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Just installed JVC D-VHS player - impressions

Discussion in 'TVs' started by Bernard Barnett, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    I persuaded my other half to buy a JVC D-Theater machine for my birthday and had a play with it at the weekend. Bought from CRT Projectors by the way - not the cheapest option but probably the surest, and it came with a very substantial high-quality transformer. I'd had doubts about whether I would see much of a difference compared with DVD on my small 32-inch Sony plasma, but somewhat reassured by comments on this forum I went ahead. The tapes I tested were Independence Day and Men of Honor, both outputting 1080i which my plasma (an ALiS screen) downscales to its native 1024. Does it blow away DVD? Normally I'm suspicious of such expressions but in this case the answer is a definite yes. I'd expected the enhanced sharpness and detail but the richer, deeper colours were a revelation. The reds are a little on the strong side but I'll probably get around to tweaking them via the screen adjustments. With the limited amount of software available I suppose this will never be much more than a toy, particularly when HD-DVD comes along, but it's a pretty amazing one. I can well imagine the effect on a big screen - unfortunately I don't have room for one.
     
  2. pdundas

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    Which model? I presume the JVC 40k?

    As to the colour - its for a good reason. Only the luminance part of DVD is 720x576 - the chroma is 360x288 (for PAL)

    On a 1920x1080 HD signal you're getting 960x540 colour resolution which your Plasma can show the full advantage of over the DVD. It is for this reason that a lot of people comment on how much better the colour looks on HDTV even on low resolution displays.
     
  3. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    Yes, it's the 40k. It seems very strange to put a VHS tape in a player and get such an oustanding result! Thanks for the explanation re colour.
     
  4. davideng1

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    Just to add to your impressions of the JVC D-VHS, I have just obtained one too. I went the slightly more risky route of importing direct from B&H in the states.
    I am sending it to a Sanyo Z1 and I can see the step up from dvd straight away. The colours are more vibrant , the blacks have more depth with no compression. The audio relates more to DTS laserdisc .

    The movies are difficult to get hold of at a reasonable price , so far I have Cape Fear , Speed , and Alien with Master & Commander on its way.

    No Regrets so far even if it is on tape!
     
  5. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    What do you think of the reds? Mine are particularly noticeable as being too strong on skin tones.
     
  6. rogeralpine

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    What's the best price you have found for the films David?
     
  7. pdundas

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    www.dvdboxoffice.com is the cheapest I've ever found them at about £17 each delivered at current exchange rates. They do not carry the Universal titles, however, and stock is somewhat variable.

    www.dvdempire.com is also worth trying. If you want a particular D-Theater title and see it on stock grab it as you may never see it again.

    If you have somebody in the US who will accept shipments for you (as few people will ship internationally) some also pop up on www.ebay.com (note the .com and not .co.uk)
     
  8. pdundas

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    The component outputs of both the 30k & 40k have come in for some critisism in the past. The main one has been that they do not deliver the whole 1920x1080 bandwidth. Whether this matters or not unless you're using a 1920x1080 capable projector I do not know.

    The solution is to use something like the Samsung SRT-165 connected to the JVC via firewire and then use either the component or DVI output of that. It's quite an expensive solution for a minor problem.

    For non D-Theater material, if you're using a HTPC you could also try connecting the JVC to the PC with firewire, running DVHStool and using the PC's DVI or RGB output.
     
  9. davideng1

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    My thoughts regarding skin tones are that they look spot on , I am also using a hoya filter on the Z1 projector .

    I agree with the above post regarding prices , there is no doubt the tapes are expensive compared to dvd but its worth it .

    I forgot to mention the JVC D-VHS machine worked out at about 360 pounds plus import duty and postage.(not to bad if you say it quickly!)
     
  10. pdundas

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    Looking at the web, the delivered price for the 40k from B&H is US$735.00 which is about £420 at current rates. Duty & VAT and fees will total about £135 therefore the delivered price should be about £550-£560. I have no idea how that compares to what you pay for a grey market import in the UK.
     
  11. CKNA

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    People who said it did not deliver full resolution were wrong and their test was flawed. Go to AVSforum and search for threads that show actual response.
     
  12. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    I'm sure CRT Projectors would be pained to hear themselves described as "grey importers"! The price paid was considerably higher than that, but it included a very heavy-duty transformer and there was the added reassurance that it had been CRT's responsibility to see that it hadn't been damaged on its transatlantic voyage. Moreover I have the confidence that, as the highly reputable company people on these forums know them to be, CRT will take care of the hassle of sorting things out if anything goes wrong. To me that's well worth the extra (especially when it's the other half's money!).
     
  13. pdundas

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    It was Widecsreen review. I've never found any problems with the component outputs either with D-Theater or other D-VHS HD material.

    Having said that, I did find a Samsung receiver for $99 which is currently sitting in the USA which I'll pick up when I'm next there and I'll be interested to try the DVI output. I don't think I'd have paid more than $99 though.
     
  14. pdundas

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    By "grey" I meant not an official import by JVC (UK). Backup is certainly useful to have when talking about JVC D-VHS machines as they have a pretty bad record on reliability.

    I have a 30k from mid-2002 which has been dead for about 6 months. The good news is that JVC (USA) have agreed to update it with the legendry "fix" free of charge as long as I pay the shipping (about £65 wach way). The 40k I have, thus far, seems quite a bit more stable.
     
  15. Chris Bellamy

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    "People who said it did not deliver full resolution were wrong and their test was flawed. Go to AVSforum and search for threads that show actual response."

    That's true for the digital output which is effectively flat to 30MHz, but the analogue component outputs drop off starting just above 22MHz (30K) or 24MHz (40K) to a rather large -8dB at 30MHz (although that's not nearly as large as first thought from the wsr review).

    I must say it's a bit of a shame that DVE 1080i (not the 720p version) was so badly affected from pre-filtering by JVC's MPEG encoder as to render such test patterns useless for the very purpose they were designed. Especially if you bought a copy!

    Chris
     
  16. pdundas

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    The digital output is just a direct dump of the transport stream directly from the tape - no processing of it goes on in the JVC at all. Whatever is on the tape comes out the firewire port (with relevent copy protection flags in the case of a copy protected tape).

    Personally, I think the "problems" with the component outputs have been a bit overblown. It's a shame but 99% of users will probably not notice and just enjoy the already excellent picture. If anyone uses a PC for DVD playback and has a firewire port you can compare by:

    (a) Connecting the JVC to a PC via a firewire port and using XP's inbuilt JVC driver.

    (b) Loading up DVHStool and doing a "Tape Preview" and playing a non-copy protected D-VHS tape.

    (c) Comparing the results playing back via the PC on whatever display device you normally use with the results of a direct input off the JVC.

    Note that DVHStool is not 100% compatible with the 40k. It will retrieve a transport stream OK but not record onto the JVC without glitches. The only way I have found to record a clean .ts from a PC to the JVC 40k is to use a Mac and the DVHSCap tool under OS X 10.2.8 or later.
     

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