying to find out how I can put HD to my other HDTV in my bedroom?

    At the moment the Sky goes through the RF cables so I can watch it in other rooms. But I presume HD won't work over RF and HD won't work over those scart senders. So are there any HDMI senders?

    Thanks in advanced.
     
  2. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    There are HDMI extenders - which allow you to run longer than usual HDMI cables. However these are SERIOUS money. You might find that analogue component is easier to distribute over distances for a given budget - there may be component versions of the analogue equalised VGA over Cat5 type devices you can get.

    There is also the possibility that you will be able to use one of the new mains wiring or wireless high data rate systems - but these may take a while. Short term you may be best off using the RF2 system still and watching in SD on a second TV. I'm sure Sky will still provide that as an option. Sure the picture will be RF SD quality (and thus junk) but it will mean you can watch Sky upstairs - though if you have an HDTV in your bedroom I can understand why you'd not want to do this.

    I guess you have to work out how many of the channels you watch in your bedroom are going to be in HD?
     
  3. tim k

    tim k
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    The other option is to go the HTPC route, get a media centre pc, and with xbox 360 round the corner (if you can get on release day!) you can use wireless streaming of hd captured material. this would involve a component in video card, capturing in .ts format and then sending out to the 369 with component out to hdtv. it may sound complicated to a non technophobe, but this will be the best route to getting (and cheapest) and most accessable way of routing hd signals through the home.

    media centre also allows you to play music, video, pictures, weather, news and all sorts. a great product from microsoft.
     
  4. StevenBagley

    StevenBagley
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    Hardly cheap when a HD capable component capture card will cost you about £1000 (the new AJA Kona LHe). And even then I'd be surprised if it was support by Windows Media Centre since it is a professional video editing card and not a TV tuner.

    It'd be cheaper to run a second feed from the LNB to the bedroom and use a second HD sat box.

    Steven
     
  5. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    Yep - though it isn't clear whether the XBox 360 will play .ts files etc. It WILL play DVR-MS (which is a form of MPEG2 surrounded by a special Microsoft wrapper with Metadata etc.)

    The problem is that there are no current HD delivery systems in Europe that look like they are going to be MCE compatible. Sky HD will - at least initially - be a sealed box system. Euro1080 is satellite / cable delivered and MCE isn't DVB-S/S2/C compatible currently.

    It may be that Windows Media Connect and the XBox 360 will provided a solution - but I think you have to be careful not to jump to the "it plays on a PC therefore it plays on XBox 360" conclusion. In the US a lot of people have bought Media Center Extenders and then discovered that they can't replay Divx, DV, MPEG4 or MPEG2 HD files - only a narrow range of WMV and MPEG2 SD formats.

    I'd suggest - wait and see.

    Don't get me wrong - MCE is a pretty good product (still lots of rough edges though) - and I use it. Dual tuner DVB-T support and high quality RGB SCART connection, alongside all the other MCE stuff (one good side benefit is the ability to watch web stream feeds on a TV) make it a very good solution.

    I'm looking forward to the XBox 360 - as it will be the first time a 16:9 and 625/50 compatible Media Center Extender has been available.
     
  6. phlashman

    phlashman
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    Thanks for the info. I've got a 360 on pre-order (ordered the same day the prices where announced so I'm sure I'll be gettting one.) I'm looking foward to see what it can do without a Media Center PC. I fear it won't be much. If it isn't much I'll probibly get a Small form PC and use that for downloading and watching HD stuff as I download most of my TV now anyway. (My ISP love me LOL) With the BBC IMP offering HD stuff and I bet it won't be long until we see iTunes or something offering HD content maybe a PC is the best idea for now.
     
  7. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    Broadcast quality capture cards (like analogue component or SDI/HD-SDI types) almost certainly won't be MCE compatible as you say. MCE requires real-time hardware MPEG2 encoding - the last thing you want as you would want uncompressed video, or a frame-based only compression scheme, for broadcast quality editing.
     
  8. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Hello phlashman

    How far does your HD signal have to travel?

    Analogue HD is well catered for with all sorts of 'Component' Video Switching and Distribution products available; see http://www.zektor.com/hds42/index.html

    You can also have 'Component' Matrix switchers to enable you to view multiple HD sources on multiple HD screens.

    Digital HD is also starting to feature more and more with Switchers, Splitters and Distribution amps for HDMI appearing in all shapes and forms; see http://www.gefen.com/kvm/htda.jsp

    Long HDMI cables are now available up to 31m, see http://www.bettercables.com/31me1febecad.html and HDMI over CAT5 or Fibre optic is also available.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  9. loz

    loz
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    Probably cheaper to buy a 2nd Sky HD box and multiroom.
    Gonna be cheaper and easier than all that phaffing around with fancy and expensive distribution systems and cabling that can carry an HD signal
     

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