Is Upscaling worth it?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by TazUK, Mar 28, 2006.

  1. TazUK

    TazUK
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    Ok, I've spent a lot of time reading this forum and trying to come to a decision but I can't.

    My dilemma is that I have a new HD TV (Panasonic 32LXD500) and so I want to make the best use of the new television. By a coincedence, my trusty DVD player (Pioneer DVP-717 old, but classic) has packed up so I've been allowed to get a new one. (The missus is very forgiving when she can't watch her Dirty Dancing DVD on repeat).

    With that in mind, I decided to work out what I wanted from a player and here's the list. In order of importance (1 being most important).

    1) Good quality DVD playback.
    2) Not too chunky and silver-ish looking front. (Not my request)
    3) DivX playback from CD and DVD.
    4) Upscaling over HDMI (or DVI).
    5) Recordability to either HDD or DVD.

    Normally I'd say the recording capability would put this is a different forum, but its not a big requirement. DVD playback is by far the most important aspect.

    I decided to make a shortlist of the available options but every option has downsides.

    Denon 1920 - Lovely DVD playback, but has lip sync issues.
    Sony NS92V - Nice player, but has picture shifting problems.
    Samsung R125 - Good all-rounder inc. recording, but black.
    Oppo 971H - Sounds good, but never heard of Oppo and has picture shifting problems.
    Snazio SZ1350 - Lovely features inc. HD DivX, USB and WiFi, but poor remote and DVD playback.

    I understand that not everyone gets these problems and I'm sure plenty of people are extremely happy with their choices.

    With all this in mind (and I thank you for reading this far), I have 2 main questions.



    1) Is upscaling via HDMI worth it with SD input, or would a better non-upscaling player be better with my particular screen? I'm tending toward the HDMI route only because my XBOX360 currently occupys my only component in, but if the right player came along, I could probably buy a cable and shift it to the VGA input.

    2) Whether your answer is 'Yes' or 'No' to upscaling, what is the best DVD player (or recorder) for my money? I'm looking at around £200, but I could go higher if the player was worth it.

    Any and all help would be appreciated.
     
  2. Timbo21

    Timbo21
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    I'm not sure upscaling will do you much good, since none of them will do it to the exact resolution of your TV. This means that your TV will need to use it's internal scaler, whether you're feeding it 576p/720p/1080i. I think the Panasonic is something like 768p resolution.

    I would forget the recorder side, because to get decent DVD playback from a recorder with HDMI you would have to spend quite a bit over your budget.
     
  3. TazUK

    TazUK
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    Yeah, the TV is 1388x768p

    I was under the impression that the SnaZio could actually output at 768p (don't know whether the TV understands that though).

    I think I'm swaying back to the Denon or the Sony, but I'm worried that the Sony's problems may need more than a firmware fix and I don't want to wait for a new model and the Denon seems to have problems playing DivX files in fullscreen mode.

    Grrrrrrrrr... why does it have to be sooo hard!! How much do I have to pay for a decent DVD/DivX player?
     
  4. Timbo21

    Timbo21
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    Well, the new Marantz 6600 looks pretty good. You can view a forum members review here:

    www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=315961&highlight=marantz+6600

    It playes DivX, but the cheapest I've seen it is £317 from www.petertyson.co.uk

    The £200 price can be a bit tricky.

    However, the Snazio 1350 looks great (it may well be able to output 768p). You can get real Hi Def from streaming downloaded files like WMV9 HD, or DiVXHD files, from your pc via ethernet connection. I think it will play almost everything, apart from HDDVD/Blu-ray. The only downside is the sound quality may not be as good as some of the stand alone DVD players. The Marantz would more than likely have the best sound.
     
  5. Butters

    Butters
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  6. gandley

    gandley
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    for the panys i believe outputting 1080i and letting the screen downscale is what some say is the best option. a couple of respected dealers on this site advise this.
     
  7. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Hello TazUK

    The SnaZio SZ1350 does offer you the option of Outputting PC resolution signals via the DVI socket - its non HDCP so will work with both HDCP and non HDCP DVI and HDMI Input sockets.

    The IR problems with the SnaZio are (I find) not an issue with the latest firmware and players - though you do have to keep in mind that once the Net DVD Cinema HD players receive an instruction it can take a little longer than a conventional DVD player to react if the instruction involves checking its network ports.

    DVD playback looks (again to me) very good with the SnaZio - deinterlacing is on a par with anything else I've seen at this price point; though some folk report a few glitches here and there when FFW at the highest rate.

    If you capture your Dirty Dancing DVD to your computer hard drive you can play it back endlessly using the SnaZio's streaming abilities without fear of wearing out the DVD drive :)

    Best regards

    Joe

    PS And better still put a second SnaZio (SZ1310 non DVD version) in another room then YOU don't have to listen or view Dirty Dancing!!!
     

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