HDMI Upconverting questionable???

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs Forum' started by Kalos Geros, Oct 17, 2005.

  1. Kalos Geros

    Kalos Geros
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    A provocative title to the thread but consider this: suppose you are upconverting a 576-line source to, say, 1080 lines in your brand-new HDMI upconverting DVD player...since most HD Plasmas have panel resolutions of 768 lines (rarely you can find an exact-matching 720 or 1080 line plasma), the upconverted data need to be downconverted again in the plasma display itself...so we have a double line resampling...upconverting to 720p is no different since it needs to be upconverted further to 768...I see a potential problem here...can anyone with hands-on experience put me at ease that it odesn't look as bad as it sounds?
     
  2. Lionheart

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    I do the very thing you are talking about Kalos with my Panasonic S97 upconverting dvd player to my Panasonic 42pv500 TV via HDMI at 1080i, and the reason I do it, it gives me the best picture of all the choices IMHO....I let the dvd player and the tv do all the maths and just enjoy the pic....as the tv and dvd player are designed to do these things I dont even think about it....however it is an interesting subject and there is plenty to read in various threads about this subject if you do a search
     
  3. MAW

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    Most pro installers agree with you, Kalos. That's why most custom installs are done with panels and not TVs. HDMI is a copy protection system, not a high quality interface. Output at 576p into a video scaler, and output from that at panel native resolution for the best picture. Finding a panel which accepts native res at 50Hz on an HDCP enabled digital port is the hard bit. There is one that I know of, but it has so many other potential issues, I have not yet been brave enough....
     
  4. Joe Fernand

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    Hello Kalos Geros

    If you have a DVD player with Up-Conversion its also most likely to be offering you Deinterlacing - if you want to make use of these features then 720P is most likely your best Option (I don't think any Up-converting DVD players offer 1080P - it'll be 1080i).

    Its down to personal taste as to where you 'convert' your Video signals (DVD, Freeview, Digibox, VCR ...) to match the pixel count of your Display.

    Often it does work that 'over sampling' a relatively low resolution signal and then down converting within the Display produces good results - as for Up-conversion in the DVD and then further Up-Conversion in the Display I'd suggest a bit of time spent trying out all the options in your system is worth the effort to work out exactly what works best.

    The intricacies of Plasma Display technology mean there are all sorts of processes going on that means simply worrying about 'the obvious' one is futile - if you want to get in a real sweat have a look at how a DLP projector works!!!

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  5. Galaxian

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    I thought HDMI is a pure digital connection to avoid the analogue to digital conversion giving a better picture quality and HDCP which is used in conjunction with the HDMI interface is the copy protection system?

    I've only spent a few months researching all this so I could be talking rubbish but I would like to make sure I've not misunderstood. I thought it was possible to output via HDMI without the copy protection system. I know Sky plan to use HDCP to protect the HD content but does a DVD using HDMI also require HDCP?

    The general opinion seems to be that 1080i on a 768 line panel gives the best results. I assume reducing a more detailed image rather than digitally enlarging a smaller image will always give better results.
     
  6. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Hello Galaxian

    The Hollywood spin Doctors would like us all to believe HDMI is about image quality when (as MAW says) in reality its all about Copy Protection.

    If it was about image quality then DVI or SDI would suffice - but seeing as they don't have Copy Protection built in that was never going to happen.

    In a DVD player that's HDMI equipped when you play a disc that includes Macrovision anti piracy flags the 'flag' on the disc tells the DVD player to switch on its HDCP digital copy protection and only let an image be displayed on your Display if the Display also includes an HDMI or DVI (with HDCP) socket that's had its HDCP licence fee paid for by the hardware manufacturer.

    If you play a non commercial disc in the same player then the lack of Macrovision flag from the disc means the player wont invoke HDCP - so you can play that disc on a non HDCP Display.

    The same will work in Broadcast terms - include or omit a Flag in the Broadcast data stream and you'll have HDCP switched on for some programs and not others.

    If you Output/Input 1080i from a source your the relying on your Display to Deinterlace the signal - you may find your source is better at Deinterlacing than your display so worth trying 720P too.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  7. Sharpy14

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    I use a Samsung HD950 (hey................so shoot me!), and it looks better on 720p, and I care not a jot if it upconverts then down converts before side pixellating, nor that native resolution is 768 divided by the...............oh whatever it is, the picture looks great and that, after all, is what it is all about...............surely?
     
  8. MAW

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    Of course it is, Sharpy. The original question is a valid point though, the less repeated scaling/processing/deinterlacing operations you put a signal through, the better, in general terms. It also helps to make sure you do all these operations in the devices in your system that are best at them. The purist route is SDI out of your source, at 576i, and deinterlace and scale in a device designed for just that job, and display on your panel a native res progressive signal, the best and cleanest available. This signal path as you see does not include HDMI. There's nothing intrinsically wrong with it, it is indeed a digital signal, just there is a great deal more to video than just 'being digital'.
     
  9. Galaxian

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    Thanks for clearing that up Joe.

    I plan to use my trusty old Tosh SD900e with my Plasma (when it arrives) rather than purchase a new HDMI capable player. If the picture isn't that great then I may look to purchase a new player with HDMI output and upscaling making sure to try all possible outputs for best results.
     
  10. MAW

    MAW
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    You may find that differences in the way different displays deal with digital and analogue signals govern what you replace your DVD player with. What screen do you have?
     
  11. Galaxian

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    I've ordered a Pio 436XDE which should be delivered tomorrow (currently has a Tosh 36" CRT). I'm hoping I'll be happy with my current DVD players output via component to this screen as I don't want to spend anymore more for a while.
     
  12. Sharpy14

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    The question was

    "put me at ease that it doesn't look as bad as it sounds?"

    And the answer is, it doesn't, it looks very very good. I ran a Sony DVD player through scart and it looked, not exactly guff, but not that great either. I then ran the Samsung via HDMI upscaled to 720, looked great, tried it at 1080 and it looked like it was not as good, so dropped it back.

    £115 well spent
     
  13. MAW

    MAW
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    Well, from a high end video standpoint it is as bad as it sounds. Personally I would never do it, and try to avoid it on all my installs. Of course, the £50 scaling chip in your Samsung player could perform miracles, and be way better than the scaling chip in your £2.5k plasma. I would hope not though.
     
  14. Joe Fernand

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    Hello all

    Sharpy14 - the problem with your 'It does' answer is that your answer only applies to your DVD player/Display combination.

    The same may not hold true using your Player with a different Display or your Display with a different Player.

    You really need to try out all the options on any given system and see what works best for you.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  15. Kalos Geros

    Kalos Geros
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    Thanks for your responses, lads...I'm glad that you recognized the problem...so a dedicated saler that can match the ootput res to the panel's res is best but expensive solution...

    I however find it outrageous that Macrovision should trigger HDCP protection...that basically means I cannot watch ANY of my LEGALLY purchased DVDs on a, say, LCD TV with DVI that doesn't support HDCP...this is RUBBISH and competely unaccaptable...Macrovision is a copy-protection system...how in hell's blazes can I copy a DVD digitally on a Plasma panel...I'm not Gandalf...
     
  16. MAW

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    I think we all agree for most of us it's just a pain in the ..... and most have no ambition to be a DVD pirate. The biggest pain though is that the implementation of HDCP has left us with an interface that's useless for anything but digital video on 95% of displays. Look at all the 'I've got problems, DVD to HDMI' threads.
     
  17. HeweyBoy101

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    It'll be fine. I bet if you did a blind test you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between HDMI and a quality component connection.
     
  18. malsher

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    I run 1080i upscaling from a Panasonic DVD-S97 through to a TH-42PV500A via HDMI and the quality is gob smacking. I may not be the best to comment as I have little if any experience with other plasma panels, but for my money, this is the best viewing I've ever experienced.
     
  19. neilmcl

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    I don't think anyones mentioned the fact that with some players/display combinations you may get just as good a picture, if not better with just using a good old-fashioned analogue component output. There are a number of interesting posts on the subject over on the DVD Player forum.
     
  20. Sharpy14

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    The chip in my Samsung does indeed perform miracles, but only if you use the Miracle Setting when you set it up.

    If you are an AV retailer, who does custom installs, then you are never likely to install a Samsung DVD player because the nuances of the AV enthusiast requires higher end kit, which is fine (in the same way you probably would not sully your hands with installing a TV, it simply has to be a panel).

    All I was saying was the picture is superb (to my non professional and philistine eyes) using the Samsung and upscaling it to 720.
     
  21. MAW

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    Sharpy, you misunderstand both my comment and custom install/high end kit. I would not install a Samsung DVD, for the same reason I don't install anything else made by Samsung, not that it's not good enough, but because of the most appalling backup if there is a problem. I have seen them working, many times. The miracles they perform are much in line with other kit at that price level, there is little in the way of rubbish on the market these days. Panels are chosen in CI because they are cheaper very often, not more expensive, and the end system is simpler. After all, 90% of CI customers have sky+. whatever do they want with another 2 TV tuners?
     

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