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HDCP - should it worry me?

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by dgc, Nov 25, 2004.

  1. dgc

    dgc
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    Likely to be spendng some cash shortly on a 50" panel and scaler.

    Torn between the two usual suspects PDP-50MXE 1 and the TH-50PHD7.
    Also torn between the Lumagen Vision HDP and IScan HD+. The Lumagen is edging that though the Iscan would be better as a hub with it's audio facilities.

    The pioneer is just edging it at the moment due to its frame rate options and possibly being better in brighter viewing environment (watching with the lights dimmed is a no no most of time as SWMBO is something of a book worm).
    It also has added advantage of being several hundred pounds cheaper at moment which would help pay for an amp upgrade.

    However the HDMI option on the new Panny seems as though it may cure the digital native rate issue and my major concern on the pioneer is it's lack of HDCP.

    With sky HD on the horizon I don't want a panel that won't accept HDCP signals (which I assume the sky box will pump out).

    If I went for the pioneer is there a way around the HDCP issue or is it something I shouldn't worry about.
     
  2. Dutch

    Dutch
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    Hi Charlie,

    The Pioneer can be fitted with an Aurora TVP-500F card which can replace the standard Pioneer ones. This card offers 2 HDMI inputs for use with HDCP sources, while keeping the on-board DVI for computer use. Hopefully this card will be shipping soon. Also, don't forget the new NEC 50XM4 or XR4 models which are very highly regarded and are also DVI-HDCP compliant. Hope this helps.

    Steve

    http://www.auroramultimedia.com/web/?section=products&product=tvp500f
     
  3. duvl

    duvl
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    dgc
    I'm very much looking at the TH-50PHD7 as well but am curious as to why (if you want HDMI) you have presumably discounted the Pioneer PDP-505XDE? A little more I know (£4300 Sevenoaks) but by the time you add various tuner options there won’t be much in it. The best price I've seen for the Panasonic TH-50PHD7 is £3800 (inc stand and delivery) but am still trying to find one to view before I decide.
     
  4. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    As Dutch says the Pioneers have optional card for HDCP compatability. I suspect more will appear in new year for them.

    Panasonic HDMI is unlikely to allow NR at 50Hz. The DVI card is the one for PC resolutions and we know it doesn't like 50Hz NR......

    Both are great plasma.

    Gordon
     
  5. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    duvl

    If you don't require the 'feature set' or 'looks' of the XDE PlasmaTV and you intend to employ an external Video Processor then your better off with an MXE or PHD Plasma Display model.

    The Media Box of the XDE is not ideal if your planning on using a Video Processor.

    Not having HDCP on the MXE1 is a pain - lets hope we have a couple of HDCP compliant Input Card options early in 2005.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  6. dgc

    dgc
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    cheers for the input guys

    duvl

    As joe says - the panels rather than the tv give better flexibility and with sky/freeview components already owned i don't need a tuner

    My concern about these add on cards for the pioneer is how much? The aurora cards seem to have a lot of features I won't need - so added cost for no benefit. Still I wouldn't need it immediately so perhaps fingers crossed a better solution arrives.

    decisions decisions
     
  7. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    DGC

    The TVP-500F has an SRP of 1,102.00 Euro - ex UK VAT*.

    Best regards

    Joe

    *Price correct at 30.08.04
     
  8. dgc

    dgc
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    :eek: :eek: :eek:

    That panasonic looks better and better :laugh:
     
  9. MAW

    MAW
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    The frame rate issue could be a killer. I have been optomistic that this would be solved but it seems not so far. This appears to me to mean that Pansonic, one of the authors of the HDMI spec, are unable to produce a functional interface if so. The spec states in black and white what HDMI is, and this ain't it. The 60hz limit means that pal video has a horrible judder, Pioneer are the only cure, but no HDCP.... Sometimes I hate digital video.
     
  10. hjkrebs

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    If all digital video comes from an SDI modded DVD, will the noHDCP compliant DVI still be a problem?

    Can I ask another question. Isn't the Pioneer 50MXE1 a poorer display than the 50XDE. It has 1080x768 and rectangular pixels, whereas the 50XDE has 1280x768 and close to squared pixels. Is this of importance?
     
  11. MAW

    MAW
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    The MXEis the same glass, same res. as the XDE, and is a better display with more set up capabilities than the XDE. You have found yourself misinformed. SDI gets around HDCP, you can have many DVD players modified, one of the sponsors of the board does it. SDI is much more like digital video should be, but sadly as it does not support copy protection, and even though it pre -exists HDMI, it is not the default standard. Blame Hollywood.
     
  12. cucuz

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    Excuse my ignorance chaps , but is this HDCP thing still an issue iwith the Pioneer if your source is put through and external scaler like a Crystalio or a Lumagen ?
     
  13. MAW

    MAW
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    Ignorance is bliss with digital video! Yes it's still an issue
     
  14. cucuz

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    Thanks for the reply MAW . So the only way to by-pass HDCP is to go SDI with all your sources through a SDI equipped scaler ?
     
  15. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Correct: If your source has HDCP encoded output (DVi or HDMI) then all repeaters, switchers and displays in the chain MUST be HDCP compliant.

    As you have worked out going SDI solves these issues.

    Gordon
     
  16. hjkrebs

    hjkrebs
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    All sources? Only digital sources I presume?
    I assume that mean DVD and digital satellite receivers?
     
  17. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Not ALL sources. Just those that would have HDCP equipped DIGITAL outputs...The analogue outputs do not enable HDCP.

    gordon
     
  18. MAW

    MAW
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    And guess who sells great SDI enabled scalers? That's a plug, not a dig. Though Gordon's scalers are also HDCP compliant. Wonder what the SDI board for the panasonic will be like? Same old issues I suppose.
     
  19. dgc

    dgc
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    The SDI board for the Panasonic looks very expensive.

    SDI solves the HDCP problem for DVD but potentially not for Sky HDTV.

    Of course it's all speculation at the moment until more detail emerges of what digital signal the sky HD box will output. I'd be surprised if it wasn't HDCP protected and I'd also be surprised if an SDI mod was possible. The lastest versions of Sky+ can't be modified.

    It's still a few years away but if I buy a 50" panel now I wouldn't be looking to replace for at least 5 years. I'd rather have peace of mind of a panel that will accept HDCP without having to spend £700+ on an adaptor card.

    That really leaves me the option of waiting for the next generation of Pioneer in the hope they include HDCP or ruling out the MXE.

    The NEC 50XR4 seems to be getting rave reviews on AVS. Hopefully it will be more available over here shortly. Only prices I've seen for it so far are £700 dearer than the MXE - which would pay for the MXE add on card.

    The 50XR4 does seem like the ideal compromise though (and I prefer the look of it's bezel :laugh: ).

    January will be decision time (when some builing work is due to be finished) so a few more weeks to chew things over and keep changing my mind.
     

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